What is high-eyepoint?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by juan_su, Apr 13, 2005.

  1. Hi guys,

    This question been on my mind for a while but searches of what
    high-eyepoint is only yields cameras that feature it. I know my F5 and
    F100 have them but what does it mean?
  2. It means that your eye can be further from the viewfinder and still see all of it. High-eyepoint finders are bulkier and more expensive, but very worth it if you wear glasses.
  3. That's Nikon's term for what's called long eye relief by virtually every other maker of optics, such as rifle and pistol scopes.

    With Nikon's high eyepoint finders you don't have to mash the camera against your face to see the entire frame. This can be a convenience and even a necessity, depending on the photographer's usage.

    For photojournalists or street photography, not having the camera mashed against one's face means better peripheral vision. Very important in crowded areas when moving around or trying to dodge people.

    For those who need to use "blimps" (housings that dampen camera noise) or underwater housings, it means you can still see the entire frame even tho' the housings force your face away from the normal position.

    I like the high eyepoint finders. Some people dislike the smaller magnification that goes along with this design.

    Nikon's high eyepoint finders also show nearly 100% of the total frame, whether film or digital sensor. This is important for photographers who need the shot to be framed properly right out of the camera. Cameras that show less than 100% force you to guesstimate the framing for slides, which involves the risk that either unwanted objects intrude into the edges or something essential gets cropped out.
  4. In my mind it means the viewfinder frame is down a little "hallway" of sorts. It allows you to see the entire frame without having to rove your eye about. Cameras built on the FM/FE frame size have the worst VF's nikon ever built IMHO.One has to allow the eye to wander up/down,right/left to see the entire frame.
  5. High-eyepoint viewfinders are most of the reason why I use Nikon equipment. The second reason is that I have so much existing stuff for Nikons that I wouldn't change except for a critical problem. The F6 doesn't have a HP viewfinder which is an incredible oversight from Nikon and a sign that film indeed is going to be extinct.
  6. Ilkka, Have you actually tried the F6's viewfinder?
  7. To estimate the high eyepoint distance, aim the camera at a bright area such as a window, and holding the camera about 10-15 inches away from you, and observe the location of the circular exit pupil to be seen "floating" towards you. The distance can actually be measured if you mount the camera on a tripod and hold a small plastic rule up to it. If you have a really bright source, a ground glass held there will give you the same result. This location is where the pupil of your eye should be for best visibility.
  8. Yes, of course I have, and I can see 2/3 of the area comfortably but that just isn't good enough. Nikon has gone from 25 mm in the F3HP to 18 mm in the F6, probably to minimize the weight. Of course, the F3HP is lighter than the F6 but that's beside the point isn't it.

    There apparently aren't enough eyeglass users (and mine are really quite small) to justifying making a film camera with consideration for them too. Of course, some users consider it fine ... but why then was the F3HP ever made, if 18 mm was fine.
  9. That's interesting. According to the specs, F5 has an eyepoint of 20.5mm. I couldn't find official specs on the F100, but many websites list it at 21mm. Yet I find both the F5 and F6 viewfinders brighter and just nicer than the F100 (not by much). Is it my imagination? What accounts for this difference? Do you know what "number" captures this?
  10. I prefer the F100 viewfinder to both the F5 and F6 which don't show as good evenness of the illumination in my perception (the ocular tends to shadow the edges of the image). I guess it is a question of the variation in individual eyesight and facial geometry and maybe that's why there are so many different viewfinder designs ...

    The F6 was optimized for light weight and magnification, I think this is an attempt to replace both the F5 and F100 in the near future. But not all people can be pleased with one camera ... I personally think the F6 is great in other respects but viewing comfort is a critical parameter to me and the F6 viewfinder just doesn't work for me. But it is indeed very bright and very sharp, so in that sense it is an improvement over the F5 and F100.
  11. Wow! Thanks for the info guys. I myself wear glasses and I do notice the differe High-eyepoint makes.
  12. one more reason to but nikon and not canon.

  13. Good finders go with high prices, Rob. I haven't peered through the finders of Canon's best dSLRs but the EOS 1V finder was excellent. Good eye relief and, as far as I could tell, 100% framing.
  14. good, but not as good as f5/f100 etc.

  15. Have used F, F2As, F3HP, F4, F5. F100. F6.
    Kept: F3HP. Use glasses.

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