About the 139

The Contax 139 Quartz (to give it its full name) is a 35mm SLR that was introduced in 1979 and manufactured up until 1987 with something over 200,000 being built in that time. It was manufactured by Yashica under licence to Zeiss and was the second model in a range of cameras that were designed to take Zeiss lenses. The first camera in the range was the RTS which was squarely aimed at the professional photographer while the 139 was intended for the amateur market. It sold for around £250 with a 50mm f/1.7 standard lens.

The 139Q has a quartz-timed, electronically-controlled vertical metal shutter and was the first camera to use such technology. Other features include aperture priority exposure or full manual control and TTL flash metering with off-the-film measurement. Typically of Zeiss, it had a wide range of accessories available as well as a wide range of Zeiss lenses.

The lens mount was designated Contax/Yashica and was shared with a range of Yashica cameras. The 139 can also be used with the Yashica lenses.

For more information on the camera a copy of the instruction manual and various other documents can be found on the Documentation page.