Go Back   Rangefinderforum.com > Cameras / Gear / Photography > Classic Film RangeFinders & Other Classics > SLRs - the unRF

SLRs - the unRF For those of you who must talk about SLRs, if only to confirm they are not RF.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes

Nikon F lenses vs Canon FD – which are better?
Old 08-15-2018   #1
papo
Registered User
 
papo is offline
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 98
Nikon F lenses vs Canon FD – which are better?

Can this even be compared in a constructive manner? I want to get me a manual focus camera so i wanted to determine this by optics. I think i will be shooting a fl of 50mm and while sharpness is important for me, a decent image look is also something to consider. I have a few AF Nikon G lenses which create an amazing look on my F100 but unfortunately they arent compatible.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #2
presspass
filmshooter
 
presspass is offline
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Lancaster County, Pennsylvania
Posts: 1,223
Color or black and white? Canons, the FD series, are known for lenses that are not as contrasty as Nikkors. That said, either system has excellent lenses. There are more used Nikon lenses available, but the Canons cost less.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #3
Timmyjoe
Registered User
 
Timmyjoe's Avatar
 
Timmyjoe is offline
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 3,004
Both the Canon FD and Nikon AI prime lenses are excellent, I've had great luck with both.

Best,
-Tim
__________________
http://www.timcarrollphotography.com

New Photo Books
Sturgis Stories
& Scenes From Sturgis
now available
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #4
shimokita
白黒
 
shimokita's Avatar
 
shimokita is offline
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Japan, Tokyo
Posts: 799
It also comes down to specific lenses... I really like my old Nikon 50 f/1.2 & 85 f/1.4 but IMHO the results from the Nikkor-H 2.8cm f/3.5 & Nikkor-P 10.5cm f/2.5 tend to be more interesting with Neopan 100 (excluding FL considerations).

Think about brand, but also specific lenses...
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #5
peterm1
Registered User
 
peterm1's Avatar
 
peterm1 is offline
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 5,580
It depends. In terms of build design and quality I think Nikkors are better in a number of ways (I have used both marques) though both a good. I have in mind that the older FD lenses (and all FL lenses) have that breech lock arrangement which can cause problems sometimes for users - jamming of lenses for example and require care in mounting which slows the process down. I have had jamming happen twice and its relatively common based on internet searches of what to do when it happens. Also the newer FD lenses are distinctly plasticy - though at a time when Nikkors were still all metal and glass. This made them lighter of course but many thought it made them feel a bit cheaper, though I am sure they were and are still solid capable lenses in reality.

In terms of imaging I would suggest checking groups on Flickr and see which look you prefer for specific lenses. There are some stand out optics for both marques.

Having said this both lens marques are perfectly acceptable - though there is another consideration - the bodies available. In my view Nikon also offered a better and more diverse range of camera bodies over the years if you wish to go down the film camera route. With a Canon on the other hand my view is that you are more or less limited to the F1 (old or new) because I am not too enamoured with their non pro bodies. If you wish to use the lenses on a mirrorless camera though using adapters, then its your call.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #6
Archlich
Registered User
 
Archlich is offline
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 1,303
If one is noticeably "better" than the other then they wouldn't be having this war going on for decades.

Just pick your body and shop then lenses accordingly. None will disappoint.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #7
Roger Hicks
Registered User
 
Roger Hicks is offline
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Aquitaine
Posts: 23,947
As others have said, it depends on the lens.

And on which system you find easier to use.

Unless you're better than 99,9% of photographers, more will depend in you than on which system you use. For a development of this argument see "The Quality Plateau" on my .eu site.

