Nikon F6 vs. F5: Which is Better?

Nikon F6 vs. F5: Which is Better?

The Nikon F5 and F6 are two highly acclaimed cameras in the world of professional photography. While both models come from the same reputable family lineage, they offer differing features and functionalities that appeal to different groups of photographers. This article aims to delve into a comprehensive comparison between these two models, helping you discern which camera best aligns with your photography goals and needs.

Nikon F6 Overview


Released in 2004, the Nikon F6 is a 35mm autofocus SLR camera that boasts advanced features. With an 11-point auto-focus system and a top shutter speed of 1/8000 second, it offers precise and fast focusing. Additionally, it provides both matrix and center-weighted metering systems for accurate exposure measurement. Powered by two CR2 lithium batteries, the F6 can deliver up to 1,500 shots, making it a reliable choice for photographers.

Nikon F6 Overview


The Nikon F6 is a highly reliable camera that excels in low-light conditions and offers an impressive shutter speed range of 1/8000 second. Its swift lens-changing capability makes it an ideal choice for photographers who frequently switch between telephoto and wide-angle lenses. Moreover, the F6 boasts an advanced 11-point auto-focus system, ensuring exceptional precision when capturing subjects. With its lightweight and compact design, it is a perfect companion for extensive trips or photo shoots.


Unlike some of its competitors, the Nikon F6 lacks the capability to capture video footage. In addition, battery life on the F6 can be quite short, especially when compared to other similar cameras. Furthermore, the F6 comes with a rather substantial price tag, which can pose a challenge for individuals seeking to rationalize its purchase when compared to more affordable alternatives. [1]

Nikon F5 Overview


The Nikon F5 is a 35mm autofocus SLR camera that was released in 1996. It has an 8-point auto-focus system and a top shutter speed of 1/4000 second. It also features the ability to meter with both matrix and center-weighted metering systems. The F5 utilizes four AA batteries which can provide power for up to 2,000 shots.


The Nikon F5 is an incredibly reliable camera that offers excellent performance in low light conditions and has a fast shutter speed range of 1/4000 second. It also features the ability to handle a variety of lenses with its autofocus system, making it ideal for those who need to switch between telephoto and wide-angle lenses often. Additionally, the F5 is highly regarded for its battery life, which can last up to 2,000 shots when using AA batteries. It’s also lightweight and compact, making it easy to take on extended trips or photo shoots.


The Nikon F5 is not able to capture video footage as some of its competitors are able to do. In addition, the F5 does not feature an 11-point autofocus system like the F6 does. As such, it may not be as accurate when locking onto a targeted subject. Additionally, the F5’s price tag can also be quite high compared to some of its competitors.

Nikon F5 Overview

Comparison of the Nikon F6 vs. F5

When comparing the Nikon F6 and F5, it’s important to consider both their pros and cons. The F6 features an 11-point autofocus system and a top shutter speed of 1/8000 second. It also has excellent low light performance and is capable of changing lenses quickly and easily. On the other hand, the F5 features an 8-point autofocus system and a top shutter speed of 1/4000 second. It also has good battery life, but may not be as accurate when locking onto a targeted subject. Additionally, the F5 is cheaper than the F6, making it an attractive option for those on a budget. Ultimately, both cameras offer excellent performance and features, so it’s up to each photographer to decide which one best suits their needs.

In the end, the choice between the Nikon F6 and F5 will come down to a variety of factors, such as budget, desired features, and photography style. The F6 offers more advanced autofocus and higher shutter speed capabilities, making it ideal for those who need an extra edge when shooting in low light or capturing moments in action. On the other hand, the F5 provides good battery life and an 8-point autofocus system which is suitable for general photography purposes. No matter which camera you choose, both are excellent options for those who want to take their photography to the next level. [2]

Audio Features Comparison

When it comes to audio features, the Nikon F6 and F5 have a lot in common. Both cameras offer a built-in microphone for recording sound, as well as an input jack for connecting an external microphone. The F6 also has a headphone port which can be used to monitor the sound while shooting, while the F5 does not have this feature. Additionally, the F6 features two buttons for adjusting audio levels while recording, which can be handy when filming in loud environments. On the other hand, the F5 only has one button which is used to turn on and off the microphone. Overall, both cameras offer basic audio functionality, but the F6 offers more precise control over audio levels while shooting.

When it comes to audio quality, both the Nikon F6 and F5 are capable of producing good results. The F6’s built-in microphone is designed to reduce background noise, while the external inputs on both cameras allow for greater flexibility in sound recording. Additionally, both cameras offer manual audio level control which allows photographers to adjust levels as needed. All in all, both the F6 and F5 offer good sound quality, although the F6 has more features which make it better suited for audio-focused projects.

