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  1. #1

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    Accuracy of Nikon FM2n's Higher Speeds

    I have seen this subject mentioned, and even debated, elsewhere. Thus, as I am considering adding an FM2n, I thought I would query the APUG 35mm panel experts. I have read that the 1/4000th and perhaps even the 1/2000th speeds are fairly inaccurate. I recall reading that the 1/4000th setting really fires at about 1/2750th. Has anyone heard this? Can anyone confirm, deny...or discuss? I really like my FE and FE2, and I would not want to be disappointed with the FM2n.
    Last edited by FilmOnly; 06-12-2010 at 02:18 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  2. #2
    PhotoJim's Avatar
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    Mechanically-timed shutters tend to be slow at their fastest speeds. I have only used 1/4000 a couple of times on mine, but I find 1/2000 to be accurate enough that I don't need to apply compensation.
    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?

  3. #3

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    Tolerance is +/- 25%. You can get an electronically timed shutter close and a mechanical shutter dead nuts on at 1/000 but 1/750 to 1/1250 is still within tolerance.
    Heavily sedated for your protection.

  4. #4
    Carl V's Avatar
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    My advice would be to shoot a roll of film of the same subject at all shutter speeds and adjust your aperture to compensate; if there are any major differences in speeds, this will show up when you process the negatives.

    Personally, I've never heard of this problem specifically with FM2's and have been using them for years. However, as John Koehrer mentions, any camera model/manufacturer's shutter may produce a speed with a slight variation on what it's supposed to be firing at, but it won't be significant enough to produce over or under exposure.
    Carl.

  5. #5
    RalphLambrecht's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carl V View Post
    My advice would be to shoot a roll of film of the same subject at all shutter speeds and adjust your aperture to compensate; if there are any major differences in speeds, this will show up when you process the negatives...
    Good advise and best done with slide film.

    For the technically minded, there are shutter-speed testers available, even as DYI kits.
    Regards

    Ralph W. Lambrecht
    www.darkroomagic.comrorrlambrec@ymail.com[/URL]
    www.waybeyondmonochrome.com

  6. #6
    Alex Bishop-Thorpe's Avatar
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    If your shutter speeds aren't a problem in practice, it isn't a problem. Using a shutter speed tester will only make you paranoid - the truth is that it's very unlikely that any shutter you own is dead on accurate at all of it's speeds. As long as it isn't enough to be noticeable in practice, there's nothing to fix.
    As for the FM2/FM2n, I can only really comment that I've used a Nikon FM2n for the last 4 years and never encountered a problem with it's high speeds.
    The Analogue Laboratory, or 'so you built a darkroom in an old factory in the industrial zone'.
    Blog thing!.

    Worry less. Photograph more.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fleath View Post
    If your shutter speeds aren't a problem in practice, it isn't a problem. Using a shutter speed tester will only make you paranoid - the truth is that it's very unlikely that any shutter you own is dead on accurate at all of it's speeds. As long as it isn't enough to be noticeable in practice, there's nothing to fix...
    I was very happy shooting with an Asahi Pentax MX, which to my eye was giving me very good exposures.

    Then I had to have it serviced (for some other problem) only to be told that the shutter speeds were all in need of adjusting as they were all out.

    This has now been done, and there is very little if any apparent difference in the result.

    Go figure

  8. #8
    Alex Bishop-Thorpe's Avatar
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    I built a shutter tester last year to check the accuracy of an old leaf shutter - I found out that 1/500 of a second was much closer to 1/100 of a second. That kind of information is pretty useful. Finding out my Canon AE-1P's 1/250 of a second was closer to 1/300 wasn't worth worrying about though...
    The Analogue Laboratory, or 'so you built a darkroom in an old factory in the industrial zone'.
    Blog thing!.

    Worry less. Photograph more.

  9. #9
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    As I recall, some shutter testers yield inaccurate results with leaf shutters. From what I understand, they start timing from the moment the shutter starts to open, which leads to inaccuracy at the higher speeds when the opening and closing phases comprise a significant amount of the total elapsed time. A way to measure total light through a known aperture would give a more accurate number.
    Last edited by lxdude; 06-16-2010 at 04:51 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    I do use a digital device in my photographic pursuits when necessary.
    When someone rags on me for using film, I use a middle digit, upraised.

  10. #10

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    If your are concerned about accuracy at higher speeds, then purchase an Fm3A, the shutter is controlled electronically with batteries installed and reverts to manual if no batteries. Best of all the Fm type Nikons.-Dick

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