Practical size limits for Nikon F-mount digital cameras?

theShutterGuytheShutterGuy Posts: 2Member
edited February 2015 in Nikon DSLR cameras
Hello, I've been a long time lurker on this website and decided to finally register and post.

I've been a Nikon SLR then DSLR user for quite a few years. Lately I've been having 'camera envy' for smaller full frame camera products out there from the prohibitively expensive Leica cameras to the Sony A7 iterations. I would appreciate having a smaller or lighter full frame digital camera option that can support my many Nikon lenses from my AI/AI-S ones to the D and G ones. When I feel like taking my camera out, but don't feel like hauling around something huge, I'll throw a 28mm f2.8 or 35mm f2.5 series E lens on my D600.

I began musing on what would be the 'perfect' camera for my use, which in general means easy to use controls, in the smallest reasonably possible package (I buy size small gloves). Given the flange distance of 46.5mm, how small could make a Nikon DSLR? How much smaller could that same Camera be if it was mirrorless? I did a quick drawing overlaying some dimensions form an image from camerasize.com to get a sense. Using the Nikon Df as the basis, I figured there is about 17.85 mm of material from the focal point of the sensor to the back of the body. That means the rest of the sensor, the screen, the buttons, the case and everything else fits inside of that portion. What would be the practical limits of reducing that distance, or camera size overall?

I don't mean to imply that Nikon should make a camera just for me, but I'd like to hear this forum's thoughts on the subject.

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Comments

  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    I think Nikon should make a camera just for me, but realistically there is a chance they might not.

    That being said, I recently bought the Sony A7II (24mp FX), it is smaller than my wife's D5100, and feels as solid as my D810.

    I bought it as a mount for my Leica lenses, but it also has a Nikon and Canon lens adapter. The Canon adapter will even auto focus Canon AF lenses (how well I do not know). My Leica lenses now have VR (it is sensor based on the Sony).

    It is not yet a D810 challenger for anything moving fast, and has none of it's own lenses worth having (not even the Zeiss), but shows in many ways how competent Sony has become. It is also relatively cheap.

    .. H
    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    Please search "mirrorless" on the forum and you will find what IMO is the answer to your question. Having had a Canon 7 in the 1960's and still having two "F" Bodies, I would like to see something in the size of an old "F" body with all the capabilities of a D4s, and done as a mirrorless with an EVF which looks exactly like the ground glass on my "F" bodies.
    Msmoto, mod
  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    Please search "mirrorless" on the forum and you will find what IMO is the answer to your question. Having had a Canon 7 in the 1960's and still having two "F" Bodies, I would like to see something in the size of an old "F" body with all the capabilities of a D4s, and done as a mirrorless with an EVF which looks exactly like the ground glass on my "F" bodies.
    yes

    ... H

    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • heartyfisherheartyfisher Posts: 3,181Member
    dont think mirrorless suits the OP
    Moments of Light - D610 D7K S5pro 70-200f4 18-200 150f2.8 12-24 18-70 35-70f2.8 : C&C very welcome!
    Being a photographer is a lot like being a Christian: Some people look at you funny but do not see the amazing beauty all around them - heartyfisher.

  • theShutterGuytheShutterGuy Posts: 2Member
    dont think mirrorless suits the OP
    You're getting more to the heart my rambling question Heartyfisher. What are the practical size limits of a Nikon F-mount digital camera of any sort including the traditional DSLR style?

    I guess you could start with, whatever the smallest/thinnest nikon film SLR is and campare it to the current offerings. Does anyone know model that would be and what the dimensions are? At the same time does anyone know the thickness of the current Nikon full frame sensors and if they have ever been thicker? I could back that into my drawing to get a sense of what is going on.
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,530Member
    I would say it is the smallest D3xxx ever produced. Smaller is probably possible but perhaps not practical, unless you can manipulate higher n-space dimensions. But if you can do that, cameras will likely be the furthest thing from your mind.
  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    Why would mirrorless not qualify as an F-mount ?
    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 3,530Member
    As long as the flange to focal length does not change it is a f-mount, but then that reduces the benefit of mirrorless.
  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    If an adapter could be provided that preserved all f mount lens functions then for any practical purpose it is an f mount.

    Olympus has done this for FT lens to MFT, including phase detect autofocus support. There is a similar adapter for canon lenses to Sony FE mount which preserves autofocus.

    ...... H
    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • heartyfisherheartyfisher Posts: 3,181Member
    The criteria of the OP was that its an F-Mount bec. you can use all the old Fmount lenses on it.

    The current smallest F-mount camera would be the D3XXX. So I would say that that is the close to the limit in size. However If you were designing one specifically to be "thin" then I think it would be only a few mm ie the thickness of the sensor and the protective body. the rest of the electronics can be moved to the side (or above or below). so it would be thinner but probably a bit taller.
    Moments of Light - D610 D7K S5pro 70-200f4 18-200 150f2.8 12-24 18-70 35-70f2.8 : C&C very welcome!
    Being a photographer is a lot like being a Christian: Some people look at you funny but do not see the amazing beauty all around them - heartyfisher.

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