Vintage camera collection – Rank Mamiya Auto – Lux 35

This is the latest addition to my collection of 35mm film cameras. It is a fixed lens, SLR camera with a leaf shutter and a Mamiya Sekor 48mm F/2.8 lens which was made about 1963.

In many ways this camera reminds me of the Topcon unirex and IC-1 Auto cameras that I own because of the fact that it is an SLR camera but fitted with a leaf shutter rather than a focal plane shutter. On the Topcon cameras the lens is replaceable, however on this camera it is a fixed lens.

It’s a pretty simple camera with the minimum of controls. There is a light measuring selenium cell mounted above the lens and an auto exposure setting on the aperture scale which allows the camera to select the aperture once the shutter speed is chosen (what we would now call shutter priority automatic exposure). The aperture the camera selects is displayed in the viewfinder in the form of a marker down the right hand side.

The shutter itself, although a leaf shutter, is noisy because there is still a mirror which needs to be moved out of the way and returned in place, so there is none of the whisper quiet you would expect. In fact it’s one of the noisiest cameras I’ve got!

There are the usual focus assist circles in the viewfinder although this camera is missing the split rangefinder display which most cameras of this vintage would have.

The accessory shoe has no flash connection, but there is a flash sync socket on the front panel for cable flash connection. Because the shutter is a leaf shutter flash sync will be at all speeds.

This camera was in quite nice condition when I received it, although unfortunately it stopped working a couple of days later with shutter and aperture problems. I hope I can get it fixed but if not it will be a display only camera.

  • Rank Mamiya Auto-Lux 35
  • Mamiya Sekor 48mm f/2.8 lens
  • Cds light cell
  • Long throw film advance + frame counter
  • ‘Cold’ accessory shoe
  • Flash sync socket on front panel
  • Selected Aperture visible in viewfinder
  • Shutter priority auto exposure & Manual Exposure
  • 1/500sec to 1/15sec + B
  • f/2.8 to f/22
  • Ser No: 650935
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