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Minox 35 GT vs Minox 35 GT-E with Lomography Color Negative 800 film

You own a Minox 35 GT or GT-E and you are wondering if the Lomography Color Negative 800 film will work with it? Read on to find out.

Photo by inrod

I got a hand-me-down Minox 35 GT from my dad after he decided to use only digital cameras. I was pleased to get it, however, I didn’t use it that much because of the need to fiddle with the focus setting and the aperture. However, I did some research on the camera and learned how to use it. It used to be my only compact camera, which can use ISO 800 film.

I took it with me on a trip to Japan, loaded with the Lomography Color Negative 800 film. I wanted to be prepared to make pictures with less light and during at night. After getting back, I had the film developed and was disappointed: even though I used an ISO 800 film, the pictures taken at night time were underexposed.

The pictures taken at daylight and much artificial light turned out perfectly. I was amazed about this outcome.

So, I did some more research and found out, that the battery I used was not the best replacement for the old mercury batteries. I got me the Minox power adapter with fresh batteries and tried again the Lomography Color Negative 800 at low light.

Again underexposed! I figured, this has to be a camera problem. ISO 800 is the fastest film the camera can use. Together with batteries that do not match 100% of the original specification, it could lead to high tolerances for measuring the exposure and thus leading to underexposed pictures.

To verify this, I borrowed a newer Minox 35 GT-E from one of my colleagues and loaded it with the “Lomography Color Negative 800”;http://shop.lomography.com/films/lomography-film/lomography-color-negative-800-iso-120-3-pack . The GT-E does not need mercury batteries and it has a ISO range up to ISO 1600. With that in mind I went shooting.

Again, for daylight conditions, I got perfect pictures. What about at night?

This time, even the night shots turned out maybe just slightly overexposed. Though, I think it’s much better than with the Minox 35 GT. It’s not a problem of battery or film, it’s a camera issue.

Summary:

In conclusion I suggest to use the Minox 35 GT with film speed up to 400 max. Above you will get underexposed pictures at low light. This is a result of the light sensor used in the camera (CDS type).

If you have a successor of the 35 GT, like the 35 GT-E or newer, you will get very nice shots with an ISO 800 film at low light conditions without flash. This is due to the different light sensor (based on silicium) which was used for later Minox generations.

Now, I guess what I’m currently looking for is a Minox 35 GT-E since my colleague didn’t want to sell me his camera!

written by inrod

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This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: Deutsch.