The proximity of skeletal myosin subfragment-1 (S1) to actin, and its orientation with respect to thin filaments of single muscle fibers, were compared in the presence and in the absence of ADP. The proximity was assessed by the efficiency of carbodiimide-induced cross-linking and the orientation by polarization of fluorescence of probes attached to the essential light chains. ADP made no difference in proximity or orientation when the molar ratio of S1 to actin was low or high. However, at the intermediate ratios, ADP made a significant difference. Strong dissociating agents, AMP-PNP and PP(i), made significant differences at all ratios. To explain this behavior, it is unnecessary to invoke the ADP-induced 'swinging' of the tail of S1. Rather, it is simply explained by the 'two-state' model which we proposed earlier, in which S1 binds to one or to two actin protomers, depending on the saturation of the filaments with S1s. The dissociation induced by the ADP shifts the equilibrium between the two bound states. At high and low degrees of saturation, ADP is unable to significantly decrease the amount of S1 bound to F-actin. However, at intermediate saturation levels, ADP causes significantly more Sis to bind to two actins. These results suggest that the ADP-induced changes seen at the intermediate molar ratios are due to the dissociation-induced reorientation of S1.