A mechanical beauty and one of Nikon’s highly sought after camera, the FM2 is probably one of my favourite cameras to bring along on photo walks if I’m want a solid light-weight camera with solid performance in any weather…and I mean any weather. Combine that level of performance with some amazing lenses and a great meter you have not only a great camera for someone who loves photography but one that’s great for someone who’s just starting off.
Type: 35mm, Single Lens Reflex
Lens: Interchangable, Nikon F-Mount
Year Manufactured: 1982-2001
This is your basic, no-nonsense camera. Probably the part I like about this camera is that it’s fully mechanical. You don’t need a battery to use this camera, it works at every shutter speed and aperture with or without the battery. The only thing that uses the battery is the meter. Speaking of the meter this beautiful center-weighted meter is nice and accurate with the in viewfinder display showing a simple circle for proper, with a circle and a + or – to show 1/3 stop over or under respectively, then a + and – for over and under. Clear displays of shutter speed and aperture means you don’t have to take your eyes out of the scene to adjust. The camera is also really light weight and durable perfect for photowalks or travel when weight is an issue. Also being mechanical this camera will work in pretty much any condition. I’ve taken it out in near -30C weather and super hot as well, rain, snow and dirt. The camera just keeps working.
Most cameras I’ve used I’ve been able to find some bad points on, the FM2 however I really can’t come up with much. I’m not staying this camera is perfect. It is fully mechanical, and can’t use every Nikon lens out there and it is manual focus. Personally the hardest part for me was figuring out how to turn it on to shoot, you have to flip out the film advance leaver slightly to get it going. Other than that I have no real complaints or ‘bad’ points about the camera.
If you have Nikon manual focus or D-Type Nikon glass and want a fully mechanical 35mm camera then this is the one for you! Perfect for film lovers and those new to film and students! It’s almost a gateway into the wonderful world of film photography. Easy to use and well laid out. If you’re a fan or a user of the Nikon Df then this camera will be perfect for ‘pure’ photography as the Df is based off of the FM2/FE2. If you’re a student in a photography program and need a mechanical camera look no further. Plus you can find them pretty cheap the FM2, FM2n, and FM online.
All Photos shot in along N. High Street between the Columbus Camera Group and Midwest Photo Exchange in Columbus, Ohio
Nikon FM2n – AI-S Nikkor 50mm 1:1.4 (Yellow-15) – Ilford Delta 100 – Ilfosol 3 (1+9) 5:00 @ 20C