Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Instruction Manual for MD-4 Motor Drive - Detailed Features Part 3

Frame Counter

A subtractive-type frame counter is built into the MD-4. For normal shooting, set the counter to the orange dot and forget it. At this setting, the counter is disengaged and the motor drive stops automatically when the film tension increases at the end of the roll.

OrangeDOT.jpg (6k)
However, in below-freezing temperatures, film becomes brittle and easy to break. Therefore, to prevent the film from being accidentally torn, set the frame counter to the number of frames on the roll. When the counter reaches "0," the motor drive automatically shuts off before the film is damaged. One LED also lights up as a visual indication.

Note 1: To set the counter, turn the counter setting dial to the right until the desired number is aligned with the white index 36, 24, 20, and 12 are in red corresponding to the number of frames in commercially-available cartridges. You can also shoot short bursts by setting the counter to the number you want (Fig. 1). When the counter reaches "0" the motor drive stops and one LED lights up (Fig. 2). To reset the frame counter for another burst, first turn the counter setting dial to the orange dot and the LED will go out (Fig. 3). Then you can rotate the counter to the desired number. Before resetting the counter, make sure to check the camera's frame counter to determine whether there are enough exposures left on the roll for the next burst.

Fig 1.jpg (6k) Fig 2.jpg (6k) Fig 3.jpg (6k)
Note2: If you rewind the film before the frame counter reaches "0" the counter will not reset properly to the orange dot. Therefore, before starting to shoot your next roll of film, make sure to reset the counter to the desired setting.

Fig 1

Fig 2

Fig 3

The film becomes brittle in low temperatures In cold climate, be careful not to overestimate the number of frames remaining on a roll of film since this may result in the motor pulling the film off the supply spool or damaging its perforated edges. It may be a good practice to set the frame counter to one less than the number of frames remaining on a roll of film. For example, if you food a fresh 36-exp. roll, set the frame counter to 35.

Rewind 1 & 2.jpg (8k)
Note 3: If the film is automatically rewound in cold weather, static electricity charges may cause accidental exposures resembling lighting bolts to appear an the film. To prevent this from happening, push R1 to the left and rewind the film slowly by hand with the camera's film rewind crank.

Rewind Slides 1 (R1) and 2 (R2)

When one LED lights up to signal that the film is at an end, you must rewind the film. To simplify this operation, the MD-4 features completely automatic film rewinding. Depress the lock button on R1 and push the slide to the left. Then while holding R1 in position, push R2 up. Immediately the film will start rewinding. When the sound becomes more high-pitched, this indicates the leader has been completely rewound back into the cartridge. To stop the rewinding action, push R2 back down and immediately R1 will spring back into its original position.

If you were using the frame counter, it moves from "0" to the orange dot position as soon as R2 is pushed up. Rewinding time for a 36-exposure roll of film with alkaline manganese batteries is approximately 8 sec.; with the optional MN-2 NiCd Battery Unit, it is reduced to 4.5 sec.

Battery Chamber (Also Check the Battery Issues section.)

Instead of using a separate battery pack, the MD-4 houses its batteries in a built-in battery chamber. The standard MS-3 Battery Clip accepts 8 AA-type penlight batteries to power the motor drive up to 4 frames per second. Once the motor drive is attached, the camera gets all its power from the batteries in the motor drive. In this way, the camera is able to run on high capacity batteries.

As a separate accessory, the MD-4 accepts the MN-2 NiCd Battery Unit for extremely high-speed shooting up to 6
* fps. Since NiCd batteries are better able to maintain their peak performance in cold temperatures, the camera/motor drive combination will still operate down to -20°C. The following table lists the firing rates according to power source (Table 1), while the bar graph gives you the expected life of various battery types under ordinary temperatures (Table 2).

* Possible when the shutter speed is at 1/125 sec and above and the mirror is at the lock up position.
Table 1: Frames per Second (fps)
Shutter Speed Range (Sec.)

Power Source

AA pen light batteries (Zinc Carbon)

AA pen light batteries (Alkaline-Manganese)

MN-2 Battery

MA-4 (AC/DC Converter)

1/125 sec - 1/2000





1/125 sec - 1/2000 with mirror up





Table 2
PowerChart.jpg (7k)

Battery Check Button and LED Indicators

TestPower.jpg (6k)
To check battery power, depress the battery check button. If both LED's light up, the power is sufficient to provide the fastest firing rates. If only one LED comes on, you can still use the MD-4, but at slower rates. If neither LED lights up, the batteries should be changed for a fresh set.

Note 4: One LED will also light up if the batteries become so weak that the motor drive can no longer advance the film and just stops during the course of shooting.

The LED's also indicate other camera functions. One LED will light up: 1) each time the film is wound after a shot is taken; 2) when the film reaches the end of the roll and needs rewinding; 3) when the frame counter reaches "0"; or 4) when auto-rewinding is stopped with the optional MF-6 Camera Back.

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Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Instruction Manual for MD-4 Motor Drive - Detailed Features Part 3
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