Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Nikon F2 Photomic DP 1 - Index Page


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The Nikon Photomic Finder DP-1 incorporates a precise center-weighted Cds exposure metering system which couples with the camera's lens aperture diaphragm and shutter speed controls. It makes possible easy, accurate thru-the-lens exposure measurement with the Nikon F2. A Nikon F2 camera body couples with an DP1 prism is usually referred as a "Nikon F2 Photomic".


Main Reference Map
Attaching the Photomic Finder Shutter Speed Coupling
Aperture Coupling
Maximum Aperture Indicator

Click HERE - new Window...

Setting the Film Speed ........... Installing the Batteries.......... Checking the Batteries.......... Exposure Measurement.......... Turning On the Meter.......... Centering the Meter Needle.......... Getting the Right Exposure .......... Exposure Measurement: Special Cases..........Stop-Down Exposure Measurement..........Exposure Correction for Special Lens-Focusing Screen Combinations.......... Repro-Copying, Slide-Copying.......... and Photomicrography..........Viewfinder Readylight..........Care and Maintainence.......... Specifications..........Accessories

BEFOFE you proceed with the rest of the content baked for you in this site, it will be easier for you to click open a new window with a copy of the Main Reference Map for reference.

Note: Off-topic discussion for Nikon Meter and non-Metered Prisms are also available at: the Index Page (10 Parts)

Based largely on the information on an original instruction manual, this site is aimed to help you get the most out of your Photomic finder with your Nikon F2 and make comparison with other finders which featured in this site.

You are safe to use the content herein as a ready reference until you have mastered its basic steps. Bookmark this section or print them for visual reference. For other issues not covered in this site, make good use of the Message Board readily for you but please don't mail me.

Mounting the DP1 finder to a Nikon F2 camera

To attach the finder to the camera with the lens in place, first set the lens aperture diaphragm at f/5.6 or larger and place the finder in position loosely. Make sure that the meter coupling pin is in the center.

Then press down gently on the finder until it clicks into place and the two clamps settle into place. Mounting the finder on the camera body without a lens is simple. just set it in position and press until it clicks into place.

To remove the finder, first, depress the base of the finder release lever and then turn the lever downward. Next, press the finder release button on the back of the camera. dp1ilus2.jpg The finder will come loose and can be lifted out. Avoid using excessive force when attempt to remove the finder.
Shutter Speed Coupling

When the Photomic finder is attached to the camera, the shutter speed dial on top of the camera is inaccessible. Therefore, an auxiliary shutter speed scale is provided on the finder.

With the finder in place, twist the shutter speed selector back and forth until it engages the dial on the camera and the two rotate together.

Lens Aperture Coupling

The Photomic finder takes advantage of the automatic diaphragm feature of Nikkor lenses to measure light with the lens wide open. Full-aperture metering gives a bright, clear finder image for viewing and focusing and minimizes the effect of light entering the viewfinder from the rear.

Position the lens In the camera's bayonet mount so that the Indicator dots on the lens and camera body line up. Grasp the lens by the white milled ring and twist it counterclockwise until it clicks into place.

Turn the aperture ring all the way to the minimum aperture setting (largest f/number), then all the way in the opposite direction.

This step automatically fits the coupling pin In the Photomic finder into the coupling prong on the lens and adjusts the meter to the maximum aperture of the lens.

In order to measure exposure at full aperture with lenses having different maximum apertures, the meter must be adjusted to the maximum aperture of the lens in use. This is done each time the lens is attached or changed as follows:
Maximum Aperture Indicator

The above adjustment can be verified by checking the maximum aperture Indicator in the window on the Photomic finder. The scale has a range from f/1.2 to f/5.6. For example, if the 28mm f/2.8 lens is mounted on the camera, 2.8 should appear in the window.


The exposure meter in the Photomic finder must be adjusted for the film speed (ASA number) of the film in use. Lift up the milled ring around the film-speed dial and turn it so that the film speed appears opposite the red arrow.
The film speed dial covers a range from ASA 6 to 6400 with two dots# between each pair of numerical settings for intermediate values such as ASA 64, 80, 12S, etc.

Warning: Wrong setting of the film speed in use from the camera could result wrongly exposed pictures if camera meter values are used.


Two 1.5V silver batteries are supplied with each Photomic finder. They must be installed in the battery chamber on the Nikon F2 camera base plate before the meter circuit will operate.

To install the batteries, twist the base plate cap with a coin or similar object to remove it and drop the batteries into the chamber. Make sure that the plus (+) side faces out.

