The Yashica Auto Focus Motor. I’d never heard of it before finding one in a local charity shop, and for a mere £8 including original strap, case and manual, I thought it was worth a go. Delighted to discover that it worked perfectly, some ambivalence still remained due to its awkward looks, noises (more on that later) and name; no alphanumeric codes like the greats here, just a description of its one main feature: Auto Focus Motor. It also lacks the magical T* designation on the lens which has made later Yashica iterations so sought after. So why do I like it so much?
Yashica Point & Shoot
The The Yashica Ninja Star II AF-J2 isn’t my first Yashica. Early last year I found an odd plastic camera I hadn’t heard of: a Kyocera P. Mini 2. At the time, I was unaware of the Kyocera/Yashica connection. The former purchased the latter in 1983, branding future items under both names. Thus the Kyocera P-mini …
In my pursuit of a point and shoot film camera, I found myself drawn to the Yashica T series because of (A) the high-quality Zeiss lenses and (B) Contax Ts are way out of my budget. I ended up getting my hands on a Yashica T2 through an online auction and, luckily, the camera was in working condition, albeit with some adhesive residue which was easily wiped away with some nail polish remover. Thus, began my Yashica T2’s journey as my everyday camera, always ready for life’s peculiar moments or mind-numbing gridlock traffic.
The Yashica T4 Zoom is a camera that is often only reviewed in comparison to it’s legendary namesake. Most of the reviews compare the lens quality unfavourably, but where the lens isn’t as high quality, for my use it makes a very versatile counterpart to my Contax T2. It also has some features that make it an extremely reliable and capable tool for my uses.
The Yashica T3 features an F2.8 35mm lens, the only compact Yashica in the T series to do so. This was one of the reasons I wanted one as I always try and avoid using flash where possible, the other reason was that it was so much cheaper than any T4/T5 I’d been looking for at the time. I picked mine up for around £40 and really didn’t expect to get it for that much, it was a nice clean example and came fully equipped with a case and strap, not bad eh?