Nikon DF...

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by Brian, Dec 1, 2013.

  1. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    I have a lot of Nikon lenses- somehow managed to pickup 30 Nikkor Rangefinder Mount lenses between the S-mount, Contax RF mount, and Leica mount lenses.

    But I REALLY have a lot of F-Mount lenses. I shot mostly with Nikon SLR's from 1978 up, used an F2AS and F2Sb for a long time. I picked up a used D1 about 10 years ago, but never "warmed up to it". Worked with AI lenses, but just not the same as the F2AS- and did not like the "mini-viewfinder" 1.5x crop factor. This past Summer I used the EP2 with the Nikkor 300/4.5, did not have an easy time with the focus.

    The DF caught my attention, checked one out yesterday at Photocraft, a local independently owned camera store. I did my part for Small Business Saturday. So far, focus with the 55/1.2 wide-open is easy and fast. For anyone that has used an FE2 with a B2 or E2 screen: about the same. I have that combo as well.
     
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  2. tmldds

    tmldds Leica Place Regular

    183
    Nov 20, 2013
    Texas
    Did you buy it?
     
  3. Paxnobiscum

    Paxnobiscum Leica Place Regular

    30
    Oct 10, 2013
    Kopasker, Iceland
    Petur Thorsteinsson
    I also find the Nikon Df a very interesting camera, but it's too expensive for my wallet at the moment. I happen to have close to forty manual focus F-mount lenses, some of them are Leica-R with Leitax F-adapter - and a few auto-focus lenses too. I mostly use them on Nikon D700, but I really want a Nikon body, optimized for manual focusing. When I manage to finish the darkroom in my cellar I will start using the film bodies again.

    I don't want to hijack your thread, but the Summicron-R 50/2 (v.1) is such a favorite lens, on D700 + Leitax F-mount, that I sneak in one snap-shot portrait of a former student of mine, just to recommend the combination of Nikon and Leica-R lenses. @F/2 and MFD.

    6801441135_23fe9c45fd_b.
    20120130-_DSC2425-A portrait of the artist as an old man by Count Basil, on Flickr
     
  4. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    Yes- bought it. Used it with the 55/1.2 AI Nikkor today, no problem focusing wide-open. It was like using the FE2 for focus.

    I finally broke down and put an AF lens on it, that works too...

    My test shot at ISO 12,800, 55/1.2 wide-open, hit the focus. All lights in the house off except the Christmas tree LED lights. It was dark.
     

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  5. asiafish

    asiafish Leica Place All-Pro

    Aug 9, 2013
    Bakersfield, CA
    Andrew
    I started reading all of the chatter about the Df when announced (clever ad campaign) and decided that it was time that I bought a DSLR and a few zoom lenses to cover what my M Monochrom and Leica primes would not. Little things, like color, anything longer than 90mm or wider than 35mm (I didn't like using a 28mm on the M) and focusing closer than .7 meters. Of course it had to be full-frame, and as I did not own any SLR gear any more (sold all of my Sony/Minolta gear to help fund the Monochrom).

    So the Df was looking like the right camera for me. It had everything I wanted in a DSLR, reasonable megapixel count, high-ISO performance, weather sealing and most of all the retro styling and real dials. I compared pricing and availability for the types of lenses I wanted, and had picked out kits from both Nikon and Canon that would do what I wanted. The Canon lenses tended to be less expensive, and there was a better selection of f/4 pro-class zooms with image stabilization (IS in Canonese, VR in Nikonian). Nikon seemed to be ahead in the faster f/2.8 zooms, but I have no desire to carry them.

    Then the price was announced, and rather than $2800 for the Df body and $1300 for the 24-120 f/4 VR which would be my first lens purchase, I got the Canon 6D with the 24-105 /4 (a better lens from the samples Ive seen) for $2500 for the pair. Yes, I would much rather have the Df body, but for a secondary camera mainly for travel use the Canon was good enough.
     
  6. asiafish

    asiafish Leica Place All-Pro

    Aug 9, 2013
    Bakersfield, CA
    Andrew
    Now if only Canon would come out with a Digital F1n or FTb, with an EF mount of course.
     
  7. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    If the Df is successful, I am guessing Canon will follow.

    I'm sure it would not be FD mount.

    At the last camera show I went to, let the Canon rep know that at leasy One Canon 50/1.4 FL mount was being used on an M Monochrom.
     
  8. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    If the Df is successful, I am guessing Canon will follow.

    I'm sure it would not be FD mount.

    At the last camera show I went to, let the Canon rep know that at leasy One Canon 50/1.4 FL mount was being used on an M Monochrom.