Cheers,

R.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #8
Larry H-L
Registered User
 
Larry H-L is offline
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 599
Also consider your preference for focus / zoom rotation direction.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #9
Contarama
Registered User
 
Contarama is offline
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 1,249
It would probably be easier and cheaper to build a FD system than a F mount system. A lot of the really good Nikkors are getting pricier everyday and when the F mount no mirror blocks arrive I think the Nikkors will go up even more. Then again this could also happen with the FD glass.
__________________
Art is the ability to make something...even if it is a big mess...
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #10
aizan
Registered User
 
aizan's Avatar
 
aizan is offline
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Torrance, CA
Age: 37
Posts: 4,601
my recommendation is to get a nikon just so you can use the 58mm f/1.4 voigtlander nokton. the 50/1.4 nikkor’s bokeh is bright ring, if that’s what you’re looking for, but the 50/2 is smooth. the canon 50/1.4 is pretty good, the 1.2L so-so.
__________________
Ugly Cameras
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #11
ChrisPlatt
Thread Killer
 
ChrisPlatt's Avatar
 
ChrisPlatt is offline
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Queens NYC
Age: 58
Posts: 2,839
Nikkor lenses don't fall off your Nikon camera body when you inadvertently rotate the FD breech-lock ring instead of the aperture ring...

Chris
__________________
Bring back the latent image!
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #12
Phil_F_NM
Camera hacker
 
Phil_F_NM's Avatar
 
Phil_F_NM is offline
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Age: 43
Posts: 3,978
First, if you are used to the way Nikons focus, get a Nikon.
That's not that big of a deal in the long run.
Some Canon lenses are way better than some Nikon lenses.
Some Nikon lenses are way better than some Canon lenses.
For example, if I could find then afford a Canon 24mm f/1.4 L lens in FD mount, I would sell a bunch of my Nikon gear (but not all) in order to buy that lens and a Canon F1.
Then again, I would love to find a 28mm f/1.4 Nikkor.
These days I really don't have any more GAS. Even though I just sold an entire medium format system, I don't really want more gear. I want more film. I own a bunch of Nikkors from a pedestrian Series E 50mm to a fantastic 50mm f/1.2. Both have their strengths. The series E was given to me in a bag of moldy gear and is a great shooter. The f/1.2 cost a good amount of money.
I'm a Nikon apologist but I won't denigrate Canon. I've owned some amazing Canon lenses and bodies also.
Everything has its strengths and its weaknesses.
You may want to look outside Nikon and Canon as well. All of the big manufacturers made extraordinary gear (and all of them made some stinkers too) and these days one can get a lot of it for pretty damned cheap. Working Konica Autoreflex bodies are almost (and often) free, usually with a good lens hanging off the front. Same goes for Minolta and Pentax. Olympus are a little more as far as I've seen but my small sample space may not be representative of what is really out there. No reason to limit yourself to a Nikon or Canon unless the pro bodies offer some functionality which you need: interchangeable finders, 250 exposure backs, advanced motor drives, ability to do rough carpentry with the camera, ability to use it in combat and never have a hiccup. (In the case of the latter, I might recommend a Nikon F2 or a Canon F1.)
Find a body, find a lens, shoot and enjoy. Or find a particular lens that does something you want done then match it to a body, shoot and enjoy.

Phil Forrest
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #13
bluesun267
Registered User
 
bluesun267's Avatar
 
bluesun267 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 217
I feel there was a fairly consistent lens design philosophy among the major manufacturers of the film era (I'm talking SLR lenses of the 60s-80s).

In general I'd echo other comments here, from my experiences dating back to the film era...Canon lenses seem to render a 'flatter' looking image to my eye...most noticeable on color negative film, but I can see it as well in B/W and slides. It may partly be lower contrast, but I think it's also other design parameters--that certain 'je ne sais quoi' we love to debate on these forums. Nikon glass seems to pack more of a punch (in contrast and/or dimensionality, but not always color saturation, strangely enough). A further complication is that there's probably at least one or two lenses from each manufacturer that goes against the predominate grain of their lineup.

If I could design my own ideal SLR body, to be honest, I'd choose 70s era Minolta lenses, as they seem to have the most 'balanced' combination of characteristics. Unfortunately I don't really gel (ergonomically) with any of the Minolta (or Canon) film bodies, so I content myself with Nikon and Nikon glass.

