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Nikon SB-25 TTL AF Speedlight

Four years after debut of the high performance flash,
Nikon SB-24, Nikon announced a successor, Nikon SB-25 TTL Speedlight in 1992. This update was essential due to rapid development in both Nikon camera/flash design. It was marketed along with a new generation of Nikon AF SLR camera, Nikon F90 (N90 in US), a high tech AF SLR camera with cross AF sensors, built-in 3.6 fps power drive, improved Matrix metering with 8 segments evaluative system that requires works a new series of AF-Nikkor lenses that has a distance chip embedded in the lense for evaluating light levels and contrast of the subject and based on the distance information to track on moving subject during a shooting sequence.

Credit: Image of the Nikon SB-25 TTL Speedlight mounted on a stand courtesy of Mr. James Lee® <jleehome@optonline.net>. Image copyright © 2003. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

Among the many innovative features in the camera, there are few areas which directly related to flash photography which called for an update of a new flash unit to support the functions: The F90 was the world's first SLR camera that provides TTL-Multi Sensors (5 segments) evaluative flash metering. The system provides precise light and distance in flash exposure measurement. Further, since beginning with the F90 onwards, many Nikon updated AF SLRs also offer other new camera function in Matrix filled-flash, second curtain sync, preflash Red-Eye reduction and an amazing 1/4000 sec FP fast sync capability. The last few inclusions were not supported in the design of any of the previous Nikon AF speedlights and the SB-25 was specifically introduced to patch what the previous Nikon Speedlight such as SB-24 that cannot offer and aimed to supplement those functions with the new F90 and of cause, all the subsequent Nikon AF bodies introduced at later stage that may provide similar capabilities. Well, similarly that was how Nikon auto TTL-thrystor evolved all these years - the subsequent Nikon SB-26 TTL AF Speedlight that introduced later in September, 1994 (with the F90x) also incorporates a few additional enhancements (in particular with an interesting built-in wireless slave flash control function for true-cordless single or multiple flash operation). Eventually when AF-Nikon SLRs which has 3D-Matrix Multi-Sensors balance fill-flash function, there was also a need to call for a new flash model to support the 3D-Matrix and that was how both the Nikon SB-27 and Nikon SB-28 speedlights were introduced.

However, Nikon SB-25 Speedlight is versatile enough and has a great backward compatibility with older Nikon SLR models as it can also be used with all Nikon AF SLR cameras without the prescribed new functions. With any Nikon bodies that equipped with more advance functions, such as 3D-Multi-Sensor TTL auto flash, it will/should be working flawlessly with those bodies as well and it can also be used with Nikon standard TTL auto flash, as well as non-TTL automatic flash, as well as full manual control. This very high-spec Nikon TTL auto thyristors unit does not only performs true to its capability, but it has an extremely well-designed physical construction. The entire body structure is very rigid and all operating buttons are hard rubberized-coated, slightly recessed to prevent accidental actuation. Operating logic is well thought out especially in relating to its display system. The LCD panel at the rear section indicates selected distances or ranges, as well as apertures which can be adjusted. Operating status such as type of automatic flash, special flash functions, and zoom head setting are indicated.

Credit: Image was scanned from a 1993/4 Nikon Sales manual.

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Nikon SB-25 Flash / speedlight compatibility chart with various Nikon cameras.

Source: Nikon Europe

This high performance Nikon TTL Speedlight has a guide number of 118 (138 ft at 35mm setting, ISO/ASA100 film). It provides enough raw power to cover for many action-based flash photography and even support working range for stroboscopic effect in repeating flash photography.

With capable Nikon SLR bodies that supports rear curtain synchronization, such as the Nikon F4 Series, F90, F801(s) and F601(s)) available at its time of introduction, the flash allows synchronization with the rear shutter curtain. Similarly, with these mentioned bodies, the power driven motorized zoom head will adjust its focal length in correspondence with the focal length of the lense in use.


One improvement made to the SB-25 is its flash head which has a tilting angle (-7°) which allows the flash extends its TTL filled-flash function in macrophotography. Similar to the previous SB-24, the SB-25's flash head is very versatile and flexible as it can be maneuver by tilting from -7° to +90 >° with click stops; rotates through an arc of 270 °, 90 ° clockwise and 180 ° counterclockwise with click stops.

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The LCD is backlit and has a very pleasant indigo colour when it is turn on in the dark. It provides good contrast to read various information and settings even when the ambient light is not ideal.

Credit: Image of SB-25 courtesy of TrevosePawnShop® <TrevosePawnShop@aol.com> who operates an Ebay Store. Image copyright © 2003. All rights reserved. Please respect the visual property of the contributing photographer.

