Official Nikon statement: F6 remains in production

Discussion in 'Industry News' started by Angarian, Sep 10, 2018.

  1. Angarian

    Angarian Member

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    I think this is very good news not only for Nikon photographers, but for the whole film photography scene in general:
    With all the buzz about the new Nikon Z6 and Z7 DSLMs, there is also a report about the production of these cameras in the Nikon factory in Sendai. Sendai is the factory where most of the Nikon professional stuff is made (prof. cameras, lenses, flashes). There have been several reports from factory visits in this factory in the past. It is a very modern and flexible factory.
    Sometimes very important information concerning a product are hidden in a completely different topic. Therefore in this current report about Z camera production it is also said that the F6 is still in production (that the F6 has always been produced in Sendai is well known from former factory visit reports):
    https://nikonrumors.com/2018/08/24/...rorless-cameras-per-month.aspx/#ixzz5PYKRi8bR

    I am a F6 user for many years. I bought mine new from the factory, complete set with the MB-40 vertical grip. It is the best 35mm SLR I have ever used. It is a "dream-machine" of a camera for me.
    Therefore I am of course very happy to read this news. Hopefully more photographers are able to enjoy the outstanding capabilities of the F6 by buying it new .
    So by that demand it could be kept in production for some further years to come. This camera is so excellent, it definitely deserves it!
     
  2. Billy Axeman

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    The only thing you could conclude from this article that the F6 is still in production, not that it remains in production, and it is not an official statement.
    If this is true I'm quite surprised because many accessories are difficult or impossible to get new. However, there might be a chance that the F6 is just hanging on because of a resurgence of analog photography.
     
  3. Theo Sulphate

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    This statement from the article has convinced me the F6 is actually in production: "What you saw today is the Z7 assembly line. Currently, the Nikon D5 and Df are on pause. We have another line for the film camera F6."

    Wow. I'm totally surprised because I thought the accountants and other financial critters at Nikon would not allow resources (building space, material, personnel) to be devoted to a film camera in this era.

    Now I'm uncertain what to do. With what I already have, I don't need any camera of any kind for the next eight lifetimes. I have the F through the F4 and deliberately stopped there because I didn't like all the electronic subsystems and the controls of the F5 and F6. With this news, I'm tempted to get the F6 because it's very likely to be last film Nikon I can buy new. To complete the Nikon pro-camera collection, I suppose I'd need an F5 as well - but I've seen silly low prices for them recently.
     
  4. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    I feel the exact same way. I'm starting to save for one.
     
  5. Billy Axeman

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    Here is also another discussion:
    https://www.photrio.com/forum/threads/nikon-f6.155678/

    What is unique for the F6 is that you can use matrix metering with manual lenses (AI, AIs) and on B/W film for a very reliable exposure. I even use this combination with filters as long as they have a small factor (UV or light-yellow).

    For the rest, it's very big and heavy (with battery grip it is bigger than the F5) and I don't like the design, notably the penta-prism bulb. It is very comfortable in your hand though, with an edge chopped off on the bottom-left side, which works excellent with manual lenses.

    I also bought the F6 (in 2017) because I felt it was my last chance, and actually of all my film-camera's I use it the most.
     
  6. MultiFormat Shooter

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    Excellent news, indeed! I just got one, albeit (barely) used, and I've only had a few rolls through it, but I love it! I, too, have the MB-40 grip for it. I also got a Type L focusing screen, and had it factory-modified to take non-AI lenses. As Angarian said, it is a photographic dream machine.
     
  7. Theo Sulphate

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    Several years ago someone on this site wrote that they bought a new F6 and there was a card inside on which one of the factory workers who assembled the camera wrote a note of thanks to the buyer for purchasing it.

    Other people who bought F6's reported no such card.

    Maybe I'm overly romantic or just a sentimental old fool, but if I knew for sure such a note would be in the box, I'd've bought the camera then immediately.

    I'm still astonished over this news. The F6 was introduced in 2004!
     
  8. RalphLambrecht

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    very good news indeed but I will keep using my FMs until they or I die.
     
