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Tuesday, 06 October 2009


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Probably won't be available in the U.S. or Europe

C'mon Mike, you know damn well they'll be selling to the World on eBay :-)

And sell they will, especially at that price and, dare I say it?, looking so attractive. Yes, that $100 piece of plastic with a manual focus lens attached actually looks attractive to me. Must be the OVF ;-)

PS: Why do the specs list a 12MP option for picture size?

Perhaps the most interesting thing is the highly visible screws above the lens, just begging you to take the thing apart. Looks like a fun DIY mod toy :)

Yashica brand is back? It looks like old trusty Yashica Electro GSN, simple but quite nice. GSN has been able to take good pictures, time will tell about this one... I would buy it!

Yashica lives again!!! Too bad that 45mm isn't the f1.7 they put on the electro 35 series...

"PS: Why do the specs list a 12MP option for picture size?"

Interpolation? The translation mentions something about the 12Mp image being "rougher than other sizes"...

I have a digital Holga - my phone. Isn't that what Best Camera is all about?

Btw it looks like it is not *really* manual focus, but fixed-focus with possibly two positions: landscape and macro.

Not that focus will be a huge issue with a 7mm f/3 lens on a 1/2.5" sensor...

@ James

Indeed, you could unscrew them and add a washer or 2 in order to create a light leak.

$89 bucks is worth it as long as the photos are not "too good"

probably the first digital compact camera with *instant* release! the perfect camera to shoot street!

so yashica built the DMD.
who would have guessed..

Aha, the 12MP option is an onboard interpolation of the 5MP native image.

Further, I figured out that focusing isn't quite manual. Basically, you have two settings: Hyperfocal (1.5m - infinity) and Macro (0.2 - 0.4m). That's it.

No aperture selection to worry about, no focusing worries either...one just needs to be concerned with finding something worthy of photographing. I'm loving this camera already!

If only it had a decent lens and a rangefinder... A reasonably cheap, digital Konica C35 (or Mamiya 135EE, Rollei XF35, etc.) would be a very nice camera.

Looks like fun - but certainly a fixed-focus rather than a manual-focus lens (with one glass layer and 3 plastic layers).

I imagine we can expect better and better - certainly more and more - sub $100 digital cameras as time goes on.

I think this thing'll sell really well for what it is, and I think the most interesting thing will be to see how bigger manufacturers respond to discovering that a low MP, optical viewfinder, fixed lens compact camera has a market. A slightly more sophisticated lens and a larger sensor, and this thing'd be perfect. Maybe someone will give that to us.

Either way, the writing is on the wall, between this, the X1, and the micro4/3 stuff... the DMD is coming if it isn't here.

Retro Digital. Now I know I'm old. Geezzz

It looks like it may be easy to take the lens off to make modifications. An infrared digital Holga?

How about hacking the lens to remove the layer of glass.

For under $100, I'd buy it.

There are several digital cameras designed for and marketed to children, like the Fisher-Price Kid-Tough. This is only negligibly more expensive, and looks like a much better choice, especially for a slightly older child.

"Yashica brand is back?"

When Kyocera wound down their photo operations, they sold the Yashica brand to a Hong Kong-based company "to use on photo products such as digital cameras, digital camcoders, digital photo frames, portable DVD players, digital audio players, digital voice recorders, binoculars, mobile phones and SD cards".

Here is a Contax history article I wrote a while ago

The FisherPrice is, in a word, crap (I got one for my daughter). An old Casio Exilim EX-S2 is a *much* better option for a kid who knows not to bounce the camera down the stairs (got one for my other daughter). At 2 MP it's not a fabulous capture but it has near instant release, a 36mm equivalent lens and an all metal body with an optical VF.

If they can put an optical finder on this thing, I don't see why we can't get one on every other camera.

"I don't see why we can't get one on every other camera."

Well, one reason is that other cameras have zooms, and/or interchangeable lenses. It's a lot easier to make an optical finder for a single-focal-length fixed lens....



Can we see an ISO ladder test, please, between the Yashica (if you can get your hands on one) and the Nikon D700? Or a limited edition print of your feet from its first test capture?

It doesn't shoot RAW.. :/

So its basically the same as my LX3 if I lock zoom at 42mm, stop using large aperture values, disable AF and Raw and reduce resolution in photoshop. Move on gentlemen, nothing to see here...

I'm sorry, the lack of RAW, matrix style metering, a f2 35 - 300 equivalent zoom, auto focus, scene modes, a full size sensor, I could go on, means that this is not good value for money. I mean, when will camera makers get serious and give us what we want.

