Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Yashica EZ F521 Review

There are two major drawbacks that turn me away from this little Yashica.

First, it takes three seconds to boot. Not fatal per se but, given that it loves to turn itself completely off (not stand-by) after 60 seconds to save power, if you are not shooting non-stop and there is a 60 second gap between two pictures, you have to turn it back on and wait for another three whole seconds before you can shoot on.

I also hate that there is no way to turn the monitor permanently off. Yes, you can suspend the monitor by pressing the display button a few times. But the slightest touch of shutter release will bring it back on. I do not "chimp" and only use the viewfinder to frame. That means I have to constantly struggle with the display button. To make things worse, the shinning bright light from he monitor, which is very close to the viewfinder, is more than distracting. It makes the viewfinder hard to use. Why bother building into a camera a viewfinder that is not usable?

These two things together, my shooting mode is like this: turn the camera on, wait for three seconds, press the display button a few times to turn off the monitor, frame and shoot, press the display button again to turn the monitor off, frame and shoot...(60 seconds later)... turn the camera back on, wait for another three seconds...

This little inexpensive Yashica feels good in the hand and produces images of acceptable quality. It is a pity that it tries too hard to impress by pretending to be capable of doing things that are not expected of a supposed to be simple and fun to use camera. Take away the all the built-in filters, cancel the video mode and limit the monitor for pictures review purpose, it will then be a great fun camera.

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