Audio Features Comparison

Storage Comparison

The Nikon F6 and Nikon F5 both have the ability to store images on removable memory cards. The F6 has two card slots, allowing photographers to use either CF (CompactFlash) or SD (Secure Digital) cards for storage. The F5 only supports CF cards. Besides the type of card used, there are other differences between the two cameras in terms of storage. The F6 can store up to 40 pictures on a 1GB CF card, while the F5 can only hold about 30 pictures on the same size card. This may not seem like much of a difference, but if you are shooting action or sports photography and need to take lots of pictures quickly, then having more space can be very helpful. [3]

Power Comparison

When it comes to power, both the Nikon F6 and F5 are rock-solid cameras. The F6 has a top shutter speed of 1/8000th of a second, while the F5 has a maximum speed of 1/6000th of a second. This makes the F6 the winner in terms of speed capabilities. However, the difference may not be that noticeable for most photographers.

The F5 has a slightly larger buffer, which allows you to shoot more images in burst mode before the camera needs to pause and write them to the memory card. This makes it better suited for sports or wildlife photography where you may need to take multiple shots in quick succession.

In terms of battery life, both cameras have the same amount of power, although the F6 is slightly larger and heavier than the F5. This means that it may not last as long when shooting with a large number of batteries.

Connectivity Comparison

The Nikon F6 and the F5 both offer a range of connectivity options, but each system has its own unique advantages. The Nikon F6 offers a 10-pin remote terminal for use with wired or wireless remotes, as well as a hot shoe to connect with off-camera flash units. It also has an infrared receiver that can be used to trigger remote slave flash units.

Connectivity Comparison

The F5 has a USB port and an IEEE 1394 (FireWire) connector for transferring images to a computer, as well as an NTSC/PAL video output. It also has the aforementioned hot shoe and infrared receiver that can be used with off-camera flash units. Both cameras have PC sync sockets, which allow the use of a wide range of studio strobes and flashes.

In terms of wireless connectivity, the Nikon F6 has both an infrared receiver and transmitter for use with remote slave flash units. The F5 is limited to just an infrared receiver for off-camera flash control. [4]

Finally, the Nikon F6 offers Wi-Fi capabilities that allow it to connect to compatible devices such as smartphones and tablets, allowing users to control the camera remotely. The F5 does not have this feature.

How to Store and Maintain Your Nikon Camera

Battery Charging and Storage

No matter the model, it is important to ensure your Nikon camera batteries are kept in a fully charged state. This will help them maintain their maximum lifespan and performance capabilities. The best way to charge your Nikon batteries is to use an officially endorsed charger- whether that be the original manufacturer’s device or a third-party option that meets safety standards. It’s also important to store your batteries in a cool, dry place.

Cleaning and Maintenance

To keep your Nikon camera running smoothly and take the best quality shots possible, you will need to regularly clean it. This means removing any dirt, dust, or fingerprints from the device’s body and lenses. A good way to do this is with a soft cloth dampened with a cleaning solution- ideally one that is specifically designed for photo equipment. Additionally, you should check the performance of your camera regularly and take it in for servicing if necessary.

Adjusting Settings

Depending on the type of photography you’re doing, you may want to adjust certain settings on your Nikon camera. This can range from simple changes like making sure the autofocus is on or off, to more advanced options like configuring shutter speed and ISO. Doing this manually or using Nikon’s built-in menus will help you get the most out of your camera’s features. [5]

Updating Firmware

Finally, it is important to keep your Nikon camera up-to-date by updating its firmware. Newer versions of the software contain bug fixes and additional features that can help your camera run more efficiently, as well as improve the image quality. Check for updates regularly and be sure to read through any release notes before you start downloading. This will ensure you know exactly what changes are being made to your device.

How to Store and Maintain Your Nikon Camera

Accessories You Might Need

The Nikon F6 and F5 both have a great range of accessories available, from additional lenses to flashes and other items. You’ll need to factor in any extra purchases when you compare the two camera models.

For instance, if you want to get into flash photography with either model, you’ll need one of the compatible flashes for your setup. The Nikon SB-800 is a popular option with both cameras, and can be used for both outdoors and indoors shooting.

You’ll also need to consider other accessories such as SD cards, tripods, monopods and camera bags when you’re making your purchase decision. Most of these items are generally interchangeable between cameras, but it’s important to research your particular model before making any purchases.

In terms of lenses, the Nikon F6 and F5 are compatible with Nikon’s line of AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor lenses. The range offers a variety of prime and zoom lenses at different price points for an array of shooting scenarios.

Overall, both cameras offer great accessory options that allow you to customize your setup for the best shooting experience. It’s important to consider any potential accessory purchases when you’re deciding between the Nikon F6 and F5 – additional gear can help take your photos to the next level. [6]

Alternatives to the Nikon F6 and F5

If you’re looking for an alternative to the Nikon F6 and F5, then there are a few options that may be worth considering, depending on your specific needs.

One option is the Canon EOS-1D Mark IV, which offers a 10fps burst shooting rate, excellent image quality, and solid build quality. It also has a weather-sealed body, an advanced autofocus system, and support for both Canon EF and EF-S lenses.

The Nikon D850 is another great choice, especially if you’re looking for a high resolution camera with excellent dynamic range. The D850 offers a 45.7 megapixel full frame sensor, 8fps burst shooting rate, fast autofocus system, and support for both FX and DX lenses.

