30 Weeks, 30 Cams: Week 2, Minox 35 EL


After testing the Ilford Sportsman 300S in week 1 and being pretty satified with it, I tested the Minox 35 EL I got for €2.49 from eBay in week 2. This one I got from eBay too, but I paid more for it. I didn´t know anything about it but I noticed it the first time bccbarbosa had some nice shots uploaded, taken using one of the tiny Minox 35 series. That was my motivation to buy it.

Before reading on: my rolls shot with the cameras are all test rolls. I didn’t shoot with them before. And as I’m new in finding out, there might be some shots that I screwed. If I know a camera already, I’ll mention it.

Credits: bloomchen

This camera is really a lightweight one. It’s tiny and fits in every pocket,and so it fits with all the other so-called Minox “spy cams.” The first thing I did when it got sent over was to open it and have a look if the shutter works. It didn’t open so I had to go to my lab to get new batteries.

The guy from my lab is a real expert and he asked me what kind of film I’d like to shoot with. I said first roll will be black and white, so he told me it is OK to get a standard battery for it. The reason he asked me was that with the standard battery the camera is overexposing but it isn’t that important with b&w but would cause trouble with crossing. I would then have to buy an adapter and another battery. I chose the standard one to keep it cheap.

Credits: bloomchen

So I loaded it with the batteries and a roll of Kodak B&W 400, and that’s when it all began. If you load a camera with a roll you can’t — or better you don’t want to — manipulate it anymore with the settings to find out if the shutter works by looking at it and shooting a picture.

Credits: bloomchen

But this would have been necessary as the Minox 35 EL leaves you thinking that it didn´t work. Well, actually it’s working like the LC-A set on “A” mode, but the difference is that the LC-A has a sound and gives you the feeling in your finger that it exposed the roll. The Minox 35 doesn’t. Sometimes, it did but most of the times not. So, I was convinced that my lab will tell me that there were only a few pictures were exposed. But surprisingly, I was wrong. And on top of it, a lot of them were overexposed.

Credits: bloomchen

Another negative point was that the transport of the roll didn’t work really good and that is annoying. The results came out pretty interesting but sometimes you get a screwed photo.

Credits: bloomchen

So the camera is pretty ambivalent to me. The feeling wasn’t that good while shoooting the roll. Some pictures are overexposed and the advancing of the roll didn’t work that well, but it is easy to handle and a tiny little camera you can take with you everywhere.

Probably, shooting in not so good light conditions is better with the camera, but it will most likely remain on my shelf for quite some time. Maybe even for a longer period as I now got the big brother of this camera as a gift, the Minox 35 GL I’ll give it a try to see if it still works.

Credits: bloomchen

Thanks for reading and stay tuned for the next installment!

written by bloomchen on 2012-04-11 #gear #vespa #review #project #camera #berlin #b-w #lomography #kodak #cams #kreuzberg #s-w #neukolln #user-review #summary #bloomchen #30-weeks #projekt-x-berg


  1. alex34
    alex34 ·

    Good to see an honest review.

  2. bloomchen
    bloomchen ·

    @herbert-4, @adi_totp, @alex34, @ohpleasedontgo, @clownshoes, @uncle_jay: thanks. but i have to admit that something went wrong with the scans. so not all pictures that seem to be overexposed are really overexposed. another lomo-guy was involved in the discussion and so i scanned again and it came out like this: www.lomography.com/homes/bloomchen/photos/15701600

  3. neanderthalis
    neanderthalis ·

    Well done review :)

  4. yanncbienmoi
    yanncbienmoi ·

    Hi There !
    According to the photo, the camera is not a Minox 35 EL but a Kiev 35 (it's russian imitation). This could explain the lack of optical quality of the different shots ;-)

  5. bloomchen
    bloomchen ·

    @yanncbienmoi Hi! Thanks for yor comment. But naah, it is just the wrong pic from camerapedia. I have two Minox cams. The one I have taken these shots. Another one I found in a thrift store but it is not working anymore.

    I really want to test my cams again but I don't have the time to do so. Unfortunately.

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