The Minox 110S was first released 1974, a high end camera for Kodak 110 pocket film*(see below). The company was already known for their miniature Minox spy cameras and their ultra compact 135 film cameras.
110 film was introduced by Kodak in 1972. The film sits in a cartridge,
like Kodak's earlier 126 film, but is much smaller. A frame is 13mm ×
17mm, has one perforation per image to control film advance and 24
frames per cartridge (12 were also available). The film is protected by
a backing paper like 120 film. The frame number is visible through a
window at the back of the cartridge. The basic film is ordinary 16mm
film which was already on the market, so it could be processed in
existing machines. The small picture size made very small, pocketable
Kodak introduced with its 110 film a line of
Kodak Pocket Instamatic cameras which were followed by
cameras from other manufacturers. Most cameras were cheap
point-and-shoot, but very sophisticated models were also made. Small
digital cameras made 110 film obsolete. Bit by bit manufacturers stopped making 110 format film (Fujifilm in 2009), but in 2012 (and 2019) Lomography made a large batch of 110 film, followed by other firms.
Minox 110S has a rangefinder and advanced features, a very luminous
lens, aperture priority, even with flash, and an automatic shutter. The
camera was built by the Balda company for Minox, about 40.000 were
made, however Balda made its own model variants and sold them under
their proper name as Balda 1000, especialy after Minox stopped selling
them abrupty in 1978. Its main features are:
25mm F2.8 Rodenstock Ysarex lens, 4 elements, F2.8-F16, min. focus 0.6m Electronic shutter, 4s - 1/1000 Size 131x54x26, Weight 130 gr. 100 and 400
ISO, automatic setting, rangefinder, parallax compensation, electronic flash available
Camera, leather case, instructions and box. Next to it electronic flash.
Camera abd flash in original leather cases.
Camera closed, front well protected.
front open. Bright view/rangefinder with framelines, parallax
corrected. The aperture is visible in the rangefinder and an under- or
overexposure arrow may light next to it. To the right, at the bottom:
film advance lever. It seems to be a problem of this camera. It's tiny,
2-stroke and erratic, as on mine. There are more complaints about it.
If it fails, you lose a photo.
Camera with flash attached.
from the top. The aperture value is visible and can be changed via the
black dented wheel. The focussing is done via the slider and there is a
real rangefinder spot in the viewer. Small red exposure button and
cable release socket next to it.
Seen from above, scale changed to feet.
from below. Tripod socket. The slider to the left opens the camera. The one at the bottom to the right opens the film
Camera film compartment open.
Battery carrier takes 2 625U batteries, still available.
camera is very easy to use, silde it open and it's ready.
manual settings, you choose the aperture, the exposure is automatic.
You have to
focus and frame, which is easy via the bright finder and a real
rangefinder spot. If by half pressing the shutter no arrow appears,
exposure is fine. If a red arrow appears to the left, it's
overexposure. Turn the aperture wheel in direction of the arrow. If a
yellow arrow appears to the right, the
camera will use slow shutter speeds. Turn the aperture wheel in
direction of the arrow or put the camera to a tripod or firm surface.
There is an electronic flash
available. The camera deals less well with available light. After taking
a picture, you have to cock advance lever twice. Putting a film is easy as well,
you drop the film into the compartment, advance to the first frame and that's it.
a luxury camera
with advanced features as aperture priority and a very good lens for
good picture quality. The finish isn't up to the hight of Minox'
reputation, especially the poor film adcvance lever. It has a small and
very light pocketable body. On mine, film advance was erratic. Compared
to other high end 110 cameras, it has severe problems with backlight
and low light situations. So picture results didn't convince me. I gave
it 3 more chances. All three cameras didn't work. It seems as if there are
lots of defective cameras on the market. Be careful if you want to buy