Of course it goes without saying, if you are shooting film, I'd go with the body that feels the best to you and not worry about the glass, at least in the sense of which brand is "better". There's also Pentax, Olympus and Leica (and Yashica/Contax, Konica and others) to consider in film SLRs, all of which bring something interesting into the mix, glass-wise at least.

Also, I really REALLY love Rollei 35mm SLR lenses, probably better than any of the others, but I can't seem to find a body that works!
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #14
farlymac
PF McFarland
 
farlymac's Avatar
 
farlymac is offline
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Roanoke, VA
Posts: 6,244
They both have good lenses. It's the differences in the cameras that sent me back to Nikon after a short time with the Canons. I originally thought I'd be happy using both systems, but after a while it became apparent the way the Nikons operate was more suitable to me.

PF
__________________
Waiting for the light
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #15
Steve M.
Registered User
 
Steve M. is offline
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,382
As others have correctly stated, it really depends on which lens. There are some excellent FD and F lenses, and there are some that are not. In general, Canons have better bokeh. You can pick up some great FD lenses for peanuts too. I and a lot of other people love the Nikon cameras a little more than the Canons (OK, a lot more), but lenses are all about which lens.

Of course you have to put up with the Canons and all other lenses (other than Nikon) focusing and mounting backwards :]

And while we're at it, Fords are better than Chevys.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #16
Robert Lai
Registered User
 
Robert Lai is offline
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 1,637
I have both systems. The early FL lenses had problems. They only had one guide pin for the focusing helical, so they sometimes tended to bind. Worse, the helical lube commonly migrates into the diaphragm blades to lock them wide open. I had a 58mm f/1.2 FL lens that did this.
Incidentally, some of the Canon lenses have thorium in them, so they are radioactive. They will yellow with time. The 58 f/1.2 FL is one of them, as well as certain 35mm lenses. There is a list of radioactive camera lenses here:
http://camerapedia.wikia.com/wiki/Radioactive_lenses

Note that the early Nikkor 35mm f/1.4 lens is also radioactive.

The Nikkors seem to be more solidly built, and don't seem to have any appreciable weaknesses in construction. The Canon breech lock system theoretically is self compensating for mount wear, and the actual contact faces that determine the lens to film distance never wears. So, that is a plus. However, Nikon mounts are stainless steel, and I've just never worn out any Nikkor or Nikon camera lens mount, in over 35 years of ownership. The other user problem with the Canon breech lock is that you start to turn the breech lock ring thinking that you are focusing, when all you really are doing is slowly unmounting the lens. Then all of a sudden the lens can fall off your camera.

You can get some very superb Canon FD lenses for relative peanuts. I bought some very fine lenses from our own Timmyjoe - including his Canon FD 50 1.2L, and FD 85 1.2 L lenses. The prices are quite reasonable for such high quality lenses.

I never found the Nikkor 50 or 35mm lenses much to write home about. Even the greatly lauded 50 1.8 or 50 f/2 lenses have some distortion when not at infinity.

As someone mentioned above, the Voigtlander 58 1.4 is the lens I use on my Nikon cameras. That lens is "just right" in its rendering.

The Voigtlander 40 f/2 Ultron has replaced all of the 35mm Nikkors for me. The Nikkor 28 f/2.8 AIS (and only the AIS) is an especially good lens, and still available new. One of my favorites is the often ignored 45mm f/2.8 guide number lens. This is a Tessar, but it's QUITE a TESSAR!. Rendering is first class, and the guide number feature is super useful for a flash bulb user, such as myself.

The Nikkor 85 f/1.4 is a fine lens, and it would require a lot of pixel peeing to tell you if the Canon 1.2L is better or not. I like them both, so I won't say which is better.

The Nikkor 105 2.5 has always been lauded as a great portrait lens. It's nice, but I find that 105 is usually too long for the space that I have in a room.

The Nikkor 180 and 300mm lenses are also really fine in quality, especially the ones incorporating ED glass.

