Yashica FR

35mm MF film SLR camera


Production details
System: Contax/Yashica (1975)
Imaging plane
Maximum format:35mm full frame
Mount and Flange focal distance:Contax/Yashica [45.5mm]
Imaging plane:36 × 24mm film
Model:Electronically controlled
Speeds:1 - 1/1000 + B
Exposure metering:Through-the-lens (TTL), open-aperture
Exposure modes:Manual
Physical characteristics

Manufacturer description #1

Lens Mount: Contax/Yashica mount (three-claw bayonet mount) with internal linkage system (aperture scale coupling lever, aperture keying lever and automatic diaphragm action lever).

Lens: Yashica Lens ML f/1.4 50 mm standard lens interchangeable with a wide range of Yashica ML and Zeiss T* lenses.

Shutter: Electronically controlled horizontal run focal plane shutter with speeds from 1 to 1/1000 sec. (11 settings), plus B; built-in self-timer and X sync.

Shutter Release: Feather-touch electromagnetic release triggers the mirror flip-up and shutter operation through electrical switching; features release socket on camera body.

Exposure Control: Through-the-lens full aperture light reading with CdS sensors positioned in the pentaprism with the shutter speed pointer to indicate correct exposure and red dots warning against over/under-exposure; LED display button with self-locking system provides exposure readout before or after film wind; ASA range from 12 to 3200; EV range from EV 1 to 18 at f/1.4 (ASA 100).

Viewfinder: Through-the-lens reflex viewfinder shows a field approx. 92% of the actual picture area and provides image magnification of 0.87X; LED display (green for correct exposure and red for over/under-exposure), aperture display and shutter speed scale visible in the finder.

Focusing: Convenient focusing with diagonal split-image center spot and microprism collar.

Film Advance: Film advance lever advances the exposed frame, registers count of exposure on the exposure counter and charges the shutter with a single 140 degree stroke or several short ratchet actions; auto-resetting exposure counter; easy load take-up spool; manipulation of film rewind release button permits intentional multiple exposure; foldaway film rewind crank-handle.

Power Source: 6 V silver oxide battery (Eveready 544, Ucar 544, Mallory PX-28 or equivalent).

Other Features: LED battery checker display; Depth-of-field preview button; Lens release button; Interchangeable camera back; Coupling system on camera base permitting use of exclusive winder (compact motor drive unit); Direct X contact shoe.


The Yashica FR is a high precision SLR incorporating the most sophisticated electronic systems. It features the Contax/Yashica mount affording perfect coordination of the optical, mechanical and electronic systems and permitting use of a wide range of Yashica ML and Zeiss T* lenses. It also offers countless advantages in photography by virtue of such systems as:

Electromagnetic release. This feather-touch release effectively prevents camera shake at the critical moment of exposure and at the same time permits use of various remote control accessories, such as the cable switches and infrared controller set.

LED Exposure Readout. This comprehensive readout system assures precision and versatility of exposure setting. Correct exposure can be set through preselection of either the shutter speed or lens aperture.

Winder Coupling System. A coupling system is featured on the camera base to permit most effective and efficient use of the exclusive winder (compact motor drive unit). Precise synchronization is assured at all shutter speeds owing to an original system incorporated in the electromagnetic release system.

Interchangeable Camera Back. The standard camera back can be interchanged with the exclusive data back.

Manufacturer description #2

If you're looking for a rugged, full-featured SLR with an action power winder, the Yashica FR was made for you. It shoots photo sequences at least 20% faster than its competitors' fastest winders.

That's because the FR has an advanced electromagnetic release system, the most responsive system available. A unique focal plane shutter that assures shutter-speed accuracy by avoiding the "inertia lag" found in conventional designs. And because the Yashica FR's winder is powered with 6 batteries, not four, you get power-to-spare for constant high speed power shooting at up to 2.5 shots per second.

