Nikon F100 Almost as Good as The F6

Discussion in 'Modern Film Cameras' started by Henricvs, Dec 25, 2018.

  1. Ackshually the F6 (and F5) has a self-diagnostic shutter. It wouldn't have let you take a picture with a broken curtain.
  2. Wow, what are the odds that both F100 cameras had the same type of broken shutter? I've had mine for years without one hiccup, except the broken back. I have to disagree with your comparison. Both are pro Nikons and one is simply an older model. I know the F6 is a great camera, I love mine. Not everyone can afford the price tag of an F6. The F100 is good choice if you can't afford the F6. This isn't a case of equal comparison between the F100 and F6. Read the original post carefully.
  3. The F100 came to the market in what I'd call the teenage years of the internet, and there is still a LOT of discussion out there if you poke around on the web about the camera when it was new.

    For one thing, it certainly seems that Nikon sold a whole lot of them. I know plenty of photographers IRL who haven't shot theirs in years but don't want to get rid of them, yet there is no shortage of them on the used market. I'd consider it analagous to the D700, D8x0, and Canon 5D series today-cameras that are equally suited to both advanced amateurs and to pros who either don't need the features of the D3/D4/D5 or 1D series bodies(or F5 or EOS-1V in the film days) or alternatively just don't want to deal with the size and weight of them.

    Back in the day, there seemed to be a lot of chatter about the rewind fork. It's certainly not metal like it is on my F5(and I'd guess also the F6) but the redesigned one seems to have been favorably received. I recall an anecdote about Galen Rowell having it break after he was convinced to try one out, and went back to his trusty F4 for a while as a result. I seem to recall that he HAD switched to the F100 as his primary camera at the time of his death(and chances are would be toting something like a D610 or D7200 if he was still alive today) but only after the fork redesign.

    I've heard a smattering of reports about focus issues, but that seems to be true of every new Nikon SLR these days...granted we can see issue on a 36mp+ DSLR in a way that we probably couldn't previously short of looking at Tech Pan under a microscope. Most problem reports with the F100 seem to come down to sample variation rather than actual design issues from what I've seen(there again, rewind fork excepted).
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  4. One other thought:

    The F5 has an eyepoint of ~21mm, which is down from 22mm on the F4 and 25mm on the F3HP. Generous eyepoints are appreciated if you wear glasses(I do) although IMO the F3HP might go a bit too far since Nikon actually reduced the magnification vs. the standard F3 finder. With that said, even with shorter eyepoints the F4 and F5 actually have less magnification than the F3HP-I'm GUESSING this is because the only "extra" information you need to see on the F3 is the little LCD and the ADR pipe at the top of the viewfinder, while the F4 has the full LCD at the bottom plus the ADR, and the F5 has to show you the orange focus point triangles. The F100 gives you 21mm also and .76x, the latter of which is higher than the F3HP(.75x) but is also 96% vs. 100% on the single digit Fs.

    In any case, the F6 drops the eyepoint down to 19mm. That's a bit disappointing to me, but there again I assume it's okay. The D800 is even shorter at 17mm, though, and I don't have any trouble with it(the D3s is 18mm, and I'm also fine with it). The F6 DOES use the same DK-17 "locking" ring as other D2-series and later round eyepiece cameras, and that IS generously sized. I seem to recall the FM2n being specced at 19mm, and I have to move my eye around a lot to see everything in the finder, but at the same time the eyepiece on it(along with other FM and FE series cameras, Nikkormats, the EL2, the F2, and round-eyepiece Fs) is a fair bit smaller than the high eyepoint style used on the F3HP, F4, N8008, N90, F5, F100, and D series.
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  5. I don't think I had a shutter problem but since a part of the curtain broke down, the shutter didn't want to release. It only did after so many pressures in both cases.

    I guess I was unlucky.
  6. The F100 is one of the best cameras Nikon has made. There's not much more I'd want in a film camera - it would be nice to have the improved AF module of the F6, but the F100's AF is no slouch - when I went digital with the D70, the lower spec AF (like the F80/N80) was a bit of a disappointment. The D300 had more focus points, but didn't seem that much faster than the F100. The F6 also does i-TTL/CLS and is therefore compatible with recent flashes, which lack the film TTL mode - the SB-800, which works with both film TTL and i-TTL, is a good flash for F100 owners who also shoot digital. I think both cameras have the same lens compatibility, so no problem with AF-D, AF-S, G and VR, but neither will work with electronic aperture E lenses or AF-P. It's a shame we will probably never see an F7 that brings compatibility up to date.

