Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
03-05-2018, 09:38 AM   #1
Veteran Member
Lord Lucan's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: South Wales
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 414
Canon F1 Behaviour

I have been looking at some glossy brochures of mid-1980's cameras, ones I picked up when choosing my first SLR (an ME Super). I was surprised by what I read about the Canon F1 which I had regarded as in the same bracket as the Pentax LX and Nikon F3. In fact while the Nikon and Pentax are quite similar in behaviour (Manual or AE - Auto aperture priority), the Canon F1 is basically manual. It only offered AE if you used a certain one of its five interchangeable viewfinders, a shortcoming that the brochure gets a bit arm-wavey to justify ("creativity" and all that). It is not clear even if manual metering is available with those other viewfinders, does anyone here know?

A diagram of what you see in the viewfinder shows down the right hand side a match-needle scale of lens apertures, and below that a single figure for the shutter speed : the reverse of most cameras and strange in that the aperture range will differ for every lens fitted - does this aperture range display somehow change when you change lenses? Of course the scale is shorter than a shutter speed scale would be, so the meter needle is going to be off-scale more often than with a shutter scale.

Finally, it says that if you fit the motor drive or winder, you get shutter priority auto mode; it is not clear if this is an added option or if the aperture priority mode is then lost. Anyway, its weird - I can't see the logic what a motor drive has to do with the exposure system.

All in all, the Canon F1 sounds a rather quirky camera and I'm suprised it was such a success as it was. Perhaps it was just Canon's excellent lenses that did it.

03-05-2018, 09:58 AM   #2
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
ChrisPlatt's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Rockaway Beach NYC
Posts: 5,795
Canon F-1 and F-1N predated the Pentax LX and Nikon F3.
They were intended to be competitors with the Nikon F2, also fully manual in operation.

Chris
03-05-2018, 10:17 AM - 1 Like   #3
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
boriscleto's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: North Syracuse, NY
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 14,211
QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
Canon F-1 and F-1N predated the Pentax LX and Nikon F3.
The Canon F-1 was introduced in 1971 along with the FD lenses. So it is a contemporary of the Electro-Spotmatic...

The Canon New F-1 is contemporary to the LX and F3...It was introduced at the same time as the L lenses...

Canon New F-1 - Exposure Control/Metering

Name:  Screen Shot 2018-03-05 at 12.17.15 PM.png
Views: 181
Size:  64.3 KB
03-05-2018, 10:23 AM   #4
MJL
Veteran Member
MJL's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: The Canadian WetCoast
Photos: Albums
Posts: 374
I confirm the F1 predated both F3 & LX.

One of my college newspaper colleague use it. Nikon F2 was the king back then. It was big, solid, heavy and quirky. The F1 in contrary was lighter, more "user friendly" and you can add AE function, although the prism was expensive. I tried it on couple occasions and it was a joy to use. If it wasn't I almost drop his lens due to the poorly designed lens mount (an external collar), I may have gone with Canon.

Nikkor lenses were the benchmark back then. The Canon lens IQ was no match to Nikkor or even Minolta Rokkor. Those were the old days...

03-05-2018, 10:40 AM   #5
Veteran Member
Lord Lucan's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: South Wales
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 414
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisPlatt Quote
Canon F-1 and F-1N predated the Pentax LX and Nikon F3.
They were intended to be competitors with the Nikon F2, also fully manual in operation.
The brochure I am looking at is dated 1984, so it is contemporary with the LX and Nikon F3. According to Wikipedia there was a Canon F-1 of 1971-76, replaced by the "mildly updated" F-1n of 1976-81, which was replaced by the "new" F-1 of 1981-1994. Canon thus used the same name twice, and it is the last of these three that my brochure must refer to, even though it calls it an "F-1" with no prefix or suffix. I believe that Canon fans call it the "New F-1". It would have been less confusing if Canon had called them the F-1, F-1ii and F-1iii, the way Pentax are heading with the K-1. You are right by the way in including the dash in "F-1", which I omitted in my first post and title.

The Wikipedia article Canon New F-1 - Wikipedia does seem to say that manual metering (but not auto) was available in the new F-1 with the basic eye-level finder (and the others, waist-level etc I guess) - I would expect nothing less!
03-05-2018, 11:42 AM   #6
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
ChrisPlatt's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Rockaway Beach NYC
Posts: 5,795
F-1, F-1N and New F-1 are three different models of Canon's professional SLR.
They share FD lenses but many system accessories are different.

