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  1. #1

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    Looking For a Split Prism Focus Screen for my Nikon N90s

    Needing a split prism focus screen for my Nikon N90s (60 yr old eyes and Leica R glass), I bought a Nikon EM. I'd read somewhere that their screen could be used. It looks like it would work, but I see 2 problems. One- the EM is such a neat little camera I feel badly about robbing it of it's screen. Very compact little guy, but w/ no way to adjust metering on the fly it's not good for a lot of things. So shooting the manual focus lenses on it instead of the N90s won't work. Two- I'll need to cut it down in length and width a little. Not the end of the world, but I'd prefer one that just slipped in.

    Does anyone know of any affordable split prism screen I can slip in there? The Katz Eye screens cost 3 times what I paid for the camera, so that's not an option, really. The one fleabay seller I emailed had screens at a good price, but he informed me his screens for the D40 wouldn't work in the N90s. Maybe I need to find someone that sells split prism screens for the Nikon DSLR's that have full frame sensors. I haven't a clue on that subject, as all I shoot is film.
    Last edited by momus; 12-02-2011 at 06:43 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  2. #2
    CGW
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    Quote Originally Posted by momus View Post
    Needing a split prism focus screen for my Nikon N90s (60 yr old eyes and Leica R glass), I bought a Nikon EM. I'd read somewhere that their screen could be used. It looks like it would work, but I see 2 problems. One- the EM is such a neat little camera I feel badly about robbing it of it's screen. Very compact little guy, but w/ no way to adjust metering on the fly it's not good for a lot of things. So shooting the manual focus lenses on it instead of the N90s won't work. Two- I'll need to cut it down in length and width a little. Not the end of the world, but I'd prefer one that just slipped in.

    Does anyone know of any affordable split prism screen I can slip in there? The Katz Eye screens cost 3 times what I paid for the camera, so that's not an option, really. The one fleabay seller I emailed had screens at a good price, but he informed me his screens for the D40 wouldn't work in the N90s.
    Not sure they're ever was one.A DIY transplant isn't a solution. The matte and grid screens were it for the N90s/F90x simply because it's an AF body. I have several of these, along with the smaller 8008s/801s, and love 'em with manual lenses. While their finders are big and bright, the electronic rangefinder/focus confirmation really makes focusing with manual lenses precise and easy. Have you tried it?

  3. #3

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    Yes, I routinely use the focus confirmation light, and I love it. But when my R 90 Summicron is at f2, the field of focus is very small. So small, that I can fix the focus on the eyes and just have them sharp in a portrait. When I miss focus on something like that, an inch is the same as a mile. I blew it. I can't really trust the focus confirmation light, because it isn't accurate enough. I've tested it, and the camera is not always 100% right. At f4, no big deal, but wide open it is important. Cutting the EM screen down is doable, but I'd rather not do it if I don't have to. Believe me, as much as I love the bright finders on the cameras you mentioned, a split prism focus screen would be much better for my needs.

    I screwed my Summicron w/ adapter onto the EM, and wow. You can get accurate focus in a split second on the EM, and you know it's on the money, not nearly on the money. The center weighted exposure was correct too, even using stopped down metering. But the EM isn't what you'd want for portraits because it has no spot or matrix metering, no manual metering, nor an AE lock to get the correct exposures.
    Last edited by momus; 12-02-2011 at 06:40 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  4. #4
    CGW
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    Quote Originally Posted by momus View Post
    Yes, I routinely use the focus confirmation light, and I love it. But when my R 90 Summicron is at f2, the field of focus is very small. So small, that I can fix the focus on the eyes and just have them sharp in a portrait. When I miss focus on something like that, an inch is the same as a mile. I blew it. I can't really trust the focus confirmation light, because it isn't accurate enough. I've tested it, and the camera is not always 100% right. At f4, no big deal, but wide open it is important. Cutting the EM screen down is doable, but I'd rather not do it if I don't have to. Believe me, as much as I love the bright finders on the cameras you mentioned, a split prism focus screen would be much better for my needs.

    I screwed my Summicron w/ adapter onto the EM, and wow. You can get accurate focus in a split second on the EM, and you know it's on the money, not nearly on the money. The center weighted exposure was correct too, even using stopped down metering. But the EM isn't what you'd want for portraits because it has no spot or matrix metering, no manual metering, nor an AE lock to get the correct exposures.
    I really don't think the amateur transplant surgery will work. Get a manual body with a split screen option like an FE or even an F3 or an FA if you think matrix metering will help.You're asking for a lot, feature-wise, from some old manual cameras.

    Probably the simplest solution is a Beattie N90s screen for around $135:

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=REG&A=details

    AFAIK, the Nikon DSLR screens--regardless of make--are not backwards-compatible to film bodies.
    Last edited by CGW; 12-02-2011 at 07:02 PM. Click to view previous post history.

  5. #5

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    No can do. Put a $135 focus screen into a $40 camera! That would be pretty dumb. The EM's screen is exactly the same thickness, it just needs some trimming on the length and width. Putting a focus screen into a N9os takes about 30 seconds because they're designed to be easily replaced. There's no chance of the focus being skewed from what you refer as an "amateur" job. Jeez.

  6. #6
    CGW
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    Good luck!

  7. #7
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    Get a $40 manual focus camera. If the N90 is anything like the N75 or the F100, the screen image is too small to manually focus no matter what kind of screen you have.
    Or the Nikkor AF 50 1.8. It is cheap and will autofocus on the N90, so you can keep its screen.

    I often wonder why people get fixated on two incompatible pieces of 35mm equipment when 35mm equipment is so cheap these days.

  8. #8
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    Just how do you use Leica R lenses on a Nikon?
    Mount tranformation kits or adapters where you lose infinity focus?

    Anyway, if your R lenses still have their native mount, I'd highly suggest a Leicaflex SL: less than €200 in reputable shops here and IMHO has the absolutely best focusing screen and viewfinder for manual focus ever (despite what Olympus OM fans claim)!
    Whenever I need to use an SLR in difficult light, with very long lenses or where focusing is critical, it's the SL I grab (and I have many bodies and brands to choose from).
    Last edited by Rol_Lei Nut; 12-03-2011 at 07:13 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    M6, SL, SL2, R5, P6x7, SL3003, SL35-E, F, F2, FM, FE-2, Varex IIa



 

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