    But of course the F100 is older and probably harder to service. It's a real pity about the plastic catch, which if broken means the whole back has to be replaced (though you can keep and re-mount the multi-selector and pressure plate if necessary), and spares are hard to find. Many of the parts bodies on ebay have already lost their backs, presumably donated to other cameras. The data back, which was a retail rather than a service part, is easier to find. The data features are pretty useless, but it's a perfectly good back!
    I read somewhere it was the other way round. Though I think the F100 was released first, development at Nikon was already focused on the D1, and the F100 'inherited' some of its features.
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  7. After F90 I tried my acquainted photographer's F100. They are worlds apart. F100 is much better made of better materials. Let alone AF and shutter sound. But he used crappy AF film era Sigma zooms, and I used 50/1.4 AF so my pictures were sharper and better. :rolleyes:

    As for D6 - does it have scratch proof rear display? Hardened glass or not? :oops:
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  8. I felt the same way! I am very demanding when I spend that much money.
  9. I do believe D750 should have been in the form factor of F100 (magn. alloy, no flash, 1/8000 etc.).
    After 19-20 years, modern cameras are no way better then F100/F6
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  10. I still haven't got to the F100, but the F90 is a transitional machine with some peculiarities. The F80 (US N80) (despite the numbers, it's later than the F90) on the other hand, is still cheaper than the F100, and works very well in my opinion (LINK).
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  11. The F90 is a great camera too. I went from the N80 to the F100 because I got a great deal on the F100, otherwise I would have bought the F90. Today the price on these babies are crazy good. I need to get one for my collection - to have.

  12. There's nothing WRONG with the N90(s)(what Nikon called the F90 in the US) but I always find the mirror/shutter a bit jarring. Otherwise, it's a good camera that's compatible with modern lenses provided that you're okay with P and S with G lenses. Also, the AF-to me-seems a bit worse than the F4. It's slow and tends to hunt unless you put the sensor where it has a decent amount of contrast, and even then it's loud with screwdriver lenses.

    The N8008 is a lot like the N90, but without the AF-S compatibility.

    One of the nice things about the N90, F100, F5, and F6 for the "modern" film photographer is that all have internal data logging. Probably the easiest way(IMO) to access it is with the Meta35 system, as Nikon's Photo Secretary software is not only hard to find but has limited compatibility with modern computers(forget it if you're a Mac user unless you have a beige Mac running OS 9 or earlier sitting around). Also, the F5-and presumably the F6-turn data logging "on" by default. This is one of the "hidden" custom functions only accessible via Photo Secretary or Meta 35(there are I think 3 of them on the N90, and maybe 5 on the F5 and F100) and you have to use one of these programs to turn it "on" before data is saved in both the N90 and F100.

    Incidentally, IIRC(I haven't looked in a while, and when I got my N90s out a bit earlier this evening I found that the batteries were dead in it) I think that the other two custom functions are 1. how much shooting data is recorded and 2. the AF confirmation beeper(thankfully off by default).
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  13. I used to read reviews where F90 AF regarded better/faster than 1988 Nikon F4. F90 has a very fast AF with 50/1.4 AF.
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  14. F90 is made of sleek plastic. It catches scratches very easily. It ts dense/heavy-ish but on time I found micro scratches in linking parts. Rear door coating is just horrible.
    F100 is made of thick magnesium alloy (esp. bottom part and prism area) and it has a rubber pad for a tripod underneath! Worlds apart in tactile feel also.
    "F90 is a transitional machine with some peculiarities": the matter that F90 was a concept of late 1980s in body design (plastic) but F100 opened a new concept for semi-pro cameras making them pro with no reservations.
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2018
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  16. I had to replace the stupid plastic aperture follower on my F100. Horrid job, but it's worked perfectly since then. I love the camera, except for the fact that I can't change the focusing screen.
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  17. Yes, just like the stupid plastic back latch! I wish they had used a better grade of plastic, or resin. Still if you can keep it going, it is a fine camera.
  18. I should have something new to contribute to this thread in a few days :)
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  19. And a package from Smyrna, GA is on its way to me :)
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