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  1. #1
    kivis's Avatar
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    Brightest Viewfinder on a Nikon SLR and I wear glasses

    I've heard it's the F3Hp, true? others?
    Akiva S.

    Nikkormat FTN, Nikon F, Nikon FE, Leica M3

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  2. #2

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    My FM2N with the B3 focusing screen is obviously brighter and snappier to focus than any other Nikon I have used, including the F3. A 3-series screen is probably what you have in your FM3 already.

    Still, I grab the "darker" F2 boxes (all with B screens) far more often when heading out for a walk. I've never tried to quantify or even understand it, but they're "easier" to focus somehow.

  3. #3

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    The K3 split image screen that originally came with the FM3A - can also be used in FE2 and FM2, is the brightest and never goes dark regardless of slow lens or stopping down. I don't wear glasses but understand the F3HP is best for those who do but it is not the brightest.

  4. #4
    stradibarrius's Avatar
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    I wear glasses too. I've had an F3HP, I have an F100, an FE but I like the viewfinder on my F4 the best.
    "Generalizations are made because they are generally true"
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    Barry
    Monroe, GA

  5. #5
    CGW
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    Although the F3(HP) DE-2/DE-3 finders are always trotted out as the brightest, the finders on later models like the 801s/8008s and N90s/F90x are also quite bright with good coverage and high-eyepoint relief.

  6. #6
    lxdude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CGW View Post
    Although the F3(HP) DE-2/DE-3 finders are always trotted out as the brightest, the finders on later models like the 801s/8008s and N90s/F90x are also quite bright with good coverage and high-eyepoint relief.
    I agree. The only problem with the later model viewfinders, IMO, is that they seem to be a microprism of some type. They work well for manual focusing, and are bright, but their rendering of out of focus areas is not as accurate as a ground glass screen. For example, an out-of-focus specular highlight viewed through a lens wide open is rendered as a pentagon, and straight lines easily become doubled
    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.

  7. #7
    CGW
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    Quote Originally Posted by lxdude View Post
    I agree. The only problem with the later model viewfinders, IMO, is that they seem to be a microprism of some type. They work well for manual focusing, and are bright, but their rendering of out of focus areas is not as accurate as a ground glass screen. For example, an out-of-focus specular highlight viewed through a lens wide open is rendered as a pentagon, and straight lines easily become doubled
    Not sure I follow you here. I'm not seeing this effect to any greater or lesser degree among these cameras. Aren't specular highlights' shape set by the number of aperture blades? My 45/2.8P has 7 blades and great bokeh--way better than my 50/1.8AFD.

  8. #8
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    The shape occurs with a wide open lens. I have an N8008S and that's the one it happens with. With the F3 I just get the standard realistic blur. Looking at a specular highlight, or for example a small LED light on a printer, and defocusing, what I get is a pentagon with a darker center. The center has a lighter spot inside it. Light and dark lines run through the pentagon extending beyond it, making its edges soft. When focused closer than the object the pentagon is flat on the bottom, when focused farther it inverts. An out of focus straight line, like a tree trunk or roofline of a house appears as a double line, though the lens does not render it that way.
    All very "prismatic".
    Stopped down the shape of the diaphragm "trims the edges" of the pentagon and the diaphragm shape prevails. The other characteristics remain, diminishing as depth of field brings the image closer to focus.
    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.

  9. #9
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    I'm not sure if you would care for auto-focus, but I really enjoy using my Nikon F6s. I wear glasses, and can see the entire viewfinder and the display while wearing my glasses. I'm nearsighted, so I also got the -3 diopter. Further, I have installed the focus screen with the microprisms in the center (no split image, only microprisms).

  10. #10
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    The brightest viewfinder on a Nikon SLR is probably one with a G screen.

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