Notes on the Canon Super Sure Shot AF35ML or Autoboy Super

I started shooting again - street/candid style - with one of the cameras I bought at the Vancouver Camera Show, the Canon Super Sure Shot (aka Autoboy Super) AF35ML.

I was originally going to take photos of my boys in the traditional Maypole dance but the shutterbug caught and I started shooting the things I found curious. Expressions of boredom, a beauty queen's dropped guard (so rare), regalia looking less than regal.

It was fun. And using the Canon made it more so. Also, I knew I was serious because I broke out the leather camera strap and the duct tape. I use it to make extra secure the camera chamber door (yellow highlight).

Now, what makes this consumer point and shoot, circa 1984?, my choice?
First, the lens. 40mm f1.9. It is quite rare.

I traded a BLACK Nikon FM2N to get my hands on a clean Hexanon 40mm f1.8 and a M42 to Konica (K/AR) adapter ring. If you try to buy a Pentax SMC in 40mm, you will pay a princely price. There's something about 40.

I've seen the Canon ML twice before and there is the first in good working order (this is after a decade of camera hunting). So I was pretty excited to get my hands on one and very happy to shoot it yesterday.

Nice things:

  1. It has in the viewfinder a focus lock indicator telling you where it has decided to focus (mountains, stick people family, head).
  2. The battery chamber provides a nice grip.
  3. There's a nice heft to the body and the camera really follows the lines of a rangefinder.
Not so nice things:
  1. An alarm squeals when it can't focus or detects low light conditions.
  2. The film advance sounds like a coffee grinder.
  3. I have no clue how the exposure program works.
Ideally, in a camera with a wide aperture, it suggests that the camera is optimized for portrait taking. The program is skewed to stay wide and shoot with a faster shutter UNTIL the light value are so high the camera has to start stopping down.

Stopping down makes the aperture smaller and allows less light to reach the film. From a portrait perspective, this can negatively impact the image as the depth of field increases and allows background images to become sharp which can be distracting.

The hope is the Canon AF35ML actually takes advantage of the wide aperture and follows a program curve similar to the Olympus Infinity Stylus Epic (aka mju II) which stays wide.

Here's my favourite shot of the boys with the mju II:

Check out the railing in the background, the grain is out of focus. This is on a sunny summer day. A fine example of the portrait-leaning program.

If the Canon Super Sure Shot AF35ML (Autoboy Super), could do this, despite all the noise, it would be well worth it.

The roll is shot. I'll let you know soon how it turned out.


  1. The one I have takes very sharp pics, but I don't recall any dof in the shots... Another great camera!


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