I doubt that you could go wrong with either choice.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #17
raid
Dad Photographer
 
raid's Avatar
 
raid is offline
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Florida
Posts: 30,801
Both brands have some excellent lenses and some average lenses. I had both, but then I saw Canon FD lenses dropping in price due to Canon switching away from FD to EOS mount. I started then to get some really nice FD glass at affordable cost.
__________________
- Raid

________________


http://raid.smugmug.com/
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #18
Robert Lai
Registered User
 
Robert Lai is offline
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 1,637
Oh yes, focusing directions!

The early Canon FL lenses copied Leica slavishly, with the aperture rings up front, and the focusing towards infinity in the same direction as Leica. When they switched to the FD mount, the aperture ring got pushed to the back, behind the focusing ring.

Nikon copied the Contax rangefinder, so focusing and aperture directions are completely opposite to Leica / Canon. Sometimes, if I move from my Leica to a Nikon SLR, there is a moment of confusion.

When Canon moved to the EOS mount, a lot of us couldn't forgive them. I didn't consider Canon for 20 years because of this.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #19
raid
Dad Photographer
 
raid's Avatar
 
raid is offline
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Florida
Posts: 30,801
I also felt bad about Canon, but then logic took over and I bought plenty of FD lenses. It made sense.
__________________
- Raid

________________


http://raid.smugmug.com/
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #20
Contarama
Registered User
 
Contarama is offline
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 1,249
I have a hybrid F/D Nikon system...Df and F2...with a set of factory Ai kitted K primes. Because of the F mount glass kit I built first is why. I bought it cheaper than I could today for sure and it took me awhile to get everything I wanted.

Pentax K-1 and some old mechanical Pentax I think of in a very similar way as my Nikon stuff. Pentax is a very good option. K mount and m42 or whatever. Tons of glass options. Affordable as well.

Leica is the high rent district for such hybrid systems. I wouldn't mind living there either.

I have owned a F1 and a black Canonet QL17 before. Awesome cameras. Had more Nikkors though.

Hybrid F/D systems are the way to go
__________________
Art is the ability to make something...even if it is a big mess...
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-15-2018   #21
peterm1
Registered User
 
peterm1's Avatar
 
peterm1 is offline
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 5,580
Quote:
Originally Posted by raid View Post
Both brands have some excellent lenses and some average lenses. I had both, but then I saw Canon FD lenses dropping in price due to Canon switching away from FD to EOS mount. I started then to get some really nice FD glass at affordable cost.
Yes, I agree and one specific lens I have been tempted to buy recently is the Canon FD 200mm f2.8. (But I missed out to an eBay sniper who outbid me in the final few seconds of a recent auction "battle"). Its a gorgeous piece of glass, usually available at a price somewhat less than Nikkor equivalent (180mm) given FD is a somewhat orphaned format and also because it does not quite have the same reputation as the Nikkor. But there are also plenty of others that I lust after.

Till now I have mainly bought FL lenses as I had a hankering for their somewhat olde-timey character but more recently the FDs are appealing to me more an more.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #22
Skiff
Registered User
 
Skiff is offline
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 965
Quote:
Originally Posted by papo View Post
Can this even be compared in a constructive manner? I want to get me a manual focus camera so i wanted to determine this by optics. I think i will be shooting a fl of 50mm and while sharpness is important for me, a decent image look is also something to consider. I have a few AF Nikon G lenses which create an amazing look on my F100 but unfortunately they aren't compatible.
Every manufacturer has some excellent lenses in his programme, and some which are not so good.

As you already have a Nikon F100 - which is compatible to manual focus Nikon AI / AI-S and Zeiss ZF / Milvus lenses - it makes sense to stay with Nikon.
And you don't need another camera: The F100 works very good with manual focus. Because of its better viewfinder even better than lots of former manual-focus only cameras. I have one, too.

Just tell us which focal lengths you need, and we can give you recommendations for very good (manual focus) lenses for your F100.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #23
DMA1965
Registered User
 
DMA1965 is offline
Join Date: Mar 2018
Posts: 53
They both have great build quality and excellent glass. Both have specific lenses that are legendary. Nikon has the 105 mm f2.5 and canon has the 85mm f 1.2, both legendary lenses.

