Porst Pocketpak EL

It was dec­ades ago in my life when I bought this cam­era in my con­stant strive for becom­ing a bet­ter pho­to­graph­er — LOL. It was some­where between 1970 and 1975 when I thought, using my then cam­era, an Agfa Optima 200 Sensor, was not good enough for me and I strongly needed an “upgrade” to some­thing more light­weight and so.

Money was an issue and so I ended up with this then hyped cam­era type, a type 110 film cart­ridge pock­et cam­era from Photo Porst — the Porst Pock­et­pak EL.

If you want to know more about this then world’s largest photo equip­ment deal­er Photo Porst AG, you can find loads of inform­a­tion here — it’s a Ger­man web­site, so maybe using Google Trans­lat­or is an option for you.

I have to admit here, that I nev­er got a single really sharp image out of this cam­era. I claimed the cam­era for this, but who knows.

I do not find the ori­gin­al manu­al, so there is no way to name the tech­nic­al specs. Top­ping this, nowhere on the web you can find a single piece of inform­a­tion about it and so I put here on my tiny blog what I know about and what I guess. Maybe some lucky read­ers know a little bit more about this camera.

The type 110 cart­ridge gives a 13 x 17 mm neg­at­ive size, which is roughly a quarter the size of a 35mm film with its 24 x 36 mm. This is com­par­able to today’s Micro Four Thirds sensor size of 13.5 x 18 mm and its ima­ging area of 13 x 17.3 mm.

Let’s make a jour­ney around the body …

From the left, first comes the small win­dow hous­ing the expos­ure meter, then comes the lens behind a pro­tect­ive glass and to the right sits the view­find­er. The lens might be a 4/21mm fix focus or zone focus type — if it’s sim­il­ar to its sib­lings from Photo Porst — with 1.2 to 1.5m min­im­um focus­sing dis­tance. Unfor­tu­nately there is noth­ing writ­ten around the lens, so it’s a guess only. The view­find­er con­tains a red LED, warn­ing on low shut­ter speeds and a green plastic indic­at­or, show­ing a cor­rect exposure.

Three focus steps, dis­tant, mid and close range can be set via a switch on the top of the body. Right to this focus switch there is a flash mount, where a dis­tance hold­er can be inser­ted to avoid the fam­ous red eyes. Stand­ard 4x flash­cubes can be used. Fur­ther to the right you find the shut­ter release but­ton with a screw-in cable release sock­et to it’s left.

From the left you find the view­find­er, the film check/cartridge win­dow and above, the cam­era back release switch.

Again from the left we have the view­find­er, the two cart­ridge hold­er recesses, in between the shut­ter and lens unit and finally the bat­tery compartment.

On the left there is the tri­pod sock­et and on the right is the shut­ter cock and film advance slider.

The bat­tery (yes, I turned it upside down … or … no, wait, I glued it onto the ceil­ing :) is some kind of spe­cial type — which is no longer avail­able and so makes the cam­era a dead piece of plastic. How­ever, when hit­ting the release but­ton, the shut­ter fires, so there seems to be some kind of fixed manu­al shut­ter speed.

The shut­ter is elec­tron­ic­ally con­trolled and might be be cap­able of some­thing between 1/30 to 1/500 of a second — if it’s sim­il­ar to its sib­lings from Photo Porst.

So far for the moment. You know more about this little cam­era or have an old manu­al you wanna share?

In case you’d like to con­trib­ute some inform­a­tion about this little piece of plastic from the 70s, do not hes­it­ate to send a com­ment. It’s highly appreciated.

Maybe, you want to vis­it my web­site or my flickr page too.

So long … and thanks for all the fish.


  1. I looked up the Type K bat­tery and found this video on how you can open it up and replace the innards your­self with reg­u­lar but­ton bat­ter­ies and get a work­ing K bat­tery from it.

  2. I too thought at about age 14 that the new Pock­et Insta­mat­ic 110 format would elev­ate my pho­to­graphy bey­ond what my hand-me-down Signet 35 could provide. Such is the naiv­ete of youth. This cam­era looks very, very much like a mid-range Kodak 110 from that peri­od. The mid-upper end mod­els all took that K bat­tery. For­tu­nately for me, teen­agers were still allowed to work real jobs after school, and by the time I left for Ger­many a year later I had saved enough to buy a Nikkormat. The Pock­et 20 was forgotten.…

    1. Hi Bern­ard,
      thanks for stop­ping by on my tiny blog ;)
      Indeed, the peri­od of the 110 type film for me was quite short and I headed on to my first SLR — a fully manu­al one from CARENA — Nikons and oth­er well known brand names were far too expens­ive for me at that time … but I enjoy them now :)

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