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  1. #1

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    On the Need for Speed...

    A long-time 35mm SLR shooter (Nikon, in case you haven't noticed my signature...lol), I have always been somewhat humoured at the manner in which camera manufacturers have made the speed of their motordrives (pre-integral as well integral) a prominent part of their advertising. Beyond working photojournalists and those in the scientific community, how many other shooters really need the speed offered by these drives? My own experience is perhaps a case in point. Other than way back in the early 80s when I shot two space shuttle launches (and learned the meaning of a "horde of insects") and on those occasions when shooting athletic competitions of various sorts, I have ever, if memory serves, to use the fire-power offered by these cameras. Whether using an F2, F3, F4,F5 or F6, I leave the drives set to "S"; a quick press-depress-press seems to work for me on most occasions. (BTW: I chose the F-series for the 100 per cent viewfinder, since I am - as I have noted elsewhere - a full-frame shooter.)

    I am curious as to how many other 35mm shooters out there share my sentiments: Have you ever really had the need or occasion to utilize the full fire-power of your camera? Is a 5/6/7/8/fps drive overkill for most photographers? Do bragging rights (at least in part) underlie the continued need for faster drives? Thoughts?
    An assortment of F-series Nikons with quite a few Nikkors, a pair of M6s with some Leitz glass, a pair of 500c/ms with a wide range of Zeiss optics and, just to help keep Duracell solvent, a D800.

    Favourite films: (1). KE ("Kodachrome Era"): 35mm: PKM25 and PKR64, HP5/Tri-X; 120: PKR64, PanF, FP4. (2). PKE ("Post-Kodachrome Era"): (a) 35mm: E100G, HP5 Plus/Tri-X and Delta 3200; (b) 120: E100G, PanF Plus, FP4 Plus, TMax 100.

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by BradleyK View Post
    A long-time 35mm SLR shooter (Nikon, in case you haven't noticed my signature...lol), I have always been somewhat humoured at the manner in which camera manufacturers have made the speed of their motordrives (pre-integral as well integral) a prominent part of their advertising. Beyond working photojournalists and those in the scientific community, how many other shooters really need the speed offered by these drives? My own experience is perhaps a case in point. Other than way back in the early 80s when I shot two space shuttle launches (and learned the meaning of a "horde of insects") and on those occasions when shooting athletic competitions of various sorts, I have ever, if memory serves, to use the fire-power offered by these cameras. Whether using an F2, F3, F4,F5 or F6, I leave the drives set to "S"; a quick press-depress-press seems to work for me on most occasions. (BTW: I chose the F-series for the 100 per cent viewfinder, since I am - as I have noted elsewhere - a full-frame shooter.)

    I am curious as to how many other 35mm shooters out there share my sentiments: Have you ever really had the need or occasion to utilize the full fire-power of your camera? Is a 5/6/7/8/fps drive overkill for most photographers? Do bragging rights (at least in part) underlie the continued need for faster drives? Thoughts?
    No. My thumb does just fine.
    It takes me weeks to months to use an entire roll of 36 exposures, unless of course I'm photographing something like a lot full of vintage automobiles.

  3. #3
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    I used it once when it was useful. I would easily live without it.
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  4. #4
    David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
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    Except for the occasional burst for a sequence shot, when I'm doing bird photography, I rarely shoot in multi-shot mode, BUT, on my Canon New F-1, the camera reacts faster in single-shot mode with the 5fps motor drive than it does with the 2fps power winder, so I usually have the motor drive attached. I tried the power winder for a while, figuring it was smaller, lighter, and only took 4 batteries instead of twelve, but the lag was so annoying, I sold it. I also have an EOS-1N RS, with a pellicle mirror, which is even faster, but the attraction is mainly the reduced lag time, no mirror slap, and quiet film transport, more than the possibility of consuming a roll of film in 3.6 seconds.
    flickr--http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidagoldfarb/
    Photography (not as up to date as the flickr site)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com/photo
    Academic (Slavic and Comparative Literature)--http://www.davidagoldfarb.com

  5. #5

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    I used to have a power winder for my Canon F-1 until it broke down. Hardly ever used it and took it off.
    I have a motor drive for my A-1, hardly ever used it. For me their are a waste of $.

    Jeff

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by BradleyK View Post
    Do bragging rights (at least in part) underlie the continued need for faster drives? Thoughts?
    That is the only value I've had from those motor speeds.

  7. #7
    Truzi's Avatar
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    I finally got a power winder because I've always wanted one, though have no real need for it. All I've accomplished is accidentally holding the button too long and getting multiple shots I didn't want
    Truzi

  8. #8

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    From my casual conversations with others over the years I find that many are on the miserly side when shooting film. Upon viewing images they're often disappointed with exposure or timing when a quick bracketing burst could have delivered a far more satisfactory image. Is 6-8 fps overkill for most, you ask? Probably. But not for me. On many occasions a burst has delivered one appreciably better image than the preceding or following images in the sequence. Even something as simple as shooting kids, perpetually in motion, often requires luck or fast fps to avoid closed eyes in mid-blink. Film is cheap and the cost soon forgotten but the images and memories live!

  9. #9

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    I have no need for speed. Although, I see where it might be handy on some wildlife shots.

  10. #10
    Fixcinater's Avatar
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    I have a motordrive for Canon A1: Use it because the grip fits my hands better than bare camera.
    I have a motordrive for Canon 3: Don't use it because it's giant and heavy.
    I have a triggerwind for Canon VT: Use it because it looks dangerous, hence cool.


    I used to shoot on motor drive a bunch but timing something correctly (yes, even sports) makes for a better image than just hoping you get it, even at 10FPS.

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