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Chinon CM-5

Posted by Bengt Köhler Sandberg 2014-10-13

Chinon CM-5

Technical info

Lens mount: Pentax K (PK)
Shutter: 1/1000s to 1s + B
Light meter: Through the lens, center weighted (ISO 25 - 1600)
Battery: Two 1.5v SR44 or equivalent
Flash: Flash hot shoe (sync 1/60 sec)
Weight: 455g


Takes standard 135 film
24×36 mm negative size.

Chinon CM-5


It has a good viewfinder which is big and bright.
The focus aid works great and it's easy to find focus with.

Inside the viewfinder you have nothing more than the focus aid system.
But you have three vertically placed led lights to the left side of the viewfinder.
Two for over and under reading which has a red light.
And the middle led is green and lights up when you got the right exposure.

Focus aid:
Split screen and Microprism

Shutter type:

Focal plane
Vertical metal blade.

All mechanical.

Build quality:

Much of the exterior is plastic but the body is metal.
So this has still quite good build quality but the plastic can more easily crack if it takes a beating.

Somewhat standard looking camera and nothing that sticks out either way.

Operating the camera has a quite nice feel to it.
Mostly it is nice and solid but some of the exterior is a little plasticky and feels cheap.
But overall it's not too bad.

Shutter and mirror sounds are also somewhat standard for this type of camera and shutter, so it's a little to the noisy side.


A simple all manual camera with no luxuries more than a light meter and a self-timer.
This is a great camera for those that prefer this and can also be a good backup house.

What I do miss is a mirror lock or equivalent.
The mirror do not go up first when you use the self-timer.
This is not the worst camera I have tested when it comes to shutter and mirror vibrations but it's noticeable.
So you can lose some sharpness if you don't use a somewhat sturdy tripod for longer exposures.

The camera feels quite good in your hands and buttons and levers are well placed.


I find this to be a nice camera and can see this as a great work horse.
Like that it's small, lightweight, easy to use and has a great viewfinder.
Its grip is maybe not the most ergonomically correct but is still little plus over the older CM cameras.
This is also detachable and has a little space inside it for a extra pair of batteries.

But the lack of features or the plastic exterior might turn off some camera enthusiasts.
It is on the other hand usually a very cheap camera today and you do get a lot for the money.

Thumbs up:
uild quality on the body and mechanics
Size and Lightweight
All mechanical
Value for the money

Thumbs down:

Some parts are quite plasticky and feels cheap
No mirror lock or equivalent

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