The Minox 35 holds the title as the smallest 35mm full-frame camera of all time. Although marketed and sold as a consumer product, it quickly became popular among Western agents during the Cold War for its large 35mm negative in such a small form factor. It was so popular and effective that it spawned a Soviet clone in the form of the Kiev 35A. All the while, this helped to boost the camera’s consumer sales as it gained its reputation as ‘the spy camera’.
The Minox 35 GL is fitted with a 35mm f/2.8 lens – an impressive spec for the size of the camera. With a CdS meter on the front powered by a PX27 battery cell, the camera runs in an automatic aperture-priority mode. Aperture and focus are adjusted with tiny rings on the lens, and more controls such as ISO selection are situated on the bottom. The camera must be scale-focused, as there is simply no room to fit any additional focusing tool such as a rangefinder.
The Minox is a curious camera in use. The lack of a focusing system and framelines make accurate composition tricky, though with practice becomes easier. The lens can outresolve most consumer films, especially from f/5.6 to f/8. All in all, the Minox 35 is a unique piece of history that you can still use today.
|Tiny size, aperture-priority shooting, folding design, scale focusing.
|1 × PX27, or 4 × LR44.
|Overall good condition, all functions work as expected.
|Minox 35 GL camera, original case, original manuals, 4 × LR44 cells (installed).