A year ago, a once-storied name in photography, Yashica, launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund its glorious return to photography, this time digitally.
The premise of the camera they announced is that anyone with warm memories of the old days of film could use Yashica’s faux-film cartridges, called “digiFilm” to change the Y35 camera’s settings to whatever preset was indicated on the cartridge. Even if you didn't have warm memories of film, sometimes these artificial limitations are just what’s needed to get the creative juices flowing.
However, those creative juices can turn sour when early backers, who spent at least $124 on a package with one digiFilm cartridge, receive a camera that, to many initial recipients at least, feels like it was made out of parts from the local dollar store.
One YouTuber describes it as a “scam” and akin to something a student would put together at the last minute for a class. Others describe wrong cables being included in the package (the camera features a micro-USB connection, but is shipped with a mini-USB cable that doesn't work with it), fake plastic buttons, a fake viewfinder, parts that break or fall off almost immediately, and general problems that aren't OK in a toy camera, let alone something that is ostensibly a serious, artistic photographic tool.
While it’s probably not even worth talking about image quality at this point, the same unboxing video above describes it as “bad, like a webcam with an Instagram filter,” which to be honest, is about what the pictures on the original Kickstarter page looked like straight from the company.
Incredibly, you can actually still buy a Y35 camera on the Kickstarter page, though for a lot more money than initial backers paid. It sounds like, though, that buyers should expect the unexpected, just like the tagline for the camera on that page says.