The MINOLTA Vectis S-1 is one of the two SLR camera bodies made by Minolta for the APS film system. For these autofocus SLRs a complete new set of autofocus lenses had been developed, the V-lenses, three constant focal length lenses (17mm, 50mm macro, and 400mm) and a variety of zoom lenses. The camera has all the functions of SLR cameras of its time: manual modes for aperture, shutter speed, flash and focusing, fully automatic operation mode, different programmed modes for portrait, landscape, sports, macro or night, choice of automatic focusing modes, and last not least a broad information display (LCD). Other modern SLR features are the built-in retractable flash, all-electric control of the lenses, and a data wheel for manual settings of film speed, shutter speed or aperture. In addition it has all the extra functions available for APS film.
An optional infrared remote shutter-release control device was available. The viewfinder image is not projected through a prism but through a mirror construction. So the viewfinder is placed at the left side of the camera's back. Exposure informations (flash, focusing finished, shutter speed, aperture) are displayed in the viewfinder below the image. Under a removable plastic cap on top of the camera body is a connector for a Minolta AF flash. The powerful flash SF-1 was introduced as accessory for the camera. It has an infrared lamp which serves as autofocus support light instead of the built-in flash. The popular 5400 flashes and others for the Minolta AF SLRs can be used instead.
The camera body was manufactured in Malaysia.
S-1 cameras sold in the United States came in a silver/pewter color only, but in some other countries (Australia, United Kingdom, Germany, Netherlands and perhaps elsewhere in Europe) a black (some say dark slate gray) body was available. Combined with the 22-80 and 80-240mm zoom lenses, the S-1 makes a light and compact kit for travel photogaphy. Both of these lenses allow switching to manual focus. Some users prefer the 25-150 lens for the range covered in a single lens. The 25-150 does not have the manual focus option. Standard "kit" lenses for the S-1 were the 28-56 and 56-170mm. The autofocus is switchable to manual focusing by pressing the shutter release button halfway and turning the focusing ring of the lens tube. Some lenses don't support that feature but can be switched to manual focusing with the AF/M button on the lens barrel. And, with an adapter, Minolta Vectis-SLRs could mount popular Minolta Alpha/Dynax/Maxxum-mount lenses. See also Minolta RD-3000 Digital SLR and Minolta Vectis S-100 that use the same Minolta Vectis-mount lenses.
- Type: Single Lens Reflex Autofocus camera body
- Manufacturer: Minolta plant in Malaysia
- Year of release: 1996
- Film Format: Advanced Photo System
- ASA/ISO range: available films had 100 to 800 ASA (100 to 400 ASA still available)
- Lens Mount: Minolta V-Lenses bayonet
- Modes: programmed modes, fully automatic mode, manual modes
- Exposure Metering: TTL with 14 field measuring photo diode, spontaneously switchable to spot metering (button), second 4 field photo diode for TTL flash metering
- Focusing: CCD-based phase-detecting TTL autofocus
- Shutter speed range: 30 sec. downto 1/2000 sec., with flash 1/125 sec. or slower
- Flash: guide number 14, also used as autofocus support light
- Weight: 365 g without Lens + Film + 2 × Cr2-Battery
- Dimensions: 126,5 x 76,5 x 63,5 mm