Nikon DSLR Compatibility [Correct me if I'm wrong...]

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by leslie_cheung, Dec 26, 2010.

  1. All (current and discontinued) N mount digital bodies (Nikon, Kodak & Fuj):
    Are there any body that can meter w/ manual lenses but can not drive non AFS lenses? In other words, all bodies capable of metering with manual lenses can also drive non AFS lenses, correct? Is there a comprehensive chart somewhere? Thanks!
  2. So what you're asking for, is there a Nikon mount body that can meter with manual focus lenses but does not have a built-in AF motor? I assume you mean AF body, right? Non-AFS lens would be AF or AF-D, right? I'd say no, none. No idea if there is a chart that would include Nikon and Fuji bodies.
  3. Yeah, Dave AF bodies.
  4. Okay...How about bodies that have AF motor inbody but can not meter with manual lenses? d90, d80...anyone with a chart or anyone with an awesome memory? How about the fuji s2, s3, s5? Kodak dslrs?
  5. In reference to the original question, no such camera exists, at least not from Nikon. All Nikon DSLRs can drive AF lenses except for a few low-end DSLR models that lack the AF screw motor (D40, D40x, D60, D3000, D3100, D5000), and those cameras cannot meter with manual lenses.
    Re Leslie's second question: the D50, D70, D80, D90, and D100 can use AF lenses, but cannot meter with manual lenses.
    Another interesting curiosity of Nikon's history is that there were a few low-end film SLRs that could meter with manual-focus lenses (though only in center-weighted and spot modes, not matrix) and could drive AF lenses, but could not autofocus with AF-S lenses: the N2020 (F-501), N6006 (F-601), and N8008 (F-801).
    All this information is available on Ken Rockwell's Nikon Lens Compatibility page.
  6. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    The N8008/F801 can meter with AI/AI-S lenses but cannot drive AF-I and AF-S lenses. They are "screwdriver" AF only. That includes the later N8008S/F801S. Essentially, all early AF bodies are in that situation. Nikon did not introduce AF-I lenses until 1992.
    Concerning digital SLRs, all of them since the 1999 D1 can drive AF-S lenses. If there was any DSLR converted from the N8008/F801 in the 1990's, they wouldn't be able to drive AF-S.
  7. No, Shun, only low-end AF bodies, not all of them that early. The F4 is surely an "early AF body" and yet it works fine with AF-S lenses. The N55, on the other hand, was a 21st century camera, yet could not autofocus with AF-S lenses.
  8. So basically we can rule out all the bodies from the last decade or so from memory, and what you're trying to find out is whether any dark ages Nikon body DSLR was based on a manual focus body? The only one I can think of is the original Kodak DCS-100, which was based on an F3. I think all the later models used AF bodies.
    I'm also fairly confident that while the first few Fuji models were based on film bodies, they were all AF. And I'm fairly confident that Nikon only ever sold AF DSLRs.
  9. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Craig, I said all early AF bodies are in that situation, but I did not say all AF bodies in that situation are early. I also purposely did not specify what is "early." I have an F4 and I know that it can AF with AF-I/AF-S lenses. That is the only pre-1992 AF body that can do so; apparently Nikon already had plans for AF-I back in 1988 when the F4 was introduced, but they did not put that capability in the N8008 introduced that same year.
    I am not that familiar with those "pre-historic" DSLRs converted from film SLRs in the 1990s. I know Kodak had one based on the N90 or N90S, but since the N90 can drive AF-S lenses, I am sure that DSLR can also. I don't think Kodak modified the N8008.
    Anything from the D1 on can drive AF-S. The Fuji S2 and S3 are based on the N80/F80/D100 and so are all 14MP Kodak DSLRs with the Nikon mount. The Fuji S5 is based on the D200. Of course all of those can drive AF-S. I am not sure about the Fuji S1?
  10. Which fuji or kodak dslr can meter w/ manual lenses? Fuji S5 due to its d200 design...any other fuji /kodak?
  11. And I was actually looking for ones that can drive non AF-S lenses...
  12. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    The D100 was based on the F80/N80, which lacks the aperture follower tab. Therefore, all DSLRs driven from those cameras: Fuji S2, S3, all Kodak 14MP w/ Nikon F mount and the D100 cannot meter with AI/AI-S lenses that have no built-in CPU.
    All Nikon DSLRs with the Nikon brand name and the letter D in the model number (i.e. everything since the the 1999 D1) can drive AF-S.
