2115 Kamiichi Yoshino-cho Yoshino-gun
Nara Japan


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Nikkorex F







What's Nikon F?!

Nikon F is the origin of succeeding series cameras Nikon F2, F3, F4 and F5.
As the series has been improved and more electronic from F3 to F5, the size of a camera has only become larger with increase of plastic parts. Therefore, we can enjoy less satisfaction from the feeling of metal body nor weighing lighter in our hands. If you think a light camera is the best, we suggest you not to read the rest of this introduction. We don't think these people will understand the whole story of Nikon F and its series.

Nikon F was introduced to market in June of 1959 by NIPPON KOGAKU K.K. (present Nikon Corporation) and manufactured for 15 years until 1974. Its body number started from 6400001 and approximately one million cameras were produced. Some people recognize that the first two digits of this number shows the year in which it was made. For example, some people say a camera with body number starting from 64 was made in 1964. But this idea is wrong.
Its body weighs 685g with an eye level prism and 1,010g with 50 mm lens F1.4.
It is possible even for an amateur to interchange the viewfinder and the focusing finder screen of 100% visual field. You can mount any kind of Nikon lens currently produced to the Nikon F body with no specific attachments. Its mount is still active although other companies have changed to new mounts. Nikon mount is immortal!
Another advantage of Nikon F is the enough supply of its parts. You will never have trouble in procuring them as the number of product is very large. It is possible to repair it even now 40 years after the production as far as it is not with a serious trouble. This is because it is the origin of Nikon F series camera which is the Nikon Corporation's drawing card. It attributes to a stubborn conscience of the company and the good maintenance of Nikon F. This camera's evaluation has upped year by year and no day passes without hearing about this in a used camera market. According to its type, there are some premium Nikon F like early type and small production model at extremely high price.

We suppose some of you think that we do not have to use old cameras today. But it has nostalgia, precise operation and a sense of security only brought by manual operation, which present AF cameras do not have. The angular design of Nikon F is out of date and can not be compared with current level of sophisticated camera design. Its metallic body with no electric parts, however, is simple but all the more perfect.
In those days Japanese manufacturers were busy copying the design of camera and car of Western design. Nikon F is a durable camera designed by a Japanese designer with Japanese heart. It is just the case of Japanese sword. Incidentally, its sharp eye level was designed by Mr. Yusaku Kamekura who is famous for the design of poster of the Tokyo Olympic Games in 1964. Although this camera tends to be a model for the past, there are still many photographers who actively use it.
There are many anecdote regarding Nikon F. Let us introduce some of them as follows:
*Most of foreign press of the Tokyo Olympic Games used Nikon F
*Used for a large part of record of the Vietnam War
*Used by major mountaineering parties and expeditionary parties
*Used for the mission of the spaceship Apollo 15 in 1971
*Designated as the official camera of the United States Navy and Air Force
*Designated camera of NASA
*Used by almost all domestic and foreign press other than the above
*Cleared 100,000 times shutter test
*Found six months after an airplane crash along with its wrecking, but available for use
*Dropped in water and remained for several hours, but possible to take photos after a few simple adjust ments
*Only Nikon F survived for the use in North Korea without freezing

There is no end to the fame of this camera. Without using electronic parts, it has perfect cold-resistant and solidity.

The following is an extract of the Nikon F catalogue issued in 1968.
(Reference from Asahi Camera, May 1998)
"Photographers bet everything on their shutter chance. What they can really trust is their belief and reliance on their camera. Those who live decisive moment do not fail to take Nikon F. This is a once-in-a-lifetime camera."