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  1. #1

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    Which Nikon F do you feel is the most refined?

    I'm talking about feel. I'm interested in a MF Nikon and so I am thinking F-F3. Well I have an F with photonic head and it feels a bit clunky and so I am thinking of maybe getting a plain prism on an F2 or maybe just an F3. The "problem" with the F3 is that I don't need the meter and would prefer a mechanical shutter but for this camera, I might make an exception.

    From my distant memory I think that the F3 felt more refined but I haven't handled one in a long time and have never owned the two at the same time (I usually own one SLR at a time).

  2. #2
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    I would go for the F2 with the plain prism, it handles better than the F they improved the handling by moving the shutter release button further forward towards the lens mount, rounding the corners of the body, and shortening the winding lever stroke
    Ben

  3. #3

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    Probably the F2, with it's rounded-off corners. Basically it's an F with an extra shutter speed and a few other refinements. But for me, nothing beats an F with the plain prism. I have the FTN finder for when I need TTL metering (macro), but it's the plain prism which lives on the camera.

  4. #4

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    I've owned two Nikon manual focus cameras, the original F camera with a plain pentaprism viewfinder and a Nikon F3HP. I definitely would vote for the F3HP as the most "refined" manual focus Nikon that I've owned/used. I've been pretty much into digital photography since about 2005 (also with Nikon DSLR's), but I recently loaded up my Nikon F3HP with some film and I'm looking forward to seeing the results! The camera's functions (for a camera purchased in 1983) are working properly and it appears just as efficient as ever.

    Here's an interesting review of the Nikon F3HP from a recent issue of Shutterbug magazine: http://www.shutterbug.com/content/sa...-35mm-slr-saga

    Jim

  5. #5
    cliveh's Avatar
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    As a rangefinder user, I am not the best person to comment on this thread, but I do own a Nikon FM2 which is nice and chunky.

    “The contemplation of things as they are, without error or confusion, without substitution or imposture, is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention”

    Francis Bacon

  6. #6

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    Get a plain prism for you F, or an F2 with a plain prism. The problem is that the plain prisms on either are scarce compared with the Photomic head. But then I like early F's from a nostalgic point of view. The best 'F' I have ever had is, I think, the F3, which doesn't help with your question.

    Steve
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/steve_barnett/

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    landscape photographs in and around the Peak District National Park, UK.

  7. #7
    Richard Sintchak (rich815)'s Avatar
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    "Well, my photos are actually much better than they look..."

    Richard S.
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  8. #8
    stevebarry's Avatar
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    I have a plain prism F and F3 and like both. My F is beat up pretty bad - shutter button position never bothered me on the F. The film advance lever on the F3 is very very nice though - nothing better from nikon if you ask me.

    I like the idea of the F being totally mechanical....but film advance feels like there is a hump about 2/3's the way through, and the lever itself feels very thin somehow. Every time I advance the film on the F it sorta feels like the lever could snap. And the F is bottom load on the film, sort of a pain if you go through film fast and are used to a film door. Another thing, the viewfinder on the F is somehow nicer than the F3 to me. Seems bigger or brighter.
    steve barry
    my stuff

  9. #9

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    The Nikon F2 is the finest fit and finish camera to ever come out of Japan.

  10. #10
    TheToadMen's Avatar
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    Both are fine cameras. More important: which one feels & handles best in your hands?
    If it's just a matter of money, I'm guessing you'll find a cheaper F3 sooner than the F prism.
    If this all doesn't matter, I would go for the oldest camera system just becouse I can and the history of it.
    "Have fun and catch that light beam!"
    Bert from Holland
    my blog: http://thetoadmen.blogspot.nl
    my Linkedin pinhole group: http://tinyurl.com/pinholegroup


    * I'm an analogue enthusiast, trying not to fall into the digital abyss.
    * My favorite cameras: Hasselblad SWC, Leica SL, Leica M7, Russian FKD 18x24, Bronica SQ-B and RF645, Rolleiflex T2, Nikon F4s, Agfa Clack and my pinhole cameras

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