I for one will not be buying it ......

Imagine that,a plastic,under a hundred dollar camera with an optical viewfinder.
The new absolutely beautiful LEICA X1 that
sells for $2,000 couldnt manage that with a
fixed single focal lenght lens.Oh well the wait and suspence continue,until then...

I wonder if Dirk Rösler over at Japan Exposures could stock a few at his online store.

This new Yashica looks cool and all but a digital version of my dad's 1958 Kodak Pony II? And it doesn't have a Kodachrome setting? I think I'd rather just borrow my daughter's $125 Nikon 8mp Coolpix and place my Saran wrap Holga filter over the lens.

"Well, one reason is that other cameras have zooms, and/or interchangeable lenses. It's a lot easier to make an optical finder for a single-focal-length fixed lens...."

And another possible reason is that they don't think optical finders would be accurate enough to not annoy the targeted market. Or, more likely, that the extra amount of sales wouldn't be worth the extra design/manufacturing cost of putting a finder in.

In other words, it may have been a concious design decision to NOT include a finder, rather than a design limitation or compromise. Hard to say, but I wouldn't assume that all camera designers bother to try incorporating a finder. I know friends who have P&S's that have finders and probably haven't ever looked through them. If that's your market, then maybe including a finder just isn't worth it.

This camera is about seventeen million times better than any Leica that doesn't get used. :^P

On a different forum some of the posts were seriously complaining about the 'low' MP count. What are they thinking? That they would occasionally want to make mural sized prints? I hope someone markets this type of camera with an f2 and manual override for under $200. That would be sweet.

Let us see how it compares to the Minox replicas (M3, Rolleicord TLR ...); those are fun little cameras which not sophisticated results.

I'll wager the picture quality will be too good for Holgalistas and the features list (if not performance) too limited for mass market.

The latter explains why the U.S. won't see it except thorough Hong Kong eBay seller.

I agree with Matthew Miller this could be a kid's great first camera if it has any toughness to it, but add the proviso of when they're at that brief young stage where their friends won't tease them about using a "big, goofy" camera.

For my 6-yr old, I got him a Canon WP-1.

I have seen used Diana cameras at KEH for around ninety bucks.
Back in the 80's I remember seeing a couple of cases of Diana cameras for sale at a local store called Bobs Close Outs. They were a buck a piece. I didn't buy any. That was the same year I told my broker you would have to have a screw loose to pay two grand for a share of Berkshire Hathaway.
Story of my life.

With me it was a *stack* of remaindered copies of Szarkowski's book "Eggleston's Guide" for $5 each. Now a $400 book. I seriously almost did buy the whole stack.

We always remember the good investments we missed, though, and conveniently forget about all the ones we didn't make that would indeed have been bonehead moves. So don't be too hard on yourself.


Wright Morris actually did buy a stack of remaindered first editions of "God's County and My People" for $.79 each if memory serves. He wrote about it in his autobiography.
You are right about hindsight. Your note did remind me of some Hawkeye Airlines penny stock that I took a pass on.
I'm feeling better. Thanks.

I decided to pre-order one -- always been a Holga fan and it can be a lot of fun shooting with a more "limited" camera at times.

Wonder how long it'll take before people start hacking it in various ways; gotta wonder if Yashica is betting on it becoming a cult camera.

Does anyone know if you can put a fisheye adapter on this camera? Basically I'm looking for a digital version of the Lomography Fisheye camera and am hoping there is an adapter out there that'll work with this Yashica. Or if anyone can recommend any cheap alternative? Any help would be tremendously appreciated (and would save me a lot of money). Thanks.

I'm really pleased to see this camera in production. Personally, I'd pay extra for a camera without autofocus, and I'd pay extra for a fixed focal length lens, as well. As appealing as the new cameras from Olympus and Panasonic are, my next camera will have a viewfinder (though the Leica X1 is really appealing)...

How do we know this camera deserves to be called a "digital Holga?" Has anyone seen test shots? Without those, no one knows what the actual output will look like...

Now if the other camera makers would just take a step or two towards Yashica "Kurashiku-sutairu" EZ F521's direction, a lot of people would be very happy;

Losing the automatic functions and superfluous program settings, "creative modes", multi zone AF, etc... Instead, put a decent viewfinder, and just enough controls to allow proper exposures and focusing, and have an unassuming, passive little piece of machinery which won't cost so much...

Going 2 or 3 steps beyond this Yashica will mean things like having something similar to the 1,7/45mm lens, or the good old Aperture priority AE of the Electro GX. Who wouldn't want a digital Electro 35?

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