  9. Billy Axeman

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    Well, I hate to be a party pooper, but you guys jump to conclusions at even the slightest hint. What usually happens is that a camera (like this) is made in batches at distant intervals. And the comment in the cited article in fact only mentions the production site (which is already a known fact), it is not saying the camera is (will be) produced in a next batch. It is plausible it is decided by Nikon each time the previous batch is running out if and when a new batch will be produced depending on the sales and perspectives, and about the numbers.

    Also note that the article is a translation from Japanese, so we also don't know the subtleties of the language. I wonder why this was mentioned at all because it seems there was no direct reason for it, is it some sort of hint?

    I lately saw a used near mint F6 on the web site of a camera dealer in the Netherlands, and when I asked him about that, one of his comments was that this was the first time he offered this camera because it was no longer in production. However, such a comment has as much value as my tale above because there is no official statement from Nikon that production is ceased or that it will be continued in the near future.
     
  10. AgX

    AgX Member

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    More likely even is that the components for that model had been made in much larger quantities than the decreasing market needed. So stocks of parts are still there.
    And Nikon realized that it still is profitable to them to run a small assembly, likely in batches.
    In no report on the F6 production over the last years I remember having read about parts production. But I may stand corrected.
     
  11. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

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    I have a Canon EOS 3, which I use extensively and which I like a lot, and I sure hope it lasts forever, but realistically it is 20 years old by now and will not last forever. If that event happens, if it finally breaks down, all other analog Canon cameras will be of similar age, which means I may turn into a nikonite after all those years. In that case it will be important to know that there were F6 production batches from 2015 and later, and this translated page suggests just that. In 10+ years 2015 vs. 2018 does not make much of a difference for me, but 1998 vs. 2018 sure does.
     
  12. Chan Tran

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    Why are you happy? You already have an F6 and it's not likely to break down for many many years. Why do you need Nikon to continue making it?
     
  13. Billy Axeman

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    When I got my new F6 early 2017 it had a very high serial number, much higher than in the lists I had found on the internet. So my conclusion was that it was from a recently produced series.
     
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  15. Kino

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    Why do you care? Must you insure someone is unhappy?
    God, this place sometimes...
     
  16. Chan Tran

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    I care because it seems that the OP wouldn't be happy if Nikon discontinue the F6. I am trying to tell the OP that in his case whether Nikon is still making the F6 or not is irrelevant.
     
  17. guangong

    guangong Member
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    High end cameras were created with materials of such quality that the market place became stagnant with regard to new film cameras. Rolleiflex, Nikon,, Leica...no need to ever buy another. Luckily, some manufacturers saved by plastic and digital, permitting the need to continually replace every few years, prodded by marketing departments.
    I challenge anyone who can distinguish between a photo taken with an F with plain prism and a multipoint metered F6 ( excluding certain kinds of scientific applications.). And with a pancake lens, F will fit in pocket of field jacket.
     
  18. fdonadio

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    I’m not saying you’re old, nor that you’re going to die any time soon. But I believe your FMs will outlive you. :wink:
     
  19. Theo Sulphate

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    Well, that is not too bad. Up until I read that interview, my belief was that Nikon made the last batch of F6's long ago and was just dribbling stock out of a warehouse while they'd committed their entire facility to digital cameras.

    That's what Fuji did with packfilm: they made a banzai run of the stuff which would last a few years, tore the production facility down, then announced they'd discontinued the film.

    The fact the the guy mentioned an F6 line as being in existence today still astonishes me. It's almost --almost-- like a Kodak tour guide mentioning today that "here's our Kodachrome chemical and processing lab."
     
  20. Theo Sulphate

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    No one can. Given images made by a dozen or more different cameras with good lenses, I couldn't distinguish between the negatives made by any of them. However, many of us here just like cameras, which is why very few of us have just one camera. I think some of us are just happy at the thought that a high quality 35mm SLR is still being made.

    Also, perhaps there are some people new to photography, or maybe even old photographers, who might want an F6 as their very first high quality 35mm SLR.
     
