Pentax Espio : The $2 Wonder

2

What was the cheapest camera you ever bought? Was it worth the buy? Read on about the story of the cheapest camera I ever bought.

Credits: walasiteodito

I often come around Japanese surplus shops here in Manila, hunting cameras, toys, and all sort of stuffs. One of my cheapest find is this compact Pentax Espio 35-70mm af zoom camera, complete with leather case, and panoramic mask. At first the guy was selling it to me for 200 Pesos (4$) but lucky enough, we made a deal at 100 pesos (2$) since it wasn’t tested and there is a chance that it was not working. The camera is in very good physical condition, the lens is scratch-less as hell.

Credits: walasiteodito

When I got home I immediately put a cr123a battery in the gear then it suddenly winded. I started testing the shutter, it was opening, then the flash, it fires. Though I don’t have any idea about this camera, there is only one thing left to do to really test the quality of this item, that is to load it with a roll of film.

Credits: walasiteodito

Before I started clicking, I googled about the camera first. It seems that this camera has many other siblings like the much more famous Pentax Espio mini, I believe that mine was one of the first editions. There was a manual in the web, after reading, I learned a few quirks about the camera.

Credits: walasiteodito

The camera is fully automatic, the gadget will be the one to choose the shutter speed and aperture to use in a certain situation. The ISO cannot also be changed, though you can cheat the DX coding of your film spool. It has a 35-70mm af zoom lens, and I was surprised that the viewfinder also zooms and focuses as close as 0.6m. There is a light indicator in the viewfinder if the flash needs to fire (red) and if the camera focuses (green, blinks if unsuccessful in focusing). And let’s not forget, a tripod thread.

Credits: walasiteodito

Now about the quirks. It has a lot of settings, more than you expected. Flash, nighttime without flash, nighttime with flash, backlight compensation, Bulb mode, and Bulb mode without flash. There is a separate button for red eye reduction and for landscape setting. There is a button for timer too that will also enable other modes. It has 2 timer length to choose from, it also has a timer that will automatically shoot twice, continuous mode, multiple exposure, 3 second interval, and 60 second interval. OK, Enough of the technicalities, let’s start shooting!

Credits: walasiteodito

I took it to the street, It has an almost perfect autofocus, let’s say 98% of the time it is correct.

Credits: walasiteodito

The exposure is superb, I love the way it exposes even in low light situations.

Credits: walasiteodito

One of my favorite quirks is the double exposure capabilities, just look at the photos.

Credits: walasiteodito

I think this camera is suited for street photography, because it is quiet and fast.

Credits: walasiteodito

All in all, this is worth every cent. So if ever you came across one with a good price, do not hesitate to grab it.

Credits: walasiteodito

written by walasiteodito on 2013-09-05 in #reviews #pentax-espio-35mm-street-photography-review-surplus-2-cheap

2 Comments

  1. dbuckle
    dbuckle ·

    Good review and photos. I found one of these in a Thrift Store for $1. Good little camera.

  2. guanatos
    guanatos ·

    great review!

More Interesting Articles

  • Lomopedia: Pentax Espio 120 SW

    written by cheeo on 2014-11-05 in #reviews
    Lomopedia: Pentax Espio 120 SW

    35mm compact zoom cameras are all the buzz this week for the Lomopedia. Today, we bring you the ever stylish Pentax Espio 120 SW.

    1
  • Lomopedia: Pentax Espio Mini

    written by cheeo on 2014-08-20 in #reviews
    Lomopedia: Pentax Espio Mini

    Don’t let the Pentax Espio Mini’s cutesy appearance fool you. Its coated glass lens boasts sharp images that can make any glass lens-wielding camera have a run for its money.

  • Lomography Fisheye No.2: Seven Years of Wonder

    written by adi_totp on 2014-09-15 in #reviews
    Lomography Fisheye No.2: Seven Years of Wonder

    Exactly seven years ago, I bought this camera from Indonesia's local Lomography community. I remember having some savings in my bank account and just spending it all on this camera. At that time, I browsed the microsite for the Lomography Fisheye No.2 and immediately fell in love with it! Coincidentally, my friend who introduced me to Lomography just bought this same camera for his birthday. My life has changed ever since I had the Fisheye, my first lomographic camera.

    3
  • Shop News

    Diana Mini and Flash Petite Noire at 25% off

    Diana Mini and Flash Petite Noire at 25% off

    At 25% off you can take dreamy 35mm images with this little black beauty. Beam coloured light into your shots with its accompanying Diana Flash Back accessory and be the analogue king of the night.

