The Nikon FM, introduced by Nikon in 1977, was designed to compete with the Olympus OM line of cameras in the consumer SLR category. It was part of a pair of compact SLRs released by Nikon, with the FM model offering a fully mechanical body. This camera featured a TTL center-weighted gallium arsenide phosphide photodiode light meter, which employed Nikon’s renowned 60/40 percent center-weighted metering pattern.
While its auto-exposure counterpart, the FE, utilized a match-needle light metering system, the FM offered a fully mechanical experience, allowing photographers to manually adjust their exposures. However, it also provided the option for aperture-priority automatic operation when paired with compatible lenses.
Despite its compact size, the Nikon FM maintained the rugged metal construction that was characteristic of its professional predecessors, the F and F2 series. This durability ensured its reliability and longevity, making it a popular choice among photographers.
The focal plane shutter of the Nikon FM featured a vertically traveling design, offering shutter speeds ranging from 1 to 1/1000 of a second, along with a Bulb mode for long exposures. This versatile shutter mechanism allowed photographers to capture a wide range of subjects and scenes with precise timing.
With its compact size, mechanical reliability, and impressive performance, the Nikon FM became a beloved camera among photography enthusiasts. Its ability to deliver high-quality images coupled with its ease of use made it a reliable companion for both amateur and professional photographers alike.
The Nikon FM remains an iconic analog camera, cherished for its classic design, robust construction, and exceptional functionality. Its compatibility with a vast range of Nikon lenses and accessories further enhanced its appeal, making it a versatile tool for various photographic pursuits. Whether shooting portraits, landscapes, or street photography, the Nikon FM continues to be appreciated by film enthusiasts who value the craftsmanship and unique experience that analog photography offers.
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