Yashica Electro 35


The Yashica Electro 35 is a magnificently amazing camera only if you know how to work your way around it. Its cheap, has a amazing glass and is intensely sexy (specially the black version GTN).

When you pick up the Electro, you can actually feel its weight, the metal body pulls you down and it feels like a brick. Quite heavy but then when you take off its leather covers, you realize that it beats any camera you might have seen before because its just so beautiful. The Electro’s all metal chrome body (GSN) and the black matte body (GTN, this one is more rare to find) look better than any Canon or Nikon which you might ever hold. It has a character, a emotive reaction which is not matched by any other camera. This is the feeling of True Love.

It comes with a fixed lens 45mm f1.7 (to f16) Yashinon lens. Its quite fast and works like a normal lens on any SLR. At 1.7 its a little soft but it really makes a impression at 2.8 churning out crystal clear images. Because its a rangefinder, it works on a parallax focusing system, where you need to match the image inside the viewfinder to focus on a object / subject. This is a little bit of a issue when you’re working in low light because you loose sight of the image in the viewfinder and it ends up focusing someplace else. There are ways to get around it, like you could use the distance marks on the lens, focusing at a distance from 3ft to 80ft or use a hack where the viewfinder is taped with a black tinted paper to help you focus. But the best would be that you learn and guess the distance when shooting. This issue is not there when shooting in daylight, usually you can push the camera to f8 and almost everything will be in focus.

Electro uses a Mercury battery which is no more in production. But there is a alternative. You could spring load 4 LR44 batteries to do the work or instead if you’re in India, buy old stock of batteries (yes, we still have them and they work!!!) which cost about 5$ a piece. That will turn on the meter which basically tells you only if your picture is OK, Under or Over. There is no pure manual mode, all work is done in Av or aperture priority. There are of course ways to hack this too, by setting your ISO over or under to get the kind of tones you like.

The camera performs great in a crowd or in street photography because of its design. It uses a copal leaf shutter which makes no sound at all so there will be no “kacheek” when you’re shooting in public. Also there are no moving mirrors so you don’t loose a moment to the mirror movement like in a SLR. The viewfinder is on one side of the camera so you can have one eye in the camera and another on the lookout so you end up having a greater field of view than a usual SLR. All in all, the design is better than a SLR any day, just it needs a auto focus to make life simpler.

The shutter speed maxes out to 1/500 at normal settings and at about 30 seconds in B mode. This is sometimes a issue. For example, if you’re shooting in low light, in a SLR, you know that your shutter speed is coming to (for example) 2". Now you brace yourself and stand steady for two seconds. But here the shutter speed could be 5" but you’d never know, all you’d see is the Red arrow pointing to underexpose, meaning the camera is going to make a long exposure. And you could be standing, waiting for the shutter to close for a long time. This sometimes is a issue because your subject might move, you might move, the world might move and all that. So in low light, you have to carry a tripod, there is no way out. The flash (if you use one) automatically syncs at all speeds, even at 1/500. So you’d have no issues with flash photography.

Price wise the camera was expensive when it got released but its not in the same range as a Bessa or a Leica. But if you were to pick up an Electro now, you can get one starting from $10 to a mint piece for $30 (I got mine for $30 each). What more could you want!

The final picture quality is great, specially when you consider that it uses a lower center weighted metering. So the tones are great, even in a backlit image, it works perfectly. But you need to remember that there is no Exposure Lock so if you more the camera, the metering changes according to it. This needs to be kept in mind specially when shooting in a little tricky lighting situations.

So concluding :

Pro’s > Great color reproduction, sharp lens, amazing body, flash sync at any speed, almost no shutter noise, smooth functioning and easy to maintain.

Con’s > Heavy, no shutter speed information, hard to focus in low light, max ISO film only 1000, max shutter speed only 1/500, older pieces are prone to light leaks (you’d need to maintain them by putting in new light seals)

AND Tips >> Never cock the shutter unless you are sure you want to shoot. You cock the shutter and the metering turns on, if you don’t shoot, the Electro will go crazy metering everything and eat through your battery like a chubby kid goes trough a big mac. So remember no shutter cock unless you’re sure to shoot.

written by abhoan on 2011-03-13 in #reviews #old #35 #film-camera #yashica #lomography #rangefinder #film #1-7 #school #user-review #cheap #electro-35 #1970 #electro


  1. j_rad
    j_rad ·

    Great images! Especially the reflection/bicycle, and the bridge!

  2. vicuna
    vicuna ·

    Great camera indeed and I love your shots, like @j_rad I think the one with the bicycle and temple reflection is a wonderful shot!

  3. blormore
    blormore ·

    Great article! I just taped up my Yashica and ran a roll of 1000 film through it this weekend, can't wait to see the results! :)

  4. gvelasco
    gvelasco ·

    Nice shots. Nice article. Great camera.

  5. brandkow93
    brandkow93 ·

    The shot of the man on the bike with the reflection of the roof, is probably the best photo on this whole site, no cross proccessing or anything, just a beautiful black and white image that is so creative and intrigues the viewer. keep it up :)

  6. ajagee24701
    ajagee24701 ·

    Nice article, I love this camera!

More Interesting Articles

  • Photo of the Day by trungdel

    written by Eunice Abique on 2015-06-20 in #world #news
    Photo of the Day by trungdel

    Not only a form of exercise, biking around your neighborhood is a great way to rediscover its charm!

  • Lomo'Instant Accessory Challenge

    written by antoniocastello on 2015-02-04 in #world #competitions
    Lomo'Instant Accessory Challenge

    Do you love being creative? How about instant photography? If the answer is yes, no or maybe, then we've got a jam happening with your name written all over it! Being the most creative instant camera around, it's difficult to imagine the Lomo'Instant becoming any more awesome. But what would happen if you and your pals put on your thinking caps for a Lomo'Instant accessory brainstorming session of the ages — limitless creative potential! Show us your skills by joining the Lomo'Instant Accessory Challenge!

