5 frames with...

5 frames with a Yashica Minister II – by Malcolm

While on a family holiday in Cornwall in the 1970s, I saw a Yashica Electro 35 rangefinder in a camera shop window. Needless to say, my parents were not persuaded to buy it for me at that time. Since then I have always had a hankering for a Yashica rangefinder but several less than reliable Electro 35’s later, I started looking for an alternative. The alternative turned out to be the Yashica Minister II rangefinder, a predecessor of the Electro 35.

The Yashica Minister can be picked up for very little money and is somewhat under appreciated in my opinion. There are three models, this is the Minister II. It is built like a tank and is quite heavy but it comes equipped with a nice sharp 45mm f2.8 Yashinon lens, a rangefinder that works well and a built-in selenium meter with a top plate readout. A big plus point is that it doesn’t need a battery.

The exposure setup is somewhat quirky. You first take a reading from the Meter (the display text is incredibly small) which is given as an exposure value rather than a shutter and aperture value. Then you dial this value on the EV ring at the front of the lens. This alters the shutter and aperture which are coupled together. It is possible to alter the aperture setting for a particular exposure value but the shutter speed is then altered automatically. It’s a sort of manual aperture priority system. However, the results are quite pleasing.

The five frames are from the town of Clitheroe and its surroundings, in the beautiful Ribble Valley in the north-west of the UK.

You can see more of my images at https://www.flickr.com/photos/malcy

Important Information

Analogue Spotlight at The Photography Show: The Photography Show 2020 is set to have a much bigger Analogue Photography presence with a new “Analogue Spotlight” feature and a significantly increased contingent of analogue photography businesses and individuals having stands or a presence at the show.
Find out more about the show including a code for dicounted tickets here,

Support the upkeep of 35mmc:For as little as $1 a month, you can help support the upkeep of this website. The more people chuck me a small amount of cash each month, the more time I can spend building and improving upon it - simple as that!
Or, for $2 a month you can get access to my behind the scenes micro-blog over on Patreon!

Either way, want to help out, become a patron of 35mmc here:

Become a Patron!

Alternatively, if you just enjoyed this post, or like the odd post here and there, please feel free to chuck a few pennies in the tip jar via Ko fi here:

Write for 35mmc: read more here, about how you can help build upon this ever growing resource
Subscribe/Follow: click here, to discover all the ways you can follow 35mmc

You Might Also Like


  • Avatar
    Ken Davis
    December 26, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    Good frames, well done for giving life to this 60’s camera.

  • Avatar
    jess tip
    December 27, 2017 at 12:22 am

    I tried to like that camera. It’s nice to handle and for me one of the best looking cameras. Unfortunately I wasn’t happy with the lens. I’m not a sharpness junkie, but even for my taste, its quality is not satisfying.
    Considered that I got a bad example, but looking at pictures from others with that camera on Flickr, my opinion about its lens hardened.

  • Avatar
    jeremy north
    December 27, 2017 at 5:35 am

    Some nice images Malcolm. I’ve long thought that Yashica cameras are underrated. They’ve always produced high quality lenses and interesting camera designs which were well built.

  • Avatar
    October 23, 2018 at 12:08 pm

    I don’t think that’s the M2. The MII marking on the right side is not there and the “Yashica”,on the bottom left isn’t present either. I believe this is the first Minister. Either way, I want to get one.

  • Leave a Reply

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    Pin It on Pinterest

    Share This

    Thank you for commenting

    ...now share the post with your friends?