Nikon F4 and slide film
I have a Nikon F2 and a Nikon F3. Pretty good performers all 'round but I'd like to know if there may be an advantage in using the metering system in the Nikon F4 for slide film.
If you can, get an F5 or F6 or F100 instead.
Haven't worked with the F6, but have owned the F, F2, F3, F4, F5 and F100.
My favorites are the F2, and the F100. The F6 has the same metering system as the Nikon D2HS, and D2XS digital systems. Very worthy.
F4 had some falling apart issues went I owned it (like the F3), and is more bulky then the F5.
The F4's matrix metering is pretty good. It's not as sophisticated as the F5's, but it's decent. There is a small learning curve but it will definitely let you get more reliable exposures more quickly.
If you plan to use a lot of manual-focus lenses, the F4 is a great body because you can't use matrix metering on the F5 with manual-focus lenses.
The F6 will let you do this, but it's orders of magnitude more expensive than either the F4 or the F5.
Of course, if you want to use AF lenses, the F5 and F6 drive them much, much more quickly and the choice of sensors makes AF a lot more usable.
Jim MacKenzie - Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
A bunch of Nikons; Feds, Zorkis and a Kiev; Pentax 67-II (inherited from my deceased father-in-law); Bronica SQ-A; and a nice Shen Hao 4x5 field camera with 3 decent lenses that needs to be taken outside more. Oh, and as of mid-2012, one of those bodies we don't talk about here.
Favourite film: do I need to pick only one?
An F4 is a great camera, the matrix metering works with AI lenses and its bulk might give you comfort when the thunder roars. However, I must confess that I find it too bulky and heavy in nearly all other situations. If you don’t use auto-focus lenses I would stay with your F2 and F3 and buy an incident lightmeter instead. If you do use AF lenses and speed is important – I would go with the advice above.
The F4 has a spot meter that the F2 and F3 don't have and the matrix metering is nice, but, in the end, if you intimately know how your meter reacts to things, it doesn't matter too much.
Also depends on what & how you shoot.
I've shot all three of these cameras with slide film and enjoy using them all.
This is probably not too helpful, huh?
Originally Posted by Paul Goutiere
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To throw another option on the table, the F90x/N90s. It was the top end prosumer model that a lot of pros bought in the mid 1990's when the F4 proved not to be quite the successor to the F3.
The F90x/N90s came with Matrix and centre weighted metering and worked well with Ai/AiS and Autofocus lenses. I don't own one, my brother does and prefers it to his F4. The only advantage with the F4 is you can use ANY lens in the Nikon line up (pre AI in stopdown mode).
"Life moves pretty fast, if you don't stop and look around once and a while, you might just miss it."
I love my F4s. Spot meter works great imo, much better than the f3 center weighted. I apprecaite my F4 even more when conditions outside are not so good.
Sean Depuydt - Escanaba Michigan
Wow, these are all good ideas and information. Thank you all very much.
I have been using the incident light method with my handheld lightmeter but it is slow.
I love my F4s for the same reason's others mentioned: the maxtrix meetering with manual lens.
Try to get the (rare) Sport Finder (I like the extra viewing area). I think its a DA-30.
I've got both an F4 and an F6, and I shoot almost exclusively slides in 35mm. I think that the F4 does a slightly better job of metering than the F6, and I generally leave both of them on matrix metering and program.
There are some situations that will fool any meter, but the Nikon matrix metering is very good for 95% of what I encounter.
There are other reasons to go for an F6 over an F4, but I don't think metering is one of them.