What I have noticed however is that Canon lenses are more prone to haze than Nikon. In fact, I have never seen a hazed Nikon lens.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #24
Robert Lai
Registered User
 
Robert Lai is offline
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 1,637
My Nikkor 24 mm 2.8 AI that I bought used flared horribly.
When the focusing dried up I had the lens serviced.
The tech told me that there was a lot of internal haze in the lens elements which explained my flare problems. Also there was sand in the helical so the previous owner must have made a lot of pictures on a hot beach to cause all of these issues.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #25
johannielscom
Ich bin ein Barnacker
 
johannielscom's Avatar
 
johannielscom is offline
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Universitas Terre Threntiae
Posts: 7,366

One kit to rule them all
by Johan Niels Kuiper, on Flickr

ºSony A7
ºTamron Adaptall 17mm 3.5 (type 51B)
ºCanon TS 35mm 2.8 S.S.C.
ºCanon FD 50mm 1.2L
ºCanon FD 85mm 1.2L
ºCanon FD 135mm 2.0

Getting the same lenses in Nikon mount nowadays is still slightly more expensive, but price levels are comparable since the Sony FF cameras hit the market.

Yet, three years ago this was a no brainer, I got the Canon mount lenses.
Three of the Canon lenses over the course of months came off RFF cheap (one needed service), one came off eBay (sniped it cheap on Xmas morning 7 am, thanks a lot) and the Tamron came cheap off a national vending site.

I also got a 55mm macro, a bellows and a 'film stage' for Canon so I can use the A7 to shoot my 35mm negatives. Much faster than scanning them...
__________________
Gegroet,
Johan Niels

I write vintage gear reviews on www.johanniels.com |

flickr | instagram |
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #26
Fraser
Registered User
 
Fraser is offline
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Scotland
Posts: 1,721
the G lenses should be compatible with f100.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #27
harpofreely
Registered User
 
harpofreely is offline
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 220
I doubt you'll ever find a conclusive argument as to which of the lens lines is "better," so I suggest you approach this from the perspective of what you want to see in a camera body.

I have a few dozen Canon FD lenses including some standouts like the 35mm f2 "chrome nose" and FDn 135mm f2, and FDn 24mm f2, and have always been happy with them. There are very few "dogs" among the FD primes, and as others have pointed out, they still tend to run a little cheaper than the Nikons.

However - I pretty much only use them on my Fuji X-E2 w/ Metabones Speedbooster, because I find most of the Canon FD film bodies to be problematic in one way or the other.

Canon made relatively few FD bodies with aperture-priority exposure. The most important are the A-1, New F1, and T90. The T90 is a lovely, versatile machine but working examples are getting scarce. The New F1 is a beautiful machine as well, and IMHO one of the greatest manual exposure 35mm SLRs of all time, but aperture-priority exposure requires an ugly AE prism that is also getting scarce and expensive. That leaves the A-1, which gets the job done but is plasticky, over-complicated, and often needs a minor repair to address "shutter squeak."

If you know that you are going to be shooting primarily the 50mm focal length and aperture-priority AE is important to you, consider taking a look a the Minota X-570 and MC Rokkor 50mm f1.4, which can be picked up cheaply and has a great feature set. The lens is very Leica-like in it's rendering.

If you are looking to shoot primarily shutter-priority or program AE and want to stick with Canon FD, consider the humble and homely T70, which is cheap, reliable, takes AA batteries, and has a huge, bright viewfinder - one of the best MF SLR finders I've seen.

I'll leave it to others re: Nikon as I've little personal experience there.
__________________
Our inventions are wont to be pretty toys, which distract our attention from serious things. They are but improved means to an unimproved end, an end which it was already but too easy to arrive at...

- Henry David Thoreau
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #28
Phil_F_NM
Camera hacker
 
Phil_F_NM's Avatar
 
Phil_F_NM is offline
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Age: 43
Posts: 3,978
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skiff View Post
The F100 works very good with manual focus. Because of its better viewfinder even better then lots of former manual-focus only cameras.
I don't want to put this off topic but the F100 certainly does not have a better viewfinder than previous manual focus cameras. For lenses, especially zooms, with max apertures between f/2.8 and f/5.6, the F100 does have a better VF. But for manual focusing lenses faster than f/2.8, a coarse grain screen with a split image focusing aid and maybe a microprism ring are far superior.

