Nikon D300, Micro Nikkor AF-D 105mm F.2.8

I’m not sure how many of you received an e-mail with the above title about ten days ago, but I sure did.  Clearly Nikon USA’s marketing folks were targeting those undecided with respect to what gift to give to the Fathers in their life for Father’s Day.

Maybe my wife is also on their mailing list, she is quite the Nikon fan herself.  But somehow she got the idea that I might not mind a new Nikon body.  She didn’t buy me a Coolpix L120 like their ad suggested, but rather a Nikon FA!

As I hinted at before, the Nikon 1983 FA is in several ways a revolutionary camera, if not an odd bird.  It is:

  • The last big developmental step in Nikon’s manual focus bodies (other bodies released since were low-end like the FM10/EM10 or arguably a refinment of classic designs such as the FM3A)
  • The first matrix meter from any camera maker, initially called Automatic Multi-Pattern (AMP) using 5 segments
  • The first Nikon to offer all four main exposure modes (MASP), and the only one to do so with manual lenses (the F4, F100, F6 and other later bodes don’t offer S or P with manual lenses)

I managed to shoot a quick roll of some ancient Sensia 200 film through it just before our trip this past weekend and it seems to be working just fine.  Exposures appear spot on, even when shooting in Program mode on my AI’ed Nikkor 35mm f/2 O.C.  I have barely had time to play with it though, and will recount some experiences and lessons learned later.

Written by Bubble Level

Jamie Zucek lives in California and enjoys film and digital photography, collecting and shooting vintage and modern cameras whenever he can.

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