And that's just the beginning. The Yashica FR's full information viewfinder, with bright, easy-to-read LEDs tells everything you need to know, at a glance. Add all-metal construction to the Yashica FR's compact design, and you have one of the fastest handling, most rugged cameras.

Manufacturer description #3

YOU are better with an FR because this remarkable camera has CONTAX-style controls. A feather touch shutter release, finger-touch shutter speed selection and depth of field preview - as well as thumb control of exposure preview - all on the left of the camera body. This leaves the right hand free to steady the lens and to operate aperture and focus.

So you are better with an FR. You can make better pictures because you can concentrate on your subject. Your attention is not distracted by the technicalities.

With a Yashica FR you control the automation with either shutter or aperture priority.

Exposure is precise because the CONTAX lens mount gives you really accurate open aperture metering. And the centre-weighting of the TTL sensor is of the kind which received accolades when it was introduced in the CONTAX RTS.

Yes, you are better with an FR.

Better lenses, better electronics and better accessories, including a light weight motor-drive that is superior to any in the price range. Thanks to the CONTAX-style electric operation.

Manufacturer description #4

The Yashica FR marks a new trend in Yashica's SLR design. It features the highly advanced Contax/Yashica mount accepting a wide range of Yashica and Zeiss T* lenses, precision electromagnetic release system and TTL full aperture center-weighted light reading plus the unique LED exposure readout system.

The FR body has been designed for most versatile system application. In addition to the fact that it accepts two lens systems, it permits use of almost all Contax accessories. Exclusive FR accessories include the Yashica Winder and Data Back. The electronically controlled shutter has 11 clickstop speed settings ranging from 1 to 1/1000 sec. and B. Activation of the shutter is accomplished by a feather-touch depression of the electromagnetic release button. The shutter/mirror systems feature pneumatic brakes that dampen vibration. The release socket on the body affords direct use of various remote control accessories. On the other hand, the coupling system on the camera base permits most ready attachment of the motorized film winder and motor drive unit.

Exposure setting is simplicity itself with the LED exposure readout system in the viewfinder offering an effective guide. A red LED dot comes on to indicate either over- or under- exposure, while a green LED dot turns on when the correct exposure is set.

Full information viewfinder shows maximum aperture of the lens in use, f-stop in use, shutter speed setting, and LED readout. At the center of the finder field is the diagonal split-image spot with microprism collar which facilitates focusing.

Manufacturer description #5

The September 1971 issue of Popular Photography summed up the Yashica FR by describing it as "well engineered for human use". And it is just that. The senior member of the trio, the FR has a sleek and well-contoured body with all of the controls positioned right where you need them. Moreover, the smooth electromagnetic shutter release makes picture taking an effortless task. There's also a well designed diagonal split-image focusing screen that makes pinpoint focusing easy even for those with weak eyesight; a lockable exposure check button for extended readings; an LED battery check lamp and a host of other carefully thoughtout details.

And in the realm of exposure control the FR really shines. The extra bright full-information viewfmder utilizes a unique LED dot readout system which turns green when you have the exposure right. It also indicates the maximum aperture ofthe lens in use, as well as the f-stop in use and the shutter speed setting. Exposure setting is simplicity in itself, offering a choice of both aperture and shutter-speed preselection. The FR incorporates a highly reliable CdS through-the-lens metering system with a broad metering range from EV 1 to 18 (f/1.4 at ASA 100) to give total freedom in exposure control for those special shooting situations. Rugged, reliable and without the non-essential glitter, the FR is just the camera for the discriminating photographer.

Like the other members of the FR Series, the FR also takes a wide range of Contax/ Yashica accessories including the Yashica Data Back recorder, the wireless-release Infrared Controller Set, the 2 frame per second Yashica Winder, the RTF 540 portable stroboscopic electronic flash unit, which synchronizes with the Winder, and the entire range of Yashica and Zeiss T* interchangeable lenses.

