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  1. #11
    John Austin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by astroclimb View Post
    If you would like an inexpensive, rugged MF body that takes Nikon lenses from any era, I'd suggest a Nikkormat e.g. the FT2.

    I've had one since I was 12, still is fantastic (and that was like 4 decades ago) to use for a fully manual camera with spot metering. I picked one up recently for like $40.

    Cheers,

    Todd
    I concur, and at the price of a VGC Nikkormat FT2 you can't go wrong even it you later refine your camera the Nikkormat will be an unfailing stand-by camera, provided you keep the battery terminals clean and remove the battery when not in use

    I acknowledge the Nikkormat does not have spot metering etc that you desire, so decide if spot metering is needed in practical use

    I got a free black FT2 that was "ruined", but following removal of dead battery crap from the battery compartment has worked perfectly ever since - Also, as a manual camera, if the battery is dead the camera still functions

  2. #12
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    The N90s is a great choice for an inexpensive auto focus camera. Works great with nice older flashes too.
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  3. #13

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    how about my Nikkormat system, which will be for sale very soon now that I stepped into medium format (read: freefalling headfirst without a parachute or a bungee cord)
    5x7 Eastman-Kodak kit / B&L 135mm Zeiss Tessar + Compur Deckel
    4x5 Graphic View, made in USA! New project
    RB67 Pro S /50 4.5 / 90 3.8 / 180 4.5 / WLF / prism finder / polaback
    Random 35mm stuff

  4. #14
    Chris Nielsen's Avatar
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    I have an N90S and absolutely hate it. My last camera was an F5 and it feels horrible and clunky by comparison. Plus it is has the dumbest design I've ever seen - in some modes the aperture on the lens has to be locked at smallest aperture, but the rest of the time you have to unlock and move it, and because it's stupid and only has one control wheel it can't control the aperture from the body. What drugs were they smoking in Japan when they came up with that?

  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Nielsen View Post
    What drugs were they smoking in Japan when they came up with that?
    It was '92; what do you expect? I prefer the F4, but the N90S (F90X) is more advanced. Couple it with an AF 50mm f/1.8D and you're golden. Thom Hogan has a great review: http://bythom.com/N90.htm

    Mr. K. Rockwell has a pretty good review/user's guide to the N90S too, if you can filter out the BS.

  6. #16
    Rol_Lei Nut's Avatar
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    Keep in mind that AF bodies don't do manual focusing very well.
    Even if you (can) install a MF-friendly focusing screen, in most cases it still won't be as easy to accurately focus as with a good camera having a viewfinder optimized for MF.

    IIRC, Nikon doesn't have any MF models offering spot metering.

    Other excellent alternatives certainly exist, but are more expensive.
    M6, SL, SL2, R5, P6x7, SL3003, SL35-E, F, F2, FM, FE-2, Varex IIa

  7. #17
    sandermarijn's Avatar
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    Be wary of the sticky back problem on the F90x. Nikon somehow chose the wrong material. F80's can also go sticky, though not as easily.

    The F100 is a great camera and can be had for under 100 euros, but it has its own issues:
    - rewind fork was too weak in early batches (plastic),
    - in cold conditions transport locks up (use lithiums),
    - the metering mode selector on the side of the prism needs to be 'worked' in order to work properly.

    The F801(s) is a great camera, unless you desire AF with AF-S lenses.

    I personally like the F301 for having manual focus on a proper screen, and motorized transport at the same time. It's also cheap, small, light, reliable, and the mirror slap isn't too hefty. Mirror slap is what I dislike the older (F3, FE2, etc.) Nikons for.

  8. #18
    Chris Nielsen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LJSLATER View Post
    It was '92; what do you expect? I prefer the F4, but the N90S (F90X) is more advanced. Couple it with an AF 50mm f/1.8D and you're golden. Thom Hogan has a great review: http://bythom.com/N90.htm

    Mr. K. Rockwell has a pretty good review/user's guide to the N90S too, if you can filter out the BS.
    What do I expect? Not a semi-pro body with such a ridiculously bad design.

    BTW, If you cut all the BS from KR's site, that leaves about half a paragraph

    My one also has a loud squeal from the autofocus. Not sure if it's a common problem but it drives me nuts.

  9. #19
    CGW
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    Quote Originally Posted by markbarendt View Post
    The N90s is a great choice for an inexpensive auto focus camera. Works great with nice older flashes too.
    Agree. Either the newer N90s/F90x or the slightly earlier 8008s/801s would fit the bill price-wise and feature-wise. Great viewfinders, AA-powered, no problem with manual lenses.

    I'd skip relics like Nikkormats. Later manual bodies are getting tough to find in good shape.

  10. #20
    Ricardo Miranda's Avatar
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    Chris
    The "ridiculously bad design" was the same as the 1988 F801 or the F4 concerning the need to lock the aperture ring at its minimum aperture and to use that ring for A or Manual modes. The first Nikon to have 2 dials to work the aperture and shutter was the F5 in 95.
    It wasn't a design fault: it was to make use of manual features and to allow manual AI/S lenses to work with the new AF bodies.
    IMHO, the F90X is one of the greatest cameras and its AF motor is very robust and fast, albeit loud and that's the loud squeal you hear. Only the F5 has a better AF motor.
    You can have a F90X these days for less than £60 including the MB-10 grip. One of the nice things about this camera is that it uses 4xAAs on the body or the same set on the grip and it was also the first Nikon to have a battery indicator on the top LCD and a very nice illuminator.
    Its "modus operandi" is basically the same as the F801/S and F601. As I have all 3 types, it makes it easy to switch from one camera to the other!
    I heartily recommend it and, yes, I have 4 of them! Together with the F4 they are the only Nikons I use these days.
    Miguel
    If you can find a F4 for less than your 100 Euro budget, than you'll have a camera for life! It is the best AF camera to work with manual lenses. Otherwise, the F90X will fit better on your budget.
    Good luck and good shooting!
    My cameras:
    Fed 2
    Zenit 11, 12XP
    Nikon F4, F4S, F401S, F601, F801, F801S, F50, F55, F60, F65, F70, F75, F80, F90, F90X, EL2, FE, FM, FG, FG-20, EM

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