Yashica Electro 35
| Yashica Electro 35|
image by Martin Taylor (Image rights)
Note: the branding "Electro" was also used by Yashica on a series of 35mm SLRs. This article describes the popular rangefinder model.
In 1966 Yashica introduced the Electro 35, the first of a very successful line of 35mm rangefinder cameras with fixed Yashinon lenses. The rangefinder is coupled to the focusing ring and the viewfinder is parallax corrected. The Electros use aperture priority exposure with a stepless automatic shutter with speeds from 30 seconds to 1/500s. Metering is done by half depressing the shutter button.
When the shutter speed for the aperture selected is lower than 1/30s, the viewfinder shows an orange arrow pointing left and an orange light is displayed on the top of the camera. Similarly, when the shutter speed would have to be faster than 1/500s the viewfinder shows a right pointing arrow and there is a red control light on the top. Either situation can often be solved by changing the aperture, but anyway the shutter will still fire. With the underexposed indication on, the photographer may consider using a tripod.
All models of Yashica Electro are fitted with a stepless Copal electronic blade shutter, with flash sync at all speeds. The PC sync contact is placed on the left side of the camera, probably for aesthetic reasons. The Electro, G, GT, and GS models have a cold accessory shoe. The GSN and GTN models have a hot shoe.
All models are fitted with a Yashinon 1.7 45mm lens with a 55mm filter thread. On the G and later models, the lens is branded as a Color Yashinon, although it was otherwise identical. The closest focusing distance is 0.8m. The camera has three exposure modes: auto, B and flash. The first Electro has an ISO/ASA range of 15 to 500; all subsequent models have an ISO/ASA range of 25 to 1000. An ASA/DIN conversion chart is pasted to the inside of the back door.
An Electro 35 GS
An Electro 35 Gx
Variations and developments
1966 original Yashica Electro 35
1968 Yashica Electro 35 G
Letters indicate: G gold contact points in electrical parts
S (no battery test light, combined shutterdoor release and rewind crank)
T black body
- The Yashica Guy's chronology
- Karen Nakamura's overview at Photoethnography
- Matt Denton's overview
- An article by on the GT by Michael Feuerbacher
- User manuals for various Yashica Electro 35s on Butkus.org.
- Yann L'hostis' summary (includes shutter sound sample)
- Lionel's Yashica Electro 35 GSN overview at 35mm-compact.com
- Adam Brown's Yashica Electro GSN review via the Wayback Machine
- Yashica cameras on www.collection-appareils.fr by Sylvain Halgand
- Electro 35, Electro 35GS, Electro 35GSN, Electro 35GT, Electro 35GTN, Electro 35GX, Electro 35 Pro on www.collection-appareils.fr by Sylvain Halgand