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  1. #11
    Alex Hawley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobfowler
    How do you get TTL flash with an FM2? The FM3A, sure, but the FM2 and FM2n only has a flash ready light in the viewfinder.
    You're probably right Bob. I just set the thing and go.
    Semper Fi & God Bless America
    My Photography Blog

  2. #12
    Mongo's Avatar
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    If you want a camera that's similar in size to the FE but that offers a faster shutter speed and TTL, your two options in older Nikon bodies are the FE2 and the FA. Both excellent cameras. The FA has the first matrix metering ever put into a 35mm body, and from all accounts the metering is excellent in horizontal orientation and very good in vertical. The FE2 does not have Matrix metering; it's limited to manual and aperture priority.

    I have the FE2, and have had it since the month after it was first released. Top shutter speed of 1/4000, flash sync at 1/250, stepless shutter speeds from 1/4000 to 8 seconds (advertised, although mine easily goes beyond 60 seconds accurately) in aperture priority mode, marked speeds from 1/4000 to 8 seconds. The FE-2 has match-needle meter display that's not bad except in very low light. There are three focusing screens available for it. And it does TTL flash amazingly well. I've set up some very complex flash situations using the Nikon flash extension cords and multiple TTL-capable flashes, and the camera has been a champ.

    Downside: Without batteries, you shoot at either 1/250 or bulb. But in all of the years I've owned the camera, this has never caused me a bit of trouble. Extra batteries for the camera take up no appreciable room in a bag (or pocket, but put them in something if you carry them this way) and I always have extras with me. Very cheap insurance.

    The FA uses an LCD readout for the meter, and offers "P" and "S" modes (Matrix metered program and shutter priority) in addition to aperture priority and manual. The FA is one of the only bodies that uses the extra features of the Ai-s lenses over the Ai lenses (the camera knows whether the lens is a longer lens or not, and adjusts the program metering appropriately). Both will mount and use the same set of lenses (Nikon Ai, Ai-s, and any Nikon AF that has an aperture ring - therefore any non-G AF lenses).

    If you want to stay with a body that's similar in size to the FE, then the FE-2 or the FA are your best choices. If you're willing to go to something heavier, then an F3 (with the appropriate flash setup) is a good, indestructable option. And finally, the F4 is a great camera that basically is the bridge between the old world of Nikon (you can mount and use pre-Ai lenses on it) and the new world (autofocus, enhanced matrix metering, and too many other features to list). Although I love the F3, if size were not a limitation and I was buying today, I'd seriously consider the F4. On the other hand, if size is important (as it seems to be for you), I'd recommend either the FE2 or the FA. If pushed I'd recommend the FE2, but that's only because I've owned one forever and it's never let me down...but I'm sure lots of people could say the same thing about the FA.

    Best of luck to you.
    Dave
    Film is cheap. Opportunities are priceless.

  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Hawley
    Hmm, that's a pretty subjective statement. The FM2 I have has an an LCD light indicator that reads +/0/- giving you a direct indication of the exposure. Using a flash like the sunpak gives TTL flash. I think what you are forgetting is that the settings (shutter speed and f-stop) on the FM2 are completely manual. Nothing is automatic except the flash brightness when it is used. But, your mileage may vary.
    Not subjective at all. The LCD used for the readout is truly awful. It's low-contrast with no backlight. The Match Needle metering is notably superior for low-light visibility. Match LED is even better (The more accurate readout, with superb low-light visibility).

    The problem with the LCD metering is not in the concept, but the poor execution. A backlit LCD or numerical LED readout would be far superior. Note that LED arrays are used in modern SLR's for this reason.

    And your Sunpack does not give TTL flash with the FM2, as the FM2 is not capable of TTL flash exposure. The extra contact on the shoe merely allows Nikon Dedicated flashes to communicate their ready state to the ready LED in the viewfinder.

    And to everybody else: Don't forget the FM3a. It's the best of the FM and FE cameras.

  4. #14

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    Thought about the FG?

    I have a couple of FG's and an FG-20 to supplement my Leica-R equipment. I wear glasses and always had trouble seeing the full frame on the FM/FE line; it doesn't have the relief that the F3 HP had. The FG is extremely light, offers full manual along with aperture-preferred and program. It has TTL flash metering with the SB-15 flash, widely available. I've got the little motor drive and it'll also use the EM winder. It's no larger than an OM-1 which is why I love it. It has the usual Nikon centerweighted metering that I've used since the 60's, along with a backlight comp button I never use. The readout is in red LED's for shutter speed. The only thing it doesn't have for me is the aperture readout in the finder which I don't mind. I've owned FG's since the 80's and have found them extremely reliable. The only other drawback to this body, in common with the FM2 and FE2 and later, is the inability to run non-AI lenses. All of mine are AI or AIS so it doesn't matter. I've never used the program mode so can't speak for that but the metering with manual or aperture-preferred is spot-on. If you don't want program or TTL flash the FG-20 is even smaller and lighter and just as great to handle. It's a perfect traveling companion and a great platform for those fantastic Nikkor lenses!

  5. #15

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    Why complicate things? Go for a plain prism F2 body. Total simplicity and a hockey puck for durability. No meter so no batteries. It uses all the older Nikkor lenses without having to consider how/if they couple to metering. KEH has some of those great early Nikkors for less than 50 bucks each.

  6. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Shively
    Why complicate things? Go for a plain prism F2 body. Total simplicity and a hockey puck for durability. No meter so no batteries. It uses all the older Nikkor lenses without having to consider how/if they couple to metering. KEH has some of those great early Nikkors for less than 50 bucks each.
    I think I'm going to pick up a handful of good non-Ai lenses before they get trashed by the camera stores that have no interest in saving or selling them. In Japan, those lenses have almost no values now, and that's upsetting me.

  7. #17

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    I recently decided I needed to put new life in my 35mm SLR shooting and went about selling off and/or trading my Olympus OM gear for Nikon gear. I decided on an F3HP with some AI and AIS primes. I can't speak for other models, but the F3 is one very fine piece of gear and I'm happy with my choice.

    Gene

  8. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Shively
    Why complicate things? Go for a plain prism F2 body. Total simplicity and a hockey puck for durability. No meter so no batteries. It uses all the older Nikkor lenses without having to consider how/if they couple to metering. KEH has some of those great early Nikkors for less than 50 bucks each.
    I wonder if my newer Nikon lenses will work on the F2's, or if there is a mount cutout that is needed?

    Didn't the F2's have an external meter option, or was that available later?

  9. #19

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    waynecrider
    The meter head will determine whether or not it will couple to your lenses. The original F2 photomic requires the metering prong on the lens, The later F2 Photomic A/AS doesn't require the prong but does need the indexing notch on the lens.
    The meterless F2 will accept any lens with an aperture ring.
    Heavily sedated for your protection.

  10. #20

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    I kinda went the other way, been using Nikkormats and a FM and FE for years. Just bought a N2020 to get the AIS lens on it. Never used auto focus b4. Looks like it might be fun to play with.

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