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Lomopedia: Pentax Auto 110

Dubbed as the smallest and lightest SLR camera ever made, the Pentax Auto 110 continues to enjoy cult status decades after it was introduced by Asahi Pentax in 1978.

Photo via Vintage Camera Lab

In 1978, Japanese camera maker Asahi Pentax introduced the Pentax Auto 110, an SLR camera that takes 110 film cartridges, along with three interchangeable lenses. The complete system is still sometimes referred to as Pentax System 10, although most of the advertisements only use either the camera name or Pentax-110.

The complete system became iconic for being the only complete ultra-miniature SLR system created for the 110 format. It was also considered the smallest SLR camera with interchangeable lens that was ever made. The camera perfectly fits in the palm of your hand, and amazingly, so do the three lenses that come with it. Because of its size, many mistake it to be a toy and could hardly believe that it works.

Three additional lenses were made in 1981, and an upgraded model, the Pentax Auto 110 Super, was introduced a year later. The Super model sported the same size and shape of the previous model and also accommodated the same lenses. Upgrades include an improved film winding mechanism (winding the single-stroke lever both advanced the film and cocked the shutter), top shutter speed of 1/400, brighter viewfinder, electronic 10-second self-timer, shutter lock, and lowlight warning.

Technical Specifications:

  • Manufacturer: Asahi Optical
  • Place of Manufacture: Japan
  • Date of Manufacture: 1978
  • Focusing System: Single-lens reflex with pentaprism eye-level viewfinder; 0.75x magnification; 87% coverage
  • Lens mount: Pentax System 10 mount (bayonet)
  • Shutter: Leaf shutter / diaphragm; Min: 1/750 @ f/13.5; Max: 1 second
  • Metering System: Through-the-lens (TTL) CdS cell – centerweighted
  • Flash: Proprietary flash sync connector
  • Film type: 110 Instamatic Film; 13mm x 17mm
  • Film speeds: ASA 100 / 400 (auto-indexed)
  • Battery type: 2 x SR44 (standard watch batteries)
  • Dimensions and weight: Body: 56mm x 99mm x 32mm, 159g; with lens: 56mm x 99mm x 45mm, 172g

All information for this article were sourced from Pentax Auto 110 on Camerapedia, Pentax Auto 110 on Wikipedia, Pentax System 10 on Cameraquest, and Asahi Pentax Auto 110 on Photoethnography.com.

written by plasticpopsicle

1 comment

  1. divide-by-zero

    divide-by-zero

    I actually own one of these cameras. I couldn't find 110 film for it anywhere until I discovered Lomography. Thanks!
    over 1 year ago · report as spam

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