Nikon F4s, Kodak Portra 160 and the city’s best coffee

Why Nikon F4

Some weeks ago I bought a Nikon F4s from Japan via eBay. The idea is to offer analog photo sessions for e.g. Weddings. I already have a Hasselblad 503CXi, but Nikon f4s are somewhat easier to use, it has autofocus and is a little more compact than a Hasselblad. Categorizing the F4 as compact might be a stretch, there is nothing “compact” about a Nikon F4s.

Why did I buy it? Well, I have dreamed of nikon f4 since it came out in 1988 and have often stood in the photo shops in Hamburg (where I lived at the time) and said to myself… One day I’ll do it! It took about 32 years.


First, a little history…

Nikon F4 is a 35 mm SLR. Launched in 1988, it was the first professional Nikon with a practical autofocus system. Nikon F4 was designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro. In addition to regular autofocus, the F4 also has autofocus tracking.

The Nikon F4 was the first F-camera without manual film advance. The F4 has a motorized film transport  5.7 frames per second. The engine is powered by one of three different battery handles. The first F4 had MB-20 with 4 AA batteries. Mine is mb-21 which takes 6 AA batteries and has vertical release button too. The MB-21 came along with F4s and with the F4e came mb-23 which takes 6 pcs. AA or a special battery pack.

Below are some pictures of my dream…

I bought the camera at Five Star Camera on eBay. They are based in Japan and this was the first time I tried to buy a camera from “way out there”. Five Star Camera has a rating of 100% and they have just over 2500 transactions on eBay. It felt reasonably safe.

The Japanese are really perfectionistic with their photo equipment, and often you can get things that are 100% like new, even though they are pretty old. My “new” Nikon f4s arrived Denmark in about 5 days. and I was excited like a little boy at Christmas. Oh, it was great when I unwrapped it and took it out of the box.

If you are considering a Nikon F4, then I can only talk warmly about it. It’s so cool. It’s a heavy and large camera, but it lies so good in your hand and everything sits in the right places.

The pictures below are the current camera as I saw it at Five Star Camera. You can visit them here: Five Star Camera

Coffee and analog – an excellent combination

The first rolls were shot at a student reception and then a fresh roll of Kodak Portra 160 went on camera before I went in to visit Coffee Collective’s new shop in the telephone kiosk at Nørreport Station. It was my second roll portra ever and the first one wasn’t induced yet so it was a bit exciting. Now I know it definitely wasn’t the last time I put a roll of Portra in the camera. What colors.

When No. 2 roll was shot I got them induced hod Photocare on Frederiksborggade. They elicit in one hour (for an additional fee of DKK 40,-) and they can also scan the finished negatives in either 1.5, 6 or 24mp on their Noritsuskanner.

Below is scanned in 6mp. I saw my Imacon in better quality later on.