Yamato Pax M2

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Yamato Pax M2

Following the Pax I and her sisters, Yamato introduced a similar model under Pax M2. The Pax I was just two years old, and the new model offered little over it. Unique to this model is that it has no siblings, whereas most of the time, Yamato offered the same cameras under different names/brands.

The M2 had a coupled rangefinder, with the traditional two windows, whereas the Pax I had an extra (sport?) viewer. The body was the same as the earlier, slightly different-styled top. The space between the two front viewer windows is dressed with two lines, borrowed from the Minon II, together with the square/round windows combination.

The knob winder cocks the shutter as well, so gone is the dedicated cocking lever on the Pax I. A film-type memo adorns the knob’s top, and a frame counter skirts the bottom. The viewer is almost usable, larger than its predecessor, but still tiny. A miniature pushbutton by the winder releases the rewind, and the rewind button is still miniature.

The focusing dial is closest to the body on the lens barrel, and in the best Yamato heritage, it is stuck in place. It is assisted by a large finger rest; perhaps the designers preempted the need for ample force to move it. Next is the aperture dial, stuck as well, and further is the shutter speed dial, which freely turns but does not seem to do anything but turn. On the shutter speed dial, a pinhole between 25 and 50 turns red when the shutter is cocked. A synch port and a lever selecting M/X flash settings complete the lens assembly offering.

The back is fully removable via a large thumb wheel, and two disks at the sides are supposed to keep the camera stable on a flat surface. They do not.

For the collector, as with other Yamato cameras, it is worthwhile if found a working exemplar at an attractive cost. Judging by my other Yamato camera, a working model is the unicorn of cameras.

More on Yamato. and model list.

Camdex list number 10556
Brand Yamato
Model Pax M2
Manual Butkus
Value camdex.ca
Format 35mm
Introduced 1956
Country Japan
Qty made
Initial price
Type Rangefinder
Body material Metal
Mode Manual
Weight 480 gr,  Body with lens
Class average weight 620 gr,  Body with lens
ASA range Memo only
Kit lens 3.5/45
Lens make Luminor
Filter size 30mm
Lens mount Fixed lens
Mount size N/A
Shutter Leaf
Shutter make
Trigger On top
Winder Knob
Shutter_cocking Winder
Light meter None
Lock No
Speeds b, 30-300
Mirror N/A
Viewer Rangefinder
DOF preview No
Exposure lock No
Exposure compensation No
Shoe Cold
External sync X/M
Timer No
Battery, original N/A
Sync speed
Battery, replacement N/A
Battery voltage N/A
Integral flash None
Service / repair links See camerlog.com

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