Caution: Remove the silver batteries from the camera when not in use for a long time. At below-freezing temperatures, most button cells will react miserably and batteries may malfunction or cease to operate until the temperature rises again. Be careful not to expose the battery to severe cold for long periods of time.

Checking the Batteries A built-in battery checker lets you check the condition of the silver batteries at a glance. Pull out the film-advance lever to uncover the red dot, press the battery checker button

meteronpress.jpg meterindicate.gif
Watch the needle in the window on top of the finder. If the needle swings to the right edge of the notch or beyond, the batteries are in good condition. If not, they need to be replaced.

(full-aperture method)

The exposure meter in the Photomic finder features a center weighted thru-the-lens metering system cross-coupled with the shutter speed and aperture controls. The meter reads the light over the entire focusing screen but favors a central area. This means that correct exposures are easy to get even in situations where an averaged reading would result in wrong exposure.

Turning On the Meter

The film-advance lever also serves as an on-off switch for the exposure meter. To turn the meter on, pull out the lever just far enough to uncover the red dot on top of the camera. When the meter is not in use, press the lever flush against the camera body to avoid draining the batteries.

Centering the Meter Needle

The amount of light reaching the film is determined by a combination of lens aperture and shutter speed. Since the two are interrelated, different combinations will give the same amount of exposure. The "best" combination depends on the results desired. Use fast shutter speeds to freeze motion or slow ones to create deliberate blur.

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Small apertures give greater depth of field; large ones let the subject stand out against an out-of-focus background. To determine correct exposure, adjust the aperture and/or shutter speed until the meter needle is centered in the U-shaped notch visible in the viewfinder (+ and - marks let you know whether you are over- or underexposing) or at the U-shaped notch located beneath the window on top of the Photomic finder.

<< ---Pipes... Copyright ©-Free 2000 Images Collection. leofoo ® Malaysian Internet Resources

For fine adjustments of less than one f /number, either the aperture ring or the shutter speed (except for speeds slower than 1/80 sec.) permits reliable intermediate settings.

Under extremely low light conditions, the meter needle may center at the ,B11 setting on the shutter speed selector. if so, correct exposure time is 2 seconds.

IF the needle moves erratically or cannot be centered even after all possible aperture-shutter speed combinations have been tried, then the light is too bright or dim for the meter's range.

Effective range (coupling range) varies according to the lens and film speed used. For example, with the 50mm f/1.4 lens and a film speed of ASA 100, it extends from f/1.4 at 1 second to f/8 at 1/2000 second.

For added convenience when measuring exposures, the actual shutter speed and the aperture selected appear in the bottom edge of the finder viewfield. This permits exposure setting while observing the exposure needle in the viewfinder.

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Copyright © 2000. leofoo ®. MIR Web Development Team.

In memory of my friend Com. Augusto Staut, Brazil, 1971-2000.

Credit: Chuck Hester, US for his patience, encouragement and help to setup the various content in this site; Robert Johnson for some of his original images on the F2H-MD appeared in this site; my ex-staff, KiaSu for his superb 3-D logo appeared in this Nikon F2 site; Marc Vorgers from Holland who generously provide me with some of his images of F2AS; MCLau®, who has so much time with me to re-edit the content in this site and not to mention buying a Nikon Coolpix 990 just for this site. Keat Photo, Kuala Lumpur for providing their Nikon F2A to take some images for this site; again, Mr Edward Ngoh the great camera collector who provides us his collection of F2AS with MD-2; for their images on the Speed Magny film backs; Sean Cranor for his image on Nikon F2 25th Anniversary Model; Ted Wengelaar®, Holland for his continuous flow of input on some of the early Nikon bodies; CYLeow ® , photo editor of the Star newspaper, Malaysia for some of his images used in this site. Ms Rissa Chan, Sales manager from Shriro Malaysia who has helped to provide some of the very useful input. HiuraShinsaku®, Nikomat ML, Japan for some of his images on various F2 models; my staff, Wati, Maisa, Mai and my nephew, EEWyn®, who volunteered and helping me did so many of the film scanning works. Contributing photographers or resellers: Jen Siow, Foo KokKin, Arthur Teng, Mark Fallander, John Ishii, Ed Hassel, YoonKi Kim, Jean-Louis, M.Dugentas (Dell, Mr "Arsenall" and a few images mailed in from surfers with no appropriate reference to their origin. Dedicated to KU Yeo, just to express our mutual regrets over the outcome of a recent corporate event. Made with a PowerMac, broadcast with a Redhat Linux powered server.

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