Thursday, September 30, 2010

Here's Looking At You 1939-40 Camera Technology

This Perfex 44 range finder camera sits on an antique store shelf in 42N country's Bentonsport, Iowa. I didn't notice the price but the buyer would get the 35mm film camera, a leather case and the original camera box. While the product line struggled according to the data I found (see link above) the camera featured hotshoe flash mount technology some 30 years before Leica added one to their cameras.

This Perfex model was made in 1939 through 1940. Like many cameras in its day it took some time to manually focus, set the aperture and shutter speed, then snap the photo, and have it developed. Last weekend my Nikon digital SLR camera introduced in the fall of 2008 quickly snapped the portrait of the 70 year old distant relative in just a few seconds with instant confirmation of the image. Oh the irony. Know that.


  1. I'd never thought of a camera as being an antique. But they are obviously. And this one's a terrific one by the looks of it.

  2. What a special post. (I was an amateur photographer in the 70s and trained with students from the local college.) It is wonderful to see homage given to the days when photography required a skill-set for the mechanically minded. The struggle to mount a camera on a tri-pod, set the focus, add the lenses, choose the filters, test the lighting, pose the subject, hold your breath - and SNAP! It is a marvel that today's camera's take care of the "hard work" and leave nothing more than the artistry to the artist.

    I hopped in from Saturday Sampling. I've enjoyed your sample! Mine is Strawberries, Chocolate and a Captive Audience. See you there!

  3. I still love my modern 35 mm camera that requires film. I even love that I have to wait to see how the picture turns out.

    I have a digital camera, but do not love taking pictures with it. Go figure.....

    Thanks for the look at the 39-40 era camera. Cool!

  4. Camera technology has made photographers out of all of us--I love it! I didn't realize they had 35mm that long ago. Very cool.

  5. I love the name - the Perfex :) I now want something that I can name Perfex.

    Kristin _The Goat