Monday, January 19, 2015

Spotlight: Nikon F2

Nikon F2 with Standard DE-1 Finder, 50mm F/1.4 Nikkor, and AR-1 Soft Release
The Nikon F2 was first introduced in 1971, and is the last fully mechanical professional camera Nikon ever made. As the successor to the original Nikon F, the F2 attempted to improve on its predecessor in every way. Here's a list of the more significant improvements and additions Nikon made with the F2:

- A faster top shutter speed (1/2000th vs. 1/1000th).
- A special self-timer that allows for 10 second timed exposures, as well as delayed shutter action.
- A swing-open back, making film loading way easier and faster than the original F, where the back came completely off.
- A shutter locking mechanism! (Just twist the dial around the release)
- Multiple exposures!
-A way more convenient mirror-lock-up mechanism (Doesn't make you waste a frame).
-A much comfier film advance lever


Top view

What's amazing is how Nikon managed to make all these improvements while still retaining the size, weight, and beauty of the original F. In fact, to the common eye, the F and F2 look nearly identical, and that's a good thing. It wasn't until the F3 that Nikon started making its cameras look hideous. The F2 is the last of it's kind: Pure elegant mechanical brilliance.

Yes, the F2 is a masterpiece of design, but it has one downside: It's LOUD. The shutter makes a violent "CA-CLACK!" during every exposure. The F lets off a muffled "clunk" when the shutter is fired, making the original model my preferred camera for candid photography.  However, for just about any other kind of photography, I'll have an F2 in my hands.

I took my F2 out over the weekend and put its multiple-exposure capabilities to the test. I mostly used my 20mm F/2.8 Nikkor lens, but also utilized my 50mm F/1.4 and 35mm F/2. Everything was shot on Kodak Ektar 100.








































Thanks for looking!






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