Zeiss Ikon has a special place in (German) camera history. The company was formed in 1926 by the ‘Great’ merger of the Contessa-Nettel, Goerz, Ernemann and ICA companies. In general, the products were superior to those of the competition, both in design and in quality. Market leader with the Super Ikontas as medium format rangefinder cameras. The most famous and popular is undoubtedly the 6×6 series “532/16” produced between 1937 and 1955. I am the proud owner of an excellent copy dating from 1938. An impression of its use 83 years after the first picture was taken with it.Continue reading “Dreaming away with the Super Ikonta 6×6”
Something big can be stored in a modest small housing. In the early thirties the Super Nettel from Zeiss Ikon became the little sister of the Big Contax. Cheaper, a fixed lens, but in no means less beautiful, charming and even a little extravagant. Just the right qualities to fit in my personal top 5. What a Barnack is for Leica, is the Super Nettel the derivative for Zeiss-Ikon.Continue reading “Extravagant: Zeiss Ikon Super Nettel”
The rediscovery and appreciation of medium format is steadily increasing. But not everyone wants to pay a fortune for a Hasselblad or Leica and is looking for cheaper alternatives such as a Bronica or Kiev. But there are much smaller options at Zeiss Ikon and Voigtlander. Imagine, top quality and compact in medium format.Continue reading “Compact medium format: Ikonta and Perkeo”
Continue reading “Zeiss-Ikon Contarex ‘Bullseye’: beyond limits”
It is the camera of the superlatives, the Zeiss Ikon Contarex, the most complicated camera of all time. 1100 parts are located in the almost 1 kilo housing. A repairman must first remove 43 parts to get inside. No wonder the repair costs more than the almost priceless camera from the last glory years of Zeiss Ikon. Pride comes before the fall.
Zeiss Ikon is probably the most famous and biggest German camera manufacturer that was formed in 1926 by the merger of the classic four camera makers from the early years: Contessa-Nettel, Ernemann, Goerz and Ica. A very important and significant historical moment that financially was co-founded by capital of Zeiss. The company formed one part of the Carl Zeiss Foundation, another part being the optical company Carl Zeiss. That is the reason most Zeiss-Ikon cameras are fitted with the legendary Carl Zeiss lenses. Who sees a Zeiss Ikon camera, raises his eyebrows over the stunning performance these cameras delivered in those days. But like with all brands, you love or just hate them. Zeiss-Ikon only had fans because of their unbeatable variety of cameras and lenses. Nobody came near, not even Leica.Continue reading “Zeiss Ikon: the German camera empire”
A camera that appeals to the imagination is the charming and historically significant Icarette, the forerunner of the consumer camera in Germany. For that we have to go back all the way to the intriguing 1920s of the last century. And there is a lot to tell.Continue reading “Icarette: the jewel of Dresden”
Sometimes vintage cameras can perform something that has not (yet) been enabled digitally. That is the case for this brilliant Zeiss Ikon Super Ikonta C 531/2 from 1936. A vintage folder, but with superior image quality thanks to the super large 6×9 medium format. One of the very best pre-war cameras and still unrivaled today. And it’s pocket size!Continue reading “Perfection from the thirties: Zeiss Ikon Super Ikonta”