Naturally, other than permitting high speed FP sync flash, the main additional technical highlights still remain in its newly incorporated features in the two Monitor Preflash features with camera models such as F90 and above. With the flash functions of the N90 the SB-25 has two preflash features in a visible pre-flash burst of light which is used to emit invisible monitor preflash provides information regarding reflectance of the subject in focus. As many of the keypads, switches and button at its rear control panel are very similar to the previous SB-24 and owners and/or any photographer who may have experience with the SB-24 may find it very easy to navigate the various controls in the SB-25. Below are some of the features found in the SB-25 Speedlight, used them singularly or in combination with the camera types you owned and you may find the SB-25 can be a truly worthy investment with its vast potential help to unleash your creative potential in flash photography.

Credit: Mr. Corrado LOSI from Italy for rectifying a mistake made.
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In a multiple flash photography setup, the complexity of ensuring good, natural looking flash pictures can be very difficult. Nikon designed Speedlight with an array of system flash accessories (TTL sync cords, flash couplers and TTL connections to simplify the entire process.
In operation, Nikon designed the SB-25 simplifies the flash taking process with more assuring results via some new technologies in both camera/flash combinations: i.e. before the main flash fires, imperceptible Monitor Pre-flashes go off to scan the whole scene with the TTL Multi Sensor. The in board computer instantaneously evaluates which areas need what amounts of light; and then the main flash illuminates the scene perfectly. So, this ensures dark areas stay dark, the light areas are rendered with better, more natural colour. On the other hand, the foreground remains balanced with the background. This process ensures the whole scene can be looks more natural without the presence of over dominant flash effect. The breakthrough of these sequence enables a more realistic-looking flash pictures.

| previous | NEXT | 1/2 More information relating to Nikon SB-25

Main Index Pages for Nikon Flash Photography with Nikon F4 and others:
| Part I | Part II | Part III |

Works courtesy of Mr. Jim/ lensinc.ltd. pls send a thank you note on my behalf as well.
instruction manual for SB-24 (3.1MB) http://www.lensinc.net/manuals/SB24_user.PDF
instruction manual for SB-25 (3.4MB) http://www.lensinc.net/manuals/SB25BK.PDF

Nikon AF-TTL Speedlights | SB-20 (1986) | SB-22 (1987) | SB-23 | SB-24 (1988) | SB-25 (1991/2) | SB-26 (1994) | SB-27(1997) | SB-28 (1997) | Nikon SB-29(s) (2000) | Nikon SB-30 (2003) | Nikon SB-600 (2004) | Nikon SB-800 (2003)
Nikon AF-TTL Speedlight DX-Series:
Nikon SB-28DX (1999) | SB-50DX (2001) | SB-80DX (2002) (updated)

Nikon BC-flash Series | Original Nikon Speedlight
SB-2 | SB-3 | SB-4 | SB-5 | SB-6 | SB-7E | SB-8E | SB-9 | SB-E | SB-10
| SB-12 | SB-14 | SB-140 UV-IR| SB-15 | SB16A | SB-17 | SB-18, SB-19 | SB-21A (SB-29) Macro flash | Flash Accesories | SF-1 Pilot Lamp

The Camera Body - Features | Reliability | Focusing | Metering | Exposure Control | Lense Compatibility| Various Power Sources | Interchangeable Prisms | Data Film Backs | Focusing Screens | Flash Photography | Other system accessories | Cases for Nikon F4 Series | Remote Control |

| Specification | Main Reference Map | Nikon F4 Variants
Instruction Manual: PDF (4.5M) - External Link

| BACK | to Main Index Page Nikon F4 Series SLR camera Models

| Message Board | for Nikon F4 Series SLR model(s)
| Message Board | for your Nikon Optics in a shared environment
| Message Board | Specifically for Dispose or Looking for Nikon/Nikkor Photographic Equipment

| Back | to Pictorial History of Nikon SLR / rangefinders / Nikonos / digital cameras.

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Nikon Auto Focus Nikkor lenses:- Main Index Page
Manual Focus Nikkor lenses:- Fisheye-Nikkor Lenses - Circular | Full Frame | Ultrawides Lenses - 13mm15mm18mm20mm | Wideangle Lenses - 24mm28mm35mm | Standard Lenses - 45mm 50mm 58mm | Telephoto Lenses - 85mm105mm135mm180mm & 200mm | Super-Telephoto Lenses - 300mm 400mm 500mm 600mm 800mm 1200mm |

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Index Page
  Special Application lenses:
Micro-Nikkor Lenses - 50mm~55mm -60mm 85mm -105mm 200mm Micro-Zoom 70-180mm
Perspective Control (PC) - 28mm 35mm PC-Micro 85mm
Dedicated Lenses for Nikon F3AF: AF 80mm f/2.8 | AF 200mm f/3.5 EDIF
Depth of Field Control (DC): 105mm 135mm
Medical Nikkor: 120mm 200mm
Reflex-Nikkor Lenses - 500mm 1000mm 2000mm
Others: Noct Nikkor | OP-Nikkor | UV Nikkor 55mm 105mm | Focusing Units | Bellows-Nikkor 105mm 135mm
Nikon Series E Lenses: 28mm35mm50mm100mm135mm | E-Series Zoom lenses: 36~72mm75~150mm70~210mm

