The basic camera operation of the S1 Pro is identical to the Nikon N50/N60
camera. On top of the hand grip is the combination shutter release (also note
the threaded hole for a cable release) and power switch. There are buttons for
the AE compensation, setting the aperture and changing flash modes. The large
monochrome data display shows the shutter speed, aperture, white balance, AE
compensation, battery condition, selftimer, flash mode and Program shift
On the top left side of the camera is the selftimer button and the Mode Dial. Shutter speeds and aperture values are dialed in using the main command dial (shown on the right), it is also used when the camera is in Variable Program mode. The AE-L button is used to lock the automatic exposure system.
The positions on the Mode Dial are:
A - Aperture-priority, user selects aperture and the camera matches an appropriate shutter speed.
S - Shutter-priority, user selects the shutter speed and the camera matches the appropriate aperture.
P - Programmed Auto, the camera automatically picks both shutter speed and aperture for proper exposure. The user can rotate the command wheel and select other combinations of shutter speed and aperture values.
- The camera works completely in automatic mode and leaves the user free to concentrate on composition and not worry about camera setings.
Portrait - Camera selects a large aperture for shallow depth of field.
Landscape - Camera selects a small aperture for greatest depth of field.
Macro - Camera selects a shallow depth of field to make objects stand out from the background.
Sports - Camera selects a fast shutter speed to freeze rapid action. This is also the only recording mode that enables the 5 frame burst capability and the continuous AF servo focusing to let you track moving objects.
Night Scene - Selects a slow shutter speed and also sets the flash for slow syncro mode to illuminate foreground subects.
The eyelevel optical viewfinder shows 90% vertical and 93% horizontal of the captured frame. It has a diopter adjustment of -1.5 to +1.0.
Inside the viewfinder is an electronic display across the bottom that shows the
focus condition, shutter speed, aperture, exposure indicator, exposure
compensation and a flash status icon.
Looking through the Nikon-F lens mount we can see the "belly of the beast," the 1.1-inch Fujifilm SuperCCD imager. The S1 Pro can use any Nikon D-type AF lens. The D-type lenses have a CPU chip in them that relays the camera to subject distance to the exposure system to enable the 3D matrix metering.
The newer Nikon AF-S lenses can be used but the S1 Pro only has a mechanical drive link, it lacks the electrical contacts for autofocus so the AF-S lenses would have to be manually focused. All other Nikon AF type lenses can be used but not with the 3D matrix metering. Non-Ai type lenses cannot be used.
Pictured on the right above is the lens release button. Below that is the
autofocus control knob. The "AF" position enables autofocus and the "M"
position disables autofocus and lets the user manually focus.
The S1 Pro features a TTL phase detection autofocus system and in the event that
there is insufficient light it has an outboard illuminator lamp. This lamp is
also used by the flash system when the redeye reduction function is enabled.
The builtin popup flash has a guide number of 15 (ISO 100) with coverage for a
28mm lens. The range is approx 2.6 to 30ft (at various apertures) and is useable
at ISO 320 or 400. Flash modes include: Normal, Red-eye reduction, Red-eye
reduction slow sync and Slow sync.
The accessory shoe is a standard ISO-type with hot-shoe contact, ready-light
contact, TTL flash contact and monitor contact. The Nikon SB28 is a fantastic
match with the S1 Pro and works in full TTL mode.
The S1 Pro features dual flash card slots, one for 3.3v SmartMedia (up to 64MB) and another one that accepts either CompactFlash Type I or Type II devices including the new 1GB IBM Microdrive.
If only one card slot is occupied the camera automatically selects that
slot. If both slots are being used you must select the desired
media from the Setup menu.
Located on the front just below the lens are the I/O ports:
The data connection between the camera and computer is via a high-speed USB port. The USB port not only lets you download image data but control the camera with the Windows and Macintosh software supplied.
The DC IN 5V jack is for powering the camera from the included AC power supply.
The Video Out port uses a 3.5mm mini jack and
allows you to output your pictures to a TV set or VCR. Depending on your
location the video format is either NTSC (USA/Canada) or PAL (Europe.)
The S1 Pro has three seperate battery systems. The digital portion of the camera is powered by four AA type batteries and these are accessed from the left side of the camera. The camera itself is powered by two CR123 lithium batteries which are accessed via a door on the bottom. Time, date, and camera settings are retained by a lithium button cell.
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