Sales brochure from early 1961. Rather rare (here in the US and I’m sure everywhere now) sales brochure for the Yashica Pentamatic II. It appears now, after much research and blind luck, that the Pentamatic II was for sale only in Japan and only for a few months. Studies of the body serial numbers and of the serial numbers of the exclusive lens for the Pentamatic II (many thanks to my friend Paul Sokk of http://www.yashicatlr.com fame) confirms this finding.
The Japanese market sales brochure from February 1961. Also pictured is the Pentamatic S from our collection.
It’s still a mystery to us as to why the Pentamatic II never made it to markets outside of Japan and why it was only available for a short time before the model S was released. Short of being able to interview a former member of Yashica’s marketing team, we may never know. We’re still searching for a Yashica sales brochure in English with the Pentamatic II featured. Obviously we’re also interested in sales brochure from any country outside of Japan for proof. Do you have one? We’d love to see anything – even an ad would be nice.
Chris & Carol
The only difference we can tell between the original Yashica Pentamatic ’35’ and the Pentamatic II (which came out in August 1960), is the standard lens that came with the camera body.
The original Pentamatic came with the Auto-Yashinon, f/ 1.8, 5.5cm semi (fully?) automatic 6 element lens. Of course it has the unique Pentamatic bayonet mount and not the M42 screw mount. The Pentamatic II came with the Auto-Yashinon, f/ 1.7, 5.8cm lens (pictured below). Both lenses were made for Yashica by Tomioka Optical of Tokyo. We imagine the 58mm, f/ 1.7 lens was a bit faster than the f/ 1.8… but we don’t see why Yashica changed from the model I to model II and why they changed the lens… may never know either. The 5.8cm lens is a beautiful lens and weighs a ton and is rather rare today.
Update July 2017 – It is very likely that the Pentamatic II was only for sale in the Japanese home market and for only a short time. Maybe less than 5,000 cameras were made and of course about the same amount of these lenses. No English language sales brochures have been found that mention or feature the Pentamatic II. No advertisements either in English language newspapers or magazines.
The Auto Yashinon f/ 1.7, 5.8cm lens mounted on a later model Pentamatic S.
If you find a sales brochure or advertisement in English that features the Yashica Pentamatic II, please bring it to our attention. Thanks!
Chris & Carol