The Sony Alpha A7R III is also an excellent option if you’re looking for a high-end mirrorless camera. It offers a 42 megapixel full frame sensor, fast autofocus system, 10fps burst shooting rate, and great image quality.

Lastly, the Fujifilm X-T3 is a great choice if you’re looking for a more affordable mirrorless camera. It offers great image quality, fast autofocus system, and 10fps burst shooting rate. Plus it has an excellent electronic viewfinder, an advanced film simulation mode, and even 4K video recording capabilities.

Alternatives to the Nikon F6 and F5

What Types Of Photography Are Nikon F6 and Nikon F5 Good for?

Nikon F6 and Nikon F5 are both great cameras for any type of photography. However, they each have strengths that make them better suited to certain types of photography than the other.

The Nikon F6 is excellent for shooting action and fast-paced subjects such as sports, wildlife, or street photography. It has a very quick autofocus system that locks onto the subject quickly and accurately. It also has a very effective 11-point autofocus system which can track even fast-moving subjects.

The Nikon F5 is great for landscape and portrait photography, as it has an excellent metering system that allows you to accurately set your exposure in any type of light. The camera also features a wide selection of lenses that will give you the creative flexibility to get the look and feel you want for your photos.

Overall, both the Nikon F6 and Nikon F5 are excellent choices for any type of photographer, but depending on what type of photography you want to do, one may be better suited than the other. Be sure to weigh all of your options carefully before making your decision.


What are the main differences between the Nikon F6 and F5?

The Nikon F6 is better suited for shooting action and fast-paced subjects, while the Nikon F5 is better for landscape and portrait photography. The Nikon F6 has a faster autofocus system, but the Nikon F5 has an excellent metering system that will help you get accurate exposures in any light.

What lenses should I use with the Nikon F6 and F5?

The Nikon F6 is compatible with a wide range of lenses, including DX, FX-format, and AF-I/AF-S types. The Nikon F5 also works well with a variety of lenses, including both DX and FX formats. For portrait photography, you may want to consider using a telephoto lens for more control over your background blur. For landscape photography, wide-angle lenses are often the best choice.

Is there a difference in image quality between the Nikon F6 and F5?

Overall, both cameras produce very good images with excellent sharpness and color. The main difference is that the Nikon F6 has a quicker autofocus system which can capture fast-moving subjects with greater accuracy. The Nikon F5 has a more advanced metering system which makes it better suited for low light and tricky lighting conditions.

What other features should I consider when choosing between the Nikon F6 and F5?

Aside from the speed of its autofocus system, the Nikon F6 also has a higher burst rate than the Nikon F5. This means that it can take more photos in a shorter period of time. The Nikon F5 has an excellent selection of lenses which gives you more creative flexibility when shooting portraits and landscapes. It also has in-camera image stabilization which helps reduce camera shake when shooting handheld.

Is there any other advice I should consider when buying a Nikon F6 or F5?

When considering either camera, it is important to take into account the type of photography you plan to do. For action and fast-paced subjects, the Nikon F6 may be your best bet. If you are more interested in landscape and portrait photography, then the Nikon F5 will give you a more dedicated metering system and the ability to use a variety of lenses. Be sure to read up on both cameras before making your final decision.

Is the Nikon F6 a better choice for professional photographers compared to the F5?

The Nikon F6 is a great camera for professional photographers, as it has a very fast autofocus system that can handle any type of subject. However, the Nikon F5 also offers professional photographers an excellent metering system and the flexibility to use different types of lenses for unique effects. Ultimately, the right choice will depend on your specific photography needs and preferences.

What makes the Nikon F6 a suitable choice for amateur photographers?

The Nikon F6 is a great choice for amateur photographers due to its relatively easy learning curve. It has an intuitive menu system that allows you to quickly access settings and features, which makes it easier to get used to the camera. The autofocus system is also very reliable, giving you accurate results every time. In addition, the Nikon F6 offers a variety of features that give you more control over your shots, such as exposure compensation and white balance presets. All in all, the Nikon F6 is a great camera for amateur photographers looking to take their photography to the next level.

Are there any drawbacks to using the Nikon F5?

The main drawback to using the Nikon F5 is its relatively slow autofocus system. While it does offer a reliable autofocus, it can have difficulty locking onto fast-moving subjects. Additionally, the Nikon F5 does not have in-camera image stabilization, which some photographers may find limiting when shooting handheld. However, these drawbacks should be taken into account only if you plan to shoot action or other fast-paced subjects with your camera.

Useful Video: Camera Geekery: The Nikon F6


Overall, both the Nikon F6 and F5 are excellent cameras that can produce high-quality images. Which one you choose should depend on your type of photography and what features you want most in a camera. The Nikon F6 is ideal for fast-paced subjects with its quick autofocus system, while the Nikon F5 is better suited for landscape and portrait photography thanks to its excellent metering system and selection of compatible lenses. Keep in mind that both cameras offer a variety of features so regardless of which one you choose, you’ll be able to take stunning photos. With the right knowledge and practice, you can learn how to use either camera to its fullest potential and capture beautiful images.