Tuesday, December 24, 2013

SFTC Results - December's Camera, the Nikon F2

Today I'll share some images with my new Nikon F2 Photomic, which I bought from KEH for $120. It's in amazing condition, very close to like new in my opinion. For these shots, I used one of Nikon's least-loved lenses, the 43-86mm f3.5 zoom.
 
(Click Here) to see the post introducing this month's camera.
 
I mean, people HATE this lens. Many call it Nikon's worst lens, and blame this lens specifically for the long-standing belief (fact) that prime lenses provide far superior image quality to zooms. You can find plenty of haters of this lens online with a simple google search. Mine also came from KEH, for the princely sum of $30, and also looks brand new.
 
Anyway, here are some shots, all made on Kodak 400 color print film.
 
Lounging, by Reed A. George
Nikon F2, Nikkor 43-86mm f3.5 Zoom Lens
 
Now, the shot above isn't tack sharp, but I think it works well at presenting skin tones, and is perhaps appropriate for portraits (which don't need every blemish to show up in sharp relief).
 
Here are a couple at the long end of the zoom, which are also a little soft:
 
Winter Leaves, by Reed A. George
Nikon F2, Nikkor 43-86mm f3.5 Zoom Lens
 
And here are two below that show just how sharp the 43-86mm f3.5 can be at middle(ish) focal lengths. I've applied sharpening in Lightroom to both images, but not to an extreme level (maybe a little more than I usually apply with other lenses, but not significantly more).
 
Dragon, by Reed A. George
Nikon F2, Nikkor 43-86mm f3.5 Zoom Lens
 
Bell Detail, by Reed A. George

Nikon F2, Nikkor 43-86mm f3.5 Zoom Lens

I can't find anything to complain about here. Especially when you consider that this combination of the pro-level camera and "kit zoom" of the past, which commanded very high prices in its day, is mine for $150 total. Amazing capability. When I was a kid, I lusted over a camera like this. Now, they're available for very low investment, if you're willing to deal with film. I am.
 
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