Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Comparison of Viewfinder Magnifications in Nikon cameras

I think that the FM2N is probably one of the better cameras for manual focusing due to the high magnification of the viewfinder image of .86%. Compare this with .70% in D3.

The APS-C format DSLRs cannot be directly compared here because the specification of viewfinder magnification is in terms of a 50mm lens, but to get the same field of view as a 50mm lens on full frame, one has to use a 35mm lens on the APS-C DSLR. The effective viewfinder magnification of an APS-C DSLR is therefore lower than the specified one. Rough testing leads me to believe that the D300, for instance, which is specified as 0.94% magnification using 50mm, only provides an effective magnification of .75% when using a 35mm lens. This is not bad when compared to D3, but the Nikon FM2N is better for manual focussing.

Camera
Viewfinder magnification using 50mm at infinity
Viewfinder Coverage
Eyepoint
Nikon FM2N
.86%
93%
14mm?
Nikon FM3A
.83%
93%
14mm
Nikon F
.80%?
100%

Nikon F2
.80%?
100%

Nikon F3
.80%
100%

Nikon F3HP
.75%
100%
25mm
Nikon F3AF
.80%
92%

Nikon F4
.70%
100%
22mm
Nikon F5
.75%
100%
20.5mm
Nikon F6
.74%
100%
18mm
Nikon D3
.70%
100%
18mm
Nikon D700
.72%
95%
18mm
Nikon F90x
.78%
92%
19mm
Nikon F100
.76%
96%
21mm

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