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I owned a Nikon F301 in my teens and that camera was brilliant!
I then caught the Auto focus bug and purchased a Canon EOS 100 which took brilliant pictures nearly as good as the Nikon and the auto focus was ultra fast and you could hardly hear it focusing, the Nikon is not as quiet but not to noisy. Anyway i like the sound of the motordrive being loud.
The thing that really bugged me about the Canon was that it was TOO lightweight! It felt like a toy and very plasticy. I was sure that if I dropped it that would be the end of it!
So after a couple years I was tempted back to a good solid Nikon. At the time the F90x was recieving rave reviews in the press and that was good enough for me.
On getting it out the box the first thing I noticed is the weight of the thing! Which to me is a good thing..it feels as expensive as it was..if you know what I mean. Put the five AA batteries in and a Lens on the front and this thing is well heavy..but I like that weight.
Battery life is good, the motor drive is brilliant, not as quiet as the Canon as is the focusing (and the focusing does 'hunt' a little more than the Canon did).
I tend to leave the Camera on Auto mode and let the Matrix metering do the work which it does very nicely. (the Lazy way)
I switch to the Spot meter mode if I'm taking Portraits or want a 'perfectly' exposed shot in tricky situations but the camera in full auto does a very good job. I wouldn't trust it with Slide film though as the margin for error is not a s big as with print film.
It has numerous 'program modes' for portraits, sports, Landscapes etc. How usefull they are I do not now as I have never tried them.
The depth of field preview works nicely, this is a usefull feature for landscapes and portraits to check whats in focus and whats not at different apertures.
You can change flash modes on the camera with out taking your eye away from the viewfinder..red eye reduction prehaps the most useful.
The self timer can be set from 30 secs down to 3secs.
You are able to lock the focus easily if required and also the meter reading can be locked by a switch on the back till you release pressure on it. Handy for those moments you need to use the spot meter.
The motor drive can be set to 4 frames per second or 2 frames per second and the focusing set to either 'single shot' or 'continueus'. (single shot will only take a pic when the focusing is spot on and continueus uses a progressive system that predicts where in focus will be)
I am slightly disapointed in the overall image quality, but I'm prehaps just imagining it.
I'll be hanging onto this Camera though even if i do go digital.
I have seen F90's going on E Bay for around the £300 mark..good value there.
If you can't afford a brand new F100 go for one of these.