Here at the Lomopedia series, we’ve covered a lot of fine cameras that can turn heads with their looks and/or overall performance. Today, we add another one to the list. Welcome the Rollei 35s — a compact full frame 35 mm shooter that combines unique aesthetics, design, and good image quality.
One thing that you can instantly notice when you look at the Rollei 35s is its unusual control setup. Instead of the usual top plate placement of the controls, everything is situated in front of the camera. The two dials flanking the lens lets users adjust shutter speed and aperture settings on the fly. Two other dials upfront also sets film type and film speed. This is actually a great system if you are familiar with the setup. Adjusting shutter speed and aperture while focusing can make for pretty quick shots.
Another unique characteristic of the 35s is the focusing system. The small lens is collapsible and actually juts out so you can frame and compose your shot as needed. This quirky design doesn’t only make the camera look and feel more engaging, it also helps keep the whole package neat and trimmed. If we are to speculate about what designer Heinz Waaske was going for when he was working on the 35s, it would be safe to say that he was after a minimalist aesthetic that is both functional and unforgettable.
When it comes to performance, the Rollei 35s also delivers. At the heart of this compact camera lies an HFT Sonnar 40 mm f/2.8 lens that delivers clean and crisp photographs on command. Rollei managed to squeeze in a sharp albeit small lens into the equation, thus making the 35s a truly admirable piece of photographic gear. Indeed, looks can be deceiving. This compact camera looks like a point-and-shoot but is actually so much more.
Photos Taken by Our Community with the Rollei 35s
Type: 24 × 36 mm compact viewfinder camera with a manual pointer, meter needle exposure control
Specification: Collapsible lens, between-lens shutter ½ to 1/500 sec, rapid winding with double exposure and blank frame lock, exposure metering system coupled to aperture and shutter speed settings, indicator dial for film type loaded, X-center contact for flashguns, cable release socket, fitting for carrying strap
Lens: Rollei HFT Sonnar 40 mm f/2.8, made by Rollei under license from Carl Zeiss, Oberkochen, West Germany; collapsible with shutter tensioned. Five elements, four components, aperture range 2.8 to 22, manual focusing to 3 ft/ 0.9 m
Exposure Meter: Pointer meter needle aligning system with CdS-cell directed metering to subject foreground: measuring range 16 to 16000 cd/m2, 17.9 to 19.900 cd sq.yd; power supply by button cell 1.35v
Finder System: Optical viewfinder 0.6x, bright-line frame with parallax marks, showing surrounding subject field
Dimensions: Approx. 99 × 68 × 45 mm
Weight: Approx. 360 g
Accessories: Carrying strap, carrying case, Eveready case, lens cap, folding lens hood, medium yellow, orange, UV, R 1.5 filter