Chris
03-05-2018, 12:24 PM   #7
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Texas
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 1,314
We had an F1 for publications at work in 1971-72, and it was a very solid camera, easily equal in construction quality to the LX, if not in features. I added one to my collection a few years ago, and after a bit of clean up it still works great. Easier to service than an LX.
03-07-2018, 06:34 AM   #8
Pentaxian




Join Date: May 2011
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Photos: Albums
Posts: 2,374
Maybe this will help clarify the Canon F-1 models



Between the F-1 and the New F-1 was a mild update F-1n.

03-07-2018, 08:21 AM   #9
Pentaxian




Join Date: May 2011
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Photos: Albums
Posts: 2,374
Canon designations:
New F-1
F-1N, Later Model
F-1
Canon obviously really liked "F-1".
Of course with Nikon, there are those new to them who think that since the later models were F2 and F3 that by extension the first must have been a "silent" F1 . . .

This is a comprehensive review of the New F-1 -> http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/classics/canonf1n/index.htm
03-07-2018, 09:54 AM - 1 Like   #10
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Los Angeles, CA USA
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 666
I have both the second and the third F-1 models. The third is my favorite 35mm camera.

With respect to the third model (F-1 New), aperture priority auto exposure is available across ALL viewfinders. However, it is only with the eye level AE finder that the camera selected shutter speed is visible. The speeds are displayed horizontally across the bottom viewfinder with a with a needle pointing the camera chosen speed. The lens aperture, chosen by the user is displayed as a single number to the right of the speed.

With ANY of the non AE finders, pull up the shutter speed dial and tun it to the “A” for aperture priority operation. That is all!

For either manual or shutter speed priority operation, the possible lens apertures are shown in a vertical column on the right side of the VF with a lollipop over the chosen lens opening. Only valid apertures, for that lens, in the non red area, can be selected. The aperture values that are beyond the range of the mounted lens are colored red. A needle moving up and down along the lens opening values indicates a hash of the light value and asa, just like our Pentax Spotmatics. In manual mode, adjust the shutter or lens opening until the lollipop and needle line up for the proper exposure.

For shutter speed priority, one of the motor drives or the power wonder must be attached. A rod, driven by the drive/winder comes up from the drive, internally to the camera, and manipulates the lens iris.

BTW, the third F-1 version has three selectable metering patterns: 2% spot; 18% center of frame; and full frame metering.

---------- Post added 03-07-18 at 08:58 AM ----------

The operation and metering patterns of the first and second models are different than that of the third’s. I’ll write up those tonight.
03-09-2018, 07:24 AM   #11
Veteran Member
Lord Lucan's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: South Wales
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 414
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by LesDMess Quote
Maybe this will help clarify the Canon F-1 models
Crikey LesDMess, do you own all those cameras (and the many more you have shown in previous posts) ? They all look in mint condition too The Canon new F1 dwarfs its rivals Nikon F3 and LX

QuoteOriginally posted by lmd91343 Quote
I have both the second and the third F-1 models. The third is my favorite 35mm camera.
Your post answers my original question, very helpful.

I attach two shots of that 1984 Canon brochure, including one showing what the "new F-1" viewfinder shows; and it seems that the technicalities of the camera are a bit beyond what the marketing people can cope with, because the text gives the impression that auto is only available with the AE Finder or a Winder/MD; in fact they are under-selling it. Bearing in mind your post, I guess the camera is in shutter prority mode, as there is nothing being shown in the area under the viewfinder. You say that apertures in the red areas of the scale are beyond what the fitted lens offers, but in that example there are four red bits - perhaps you could clarify?

I wondered why Canon got winders and MDs involved in exposure setting, being required for shutter priority AE in the new F-1. Thinking about it, to achieve shutter priority the camera needs to set an aperture itself and that requires a motor (while a shutter control does not), and a motor requires a fair bit of space and battery power (in those days at least). A winder or MD provided that space and ample battery power I suppose, so it makes sense.




03-09-2018, 11:52 AM   #12
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Los Angeles, CA USA
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 666
QuoteOriginally posted by Lord Lucan Quote
Crikey LesDMess, do you own all those cameras (and the many more you have shown in previous posts) ? They all look in mint condition too The Canon new F1 dwarfs its rivals Nikon F3 and LX


Your post answers my original question, very helpful.

I attach two shots of that 1984 Canon brochure, including one showing what the "new F-1" viewfinder shows; and it seems that the technicalities of the camera are a bit beyond what the marketing people can cope with, because the text gives the impression that auto is only available with the AE Finder or a Winder/MD; in fact they are under-selling it. Bearing in mind your post, I guess the camera is in shutter prority mode, as there is nothing being shown in the area under the viewfinder. You say that apertures in the red areas of the scale are beyond what the fitted lens offers, but in that example there are four red bits - perhaps you could clarify?