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35mm full frame

43.27 24 36
  • Dimensions: 36 × 24mm
  • Aspect ratio: 3:2
  • Diagonal: 43.27mm
  • Area: 864mm2

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Image stabilizer

A technology used for reducing or even eliminating the effects of camera shake. Gyro sensors inside the lens detect camera shake and pass the data to a microcomputer. Then an image stabilization group of elements controlled by the microcomputer moves inside the lens and compensates camera shake in order to keep the image static on the imaging sensor or film.

The technology allows to increase the shutter speed by several stops and shoot handheld in such lighting conditions and at such focal lengths where without image stabilizer you have to use tripod, decrease the shutter speed and/or increase the ISO setting which can lead to blurry and noisy images.

Original name

Lens name as indicated on the lens barrel (usually on the front ring). With lenses from film era, may vary slightly from batch to batch.


Format refers to the shape and size of film or image sensor.

35mm is the common name of the 36x24mm film format or image sensor format. It has an aspect ratio of 3:2, and a diagonal measurement of approximately 43mm. The name originates with the total width of the 135 film which was the primary medium of the format prior to the invention of the full frame digital SLR. Historically the 35mm format was sometimes called small format to distinguish it from the medium and large formats.

APS-C is an image sensor format approximately equivalent in size to the film negatives of 25.1x16.7mm with an aspect ratio of 3:2.

Medium format is a film format or image sensor format larger than 36x24mm (35mm) but smaller than 4x5in (large format).

Angle of view

Angle of view describes the angular extent of a given scene that is imaged by a camera. It is used interchangeably with the more general term field of view.

As the focal length changes, the angle of view also changes. The shorter the focal length (eg 18mm), the wider the angle of view. Conversely, the longer the focal length (eg 55mm), the smaller the angle of view.

A camera's angle of view depends not only on the lens, but also on the sensor. Imaging sensors are sometimes smaller than 35mm film frame, and this causes the lens to have a narrower angle of view than with 35mm film, by a certain factor for each sensor (called the crop factor).

This website does not use the angles of view provided by lens manufacturers, but calculates them automatically by the following formula: 114.6 * arctan (21.622 / CF * FL),


CF – crop-factor of a sensor,
FL – focal length of a lens.


A lens mount is an interface — mechanical and often also electrical — between a camera body and a lens.

A lens mount may be a screw-threaded type, a bayonet-type, or a breech-lock type. Modern camera lens mounts are of the bayonet type, because the bayonet mechanism precisely aligns mechanical and electrical features between lens and body, unlike screw-threaded mounts.

Lens mounts of competing manufacturers (Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony etc.) are always incompatible. In addition to the mechanical and electrical interface variations, the flange focal distance can also be different.

The flange focal distance (FFD) is the distance from the mechanical rear end surface of the lens mount to the focal plane.

Lens construction

Lens construction – a specific arrangement of elements and groups that make up the optical design, including type and size of elements, type of used materials etc.

Element - an individual piece of glass which makes up one component of a photographic lens. Photographic lenses are nearly always built up of multiple such elements.

Group – a cemented together pieces of glass which form a single unit or an individual piece of glass. The advantage is that there is no glass-air surfaces between cemented together pieces of glass, which reduces reflections.

Focal length

The focal length is the factor that determines the size of the image reproduced on the focal plane, picture angle which covers the area of the subject to be photographed, depth of field, etc.


The largest opening or stop at which a lens can be used is referred to as the speed of the lens. The larger the maximum aperture is, the faster the lens is considered to be. Lenses that offer a large maximum aperture are commonly referred to as fast lenses, and lenses with smaller maximum aperture are regarded as slow.

In low-light situations, having a wider maximum aperture means that you can shoot at a faster shutter speed or work at a lower ISO, or both.

Closest focusing distance

The minimum distance from the focal plane (film or sensor) to the subject where the lens is still able to focus.

Closest working distance

The distance from the front edge of the lens to the subject at the maximum magnification.

Magnification ratio

Determines how large the subject will appear in the final image. For example, a magnification ratio of 1:1 means that the image of the subject formed on the film or sensor will be the same size as the subject in real life. For this reason, a 1:1 ratio is often called "life-size".