  • A Collection Of Awesome Konstruktor Snapshots

    written by shhquiet on 2015-04-10 in #gear #lifestyle
    A Collection Of Awesome Konstruktor Snapshots

    There's nothing more satisfying than taking fantastic photos with a camera that you built yourself. If you've always wanted to impress your friends with your mad DIY skills, pick up a Konstruktor Camera Kit and show them what you've got! It's also a cool way to get them into Lomography, because as you build the camera you'll discover how analogue photography works. Oh, and the Konstruktor takes gorgeous photos, too - check out the gallery and see what we mean!

  • Shop News

    Shoot recognizable images with the Petzval

    Shoot recognizable images with the Petzval

    You want your subject be the center of attention? Petzval lens photos are recognizable for sharpness and crispness in the centre, strong color saturation, wonderful swirly bokeh effect, artful vignettes and narrow depth of field that will make your subjects stand out!

  • The World According to Herr Willie: Gardens by the Bay, Singapore

    written by wil6ka on 2015-07-03 in #world #locations
    The World According to Herr Willie: Gardens by the Bay, Singapore

    Singapore, like Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong, is a likely stopover when you fly far. The city is a tiny urbanized hub but it's very favorable if you know some high-spirited locals. I was lucky to hook up with king kimbo (@hakimbo), who showed me around. He took my lame limbs to the Gardens by the Bay, an amazing place which was visually striking. I was hugging some artificial trees there when I found a baby—a very big baby.

  • Going Monochrome with the Lomo'Instant

    written by bgaluppo on 2015-06-26 in #gear
    Going Monochrome with the Lomo'Instant

    If you've ever used the Lomo'Instant camera, you know that the Fujifilm Instax Mini film ensures amazing and sharp results with vivid colors and natural skin tones. And although we love it the way it is, we also love to experiment. This time we ventured out with monochrome on our minds and got some pretty crazy results — check it out!

  • Shooting the Petzval Lens with Ian Taylor

    written by givesmehell on 2015-04-29 in #people #lomoamigos
    Shooting the Petzval Lens with Ian Taylor

    Canadian-born Ian Taylor is a full-time photographer specializing in kids and development work. It all started when his five siblings started having children at the same time he was into photography. This passion then spiraled into something amazing, and now Ian works primarily with kids, shooting them when they are in their purest form. Based in Asia, Ian has agreed to share this amazing series of photos he shot with his Petzval Art Lens in Cambodia and Thailand. He also shared with us some of his insights and views on photography.

  • 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.

  • An Interview with the Founders of Revolog: Magical Handmade Film

    written by bgaluppo on 2015-04-29 in #people #lifestyle
    An Interview with the Founders of Revolog: Magical Handmade Film

    When the founders of Revolog started working on ways to create special effects film as a college project, little did they know that it would blossom into a full blown international business. Meet Hannah Pribitzer and Michael Krebs — the passionate Vienna-based photographers behind the wonderful analog film company, Revolog!

  • Transient Living: Armitage & McMillan in Denver, Colorado

    written by maliha on 2015-01-07 in #world #locations
    Transient Living: Armitage & McMillan in Denver, Colorado

    If you want to know the heart of a person, peek inside his/her wardrobe! And no, nobody famous said that; I only just made it up. But really, don't you think it's true? After all, the way we dress screams our personality; at least for most of us. And that is why, as soon as I land on a new city, one of the things I absolutely must do is find the local boutiques. Sure, I love the fancy chain boutiques as much as the next person, but there's just something else about a local clothing store. It's unique!

  • My First Time with the LC-Wide: danika

    written by Lomography on 2015-10-16 in #gear #news #lifestyle #reviews
    My First Time with the LC-Wide: danika

    The LC-Wide is definitely one of Lomography's must-have cameras. Its Minigon 1 Ultra-Wide-Angle lens adds a different flavor to your shots, on top of the stunning vignettes, intense colors and breathtaking saturation and contrast LC-A cameras are known for. The Lomography Team is no stranger to the LC-Wide's creative potential, and has proven it capable of the most captivating images. First on the list is danika, from the Lomography Headquarters in Vienna.

  • 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.

  • Creative Ways to Shoot the Lomography LomoChrome Purple Film

    written by Robn Kester on 2015-03-03 in #gear #tipster
    Creative Ways to Shoot the Lomography LomoChrome Purple Film

    The LomoChrome Purple is easily one of the coolest films to come out in a very long time. The amazing colors and vibe it gives each shot and its wide range of exposures make it a must-have and must-shoot film. Here are some cool ways to help you get the most out of your LCP.

  • Expired Earl Grey: Does It Taste Nice?

    written by Xiang Cong Tham on 2015-02-22 in #gear #reviews
    Expired Earl Grey: Does It Taste Nice?

    A lot of lomographers have experienced using and even writing about the greatness of the Lomography Earl Grey black and white 35mm ISO 100 film. However, no one has written about using an expired Earl Grey film yet. How does it fare when it is used expired? Read on to find out more.

  • December 19th Advent Offer: Save 10% On Film Today! (Online Code: FILMFANTASY10)

    written by jacobs on 2014-12-19 in #news
    December 19th Advent Offer: Save 10% On Film Today! (Online Code: FILMFANTASY10)

    Can you ever have enough film for your treasured cameras? Are you going to take a ton of awesome analogue photos this holiday season? If the answer is yes (and we know it is), then now is your last chance to save on our super selection of analogue films!