F4

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by korin, Jan 22, 2017.

  1. Ive an F4 and as an experiment i put my 70-300mm lens on it which cannot set aperture manually. Normally i use all my cameras in manual. This lens AF's no problem and in the viewfinder the there's a reading combining f stop and speed. Obviously the minimum is set by the lens at 4.3. First up is this metering going to be accurate. Secondly i have with other fully compatible lenses a bar in 1/3s indicating exposure in the viewfinder. Is this not possible with this lens? Everything is set to manual.
     
  2. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Is that 70-300mm a G lens that has no aperture ring, such as the 70-300 AF-S VR? Since the F4 has no sub-command dial, you
    cannot manually control the aperture. I.e. the M and A modes won't work, but P and S should be fine because the camera
    will set the aperture automatically.
     
  3. Yes to lens. Ok thanks for that. And i wont be able to see the 1/3 stop bar for exposure?
     
  4. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Again, you cannot set everything to manual and expect correct exposure, as there is no way to directly control the aperture with
    an F4 and a G lens. The F4 uses a knob on the top right to control the shutter speed in full-stop increments. If you want to
    control aperture and shutter speed in 1/3-stop increments, you must use a camera body with main and sub-command
    dials, such as the F5, F100 and Nikon DSLRs. Or you use a lens with an aperture ring, but Nikon mechanical aperture
    rings have full-stop clicks. Any between-click 1/2, 1/3-stop settings are guesstimates.

    The F4 also has no main command dial. The N8008/F801 and N90/F90 from that same era at lease have a main
    command dial so that you can control the shutter speed in smaller increments than a full stop. The F5 was the first Nikon
    SLR with two command dials, main and sub.
     
  5. Yes thanks. I think youve covered it. As i said it was an experiment and it does have its uses so cheers.
     
  6. In my experience G lenses will meter accurately in S mode, within the full stop tolerance. Just pretend your Nikon is a Konica, and get used to getting the aperture you want via shutter speed.
    As you probably know, but I'll mention it anyway, although it will operate AFS focus, it will not operate VR.
     
  7. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Right Matthew, VR requires an AF body with a multi-AF-point AF module, and the F5 was also the first body with multi-point AF, namely 5. Prior to the F5, the F4, N8008/F801, and N90/F90 all have single-point AF in the old days and VR lenses on them cannot perform VR.
    The F4 and F90/N90 can drive AF-S (and AF-I) lenses, but the early AF bodies including the N8008/F801 only have screwdriver AF.
    All of this is now "ancient" history.
     
  8. I used an AF-S 24~85mm G lens on an F4 for years. Worked absolutely perfectly in P or S modes. No issues with metering accuracy. Nor should there be. Functionally a "G" lens in P & S modes on an F4 works *exactly* as an earlier AF-D lens would work in P or S modes.
     
  9. I still keep--and occasionally use--an F4 I've owned for nearly 20 years, because as far as I'm concerned, they're still the best camera Nikon ever made.
    Stupendous viewfinder--it's like looking at a movie screen after using even high-end full-frame DSLRs--superb for macro work with the interchangeable finders and extension tubes, easy-to-use controls, excellent TTL flash system, fantastic manual focus ability, and, by god, it just *feels* like a badass camera!
    I find it amazing that it actually was so forward compatible to be able to autofocus AFS lenses when, so far as I know, none were available during its retail lifetime. And of course it can use, and meter quite capably with, every lens Nikon ever made (practically) up to its time. That it can communicate, and accurately give an aperture reading, with even G lenses is really pretty gobsmacking.
    Sorry to be just a little off-topic; I just had to wax rhapsodic about the sexy and oh-so-capable F4, and I'm glad you're finding it quite useful still, too.
     
  10. Thanks for responses. Will keep on using in S-mode. I get whats been said about the sub- menu for 1/3s. And it is an awesome camera. Nothing else i have feels like this Fs. I may even buy a second. The price of this camera is way below its class. Will be interested to see if my 24mm lens looks better on film. Never been impressed. May buy the sports viewfinder since camera is mostly set to spot anyway. And swapping is so easy. As for the lyricism i concur.
     
  11. "I still keep--and occasionally use--an F4 I've owned for nearly 20 years, because as far as I'm concerned, they're still the best camera Nikon ever made."