  13. I thought you were looking for ones that can't drive non-AF-S lenses. (And by non-AF-S I'm assuming you mean screwdriver lenses requiring a motor in the body.) Are you looking for cameras that can drive AF and AF-S and also can meter with manual focus AI lenses? Or for ones that can meter with AI lenses, but can't drive screwdriver AF lenses?
  14. Thank you, Shun.
  15. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Ok Leslie, this thread is quickly turning into a trivia discussion, which is fine. But as Andrew says, exactly what are you getting at? What really is your question?
  16. I wasn't looking for any particular dslr but just wanted to organize the logic behind N dslr history. It all started when I was looking for a gift though...I wanted a dslr that can meter with manual AI/AIS lenses but I didn't need the built in body AF motor...
  17. Oh, okay, well, that would be an exotic combination - if you're thinking you could save money by buying such a body I don't think you could, because it would be either too old to be anything but a curiosity or too rare to be found at a good price. Like I said, I think the only body that meters with AI lenses but does not run screwdriver AF is the DCS-100, which is really the dark ages, and it's an actual manual focus camera. You'd need to be looking at newer models and just asking what the reasonable option for bodies with AI lens metering are. D200, for example.
    BTW you can get lists of Kodak and Fuji DSLRs and the Nikons they're based on by web searching. They're probably on Wikipedia.
  18. I wanted a dslr that can meter with manual AI/AIS lenses but I didn't need the built in body AF motor...​
    Sorry, there's no such thing, unless, as Andrew says, it's something so old that you wouldn't want it or some arcane rarity that commands exorbitant prices from collectors.
    If you want to meter manual-focus lenses with a Nikon DSLR, you're looking at the D200, D300, D700, D1, D2, or D3 models (including those with letter suffixes such as the D300s or D3x), or the new D7000, all of which have the AF screw motor.
  19. I actually own a d200, I just wonder why there are no such option (ai/ais metering but no built AF motor). Manual lenses aren't going to need it's pointless to have a built in camera motor. After thinking it through...again, a FM3A digital would sell like hotcakes...
  20. I'd love to see a digital FM3a (DM3a?), but I don't expect to see it and I doubt it would really sell all that well. (Did the FM3a itself sell well in comparison to, say, the F100?) The market is largely about autofocus these days. Leica can get away with a manual-focus digital camera, but they're more of a luxury brand than a working photographer's brand these days, and I get the impression that most rangefinder fans regard autofocus as unnecessary if not heretical.
  21. Well, I'm sure it won't sell as well as, say, the d7000 or d3100. However, it could sell. Nikon don't need to make the most margin/profit with every single dslrs. Infact, it'll be like a d700. I'm sure the d700 don't sell as well as the d90. It could be an exotic cam much like the coming fuji X100. Anyways, it would be nice...wasn't there a shortage of FM3A during its run?
  22. Well, shortages are relative to production quantities, so even if Nikon underestimated demand, it doesn't necessarily mean there was all that much demand -- just more than Nikon expected.
    Still, Nikon does come out with unanticipated curios from time to time, like the limited run of S-mount rangefinders a few years ago (who saw that one coming?). They could certainly do a digital FM3a if they wanted to. I'd buy one if the price was right. (Hey, Nikon, are you listening?)
  23. +1 for a digital version of FM3a. I'd pay for it whatever Nikon will ask!
  24. After thinking it through...again, a FM3A digital would sell like hotcakes...​
    I'd be willing to bet money that Nikon has some kind of research or evidence that such a camera would not, in fact, sell well at all for the price they'd have to ask for it. Otherwise they'd make it. Other than Leica at the very very high end, no current camera manufacturer makes such a camera.
    If one really wanted a MF Digital SLR, one would probably would want full-frame, since manually focusing on DX viewfinders is probably not what this kind of customer is looking for...
    and there is a switch on the D700 that would transform it into just the camera you desire for as long as you like. ;-)
  25. Just to add to the trivia discussion, how many dSLRs are compatible with pre-AI lenses (i.e., can mount them without breaking anything, but not necessarily meter)? I've seen this stated about the D40 and D60:
