Nikon SP camera body, chrome


The item photographed may not be the actual model but is used for illustrative purposes only.

Type: 24×36mm Rangefinder camera

Shutter speed range: 1 to 1/1000 sec., B and T Shutter: titanium or cloth focal plane type

Flash synchronization: Cable and direct contact, electronic flash synchronizes at 1/60 sec.

Motor drive coupling: For S-36 and S-250 motor drives

First production date: 19th September 1957 (last manufactured in  June, 1965)

Weight: 720 g

Only 1 left in stock


Type: 24×36mm Rangefinder camera

Shutter speed range: 1 to 1/1000 sec., B and T Shutter: titanium or cloth focal plane type

Flash synchronization: Cable and direct contact, electronic flash synchronizes at 1/60 sec.

Motor drive coupling: For S-36 and S-250 motor drives

First production date: 19th September 1957 (last manufactured in  June, 1965)

Weight: 720 g


The Nikon SP (S for series, P for professional) was an introduction by Nippon Kogaku (Nikon) of a technically advanced camera. With its titanium focal plane shutter, single finder accommodating 6 focal lengths, and motor drive coupling, the SP was assured a place among the world’s best 35mm cameras. Its features include an extra-long finder window, genuine wide-angle 28mm and 35mm finder, switchable frame lines for 35, 50, 85, 105, and 135mm, easy to grip knurled shutter speed dial (for slow speeds as well) which can be meshed with dial of a clip-on light meter, indicator window for selection of flash synchronization, self-timer, new film frame counter with film type indicator, and film type reminder dial.

Nikon produced 22,348 SP cameras with serial numbers from 6200001

to 6232150.


The Nikon SP emerged at the end of the 35 mm Rangefinder Era as arguably the most advanced rangefinder of its time. It competed directly with the other great rangefinder systems: the Leica M3, the Zeiss Contax IIA, and the Canon 7sZ.

The SP Achieved Many Firsts:

1) The Nikon SP was the first 35mm Rangefinder with SIX built in frame lines. The combined RF/VF window had projected parallax frames for the 50/85/105/135. To the left of the main window was the wide angle window, showing non parallax corrected views of the 28mm and 35mm. This was in 1957! It took Leica 23 YEARS to equal this feat with the M4P in 1980. The SP has a unique look due to its very large RF/VF window. It stretches across half the camera’s face. SP’s are instantly recognizable.

Many don’t realize that the SP’s viewfinder is in some ways superior to that of the M3. The 35mm and 28mm frames are largely useless in the M2/4/5/6 for glasses wearers. In contrast, the SP’s 35mm and 28mm frames are easily seen wearing glasses.

The photographer selects the 50mm, 85mm, 105mm or 135mm frame line by rotating the frame line dial which rotating around the rewind crank. Each frame line is colour coded (unlike Leica), and each succeeding frame line coexists with larger frame lines, creating kind of a tunnel effect which can quickly be followed. For example, if you are using the 50mm frame, only the 50mm frame will be visible. Switch to the 85mm, and it appears in addition to the 50mm and so on. The selected frame is thus always the smallest frame line visible.

2) The Nikon SP was the first Japanese camera to have a single, non-rotating shutter speed dial.

3) The Nikon SP had the first reliable professional quality motor drive. This was a really big achievement at the time, and one of the milestones of 35mm Photography.

4) The Nikon SP had the first and we understand the only bright line illuminator (AA battery powered) which illuminated projected frame lines in low light.

5) The Nikon SP was the first 35mm camera with Titanium shutter curtains(over the last half of its production). Though untried at the time, Titanium curtains proved themselves incredibly tough and durable.

6) During its production, SP boasted the longest lens range of any 35mm Rangefinder System, from 21mm f/4 to a 1000mm f/6.3!

7) Nikon was the first (and for many years the only) rangefinder system to offer a macro lens in the 50mm f/3.5 Micro-Nikkor. Other interesting and now rare lenses included the 21mm f/4, the 25mm f/4, the 50mm f/1.1, the 85mm f/1.5, the 85mm f/2 black, the 105mm f/2.5, the 105mm f/4, the 180mm f/2. 250mm f/4, 350mm f/4.5, 500mm f/5 and 1000mm f/6.3 5 for use with the reflex housing.

The earlier Nikon RF lenses were all chrome. They match up with the earlier Nikon I/M/S/S2 models. Towards the end of the S2 production, Nikon started switching to lighter weight black lenses. Some lenses were made in both chrome and black, a few were made in black only.

Additional information

Second-hand grade


Serial number


Second-hand Grading Description

  • NEWAn item that has not been removed from the box or protective wrapping.
  • UNUSEDAn item that may have been removed from the original packaging, but has never been used.
  • MINT100% as new
  • MINT-98%-99% as new
  • EXC++95%-97% as new
  • EXC+90%-94% as new
  • EXCOriginal finish may have slight scratches or rubbed. No dents or deep scratches.
  • VGMay be slightly scratched, scuffed or worn, but in good mechanical order with clean optics
  • VG-An item that falls below our regular level of gradings. Items in VG- condition will have excessive signs of use.

Please note that the following important points when you see our grading description. When applied to lenses it means that the optics are in perfect condition. What we are describing is the cosmetic condition of the lens barrel. When it applies to cameras, motor drives, speedlights etc. the understanding is that the item is in perfect working order and the description would mean the exterior appearance. In other words we are judging cosmetic appearance.

“Grays of Westminster, where mint is also a highly prized English adjective.”

– Professional Photographer magazine

Returns and Refunds

All second hand equipment comes with a 14-day Sale or Return period and a 6-month warranty. If for any reason you are unsatisfied with a second hand item you have received from us you may return it for a full refund within 14 days of purchase, the only stipulation being that the item is in the same condition as it was purchased.

If an item is found faulty at the time of purchase your shipping costs to return the item to us will also be refunded.

Where the item has been used within the 28-day returns period, we may make a deduction from any refund if the value of the goods has been reduced

You may return a second hand item for a refund if it is no longer desired or required but please note that your shipping costs will not be refunded under these circumstances.

Special Grays of Westminster extended warranties on both new and second-hand Nikon equipment are included on certain Nikon Owner magazine subscriptions which can be purchased via our online shop.

This returns policy does not affect your statutory rights. Details of your statutory rights are available from the Citizens Advice Bureau or Consumer Direct.

Delivery Information

Orders placed Monday to Friday before 12pm will be shipped the same day. Orders placed after 12pm or on the weekend will be shipped the next working day.

If your item is out of stock or on pre-order we will contact you as soon as it becomes available to make delivery arrangements.

Courier delivery estimates:

  • UK Mainland 1-2 working days
  • UK Remote 2-3 working days
  • Europe 3-4 working days (customs and duties permitting)
  • ROW 5-7 working days (customs and duties permitting)

For standard Royal Mail shipping please note that delivery times vary.

Cost of delivery:

Orders for delivery in the UK over the value of £200 are delivered free of charge.

Exact shipping charges will be shown at the checkout.