I wondered why Canon got winders and MDs involved in exposure setting, being required for shutter priority AE in the new F-1. Thinking about it, to achieve shutter priority the camera needs to set an aperture itself and that requires a motor (while a shutter control does not), and a motor requires a fair bit of space and battery power (in those days at least). A winder or MD provided that space and ample battery power I suppose, so it makes sense.



There are two images in your post. The top image is of a T70 or T50 camera which are consumer/hobbyist models.

The second image is of an F-1 New viewfinder. It is in manual or shutter speed priority mode. The shutter speed is set to 1/60 and the lens is set to f8. The largest diameter of the lens iris is f4. The camera is set to “perfect” exposure. The camera is set for normal(open aperture) metering. The viewfinder information assist light is off.

Other info in the viewfinder:
The lollipop is exactly one stop wide.
The black tick mark on the right is for stop down metering and battery check
The camera has a type “PE” screen installed.
The camera is set to 18% rectangle metering.
The focus aid is split image and microprisim combined.
It is impossible to know what kind of viewfinder is attached.

From conversations with a Canon technical person:
The power and a portion of the mechanism for shutter speed priority operation were placed in the various winder and drives to decrease the size, weight, and internal complexity of the camera. The rational was that only sports and news photographers would use shutter speed priority, and they would have one of the motor drives or the power winder attached. The average hobbyist or non-news/sports professional would only use manual or aperture priority mode.

Only the widest opening of the lens was communicated to the camera from the lens and never the narrowest. Therefore only the bottom red area changed as different lenses were mounted. The three red tick marks near the top represent the most common canon lens values narrowest diameter. They never change as different lenses are mounted.

Some of the latest canon fd series lenses had the ability to communicate the smallest aperture, but no fd camera could read it. I guess that enhancement was scrapped when they moved to autofocus ef lenses.
03-09-2018, 01:33 PM   #13
Veteran Member
Lord Lucan's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: South Wales
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 414
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by lmd91343 Quote
There are two images in your post. The top image is of a T70 or T50 camera which are consumer/hobbyist models
Yes, I should have made it clearer that image is of the front cover of my brochure, which covers the Canon SLR range at the time, and I included it because it shows the date of 1984, and therefore it is the "New" F-1 I am talking about.

I must have picked up the brochure at the time when I was looking around and finally bought my Pentax LX. Your explanation makes sense of it all now. I still think I made the right choice with the LX, especially as I can still use the K mount lenses I bought back then on my new K-1
03-09-2018, 02:15 PM   #14
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Los Angeles, CA USA
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 666
QuoteOriginally posted by Lord Lucan Quote
Yes, I should have made it clearer that image is of the front cover of my brochure, which covers the Canon SLR range at the time, and I included it because it shows the date of 1984, and therefore it is the "New" F-1 I am talking about.

I must have picked up the brochure at the time when I was looking around and finally bought my Pentax LX. Your explanation makes sense of it all now. I still think I made the right choice with the LX, especially as I can still use the K mount lenses I bought back then on my new K-1
You were not confusing. I understood. I just wanted make the post “stand alone” in case some one did not read the entire thread.

Did you need information on the vf displays, viewfinders, metering patterns, types of metering, and exposure automation of the first two F-1 models? They are different than the third model.
03-09-2018, 04:18 PM   #15
Veteran Member
Lord Lucan's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: South Wales
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 414
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by lmd91343 Quote
Did you need information on the vf displays, viewfinders, metering patterns, types of metering, and exposure automation of the first two F-1 models?
No, I was only interested in the New F-1 but thanks for the thought
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
aperture, camera, canon, f-1, f1, lens, lenses, mode, needle, operation, patterns, priority, range, scale, shutter, third
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Odd exposure behaviour with Tamron 10-24 on K-3? BigMackCam Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 10 08-10-2017 11:31 AM
K1 - Bug? M-Lens - M-Mode - Live View - EV compensation behaviour acoufap Pentax K-1 6 06-21-2016 09:20 AM
K-5 in bulb mode - interesting behaviour pathdoc Pentax K-5 7 05-24-2016 02:48 AM
Canon EF 85mm f1.8 for Canon 40D? metalmania Non-Pentax Cameras: Canon, Nikon, etc. 13 05-01-2011 08:38 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 12:20 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top