Is the F100 not good for slow shutter speed shooting?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by dmitry_kiyatkin, Jul 21, 2008.

  1. I read on the KR site that F100 has some kind of problem with mirror shake that makes it less usable for slow
    shutter speeds. Is this true? Is it really less appropriate for shooting, say at f/8 sec than an F5? Is this true only
    for hand held use but not for tripod mounted use?
  2. SCL


    Any SLR camera which does not have mirror lock up is more subject to vibration, particularly at slow shutter speeds, than one which doesn't. Mine works fine at slow speeds, but then I typically use a tripod below 1/25 sec.
  3. I haven't thought about this in awhile, but I think 1/8 and 1/15 are shutter speeds that are notorious for allowing mirror slap or shake to affect clarity on most any camera. I can't think of too many of my photos taken at that shutter speed, but I wouldn't worry about it unless doing high-magnification work. Maybe I'm just not picky enough. I do, however, distinctly remember that this photo was taken at 1/15 sec. with an F100 when I first got my 80-400 VR.
  4. The danger region is from 1/2 s to 1/30 s and it applies only to tripod shots -- the mirror shakes is too minor to affect handheld shots. Every time I've had problems with mirror shake is when I've done extreme macro or long tele work and have ahd an improperly supported setup. I believe the key to sharper images is not to switch to an F5, but first improve the camera support setup.
  5. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    A few years ago, I tested some 1:1 macro shots with the 200mm/f4 AF-D macro lens. I put the lens on a sturdy tripod and used both the F5 (with mirror lock up) and F100 (without) at shutter speeds around 1/15 sec. I insepcted the slides with a 10x loupe and I was not able to see any difference.

    If you check my postings from 5, 6 years ago, I have mentioned my findings a few times before.
  6. A person cannot hold a camera steady with very slow shutter speeds and a mirror lock up in this type shooting would not help at all. The best thing to do is get a tripod or some type of support. The mirror on a F100 is very light and I do not think worrying about the mirror is necessary. Just use a tripod for slow shutter speeds. The old rule of thumb which is not entirely correct for handholding is the "shutter speed should match or exceed the focal length". This of course is with camera's and lenses that have no features such as the VR lens.
  7. Thanks guys. I am really asking, if shooting handheld, in the dark, with a wide angle lens and an F5 is better than the
    same lens and F100. At shutter speeds 1/8-1/30, which setup is likely to yield more "keepers." Tripods is not an option for
    this exercise as is a VR lens as Nikon has not yet given us a fast wide VR lens.
  8. I`d say the older the camera the higher mirror shake. It has been probably the most noticeable improvement on each camera release (F2, F3, F4, F5... ). There is a huge difference between them.

    I think it is worth it to check your own ability to shot hand held at low speeds. It is as simple as to shot at different speeds to a led light covered with a black carboard with a small hole on it into darkness.
  9. "... an F5 is better than the same lens and F100..."

    Probably the best fit to your hands could "yield the more keepers". I dislike to use big lenses (e.g. 24-70/2.8) with
    other than pro-cameras or cameras with battery grips. On the opposite, with small primes I prefer "normal" sized
    cameras (e.g. F100). I think it could be matter of lens&camera balance, and personal ability.
  10. Most of the "mirror shake" in an F100 (or F5) is the sound of the shutter itself, followed by the mirror returning. I have never had any problem at any speed when using a solid tripod (I do a lot of nightscapes, and there's no shake in the light sources). Nikon touts the mirror damping mechanism of the F5 and newer cameras - and appears to live up to their claims.

    Ken Rockwell and Ken Barry have a lot in common - both make outrageous statements, and both deserve an healthy laugh in the end.
  11. It would be a tie. Might depend on how low the quality you will accept as keepers. However at 1/30th and a wide angle lens you should be alright if you concentrate a bit on touching off the shutter in a steady manner. Mirror lock up would be a negative aspect for hand held shots because when you lock of the mirror you lose your viewfinder. With a tripod you focus and frame the picture and then raise the mirror (if the camera has the function). Without the tripod by the time you get the mirror up your framing will be off.. The camera will move some with long shutter speeds when hand holding. The real answer is to not make up rules to ruin a picture. Use a tripod, or something to steady the camera and give the shot a chance with long shutter speeds..
  12. Eric, that is a lovely photo.

    I am still confused on this subject.
  13. If you want to handhold at 1/4 sec or such then you NEED to use a rangefinder camera which - by design - has no
    mirror and hence no slap. I can hand-hold 1/2 sec on my Contax G2; I think any Leica can be used in that range

    So, forgo your SLR for club pictures. Wrong tool = bad pics = waste of effort and time. Good luck then.
  14. Your F100 is fine and you won't see any difference chasing after another camera. Perhaps the increased weight of the F5 makes it seem more stable when hand-holding, but as those above have said you won't notice anything. You can increase your odds at slow shutter speeds by bracing the camera against a table or door jam, using a small tabletop tripod or even a small sandbag or rolled-up jacket. Try a roll of Fuji Provia 400X and enjoy your F100 :)
  15. Thanks guys, I think I have my answer without really asking a direct question. Dmitry
  16. My wife uses an F100, and has never seen problems with mirror shake. The mirror is very well damped, but as an added precaution she has made a custom setting for a very short self-timer interval, and she almost always uses a tripod. In ST mode, the mirror is raised in advance of shutter opening, giving things a chance to calm down. But in general, if you're hand holding, mirror shake will be the least of your worries.

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