There are a lot of mechanical film camera snobs out there, and I’m one of them. There’s something about the way a mechanical camera feels, that sensation of meshing gears and tightening springs that you can feel right in your fingers, which is just magical. To me, a camera that goes 'KA-CLACK!' will always be superior to one that goes 'bzzzt.'
But I also know that electronic film cameras have key advantages over mechanical cameras, and those advantages don’t always get proper recognition. In fact, I’d argue that for many photographers and many situations, electronics are better. Here's why.
Before we begin, some quick definitions: For the sake of our discussion, an all-mechanical camera is one that has no electronics in the shutter, exposure or film-winding mechanisms. It may have a light meter, but mechanically speaking, it's fully functional without a battery.
When we talk about electronic cameras, we either mean cameras with an electronically-controlled shutter, which still have manual focusing and winding, or cameras with electric/electronic everything, including shutter, exposure control, winder, and (usually) autofocus. Some electronic cameras will work at one shutter speed (usually the flash sync speed) with no batteries; for others, no power means no pictures. (Note that some cameras, like the Canon EF and Pentax LX, use a hybrid shutter with mechanical timing for fast speeds and electronic for slow speeds.)