NIKON DSLR CAMERA ACCESSORIES - PINHOLE CAMERA PROJECTION.
Brand new Nikon F3D - First Review
Nikon F3D – Manual Focus DSLR Last week in a much noticed press release Nikon announced the development of a digital version of the legendary F3 – The F3D. The F3 was the camera of choice for many pro photographers in the 80s and is well remembered for its unrivalled flexibility and build quality. It seems Nikon announced the F3D as an answer to a growing demand for a camera that combines the design and ruggedness of a classic manual focus SLR with the creative possibilities and comfort of digital photography. Previous attempts to achieve something similar, such as Epson’s RD1 rangefinder camera, were commercial failures. Let’s see if the F3D has the potential to become a more successful product. We got our hands on one of the rare prototypes for a day and found it a very enjoyable but sometimes quirky camera to work with. Specification and operation The F3D is targeted at photographers who want the look and feel of their trusted manual SLR but do not want to miss out on the advantages of digital photography. Nikon caters for this audience by transplanting the electronic components of their tried and tested D200 DSLR into an F3 body. It was Nikon’s intention to preserve as many of the original F3’s parts as possible and only implement digital components where necessary. At the camera front only a small ‘D’ behind the label gives away that this is not a standard F3. Visible digital additions have been limited to the camera’s back and include a 2.5 inch LCD screen, a number of small control buttons, a controller pad for navigating menus and a CF memory card slot. It has been possible to minimise the number of buttons on the F3D camera back as most of the original F3 controls still work in the way that veteran users are familiar with. This has been made to work by implementing several micro-switches which feed the settings of the manual controls into the camera’s digital processing system. This includes the ISO-dial, the exposure compensation dial, the shutter speed dial and the shutter button. The frame counter has been replaced by a tiny LCD display. The film advance lever and film rewind knob, in the digital world surplus to requirement, only serve ornamental purposes. Apart from these obvious differences the F3D’s specification is very similar to the F3’s. This means no auto-focus, no matrix metering and no ‘P’- or auto-mode. On the plus side a large number of original F3 system accessories can be used with the F3D. This includes the interchangeable viewfinders, flash adaptor and of course the complete range of manual Ai and AiS Nikkor lenses. Control and performance of the purely digital camera components such as menus and sensor is nearly identical to the D200 and shall therefore not be discussed in this article. The F3D does exactly what Nikon wanted it to do. It gives photographers the opportunity to experience the feel of a 1980s pro camera without having to worry about film availability and development. Using the D200’s digital components ensures undoubtedly very good image quality and overall performance of the F3D. Inevitably F3D users will also have to accept a number of compromises. A lack of auto-focus and 3D-matrix metering might be too much of an homage to the 80s for many potential buyers but will probably not deter die-hard F3 fans. However, the use of an APS-C sized sensor makes manual focussing slightly less enjoyable than on a 35mm viewfinder which could have been an argument for an AF option. Conclusion The Nikon F3D is a fairly unique camera and will certainly be popular within the group of photographers it was designed for. However, at an estimated street price of approximately ?1200 it will remain a niche product for nostalgics and manual focus aficionados who own a large number of MF Nikkors and want to use them in style.Nikon
This was made from an image produced by Enfuse. Enfuse is an exposure blending program. I don't know the technical details, but it's distinct from HDR and tonemapping, I think. It basically takes the properly exposed regions from each exposure and blends them together. As with most exposure blending and tonemapping, it results in a lower contrast image, so I did some post-processing to darken the darker parts of the image. And of course I added the colour back to the strap.
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