Author Archives: Robert

B&L BALTAR f/2.3 50mm

Toronto. The Leica was marketed in 1925, catching Zeiss off guard. It responded in 1932 with the Zeiss-Ikon Contax. It had to better the Leica in every way possible: faster lenses, vertical shutter (faster curtains), metal shutter, longer rangefinder base, … Continue reading

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rapid rectilinear lens redux

Toronto. Turns out the choice of glass plus the lens design makes a rapid rectilinear! Both the two wide angles lenses mentioned the other day predate the release of the Rapid Rectilinear (or Aplanat in Germany). R & J Beck … Continue reading

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need more cameras in your collection?

Toronto.  Like they say, “you can never have too many …”. If you ignore the “orange tornado” in DC, the folks in Ohio have two adjacent shows for your consideration. The OCCS (Ohio Camera Collectors Society) show, and Igor’s “Cleveland … Continue reading

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rapid rectilinear lens design

Toronto.After the announcement of photography early in 1839, there was a flurry of competing lens designs across Europe, each design trying to better the resolution and error correction qualities of the other. In 1866, two Germans, one an immigrant to … Continue reading

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Empire State View Camera c1910

Toronto. Around 1960, I would drive down to Toronto on a Saturday and browse down Yonge Street above and below Wellesley. One one such trip, I discovered and bought an old view camera called an Empire State. It was in … Continue reading

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sprocket rocket

Toronto. A century ago the panorama print was popular. Cameras like the Cirkut models could turn about the lens nodal point while affixed to a tripod by using gears and a spring wound motor. This format is common place today. … Continue reading

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brush and comb

Toronto. Christmas, 1980 was rapidly approaching with its usual challenges as to suitable gifts. I said to my wife that I had a great suggestion: a 20 inch lens for my Leica. Sure enough that Christmas I was the proud … Continue reading

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April 17, 1996

Toronto. The late 1980s were a busy time. Film was still king. Personal computers and bulletin boards were all the rage with techies. A telephone call to another country was very expensive. Few had heard of the internet or emails, or … Continue reading

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on sight

Toronto. I shot this photo some 46 years ago in Montreal’s Lafontaine Park. It showed my family searching for some food while the goat and the other family watched what was happening. The photograph is a still but has lots … Continue reading

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the brick

Toronto. No, not the famous Canadian furniture discounter, but an American camera made in the very late 1930s to mid 1960s by an Illinois company that touted itself as the “world’s largest manufacturer of 35mm cameras“.  The company began as a … Continue reading

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