    With the DF- I can use all of my F-Mount lenses, which number close to 100. I can also use my Retina S lenses on it with the adapter, and use the meter.
     
  9. tmldds

    tmldds Leica Place Regular

    183
    Nov 20, 2013
    Texas
    Congrats, Brian. I will be looking forward to your informative and insightful review of this wonderful camera.
     
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  10. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    Just to show a size comparison, this camera is "about" what I am used to for Digital and film cameras.

    The M8 is shown in a Zhou half-case and with the 50/1.5 Nokton.

    [​IMG]

    My most-used 30 year old F3AF, with a standard DP-3 finder, MF-14 Databack, and CF-23D half case.

    [​IMG]

    Buttons? some people not used to Buttons on a camera.

    [​IMG]
     
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  11. asiafish

    asiafish Leica Place All-Pro

    Aug 9, 2013
    Bakersfield, CA
    Andrew
    F3AF, very cool. If I remember, the autofocus was something of a kludge, but it did have focus assist with any lens. Amazing how similar the Df looks. I thought it was more of a digital F3 than digital FE as most of the bloggers made it out to be.
     
  12. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    It's been a long time since I powered up the DX-1 finder. What is amazing- how fast things changed from the 1983 F3AF to the N8008. I switched over to Rangefinders after "the baby" came along in 1998. Found the 50/1.4 AF-Nikkor spent more time hunting for focus on Nikki's face that it took me to use the SP with the 5cm F1.4 and 8.5cm F2. Bought my Leica M3 just over 10 years ago, finally switched over the the M8 about 4 years ago. If Nikon makes a Digital S-Mount camera, or a back for the existing cameras- I am in!
     
  13. asiafish

    asiafish Leica Place All-Pro

    Aug 9, 2013
    Bakersfield, CA
    Andrew
    When that happens I'll be sure to get one. Would love a digital S2 with 5cm f/1.4, would be essentially what my father shot 60-years-ago, but digital.
     
  14. VINCETAN

    VINCETAN Leica Place Top Veteran

    710
    Aug 19, 2013
    Where is your F3 AF finder Brian?

    Congrats on your purchase of the DF. It is an interesting camera with their experiment on the retro look. Too bad they cannot put a removable finder like that of the F, F2, F3, F4, F5 camera. As much as I like the F2 (which I still have a F2AS), for me, the best design is the F3. Just love the look of that camera. I was hoping that they followed the design of the F3 instead of the FE.

    Anyway, like to hear what your experience is with the DF. I went the route of the mirrorless and ordered a Sony A7.

    Vince
     
  15. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    The DX-1 works, and I have a TC-16AF to go with it. I don't use it much, but will set it up for an "Ugly Camera Thread"- with the F2Sb with DS-1 servo, Nikon F with Clip on Selenium Meter 3, and a Nikon E3 full-frame digital from 1997.
     
  16. tmldds

    tmldds Leica Place Regular

    183
    Nov 20, 2013
    Texas
    I believe I may still have a DX-1 somewhere at home. It was my work horse at work for close-ups and portraits for many years until I replaced with a Canon 1DSMk2 which I still use.
     
  17. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    The DX-1 finder for the F3AF? They are "uncommon!"
     
  18. asiafish

    asiafish Leica Place All-Pro

    Aug 9, 2013
    Bakersfield, CA
    Andrew
    I too had an F3 for a while about a decade ago. I shot Minolta when I was younger, and about ten years ago bought a bunch of used Nikon gear at an estate sale to get back into it. Life intervened and after a few months the F3 (and FM2N) along with a nice collection of Nikkor primes was sold. I only really got into photography again about two-years-ago when my wife bought me a Sony DSLR for my birthday. I used that A77 for about a year, got some absolutely stunning shots in Korea and Japan with it (Sony 16-50/2.8 and Minolta 85/1.4 didn't hurt), but sold it all when I caught Leica fever.

    I now have Canon for my DSLR outfit (6D and some glass), and if Canon should come out with a retro model I'll likely pick one up. I love the concept of the Df, and think the black one looks very F3-esque.
     
  19. Brian

    Brian Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    The Canon primes from the 60s and 70s were great- judging by the FL mount 50/1.4 that I modified for RF coupled M-Mount. It's is sharp, and Bokeh is beautiful. The Lens uses a long optical path, which reduces spherical aberration and focus shift.

    Anyone with a Sony A7 should jump on one...
     
  20. asiafish

    asiafish Leica Place All-Pro

    Aug 9, 2013
    Bakersfield, CA
    Andrew
    So far I'm quite pleased with the newer Canon lenses on the 6D. The 24-105 is quite good for a zoom, as is the 70-200 IS f/4 and the 85 /1.8. Not Leica good, but better than I expected.
     
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