Researching an article on photography, I ran across an article written by Yokoyuki Tateno for Nikon on the The History of Nikon Cameras – History of the Nikon F Series: Nikon F4. The article literally opens the innards of the history of Nikon and the Nikon f4 camera body, using the history of Nikon’s camera development resulting in the Nikon f4 camera, one of the most successful early Nikon cameras heralded by professional photographers worldwide, including by us. We love the Nikon F4.
The Nikon camera story begins with the release of the Nikon I in 1948, while the F5, its direct descendant, made its appearance in April 1996. I think that taking a chronological look over these 50 years of history and various model changes is a fascinating task.
But what happens if you trace backwards ?
That’s what I’ve done with this article — review Nikon camera history in reverse chronological order, examining the links between models and the characteristics of each product.
Yokoyuki Tateno, Nikon Corportation – History of Nikon F Series
Understanding the reasons and technologies behind the design of a camera helps users understand how to use it better. If you are a camera equipment, Nikon or Nikon f4 fan, this is a fascinating look at the decision-making process at how the Nikon F4 was developed.
This article has concentrated on a cross-section of the F4’s development at a certain period of time, and though it may appear that it merely incorporated the specifications of the full-auto camera without modification, this is not the case.
In fact, the current F4 camera was developed through a succession of questions such as “what type of camera is needed?” and “what is the optimum camera system?”
The advanced technical challenge of the F4 camera was evident in a number of places, but this thorough and determined approach was only natural given Nikon’s attitude toward camera-making — strive for the best. If only looked at through this stance alone, the F4 is unique in that other AF SLRs were developed from a basic desire to create or fill a product niche.
The article continues in Part 2 of History of the Nikon f4 Camera and you can learn even more about the history of Nikon, an honest look at the historical facts, materials, products, and product development.
I also found an interesting summary of Nikon F4 specifications that isn’t included in the history of the camera, which is interesting in and of itself for Nikon F4 enthusiasts.