Minolta Dynax 3000i: The SLR for Lazy Photographers


For all photographers who, like me, are a bit intimidated by all the settings of SLRs, Minolta introduced in 1988 the Dynax 3000i: the first point-and-shoot SLR. A clumsy, black device with a surprisingly few bells and whistles. A power button, a switch to choose between automatic or manual focus, and of course, the shutter. Advancing the film is completely automatic, and the clever DX system of the Dynax 3000i recognizes the ISO value of your film, so you don’t have to set it yourself.

Image from Wikimedia Commons

I got the camera a week on loan from Luke of Foto de Zavel. So I could play with it and see if it works for me. On a free afternoon, I took the black monster to the park to shoot a roll of film.

Because the Minolta had a basic zoom lens, and I had never before experienced the pleasure of zooming with my simple compact cameras, I went all the way. Pigeons, chickens, leaves – I zoomed in on everything like a lunatic.

Credits: marije

The camera fits comfortably in your hand, it is just heavy enough and using it is really just a matter of point and shoot. Press the shutter halfway, and the camera will focus automatically. Even when you are not zooming like crazy, the camera takes great shots.

I was very pleasantly surprised by the Minolta Dynax 3000i. Okay, it does not have a nice retro look or high cult value, but it is a solid, reliable thing that shoots particularly fine sharp images. Additional advantage: you can buy it for a small amount. My copy (because yes, after I had seen the first results I had to have it) cost only 12 euros!

The only downside of the Dynax 3000i is that the camera flash connector has its own system where only Minolta flash units can be connected. So that prohibits some nice shooting with your Fritz the Blitz or Colorsplash. But overall, it’s still a good camera.

Credits: marije

Are you a little bit afraid of SLRs, or just a lazy photographer who does not want to worry about all kinds of settings, then the Minolta Dynax 3000i is a very fine unit to add to your collection!

This article was written by Community member marije.

written by marije on 2013-03-20 #gear #review #slr #minolta #point-and-shoot #minolta-dynax-3000i #single-lens-reflex
translated by Wessel de Haas


  1. 110isnotdead
    110isnotdead ·

    Cool article, I have a Minolta Maxxum 7000 (made about ten years before yours) and it is pretty similar in terms of usability. I'm one that loves to mess around with all the settings but its true sometimes you just gotta go out there and shoot. lol
    Keep up the good work :)

  2. rbruce63
    rbruce63 ·

    The Maxxum 3000i was my first SLR since the demise (and later resurrection) of my Yashica Electro 35 GSN. The possibility of interchanging lenses and the focus on the composition with the Program exposure mode made this camera my favorite for portrait and landscaping using Ektachrome 64 and 100 film. I gave it away and later on bought a Maxxum 600 Si.

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