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Customer Review

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Pics and Video with old Nikkor manual film lenses., October 24, 2013
I have wanted a DSLR for years. Every time I hear the word Nikon, I hear Paul Simon's 50 year old lyrics playing loud and clear in my head... "I've got a Nikon camera, I love to take photographs, Mama don't take my Kodachrome away."

I have a Panasonic Lumix LX5 that I bought on Amazon about a year ago that takes great pics and videos in auto or manual mode. Recently I have been experimenting with setting f stops and exposure and ISO settings in manual mode on the Lumix. I found I could get even better pics with manual settings than just using the auto settings. I started to desire a bigger sensor and more megapixels, to get even better pics, but wasn't comfortable spending many hundreds or thousands on a new DSLR and quality lenses.

On ebay I just bought a used Nikon D3100 body and four used Nikkor manual film lenses for less than 400 dollars total. To take pics or videos, I set the f stop on the lens, set the exposure on the D3100, keep the ISO on 100, turn the manual focus ring on the lens, and shoot amazing videos and still pics outdoors, or indoors in room light with no flash.

In the used market, many 30 to 40 year old Nikkor film lenses are selling for 10% of what they cost new. These are designated Non-AI or Pre-AI lenses, and they worked with Nikon film cameras. They are solid lenses and perform incredibly well with the D3100 in manual mode, for stills and video, thanks to the magnify (+) and (-) buttons on the left side of the D3100 lcd screen. When setting up a still shot or a video with the lcd screen in live view, using the magnify buttons digitally magnifies a portion of the screen up to 6.8 X, so I can focus perfectly by turning the focus ring on the lens until the magnified image on the lcd screen is sharp. I can't read a pill bottle, even with my glasses on, but this magnify button blows up a portion of the image so I can focus perfectly with the lens focus ring. And the screen also shows the exposure time and iso settings. The f stop is set with a ring on the lens itself.

The DX sensor on the 3100D increases the 35mm equivalent of lenses by 1.5. My Nikkor film lenses and 35mm equivalents are:

Nikon Nikkor-Q Auto 200mm f/4.0 1:4 Manual Focus Telephoto Lens (35mm equivalent of 300mm).

Nikon Zoom-Nikkor 43-86mm f3.5 Non-AI (35 mm equivalent of 64.5-129mm).

Nikon Nikkor-H Auto 28mm 1:3.5 Manual Focus Prime Lens (35mm equivalent 42mm).

Nikon F 50mm f/1.4 Nikkor S Non-AI Film Camera Prime Manual SLR Lens (35mm equivalent of 75mm).
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