Monochrome Monday… JCH Street Pan 400

Route de Bouhy, Alligny-Cosne, France, August 2017Route de Bouhy, Alligny-Cosne, France, August 2017
Pentax MZ-M, SMC Pentax-M 50mm f/2, 1/180s, f8 – JCH Street Pan 400 rated at ISO 320

Scans by Peak Imaging with minimal cropping and tweaking in Lightroom CC.

An image from my second roll of Japan Camera Hunter Street Pan film (the first was shot in what turned out to be a faulty Olympus μ[mju:] II Zoom 80).

So far I definitely prefer this film to the Fuji Neopan 400CN that I have been using recently. The grain isn’t obtrusive and the images are nice and ‘contrasty’ which surprises me given the very flat light the afternoon I wandered around Alligny-Cosne, snapping away while waiting for the boulangerie to open at 4pm…

I’ve got one more roll in stock, I think I’ll shoot it this weekend.

A few frames from… the Nikon F3HP

High Tide, Sheringham, October 2016High Tide, Sheringham, October 2016
Nikon F3HP, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 – 1/500s, f11, +2EV – Fuji Neopan 400CN

Union Jack, Sheringham, October 2016Union Jack, Sheringham, October 2016
Nikon F3HP, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 – 1/500s, f11, +2EV – Fuji Neopan 400CN

Wells-next-the-Sea, October 2016Wells-next-the-Sea, October 2016
Nikon F3HP, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 – 1/500s, f8, +2EV – Fuji Neopan 400CN

Scans by Ag Photo Lab with minimal cropping and tweaking in Lightroom CC.

I’m not over keen on Fuji’s C41 process black & white film… I can’t quite put my finger on why though, other than it seems very ‘grainy’ for an ISO 400 film. Once my existing stock is used up I’m going to try shooting some Ilford Delta 400 and Kodak T-MAX 400 and see how I get on with those…

A few frames from…

The Olympus OM-1N…

Unity MillUnity Mill
Olympus OM-1N, Zuiko Auto-zoom 35~70mm f/4 – 1/125s, f8½ – Fuji Neopan 400CN rated at ISO 200

I Believe In Sherlock graffiti‘I Believe In Sherlock’
Olympus OM-1N, Zuiko Auto-zoom 35~70mm f/4 – 1/125s, f16 – Fuji Neopan 400CN rated at ISO 200

E.S.C.Co. carved stone letteringE.S.C.Co.
Olympus OM-1N, Zuiko Auto-T 135mm f/3.5 – 1/250s, f8 – Fuji Neopan 400CN rated at ISO 200

Scans by Ag Photo Lab with minimal cropping and tweaking in Lightroom CC.

Nikon F3 – A professional heavyweight.

I’ve been a Nikon user for over 20 years now, 35mm SLRs, digital SLRs and compacts and even an Advanced Photo System (APS) compact (the tiny Nuvis mini i) have all passed through my hands but I always hankered after one of the ‘single digit’ professional models…

I eventually splashed the cash a couple of years ago when a clean and tidy F3HP turned up on the secondhand shelf at Harrison Cameras in Sheffield for a very reasonable sum.

Nikon F3HPNikon F3HP + Nikkor 50mm f/1.8

Introduced in March 1980 the F3 amazingly continued to be produced after it was superseded by the F4 in 1988 and the F5 in 1996 with Nikon finally announcing that production had ceased as late as 2001!

The F3 was the first of a number of Nikon models to be designed by Italian Giorgetto Giugiaro (better known for his many automotive designs including the first Volkswagen Golf and the legendary DeLorean DMC-12) and was also the first to feature the now well-known Nikon signature red stripe on the handgrip…

With interchangeable viewfinders, focusing screens and a wide range of dedicated accessories, including the high-speed MD-4 motor drive, the F3 is still a precision tool capable of handling any photographic situation… So far I’ve managed to resist the battery hungry MD-4 but have added the DW-3 waist level finder and a Type G2 focusing screen to my bag.

Over the years I’ve been fortunate enough to accumulate a number of manual focus Nikkor lenses ranging from the 28mm f/2.8 Series E up to the 200mm f/4 and now the Zoom-Nikkor 80~200 f/4.5 that I picked up at an auction last week. Every single Nikon lens in my collection, even those dating from the 1960s and the more recent autofocus AF-D models can be used with the F3, it really is an incredibly versatile piece of kit!

It’s not all beer and skittles with the F3 though… The viewfinder display is poor, just a tiny LCD to indicate shutter speed and exposure information. In good light the aperture in use is visible in the equally tiny ADR (Aperture Direct Readout) window, in poor light it can be difficult to see any information at all.

Nikon F3HP Viewfinder‘Poor’ viewfinder display

(I fitted the DW-3 waist-level finder in place of the DE-3 high-eyepoint finder to take the above shot with my iPhone… The display is actually much easier to see like this, the DW-3 doesn’t cast a shadow over the aperture ring like the DE-3 does…)

Nikon F3HP Accessory Shoe‘Less than ideal’ accessory shoe

In aperture priority mode, dialing in exposure compensation is a job for two hands and the accessory shoe surrounding the film rewind crank is certainly less than ideal… Overall though, using the F3 is an enjoyable experience and it’s a camera that I can’t ever see me parting company with…