    Did Nikon ever offer a modification to the D1/D2 series that allowed full use of pre-AI, as they did with the F5?
  26. There are parts sticking out the back of pre-AI lenses that can damage most current Nikons. The D40 and similar models have a less complex mount that is missing the parts that break, so you can use the older lenses (but of course, no metering etc.). But none of the recent models have pre-AI compatibility as an official feature.
  27. I'd be willing to bet money that Nikon has some kind of research or evidence that such a camera would not, in fact, sell well at all for the price they'd have to ask for it. Otherwise they'd make it. Other than Leica at the very very high end, no current camera manufacturer makes such a camera.​
    Peter --- First of all, we'll never know whether Nikon did such research or not (there's no proof either way, so there's no point in arguing...) But don't be too sure, Nikon did make mistakes (I won't into their history again). For recent and current development...Nikon isn't doing enough with premium compacts and mirrorless cameras. The sony Nex are out selling canon and nikon in Japan. Europe and N. America are more consevative so traditional dslrs sell better. But my point is that Nikon is going to suffer if they are not going into the mirrorrless game soon. As far as leica M9, it's in high demand...I'm not sure why a FM3A FF digital couldn't create something lesser but similar...I still think either a FF FM3A or a FF D40 like body for 1600 or $1700 would sell well or, at the least, sell decent.
    Personally, my last two cameras were sony (I couldn't even imagine I would buy a sony, let alone two sony cameras), Believe it or not, I have no desire for the recent nikon d7000 or P7000. In the last couple years, it seems I'm slowly switching from Leica and Nikon to Sony and Nikon. Yeeeah, weird...I couldn't fathom such an idea (buying a sony) just the beginning of this year...
  28. Don't know about you, Peter, but buying a $2500 d700 just for manual lenses metering isn't very appealing especially as a gift:( On the other hand, it is quite handy as I have a few AI/S lenses...
    A gift for someone who hate AF, non metal camera and stuck in the 80's...I was wondering if I could do less than a d200, which I own and know about...
  29. ".I couldn't fathom such an idea (buying a sony) just the beginning of this year..."
    I guess it is difficult to avoid Sony considering it is a prime sensor manufacturer, but after I discovered that my Sony DVD recorder has a feature that forbade me to copy any movie on HBO or Cinemax, despite that I subscribe to those channels, I try to keep Sony out of my house. Surprising that Sony doesn't advertise this feature up front.
  30. Don't blame electronics makers for media company DRM. I'm pretty sure that's actually a feature of cable DRM that Sony has to implement to be allowed on your cable system, not a feature SOny came up with. Remember that it was Sony that fought the court case that made it legal to record TV in the US in the first place, Amazon and Apple that shamed music companies into allowing non-DRM downloads, and Microsoft that wrote such a bad DRM implementation it made everybody aware of how obnoxious most DRM is. (Inadvertently, but still, credit where it's due.)
  31. James---
    LOL, I think, in your case, sony was just following some higher regulatory order/law. I have had sony walkmans and radio in the past, I was talking specifically about just sony cameras. FWIW, the new sony is a hoot! I'm so happy I bought regrets whatsoever. Haven't use my d200/700 in a long time.
  32. 'Remember that it was Sony that fought the court case that made it legal to record TV in the US in the first place, Amazon and Apple that shamed music companies into allowing non-DRM downloads'
    They've had a pretty poor record since, though. They were pushing region-locked Blu-Ray when the competing HD-DVD standard was region-free, they left purchasers of music encoded with their own proprietary DRM out in the cold when the CONNECT store closed, and they're responsible for the infamous XCP rootkit scandal. The 'problem' is that Sony is now sells both consumer electronics and media, which tends to bring out the worst control freak tendencies of any company.
  33. Don't blame electronics makers for media company DRM.​
    Andrew, to my knowledge the Electronics makers / media companies have been the driving force behind DRM, because they used to think that they lost money because of people copying music and Movies without paying rights for the material.

