Exakta Varex IIa

Exakta was the first 35mm Single Lens Reflex (SLR) ever! And to make it more beautiful: the father of the Exakta was Dutch!
Johan Steenbergen ( * Holland, Meppel 1886 + Germany, Osnabrück 1967) moved to Dresden, Germany in 1908 and founded IHaGee Kamerawerk. This factory became world famous by introducing the Exakta.
WW II made an end to the success story of Steenbergen. He lost control over the factory to the Nazi's. In 1942 he was able to leave for San Francisco to work for the Dutch Consul. In 1945 the factory in Dresden was destroyed by bombs. Steenbergen wanted to rebuild his business but the Deutsche Demokratische Republik made it a state company. (Source: Nederlands Fotomuseum (Dutch)

Some specs on the Exakta Varex IIa
  • Type: 35mm manual SLR
  • Viewfinder: Changeable waist level view finder or eye level pentaprism.
  • Mirror: No Instant return.
  • Lens mount : Exakta, bayonet type
  • Film advance: Lever provided wind only in single stroke.
  • Shutter : Horizontal - travel focal - plane shutter with speeds from 1/25 to 1/1000 sec., B and T
  • Multiple exposure lever: Provided, disengages frame counter for correct count
  • Frame counter: Additive type (S, 0-36) resets with a knob.
  • Film rewind: By knob.
  • Exposure meter: This job is delegated to various brands of exposure meters.
  • Accessory shoe : No
  • Flash synchronization: For electronic flash and bulbs
  • Self-Timer: Approximate. 8-14sec. shutter release delay
  • Shutter Release Button: On the front of the camera
  • Battery : No way
  • Dimensions: (W x H x D): 150mm x 90mm x 45mm
  • Weight : 865g. (With 2,8/50mm Tessar lens.)
More info on the factory of Johan Steenbergen: Wikipedia
WikiPedia on the first SLR's: The invention of the SLR

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