I've inherited an old Nikon EM camera and Vivitar 35-105mm f/3.5 zoom lens. I have absolutely zero experience in photography but I wanted to get into it. Would the lens that I have fit on a modern day digital camera body? From what I have seen the lens is the most expensive part of the kit. If I could buy a digital body for cheap that would be awesome.

Thank you!


The Nikon EM film SLR used the Nikon F-mount which is still used by modern Nikon DSLRs. Therefore, a lens which fits the EM will also fit a modern Nikon DSLR.

However, depending upon the lens there may be limitations when used on a DSLR which restricts its usefulness. As an example, the Vivitar 35-105mm is a manual focus lens and so would not auto-focus on a DSLR. Also, on a low-end Nikon body metering would not be available.

Finally, the optical quality of an old lens designed for film may show flaws when used on a modern DSLR. Therefore, this particular lens is probably not a reason in itself to favour buying a Nikon DSLR over other brands (which this lens would not fit).


To me there are two separate considerations here. One is getting into photography. The other is using gear that is inherited because it is inherited.

If it is only taking up photography, then just using a camera at hand such as a smartphone is an entry point...though smartphone photography has tradeoffs relative to dedicated camera equipment. Buying contemporary new or camera and lens is one way to go.

If it is using particular equipment due to the history of that equipment it all depends on the particular individual. Here, if the camera works (they often do), then all that is needed to take up photography is a roll of film. It may be available locally through a camera shop and certainly available via the internet. Film processing can also be done using the mail.

Actually, there is a third option. Take up digital photography to get started and keep the film equipment around in case it seems like fun to shoot film. Fun is the goal of hobbies.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.