Pentax PC35 AF

I am sat at home with the start of a cold, an occupational hazard. Working with children means you are prone to catching their colds and sniffles. I find it difficult to work with enthusiastic students when all I want to do is curl up. But, even when I do take it easy I can’t just chill and do nothing so I am catching up on this review. This is another swap camera and I want to say straight off, I love it. You can find all the tech details you need for this 1982 camera at this great site.

This camera just felt nice in my hand, a point and shoot from the 80s that didn’t have a plastic feel. It has a cool metal finish with a secure sliding lens cover. In terms of features, it really has none.

It does have a light level warning. If there isn’t enough light for your shot you can hear an audible beep, but it will still take the shot. There is a screw fitting on the side which was where a motorized winder could be attached. I didn’t have the winder and couldn’t find one online, but no big deal.

It doesn’t have DX coding, but a manual film selector. That means you can push the film which is what I did for my test film. I used Fomapan 100 pushed to 400 as it was a dull grey day.

I took the camera to Manchester’s Northern Quarter. It is a very cool area of Manchester and well worth a day out, especially if you like street art.

I was really happy with the results. I know they seem a little dark, but I like that look. Plus, I finally seem to have gotten used to Ilfosol 3 as a developing fluid.

This example was quiet and as you can see, the autofocus worked a treat. The viewfinder was bright enough and I really liked how there was a needle indicator showing the autofocus choice.

Forget the expensive point and shoots and try and get one of these. This camera has made me really consider selling my Olympus LT-1 and keep this as my main point and shoot choice.

Oh, the only thing I could fault if I had to, was the rewind lever, it was a little small and tricky to use.

12 thoughts on “Pentax PC35 AF

  1. Not even a year ago, no one was talking about this camera, but within the last year, Ive seen multiple reviews online about this hidden gem (mine included). Many people pay crazy money for cameras like the Yashica T-series, the “Pikaichi” Nikon L35AF, and Olympus Stylus Epic, but this little Pentax is truly a marvelous camera for all of the reasons you mentioned! Loved your review, and Im happy to see someone else discovering this little gem!

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    1. Unfortunately I see the prices rising too. So this hidden gem is not quite so hidden now. That’s why it is staying in my reducing collection.

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  2. A few years ago there was an antique/junk shop in a giant old house near my office. I went one day on a lunch break and bought one of these, with the winder (although that doesn’t seem to work), for a few dollars. Knew nothing about it but I thought it looked interesting. 2 days later the store burned to the ground. I’ve always been happy I was there when I was and found the camera. I haven’t used it in awhile, your post has motivated me to get it out! Great shots! My film winder is a little stiff though…how is yours? Without film it’s perfect, but with film it’s harder to move and can tear up my thumb! LOL

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    1. The thumb winder was ok, I just forgot to use it due to the metal body. I kept thinking it must be automatic. The prices of this one on eBay seem to be on the up. Maybe yours just needs a little using to get it moving again.

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      1. Slow to answer but I did mess with my Pentax after I posted this. Even took off the top plate to have a look, the first time I have ever attempted to look inside one of my cameras. I worked the wind wheel for a bit and now it’s moving. So far, so good…half roll of film through it at the moment. We’ll see I guess!

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    1. Maybe I like the camera more of the photos are better. Is it the chicken or the egg? Not sure, but I did like this one as soon as I picked it up, then the results strengthened my resolve.

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