The Most Influential forgotten Nikon camera
The Most Influential forgotten Nikon camera

The Most Influential forgotten Nikon camera

If you’d try to name a few most influential Nikon film cameras, I can bet you’d completely forget about this one – Nikon F-801 from 1988.

Nikon F-801 film camera

Overshadowed by its bigger brother, the mighty F4, introduced half a year later that same 1988., not as glamorous as its mechanical (and not-so-mechanical) brethren of the yore, the F-801 and F-801s remained in production for less than five years but pushed Nikon ergonomics and way of thinking into the modern era – era spearheaded by Canon T90.

I’ve stumbled upon a great blog post which inspired me to write this post. Read about why is Nikon F801 such an important camera at 678 Vintage Cameras: Nikon F-801 – A Nikon in name only?

Personally, I’m not much of a Nikon owner, yet somehow, a total of five AF Nikon cameras passed through my possessions – way more than the AF Nikkor lenses I ever had.

I’ve had F-801, F-801s and F90x, I’ve loved the ergonomics of F-801(s) a bit more than the ergonomics of F90x, despite having big hands. It was a good camera, but somehow, the older camera simply felt easier to use, laying better in my hands. I’ve sold F90x and kept F-801s for quite some time. I’ve acquired the F100 and F80 in the meantime, and since I had only one AF Nikkor lens, I had quite a lot of redundancy, and something had to go. Finally, only the F100 remained.

Regardless of my everything, Nikon F801(s) remains one of the best Nikon cameras I’ve ever used, it is well built, well-thought-out camera, with great ergonomics; it is a solid choice for any photographer using Nikon F lenses.


Nikon F-801 from 1988 was an important camera and a precursor to modern-era cameras. Its ergonomics were great, but it was overshadowed by its bigger brother, the F4 which was introduced half a year later.