Prominent - Antique and Vintage Cameras

Prominent

1932

Voigtländer & Sohn

Braunschweig

Germany

Image of Prominent

Lens:
f4.5, 10.5 cm Heliar, iris diaphragm to f22. Serial no. 841020 .

Shutter:
Rim-set Compur, speeds 1 - 1/250, B, T. Delayed action. Serial no. 2640181.

Construction:
Leather covered metal body, leather bellows.

Format:
8, 2 ¼" x 3 ¼" exposures on 120 roll-film or 16, 2 ¼" x 1 ¾" exposures.

Focusing:
Bellows to 3 feet.

Attributes:
Swing prism coupled rangefinder giving split field. Optical eye-level finder with mask for 16-on.
Film advance indicated by red window, not coupled to shutter.
Extinction meter scaled: 0 - 30 Sch.; speeds 60s - 1/500.
Self-erecting front. Depth-of-field scale on back of camera.

Serial Number:
D967194 .

With:
16-on mask. Case marked Prominent, carrying strap.

An extremely well-made camera incorporating a host of features. The result, though, is a camera that is awkward in appearance and in use. The Prominent did not prove popular; after about four years of production Voigtländer introduced the Rangefinder Bessa, a camera with similar specification but of much cheaper construction. The price was £26.5.0.

The body-mounted focusing wheel operates the rangefinder and connects to the front standard via a double ended lever, one end connects to the rangefinder, the other moves a bar or link attached to the front standard. A chain and spring arrangement serve to make the front standard self-erecting and provides resistance or tension to the focusing movement. The front standard contains a coiled spring, the outer end is fixed to the standard, the inner end is attached to the arbor of a sprocket wheel, wrapped around the sprocket wheel is a chain anchored at the front of the camera. When free the spring will rotate the arbor and wind up the chain, this has the effect of moving the front standard forward. The rangefinder is conventional except for the centrally situated finder, the images are magnified.

References & Notes:
BP 388997/1933. BJA 1934, p. 299.

Further Information:
Lothrop, Century, p.141.

Illustrations:
Christie's Cat.11/5/2001 lot 280. Prominent with a Turbo shutter, lens no. 788173. Isenberg p.84. Auer, History, p.159.

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