MF Zoom-Nikkor Lenses: 25~50mm | 28~45mm | 28~50mm | 28~85mm | 35~70mm | 36~72mm E | 35~85mm | 35~105mm | 35~135mm | 35~200mm | 43~86mm | 50~135mm | 50~300mm | 70~210mm E | 75~150mm E | 80~200mm | 85~250mm | 100~300mm | 180~600mm | 200~400mm | 200~600mm | 360~1200mm | 1200~1700mm

Tele-Converters: TC-1 | TC-2 | TC-200 | TC-201 | TC-300 | TC-301 | TC-14 | TC-14A | TC-14B | TC-14C | TC-14E | TC-16 | TC-16A | TC-20E

Recommended links to understand more technical details related to the Nikkor F-mount and production Serial Number:
http://rick_oleson.tripod.com/index-153.html by: my friend, Rick Oleson
http://www.zi.ku.dk/personal/lhhansen/photo/fmount.htm by: Hansen, Lars Holst

W A R N I N G: The New G-SERIES Nikkor lenses have no aperture ring on the lense, they cannot adjust aperture(s)when operating in manual exposure control even with certain earlier AF Nikon SLR camera models. Similarly, not ALL features provide in a modern AF-S series AF-Nikkor lenses can be utilized fully with a Nikon F4. Please refer to your local distributor for compatibility issue(s).

PLEASE NOTE: Complimentary links are appreciative but it is not necessary, I have limited bandwidth here in this server... So, PLEASE don't distribute this URL to any bulk mailing list or unrelated user-groups, just be a little considerate, thank you. (The more you distribute, the slower this server will response to your requests...). I am NOT a Nikon nor Nikkor expert, so don't send me any mails, use the Message Board Instead. While the content prepared herein should be adequate for anyone to understand and evaluate whether you should invest into a used Nikon F4 pro-camera system for your kind of photography. Well, IF you like what you have seen so far, please help to perfect this site by reporting any broken links or any errors made.

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Credit: Chuck Hester, US for his patience, encouragement and help to setup the various content in this site; Robert Johnson for some of his original images on the F2H-MD appeared in this site; my ex-staff, KiaSu for his superb 3-D logo appeared in this Nikon F2 site; Marc Vorgers from Holland who generously provide me with some of his images of F2AS; MCLau®, who has so much time with me to re-edit the content in this site and not to mention buying a Nikon Coolpix 990 just for this site; Paul Armstrong (pkared@ameritech.net) for his explantion of the FF2 Slidemagic and Nikon F2 Pin Camera Keat Photo, Kuala Lumpur for providing their Nikon F2A to take some images for this site; Mr Edward Ngoh the great camera collector who provides us his collection of F2AS with MD-2; hawkeye.photographic.com for their images on the Speed Magny film backs; Sean Cranor for his image on Nikon F2 25th Anniversary Model; Ted Wengelaar®, Holland for his continuous flow of input on some of the early Nikon bodies; Genesis-Camera for granting permission to use an image of the SS-F2 camera; Mr Sover Wong, Australia for those great images of his rare F2 Gold;CYLeow ®, photo editor of the Star newspaper, Malaysia for some of his images used in this site. Ms Rissa Chan, Sales manager from Shriro Malaysia who has helped to provide some of the very useful input. HiuraShinsaku®, Nikomat ML, Japan for some of his images on various F2 models; my staff, Wati, Maisa, Mai and my nephew, EEWyn®, who volunteered and helping me did so many of the film scanning works; Hong-sien Kwee of Singapore for all the Nikon F2 Pin camera images appeared in this site; Luigi Crescenzi for many of his images on the Nikon F2 Titan; John for two of his images of the Nikon F2/T used in this site; Contributing photographers or resellers: Jen Siow, Foo KokKin, Arthur Teng, Mark Fallander, John Ishii, Ed Hassel, YoonKi Kim, Jean-Louis, M.Dugentas (Dell Corner.com.), Mr "Arsenall", Yang Zi Xiong and a few images mailed in from surfers with no appropriate reference to their origin. Note:certain content and images appeared in this site were either scanned from official marketing leaflets, brochures published by Nikon and/or contribution from surfers who claimed originality of their own work to publish in this site based on educational merits. The creator of this site will not be responsible for any discrepancies that may arise from such possible dispute except rectifying them after verification."Nikon", "Nikkormat", "Nippon Kokagu KK" & "Nikkor" are registered tradename of Nikon Corporation Inc., Japan. A site made with an Apple IMac.