The Panasonic C-426AF is a simple and compact point and shoot film camera, which probably has the fewest features of any camera that I have reviewed so far. But, is that so bad?
There is nothing necessarily wrong with a camera not being stuffed to the gills with features. Sometimes all you want to do is to point a camera at something and click the shutter. And that is pretty much all the Panasonic C-426AF does.
Specifications for the Panasonic C-426AF
The manual that came with my purchase is also for the Panasonic C-425AF. I’ve no idea what the difference between the two cameras is. However, the Panasonic C-426AF has 135mm film format, with a 34mm, ƒ4.5 lens. The lens contains three elements in three groups. Focus range is from 1.2 meters to infinity and focussing is automatic. Holding the shutter button half-way down, allows prefocussing – or focus and compose, in modern parlance. The viewfinder has a bright frame.
Film ISO DX settings appear to be for either 100 ISO or 400 ISO, and nothing in-between. As far as I can work out, this means that films with an ISO of 50, 100 and 200 are treated as ISO 100. Films with an ISO of 400, 1000 and 1600 are exposed at 400 ISO speed settings. Films without a DX code, are treated as 100 ISO. It is unclear as to how films which are DX coded at ISO numbers in-between these figures are treated.
The Panasonic C-426AF exposes at ƒ9 at 1/130 for daylight and ƒ4.5 at 1/130 with the flash. The flash is automatically engaged and there is no option to disable it. There is, however, a daylight synchronisation mode, which is enabled using a switch at the front of the camera (although this feature is not very ergonomic. It requires the free hand to hold the switch the whole time until the shutter is pressed). Film loading, advance and rewinding are automatic.
Using the Panasonic C-426AF
In use, the camera is easy enough to hold and the shutter engages smoothly. A red light indicator, in the viewfinder window, will show when there is not enough light and that the flash will be used. A green light will show when the flash is ready to fire.
And that’s pretty much it.