As for G lenses on the F100, they should work perfectly, every one. If they sont, the contacts on both camera and lens should be cleaned or the camera needs deeper service.

Phil Forrest
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #29
raid
Dad Photographer
 
raid's Avatar
 
raid is offline
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Florida
Posts: 30,801
Quote:
Originally Posted by peterm1 View Post
Yes, I agree and one specific lens I have been tempted to buy recently is the Canon FD 200mm f2.8. (But I missed out to an eBay sniper who outbid me in the final few seconds of a recent auction "battle"). Its a gorgeous piece of glass, usually available at a price somewhat less than Nikkor equivalent (180mm) given FD is a somewhat orphaned format and also because it does not quite have the same reputation as the Nikkor. But there are also plenty of others that I lust after.

Till now I have mainly bought FL lenses as I had a hankering for their somewhat olde-timey character but more recently the FDs are appealing to me more and more.
I have the Canon FD 200/2.8 IF. It is a relatively speaking "not-so-large" lens for a 2.8 max aperture. It can be focused smoothly and easily.
__________________
- Raid

________________


http://raid.smugmug.com/
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #30
raid
Dad Photographer
 
raid's Avatar
 
raid is offline
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Florida
Posts: 30,801
I favored the Canon cameras over Nikon cameras at the time when only Canon had built-in spotmeters. I needed to have a spotmeter for ultra-accurate metering with slow transparency film then. Nikon cameras had average meterin and no spot meters then.
__________________
- Raid

________________


http://raid.smugmug.com/
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #31
Skiff
Registered User
 
Skiff is offline
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 965
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil_F_NM View Post
I don't want to put this off topic but the F100 certainly does not have a better viewfinder than previous manual focus cameras. For lenses, especially zooms, with max apertures between f/2.8 and f/5.6, the F100 does have a better VF. But for manual focusing lenses faster than f/2.8, a coarse grain screen with a split image focusing aid and maybe a microprism ring are far superior.
My own experience is different: I get a more precise focussing with the F100 and manual focus compared to my older cams like FA and FE2. Maybe because of the brighter viewfinder. But I get definitely more keepers with the F100. But the highest keeper rate in manual focussing I get with the F6.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #32
Steve M.
Registered User
 
Steve M. is offline
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,382
Actually, a Canon FD 85 1.8 will take much better portraits than a Nikkor 105 2.5 lens, and is one of the "best bang for the buck" portraits lenses you can find for a SLR. It is one of life's great mysteries to me how the 105 Nikkor ever got known for portraits, as it is way too sharp and has ugly bokeh, both qualities you don't want in a portrait lens. Even a Canon "beer can" 135 2.5 takes much better people shots.

To be factual, the 105 Nikkor has never been known as a portrait lens, it was known as a photojournalist lens, and for that it worked very well. Sharpness was OK for that, and no one is concerned about bokeh when you're taking a photo of some ravaged soldier or napalmed civilian in Vietnam. Back in the day, almost every photojournalist shot Nikons because the cameras were almost indestructible.

The H 50 2 lens is one of the few that Nikon produced w/ beautiful bokeh, and it truly is a gem of a lens. Alas, it's too short for portraits unless you shoot it on a digital camera w/ a crop factor. I used to shoot mine on a Canon AE-1 w/ an adapter, which got interesting looks from photographers when they saw that AI prong on it!
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #33
presspass
filmshooter
 
presspass is offline
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Lancaster County, Pennsylvania
Posts: 1,223
I used four Canon primes - 20, 35, 85, and 200 - with two original F1s with motor drives for newspaper work for eight years. Never had a problem with binding, despite heavy use and sometimes miserable weather. Nor did I have trouble with the breach lock lenses either failing to mount or falling off. Then again, I was used to how they worked. The difference in focusing direction can still be an issue if, for instance, you shoot Leica rangefinders. That makes the Canons easier focus when you switch systems. Also used a couple of As and a T90. Again, no problems.
That said, my manual focus SLRs are now Nikons, usually a pair of F2s and pre-Ai lenses. It all comes down to cost and personal choice.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #34
Phil_F_NM
Camera hacker
 
