Auto-speed - Antique and Vintage Cameras

Auto-speed

1932

Ensign Ltd

London

England

Image of Auto-speed

Lens:
f4.5, 4" Aldis Uno, iris diaphragm to f32.

Shutter:
Focal-plane, speeds 1/15 - 1/500, T.

Construction:
Leather covered metal body, leather bellows.

Format:
8, 2 " x 3 " exposures on 120 roll-film.

Focusing:
Bellows to 3 feet.

Attributes:
Brilliant, and frame view-finders.
Film advanced when winding the shutter, autostop. Red window to initially align the film.

Movements:
Rise and cross front.

Serial Number:
F7944 .

With:
Ensign case.

Speed was a common marketing theme in the 1930s and used when advertising many cameras. Houghtons introduced several speed models fitted with either fast lenses or focal-plane shutters. There was, though, no great advantage in fitting a focal-plane shutter to a large fixed-lens roll-film camera, its speed is an exposure characteristic and does not indicate stopping power.

The Auto-speed, introduced in the early 1930s, was well-made and engineered but quite a heavy camera. A number of lenses were available, early advertisements list an f4.5 Aldis Uno, f3.4 Aldis Butcher, f3.5 Dalmac, f4.5 Xpres and f4.5 Tessar. The Uno model cost 14.10.0 and the Tessar 25.0.0. Later an f4.5 Ensar was included and the prices were reduced. For a short time an interchangeable Dallmeyer telephoto was also available. A notable feature of the camera is that in setting the shutter the film is advanced with the increase in take-up spool diameter being allowed for. Two shutter releases were fitted, one on the body of the camera the other near the lens connecting to the body via a cable release.

The camera could not have sold in large numbers as it is not common today. The name is written both with and without a hyphen in advertisements. A version with a coupled rangefinder was produced.

References & Notes:
BP 323384/1930. BP 328952/1930. BP 359524/1931. Ensign Cat. 1932, p.20. BJA 1933, p. 71. Ensign Cat. 1934, p. 26. US Pat. 1839953. DRP 528314.


Company Details:

Houghton-Butcher

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