  • Fräulein Catherine Takes on the Konstruktor Challenge

    written by zonderbar on 2014-06-16 in #people #lomoamigos
    Fräulein Catherine Takes on the Konstruktor Challenge

    About a year ago, we introduced the Konstruktor to the world, and the little do-it-yourself camera has left us in awe ever since. Even the Viennese blogger, Fräulein Catherine (Miss Catherine), was keen on our 35mm SLR camera that you can build yourself, and she took on the DIY challenge. Here you can read more about the feat.

  • LomoAmigo Rewind: Band of Skulls

    written by e_ercolini on 2014-05-26 in #people #lomoamigos
    LomoAmigo Rewind: Band of Skulls

    Ever wondered what it was like to be in a rock group touring around the world? Well, get ready because Band of Skulls is taking Lomography cameras along for the ride again!

    1
  • My First Lomo Affair: Crismiranda and her Fisheye No. 2

    written by icequeenubia on 2014-07-03 in #lifestyle
    My First Lomo Affair: Crismiranda and her Fisheye No. 2

    The shift from using a Pentax MX to a Fisheye No. 2 was quite a big leap for her. Although some of her first photos came out underexposed, it didn't stop her from loving and shooting with this wide-eyed camera. Find out more about Cris Miranda and her First Lomo Affair with a Lomography Fisheye No. 2!

  • Shop News

    Give your space a facelift with your own analogue print

    Give your space a facelift with your own analogue print

    Really want to bring your film photos to life? We’re now offering totally analogue fine art prints in a host of large sizes and formats! Carefully enlarged from your negatives onto premium photographic paper by lab professionals, each picture is a unique piece of craftsmanship.

  • January 2015 Events at Lomography Embassy Singapore

    written by lomographysg on 2015-01-05 in #events
    January 2015 Events at Lomography Embassy Singapore

    Happy 2015 everyone! It's back to the School of Lomography this January. Curious about our sardine can camera? Ever wondered how to create shadow printing? We have just the workshops for you. Join us!

  • Lomography's Little Lessons: Aperture

    written by jennifer_pos on 2015-03-14 in #gear #lifestyle #tipster
    Lomography's Little Lessons: Aperture

    Have you ever wondered why those nerdy camera constructors formulate complicated terms that baffle most normal citizens? Trust me, I know it all too well; Physics was the first subject to go when I had to choose between studying and spending yet another night pursuing youthful adventures. But don't worry — the remedy for all of the gaps in your knowledge is right here: Lomography’s Little Lessons on Photography. Follow this series and in no time you'll catch up on everything your curious mind desires!

  • Finally, My Own Petzval Lens

    written by pearlgirl77 on 2014-11-20 in #reviews
    Finally, My Own Petzval Lens

    In April of this year I had the chance to test the Petzval Lens and to write a review on it for the German photography forum Kwerfeldein. The lens excited me from the very beginning, at the time it was introduced on Kickstarter. I was afraid that once I had tested the lens, I would want to have one of my own! Well, that’s what happened; a year later, I finally bought my very own Petzval lens.

    1
  • Shop News

    LomoKino & LomoKinoscope Package

    LomoKino & LomoKinoscope Package

    Enjoy a truly analogue moviemaking experience with Lomography's 35mm movie camera and an accompanying accessory to watch your films with. View your masterpieces in the most analogue way possible with the LomoKinoscope. Get it now 20% off the regular price!

  • Camera Summer: What is 'Sunny 16'?

    written by dopa on 2014-08-12 in #gear #tipster
    Camera Summer: What is 'Sunny 16'?

    As an analogue photographer, you have probably already heard someone speak about the "sunny 16" rule when it comes to determining the correct shutter speed and aperture combination. But what's this about? Read on and I will tell you.

    5
  • Lomography's Little Lessons: Depth of Field

    written by jennifer_pos on 2015-04-10 in #gear #lifestyle #tipster
    Lomography's Little Lessons: Depth of Field

    Have you ever wondered why those nerdy camera constructors formulate complicated terms that baffle most normal citizens? Trust me, I know it all too well; Physics was the first subject to go when I had to choose between studying and spending yet another night pursuing youthful adventures. But don't worry — the remedy for all of the gaps in your knowledge is right here: Lomography’s Little Lessons on Photography. Follow this series and in no time you'll catch up on everything your curious mind desires!

    1
  • Lomography LomoChrome Purple XR 100-400: My Take on Colors

    written by guanatos on 2014-11-14 in #reviews
    Lomography LomoChrome Purple XR 100-400: My Take on Colors

    The beauty of this film is in how it changes the colors we see. We all know that the big changes happen to the color green, but what about the other colors? Read on to see what I found out!

    2