Phil_F_NM's Avatar
 
Phil_F_NM is offline
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Age: 43
Posts: 3,978
It's probably because the original 10.5cm Nikkor from the rangefinder days was a true Sonnar formula and was second to none in portraiture. The new 105mm lenses, especially from Ai on to the current crop are incredibly sharp to a fault. I love my AiS 105mm but it could use a bit of Vaseline or defocusing for better portraiture to hide the fine details of skin that go with being human.

Phil Forrest
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #35
raid
Dad Photographer
 
raid's Avatar
 
raid is offline
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Florida
Posts: 30,801
Both of my Nikkor 105/2.5 are Sonnar models; one for Nikon SLR and one in LTM.
__________________
- Raid

________________


http://raid.smugmug.com/
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #36
CameraQuest
Head Bartender
 
CameraQuest is offline
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: over the hills from Malibu
Posts: 5,715
the Canon film bodies take take more lenses via adapters,

likewise Nikon F lenses are more adaptable to different film bodies.

both lens families of course are adaptable to mirrorless bodies.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #37
aizan
Registered User
 
aizan's Avatar
 
aizan is offline
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Torrance, CA
Age: 37
Posts: 4,601
Quote:
Originally Posted by harpofreely View Post
The New F1 is a beautiful machine as well, and IMHO one of the greatest manual exposure 35mm SLRs of all time, but aperture-priority exposure requires an ugly AE prism that is also getting scarce and expensive.
almost all new f-1 bodies come with the ae finder. the plain finder is the one that's hard to find.
__________________
Ugly Cameras
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #38
Gregm61
Registered User
 
Gregm61 is offline
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by papo View Post
Can this even be compared in a constructive manner?.
Sure, if you are a Canon user, all Nikkors are dogs, and vice versa, LOL.

You do know, this was the 1970's and 1980's best version of the similar modern "film vs. digital" which/who is best, right?

There is no one right answer here. They were both professional systems and so had the full gamut of lenses, from the uber expensive and nice glass, to the not-nearly-so-nice and pretty darn cheap to cover all of the market lines.

Today you have look both at the original specs to see what was good and what wasn't back then, along with what the particular lens you are looking at now has gone through the first 30-40 years of its' life, which could have been not so good.
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #39
Bob Michaels
nobody special
 
Bob Michaels's Avatar
 
Bob Michaels is offline
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Apopka FL (USA)
Age: 75
Posts: 3,767
This Nikon vs. Canon debate should get knocked out pretty quick. <G> It only took around 25-30 years last time for it to finally die down with no conclusion.

Then we could move on to if you should squeegee your film or not after it came out of the PhotoFlo.

Finally, if we still had daylight left, we could decide which was better: film or digital?
__________________
http://www.bobmichaels.org
internet forums appear to have an abundance of anonymous midgets prancing on stilts
  Reply With Quote

Old 08-16-2018   #40
Roger Hicks
Registered User
 
Roger Hicks is offline
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Aquitaine
Posts: 23,947
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Michaels View Post
This Nikon vs. Canon debate should get knocked out pretty quick. <G> It only took around 25-30 years last time for it to finally die down with no conclusion.

Then we could move on to if you should squeegee your film or not after it came out of the PhotoFlo.

Finally, if we still had daylight left, we could decide which was better: film or digital?
Dear Bob,

Nah. Let's get down to the REALLY important stuff. Is Version 3 or Version 4 of [insert lens here] better?

Cheers,

R.
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 10:20.


vBulletin skin developed by: eXtremepixels
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

All content on this site is Copyright Protected and owned by its respective owner. You may link to content on this site but you may not reproduce any of it in whole or part without written consent from its owner.