Yashica Samurai Z / Z-L / Z2

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The Yashica Samurai Z and Z-L were introduced in 1989 by Kyocera, continuing the series begun with the Samurai X3.0 and X4.0 but in a slightly smaller and lighter body. The Z-L version was notable as being functionally identical to the Samurai Z, but with its handgrip and controls reversed for use by left-handed photographers.

Other new features in the Z/Z-L were faster sequence shooting (claimed to reach 4.5 frames per second); plus double-exposure and intervalometer options. The zoom range was only 3x, as with the original Samurai; and the Z's 25–75 mm zoom was slower, at f/4.0–5.6 to help reduce body size. The electronic flash pops up, rather than having a fixed diffuser as on the earlier Samurais.

The Samurai Z2 and Z2-L were subsequent 1990 versions, omitting some of the advanced features. Evidently these were less popular, as information about them is scarce. Some sources report a faster lens, but available photos of the Z2 do not appear to support this.

By 1990 there was also a short-lived Yashica Samurai V-70, an electronic still-video camera with a similar body style.


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