Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Canon New F-1 - Interchangeable Viewfinder Options

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What would you expect in a finder of a modern days' SLR camera ? I would like exposure information be staying unobtrusive and keep the viewfinder as clean as it should be to let photographer put more attention to the subject matter. I don't know how would you feel, but many of current AF sensors inside the viewfinder of any autofocus SLR camera is very disturbing. Although exposure information is as important as focusing to many camera users but I feel quite negative relating to the cursor/sensor and would always welcome the idea of leaving a clean, unclustter viewfinder in any camera.

Rear View.jpg
The viewfinder display inside the New F-1 was really a joy to use, it makes the built-in exposure meter guide almost stay undisturb to the photographer eyes except where it is required. To many photographers, the viewfinder's original function to focus and compose a picture should be a more important element. As with the previous F-1, all exposure-related information in the New F-1's finder is displayed outside the field of view in order not to interfere with subject composition.

Credit: Image courtesy of Mr. Claudio®. who is a collector for Canon photo gear, he also has an Ebay Section as well as maintaining a website on his own where occasionally trading some photo equipment. Image(s) copyright © 2003. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

Illustration on Exposure information displayed

Optical Path Map.jpg (27k) Interesting...
Great care was given at the human-engineering because, it does help a lot to determine the location and arrangement of the display. Studies showed that the human eye has a natural tendency to look either to the right or down, that was one of the reason Canon has put its eye control sensors that way in the AF cameras. Technically, it could be a easier approach of locating the exposure information display at the top of the finder, rather than positioned it to the right and lower sides instead when work with individual finders. With the waist-level finders, the display is positioned to the left. Proper dioptric correction has also been added to make the display easier to see.

But, achieving the optical and mechanical tolerances required in such positioning was possible only through high-precision processing techniques. These techniques are used both in the mechanical structure, and in the display mirrors and prisms which are needed to reflect exposure information into the viewfinder.

Manual View info.jpg With Body.jpg
At manual and shutter-priority AE mode operations, the exposure information appears on the right. It shows the shutter speed selected, meter needle (in manual mode the aperture needle also appears), and aperture scale. When the AE Finder FN is installed and the camera is set for aperture-priority AE, the display on the right is cancelled, and the exposure information (aperture selected, meter needle and shutter speed scale) appears instead at the bottom of the viewfinder. In other words, you can tell at a glance which mode you are working in simply by noting the position of the display.

The displays are lit through one of two windows, depending on the operation mode. The window for the rightside display is located on the top of the body next to the pentaprism housing. The lower display is illuminated by a window on the front of the AE Finder FN. Ambient light is sufficient to make either display bright and easy to see.
AE View info.jpg AE with Body.jpg
Shutter AE info.jpg

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Instruction Manual: Canon New F-1 Camera | Motor Drive FN | Canon High Speed Motor Drive Camera |
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Specifications: HTML | PDF (58k)

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