  21. Rudeofus

    Rudeofus Subscriber

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    I have read many books about photography, and especially the older ones desperately try to convince their readers that manual exposure measurement is the only way to get correctly exposed negatives - yet I get consistently well exposed color slides from my EOS 3 in full auto mode in most practical situations. Evidently a range of improvements have been made to autofocus, exposure measurement and other important issues, and the Nikon F6 is likely the pinnacle of engineering in our analog world.

    If you have cooperating subject matter, then the choice of camera most likely won't matter, a Nikon F will deliver the same results as an F6 or EOS3. If you chase a bunch of kids in our courtyard, then the fastest AF and the best exposure (flash plus ambient) metering technique barely keep up with the challenge.
     
  22. kmg1974

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    It was not an official statement, just a comment during a factory tour.
    That does not mean they are still making it, but that they could make it if so interested. My guess would be that the know how of putting it all together may suffer if they do not regularly train it, but not that they are making it anymore...
     
  23. Poisson Du Jour

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    They can actually.
    There is a very significant difference of how a centre-weighted / mean-average weighted meter and a matrix/3D/Evaluative meter examines the scene and differences in what the meter has "seen" can be discerned by a skilled observer.

    CW/MAW metes do not assess highlights and shadows. Conversely, a matrix/3D/Evaluative (whatever manufacturers want to call it), most definitely will assess highlights and shadows as well as mid-tones and a whole-scene summation to arrive at a medium which closely approximates, if not matches, a stored algorithm with adjustments for extremes.

    The differences will be very noticeable at small steps e.g. 0.3, 0.6 on slide film. No one particular marque excels at exposure with difficult scenes of mixed/strong contrast but they are all extremely capable in skilled hands. In that regard I would put Canon and Nikon head-to-head in the sophistication and refinement of their respective metering systems and how precisely matched metering algorithms are to their own respective lenses (neither Nikon or Canon particularly licenses metering algorithms to third party lens manufacturers, and this has been the situation for many decades now)..
     
  24. RalphLambrecht

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    I mostly agree.I'm very familiar with the Zone System and pride myself that I can consistently and accurately expose any scene to generate a perfect negative but, I must say that I've been always impressed how well of an exposure I get from the Nikon matrix metering system in a few of Nikon's cameras. I'm sure many Zone System affinados would be challenged to compete withy it.
     
  25. Theo Sulphate

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    Well, I should've stayed with what the original quote was and not extended it to a dozen cameras - because that compromises the argument, I'll grant you that.

    But if the Nikon F (plain prism, as originally postulated) were used against the F6 and the skilled photographer chose the same aperture and shutter speed that the F6 chose, then there would be no difference in the images - yes, I know this is a contrived situation.

    Yes, I'm in agreement here.

    I know it sounds a bit silly and obvious for me to to say that under controlled conditions, you won't see a difference between F and F6 images. But that's the thing: some people will really benefit from the advanced exposure and autofocus of the F6 and a few others, like me, who are doing landscape and architecture really could do just as well with a plain F.

    I'm grateful Nikon made the F6 and am happy this tool is available for those that need or want it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2018
  26. OP
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    Angarian

    Angarian Member

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    Sorry, I have to disagree:
    1. That the F6 line is operating in the Sendai factory even in this time when there is a lot of pressure there to keep up with production of the new Z series (and other cameras) - demand is higher than the current production capacity - is clear evidence that the F6 line is there to stay for the foreseeable future. Otherwise it would not make any economic sense. Keeping such a line create opportunity costs (= you could produce Z cams instead). So that it is still operating despite that fact showas it has a future. Otherwise it would have stopped and converted to Z 6 / 7 camera production.
    2. Of course it is official: If the Nikon staff at a factory visit for the press is showing the F6 line it cannot be more official. If I were a journalist, I would have much more trust in that than in any "paper only" press release of a company.
    3. The only accessoire which is not available new anymore is the MV-1 data reader (I have one, too, excellent tool). But instead you also can use the new Meta35 data reader.
    The most valuable accessoire is the MB-40 vertical grip (I highly recommend it for every F6 user, perfect addition to the F6). And this one is also in production and can be bought new.
     
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