    Sony has always been one of the most pushing companies in this area, and even has always been busy to find new methods for DRM enforcement because of their music- and movie studio ownerships..

    Here is a little quote from Wikipedia :
    "In 2005, Sony BMG introduced new DRM technology which installed DRM software on users' computers without clearly notifying the user or requiring confirmation. Among other things, the installed software included a rootkit, which created a severe security vulnerability others could exploit." ...
    Just my 2 cnts
  34. Al I know is that my Pansonic and Toshiba DVD recorders can copy anything I can watch on TV, including HBO and Cinemax.
    I have a lot of VHS tapes accumulated over the years, and I am dubbing my favorites from VHS to DVD. I do subscribe to HBO, and I copy mainly for time shifting and to watch it several times if I really like it. My Sony device which has both VHS and DVD recorders will not permit me to dub from a VHS HBO movie to a blank DVD. What a crock. Again, why didn't they state this fact up front. I suspect that their policy is due to the fact that they own a share of HBO.
  35. Peter: What about the size? I'd love to see something the size of a Leica with a big ol' viewfinder and a less than Leica price tag. Sometimes the D200 is just bigger and heavier than I want to lug around.
    Andrew: Well it's not just the media branch of Sony that's reamed the consumers. How about the various Sony cameras produced over the years that have foisted any number of their "memory stick" format on consumers? Pushing the proprietary formats as far as they can go is an even more obnoxious lock-in than most DRM variants. Minidisc players? eBook readers?
  36. Since we are (or were) talking weird compatibility questions, I'll re-pose an unanswered question I asked in another thread: can anyone tell me whether digital bodies without the aperture tab (D40, etc.) meter with an AF but not AF-D lens? I'm curious as to how the lens aperture information reaches the camera if so. (AF-D lenses have electronic connections that I assume would work; bodies with the aperture tab can pick it up mechanically.) I don't have such a digital body, and I don't think I have a non-D AF lens, so I can't experiment. This is just because I'm trying to align logic with KR's compatibility page. :)

    I, too, would like a cheap body (digital or otherwise) that worked with both AI and G lenses. I'm surprised there aren't any third-party offerings yet. I have an F5 and a D700, but - aside from an F100 or F6, which barely count - there's nothing I can keep in a bag as backup.
  37. Andrew,
    All DSLRs from Nikon will meter with all AF lenses from Nikon (except those pesky IX-Nikkor Pronea lenses). There is a limitation Ken doesn't, as I recall, mention, and that is that 3D metering II is NOT supported with AF lenses that are pre-D lenses on the D40 you mentioned (as well as, I believe, anything that doesn't have the aperture-following tab). I think they will meter in center-weighted and spot modes. All exposure modes are supported with all AF lenses.
  38. Thanks, Peter. I've now had a rummage for images; I wasn't sure whether the electronic contacts for (non-S and non-I) AF lenses only appeared with AF-D, but I see they were always there for AF. That'll be replacing the need to read the AI indent, then. I guess that also explains the "P is not D" comment I read (and why I can't use trap focus with my 500mm f/4).

    I don't think the restriction you mention is D40-specific: no Nikon will 3D meter with a non-D lens, because there's no way to tell where it's focussed. Several will matrix meter separately from the 3D functionality, though (I believe). The higher-end models will do the same if you tell them what lens they've got attached. The D40 manual doesn't suggest that matrix metering goes away completely for non-D, but it's interesting that it claims not to meter (at all) with AI-P, whereas the compatibility grid on Nikon's site for the D5000 suggests it can meter with AI-P.

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