other Fujica cameras in my collection:
Fujica ST605n [1978 - 1980*]
The Fujica 600 cameras were the base models in the ST series. The
n was an upgraded version of the 1976 ST605 (which in turn updated the 1976 ST601), with the only apparent change being a shutter speed display in the viewfinder, courtesy of a needle indicator linked to the speed dial on the top plate.
The cloth focal plane shutter has a comparatively limited range with an unconventional top speed of 1/700th - not a typical stop value. Match needle metering is the
stop down variety, and a switch on the front of the body activates the meter and stops down the lens.
This is a wholly mechanical camera, with the batteries only powering the exposure meter. In common with other models in the range, it uses two silicone cells in preference to Cds.
* I have assumed that production ceased in about 1980, since this is when Fuji abandoned the M42 lens mount, and launched the STX range of cameras. Before that happened, the ST605n was superseded by the ST605 II.
According to advertisements in a 1979 edition of
Amateur Photographer, the camera sold with an f2.2 55mm lens for around £110. That was roughly equivalent to a UK average weeks wages in 1979, so it wasn't a cheap item.
The Fujica ST605 II was the last camera produced by Fuji to use the M42 derived screw lens mount. It's very rare (in Europe/USA) and a (Globally) mysterious camera with a mere handful of references to be found on the Net, which provide very little, but nevertheless, conflicting (and inaccurate) information.
Despite the 605 designation, the
II was a cross between the ST605 and the ST705w. The shutter, with its 1/700th sec., top speed, came from the ST605. The open aperture metering system, lens mount lock, and shutter release lock came from the ST705w. However, the ST605 II did not have the viewfinder shutter speed needle pointer of the previous ST605n, nor the motor drive connectivity found in the ST705w.
While different introduction dates and markets have been suggested on the Net, I think the
II is far more likely to have been contrived in 1979, as a last breath of life to the soon-to-become-redundant M42 mount camera-parts-stockpile, and distributed only to the less demanding Asian market. It was probably produced for a short time (perhaps until 1980?). These factors would explain the limited distribution and low numbers of surviving examples. Despite the camera's capability to meter at full aperture, it was supplied with a Fujinon 55mm f/2.2 lens, made specifically for the 600 series cameras, and which required stop-down metering. This may have also led to retrospective confusion over the model's metering capabilities.
Lens mount: Fujica M42 screw.
Focus: Penta-prism eye-level viewfinder with 0.96 x magnification; 92% field of view (with f2 2 55mm lens); micro-prism, centre split image and ground glass focusing. DOF preview available via stop down metering.
Shutter: Mechanical cloth focal-plane shutter. B + 1/2nd - 1/700th sec speeds with indicator built into viewfinder. Self-timer.
Meter: Stopped-down TTL centre weighted averaging metering via two Silicon photo-cell receptors coupled to a FET (Field Effect Transistor) circuit.
Exposure: Manual match needle metering, with indicator visible in viewfinder.
Film Speed: 20 to 3200 ASA.
Flash: X sync hot shoe at 1/60.
Film Advance: Single-stroke lever with 140° winding angle.
Frame Counter: Automatic count-up and reset.
Rewind: Via crank and bottom release button.
Size: 133 x 86 x 88mm (W x H x D) with lens.
Weight: 565g body alone.
Battery: Two 1.5V LR44 type.
I paid £2.70 for my camera (body only) in May 2014 (£1.70 after re-sale of the unwanted case).
I have a Fujinon 55mm f/2.2 lens (4 elements in 4 groups) for this camera (which cost £10.01). This was a new lens introduced with the ST605, made with a less expensive plastic body, and with fewer glass elements (more information about this lens can be found on the ST601 page).
My camera is fully operational, and in very good condition. I replaced the light seals and mirror damper (Fujica ST605 light seal replacement instructions). It's a comfortable camera to use, and smaller than many counterparts of the time. It's unexceptional - but competent - the camera equivalent of a little donkey (and I like donkeys).