Blog: Cycling with a Zeiss Super Ikonta A from 1938

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by summicron1, Aug 23, 2014.

  1. summicron1

    summicron1 Subscriber

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  2. Trask

    Trask Subscriber

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    Nice photos on your blog -- it's encouraging to see what can be done with cameras from decades past. I'm surprised your dog let you make the trip alone!
     
  3. summicron1

    summicron1 Subscriber

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    She's OK with me trying to kill myself.

    The thing with old cameras, to me, is the viewfinder. Why, when they were making them, didn't someone say "this is nice, but can't you make it bigger so I can see?"

    They're all so tiny, nearly impossible to use with glasses, especially.:blink:

    Unless people's eyes worked differently 80 years ago.:confused:
     
  4. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    Nice! :smile:
    I love to see these prewar cameras being used. Kinda sorta like time travel with better film.

    Don't knock those dismal viewfinders, they're character building.:laugh:
     
  5. Jim Noel

    Jim Noel Member

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    We didn't realize they were so small but just marveled at how great the lenses and cameras were.
     
  6. summicron1

    summicron1 Subscriber

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    I"m definitely a character. Just ask the dog.:tongue:
     
  7. DWThomas

    DWThomas Subscriber

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    Nice photos and a nice ride! My two folders are early fifties vintage, so a bit younger, but they produce quite impressive results. I suppose they were the "pro-sumer" models of their era. :tongue: I've had my Perkeo II out on my bike a couple of times.
     
  8. DannL.

    DannL. Member

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    Nice camera Charlie! Another camera manufactured under the auspices of the Third Reich. I just received my Kodak Duo Series II (620) the other day. I simply love it. Also being a 6x4.5cm, it was made in Stuttgart '37-'39. But unlike the Zeiss cameras, I have to re-roll 120 onto 620 spools. But, that just adds to all the fun. I'll have to make a plug about it once I've built up a portfolio of prints. I've been eye-balling the Ikonta 6x9s, but can't decide if I really need another camera.
     
  9. Regular Rod

    Regular Rod Member

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    Excellent project and what more could anyone want from a camera that fits in a pocket?

    RR
     
  10. ME Super

    ME Super Member

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    Nice photos and bike. I need to go for a ride this morning before it gets too hot to go.
     
  11. Argenticien

    Argenticien Member

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    I would guess this is part of the overall trend where at that time, "things" were scarce/expensive and labor was plentiful/cheap. That's why you could get anything repaired (rather than replacing it), and also you might see a camera offered in 6 different permutations (fast, slow, and very slow lenses; low-end and high-end shutters) since the difference in cost on those parts made a difference of a month's wages or similar to the buyer. "Just throw a bigger viewfinder in there," then, may have been cost-prohibitive. Today, when labor is expensive (especially in the West) and materials cheap, varying a part on a $1000 camera might move its price $5, and then incurs for everyone in the supply chain the hassle of maintaining an extra SKU; why bother?

    Anyway, I've never worked with the Super Ikonta A, but I find the viewfinder on the C (same thing, I think?) to be far better than that on my comparable pre-war Bessa rangefinder. That one is really dim and tiny. (I wear eyeglasses as well.)

    --Dave
     
  12. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    The Ikonta is a great camera and if you cycle or walk you see so much more than when you are in a car.
     
  13. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

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    I love tiny viewfinders , all you can see it though it makes better composition than a beefy camera. Same as Leica , you see so less , its better to compose with a brush stroke than to hassle with very large viewfinders and it makes composing very fast. And the when prints came from these zeiss lenses , it is better than the eye can see , I want to add when composing with tiny viewfinder , its up to you your brain not your conciusness, brain can compose much better with them , align the lines , build the proportions , put few interesting things and moments and details also. Its like hypnosis and very retiring experience.