Manual focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Manual focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Electronic manual focus override is performed in the following way: half-press the shutter button, wait until the camera has finished the autofocusing and then focus manually without releasing the shutter button using the focusing ring.

Manual diaphragm

The diaphragm must be stopped down manually by rotating the detent aperture ring.

Preset diaphragm

The lens has two rings, one is for pre-setting, while the other is for normal diaphragm adjustment. The first ring must be set at the desired aperture, the second ring then should be fully opened for focusing, and turned back for stop down to the pre-set value.

Semi-automatic diaphragm

The lens features spring mechanism in the diaphragm, triggered by the shutter release, which stops down the diaphragm to the pre-set value. The spring needs to be reset manually after each exposure to re-open diaphragm to its maximum value.

Automatic diaphragm

The camera automatically closes the diaphragm down during the shutter operation. On completion of the exposure, the diaphragm re-opens to its maximum value.

Fixed diaphragm

The aperture setting is fixed at F/ on this lens, and cannot be adjusted.

Number of blades

As a general rule, the more blades that are used to create the aperture opening in the lens, the rounder the out-of-focus highlights will be.

Some lenses are designed with curved diaphragm blades, so the roundness of the aperture comes not from the number of blades, but from their shape. However, the fewer blades the diaphragm has, the more difficult it is to form a circle, regardless of rounded edges.

At maximum aperture, the opening will be circular regardless of the number of blades.


Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

Maximum diameter x Length

Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

For lenses with collapsible design, the length is indicated for the working (retracted) state.

Weather sealing

A rubber material which is inserted in between each externally exposed part (manual focus and zoom rings, buttons, switch panels etc.) to ensure it is properly sealed against dust and moisture.

Lenses that accept front mounted filters typically do not have gaskets behind the filter mount. It is recommended to use a filter for complete weather resistance when desired.

Fluorine coating

Helps keep lenses clean by reducing the possibility of dust and dirt adhering to the lens and by facilitating cleaning should the need arise. Applied to the outer surface of the front and/or rear lens elements over multi-coatings.


Lens filters are accessories that can protect lenses from dirt and damage, enhance colors, minimize glare and reflections, and add creative effects to images.

Lens hood

A lens hood or lens shade is a device used on the end of a lens to block the sun or other light source in order to prevent glare and lens flare. Flare occurs when stray light strikes the front element of a lens and then bounces around within the lens. This stray light often comes from very bright light sources, such as the sun, bright studio lights, or a bright white background.

The geometry of the lens hood can vary from a plain cylindrical or conical section to a more complex shape, sometimes called a petal, tulip, or flower hood. This allows the lens hood to block stray light with the higher portions of the lens hood, while allowing more light into the corners of the image through the lowered portions of the hood.

Lens hoods are more prominent in long focus lenses because they have a smaller viewing angle than that of wide-angle lenses. For wide angle lenses, the length of the hood cannot be as long as those for telephoto lenses, as a longer hood would enter the wider field of view of the lens.

Lens hoods are often designed to fit onto the matching lens facing either forward, for normal use, or backwards, so that the hood may be stored with the lens without occupying much additional space. In addition, lens hoods can offer some degree of physical protection for the lens due to the hood extending farther than the lens itself.


Teleconverters increase the effective focal length of lenses. They also usually maintain the closest focusing distance of lenses, thus increasing the magnification significantly. A lens combined with a teleconverter is normally smaller, lighter and cheaper than a "direct" telephoto lens of the same focal length and speed.

Teleconverters are a convenient way of enhancing telephoto capability, but it comes at a cost − reduced maximum aperture. Also, since teleconverters magnify every detail in the image, they logically also magnify residual aberrations of the lens.

Lens caps

Scratched lens surfaces can spoil the definition and contrast of even the finest lenses. Lens covers are the best and most inexpensive protection available against dust, moisture and abrasion. Safeguard lens elements - both front and rear - whenever the lens is not in use.