    Not trying to hijack the thread, but have you ever used an F5? I used F4's for years and bought a couple of F5's when they were released and never picked up my 4's again. To me - no contest. The F5 ran rings around the F4 in almost every way. I confess that I haven't shot film for years, but back in the day, I actually found my backup F100 to outperform the D4 in most areas (other than build quality). One could drive nails with the F4 if there was no hammer handy.
     
  12. As to the F5 I have been thinking along those lines but not held or used one. I was a bit unsure of the ruggedness, I hate cheap plastic. I live in countryside so bit difficult finding camera shops to check one out!
     
  13. Mark - again pointing out how long it has been since I actually shot film, I am trying to remember what it is that the 5 does better than the 4. In my recollections, it metered MUCH better,auto focused faster and just did most things better. Best I can tell you is that once I tried the F5, I never again touched the 4.
    As for build quality, while it may not have "felt" as substantial as the 4, the 5 was no fragile body. Mine were kicked around for many years without a hiccup. I didn't baby my gear - my gear were my tools. The 5 weighs less than the 4 (at least I remember that it did), but I was never afraid to take it with me anywhere, anytime.
    You can buy one today online for stupidly small money. I have kept just one (of my 3 F5 's just in case (more for nostalgia), but I haven't shot film since I picked up my first D2h. If you shoot film, you can probably pick up a good used copy from either B&H or KEH for a song and try it out yourself. If you don't see the upside, you can return it.
     
  14. Shun (or any of the mods) - if this hijacking by me of the original thread is out of line, don't hesitate to move or delete my comments. I was just waxing nostalgic about the "olden days."
     
  15. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    eric waller, no worries. You are still on the general topic about the F4, although a bit off the OP's original topic about limitations on using G lenses with the F4 that has no command dial at all. In any case, the OP's original question is satisfactorily answered, and at least I think it is fine to discuss other aspects about the F4.
     
  16. The F5 does look and feel like a great camera--and I'm sure it's more capable than the F4 in many ways. However, I like the bare, austere simplicity of the F4's user interface, and I actually regard it as more of a manual focus camera than autofocus usually (because of the arrangement of the focus and exposure lock buttons, I've always found it easier to focus and recompose with the F4 than with more modern Nikons when I do use it in AF mode). Plus, unlike the F5, you can actually take off the grip and use the MB-20, making the camera a bit more "compact," if you can ever really call any configuration of the F4 compact.
    However, because the F4 will autofocus current lenses and can be used in Program mode (or, of course, shutter priority), I think it would be fun to stick the G-version 28/1.8 or 35/1.4 on it and walk around with it like it's the beastliest point-and-shoot in the history of mankind!
     
  17. I believe the F100 also supports VR?
     
  18. Ive been out with camera today. No probs. In UK so B&H is out. Im not in hurry maybe take a punt if i find one at right price. Ive found the comments useful and interesting. If there's one criticism of F4 it would be the finish. But the sports viewfinder is a definite.
     
  19. Looking at pics of F5 is the viewfinder bigger?
     
  20. I believe the F100 also supports VR?​
    Yes, it does.
    The 5 weighs less than the 4 (at least I remember that it did)​
    Depends on the configuration: with MB-23 (F4E) and MB-21 (F4S) it weighs 200g and 70g more, respectively. With MB-20 (F4), it's 130g less. With the MN-30 rechargeable battery pack, the F5 was close to 1.5kg, certainly no lightweight.
     
  21. Not sure if these guys will ship to UK, but they are a well regarded source of used camera gear.
    https://www.keh.com/shop/nikon-f5-35mm-camera-body.html
    F5's in fine shape for < $450 US. Unfortunately, the exchange rate between US$ and GBP are not in your favor lately.
    By the way - you know there is also an F6, don't you? I have never used one. I was into digital before it was released.
     
  22. At the moment no point importing. Remember have 20% tax on shipping and import duty. Forget it. Cheaper from Japan. I'm not in a
    hurry. Wait for a good auction price on the bay. I've found in past a good deal can be had if you wait for a lens combo. Bought fm2 and
    nikon 24mm lens for £180 which thought was a deal. The F4 stops you complicating things. Take the picture!
     
  23. Oddly enough you can, with an adapter, use a Nikon G lens on a Canon EOS body, and control the aperture. Odd too that Nikon continually invents technology that won't work with older cameras.
    Well, not that odd, they want your money spent on NEW Nikon gear, not using stuff that's older than say, 2015 or so.
    :)
     

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