Question re: Vitomatic IIa

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by norters, Jun 14, 2011.

  1. norters

    norters Member

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    Hi,

    I have a question that I fear may be a silly one. I have just acquired 4 lovely Voigtlander cameras which incidentally are the most pretty cameras I have ever seen! I am taking one on a photo walk tomorrow. The film is loaded and I am ready to go.

    My only question is this. On one side of the lens is a selector switch with the letters V (green) X (red) and M (yellow). At the moment it is in the X position, which I assume is the default. What do these letters mean?

    Sorry if this is a daft question, I just want to make sure I am doing everything right having never used one of this brand of camera before (a long search on Google did not yield the answer).

    Thank you,

    norters
     
  2. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

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    This is serious question and If I were you , I would ask the same question. If you cant find the answer , remove the film , play with shutter and the subject indicators and try to find the answer.
    I advise you to not to go out without understanding the camera or your money burns and had a bad day.

    Try to hold the camera againts to light and experiment with shutter , I had a camera and x was self timer or may be bulb !

    Umut
     
  3. Pumalite

    Pumalite Subscriber

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    You can do better. Go to te butkus site and download the manual. Send him 3 bucks.
     
  4. BobD

    BobD Member

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    V= self timer, X=electronic flash, M = flash bulbs
     
  5. brucemuir

    brucemuir Member

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    Yep, anytime you see an X and an M on an older camera it usually means X synch for electronic flash and M for M type bulbs.
     
  6. BobD

    BobD Member

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    I love my Vitomatic IIa.
    [​IMG]

    I think it's one of the best of the Vito- series. Mine has the f/2.8 Skopar. I hope one
    day to find one with the f/2 Ultron
     
  7. jochen

    jochen Member

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    The "V" means "Vorlaufwerk", the german word for delayed action or self-timer, you also find this "V" on other german cameras like the Rolleiflex (i.e. "MXV").
     
  8. Ron G

    Ron G Member

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    I bought a Vito CL new from the PX while I was stationed in Germany in the early '60s and it still works today.It has the Lanthar lens but the pics it takes rival those from my Bessamatics with the Skopar lenses.
    I have picked up a few more on the way which I hope to use if I can ever find the time to go through them to make sure that they are up to snuff.I nearly always carry a Voigtlander when shooting film along with whatever else suits my needs for that day.Ron G
     
  9. R gould

    R gould Member

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    V is for the self timer, x is for x flash sync and m for m sync, X sync is for electronic flash and m would be used if you were using flash bulbs. I would suggest that you never use the self timer on this or any classic camera as if there is a weakness in the prontor or compur shutters it is the self timer, and should it stick then it would render the shutter un usable and mean a trip to the camera service shop, so leave it set to the X setting and leave it there,I have a number of older Voightlanders, including a Vitomatic 11a, and they are terrific cameras if you can live with a fixed lens, one tip I have found is to set the exposure meter with these cameras to over expose by 1 stop, and check that it is working against a known exposure meter, other than that do what I do and enjoy using cameras from a golden age which we will not see again.
    Richard
     
  10. Ottrdaemmerung

    Ottrdaemmerung Member

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    Just a tiny note: V for the self-timer setting isn't just for German cameras. My Minolta Hi-Matic 9 has it, too (and it's way too easy to trip by mistake!).
     
  11. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    I have a Vitomatic II and a Vito B. They are lovely cameras which are reassuringly solid. You can often pick these up cheap from sellers who think they don't work, not knowing that they need a film in them for the shutter to work.


    Steve.
     
  12. norters

    norters Member

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    Thank you for the responses to the thread! I indeed took it out for a test run today and ran a 24 exposure roll through it and boy am I impressed with the results! I took it into a local camera shop thinking the guy behind the counter would know what the letters meant and he looked at it like I had just showed him a three week old sandwich!
    I had gone out this morning before I had a chance to check the replies to this thread so I just kept the lever in its default position :smile: Now I know what it is for I doubt I will ever use the function as I don't intend to try it with a flash!

    I couldn't believe how sharp some of the photos came out considering the age of the camera, the fact I used a roll of pound shop Kodak film and the fact that I got it developed in one hour in a high street chain! Really impressed with the camera, the gent I bought it off sold me another three Voigtlanders with it for £30 and I hope they all work as well as this one!
     
  13. BrianL

    BrianL Member

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    I have the same camera without the meter and a Color-Skopar lens and it is one of the best users for color print and transparency film I've used. The build is like a tand and I fully think NOTHING can destroy it.
     
  14. norters

    norters Member

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    It is a hefty thing that's for sure! It weighs the same as my Zenit EM SLR! As for its survivability I plan to test that tomorrow when it is forecast to rain ALL day but I will be going out with it anyway as I am slightly addicted to using it now!

    I am so surprised with the colour I am getting from it, even off pound shop Kodak Colour Plus film!
     
  15. Richard S. (rich815)

    Richard S. (rich815) Subscriber

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    I've had the Vito B and CL in the past. Neat little cameras. Enjoy.
     
  16. ravenheadphoto

    ravenheadphoto Member

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    Four Voigtlanders for thirty pounds?? What a deal! I had a 1959 Vitomatic II (which is basically the same as a IIa) that took fantastic pictures. I sold it and the 1951 Voigtlander Vito II folder I had just recently in order to make room for more cameras in the house. What other Voigtlanders did you get in this set?

    Have fun with them and enjoy then thoroughly!