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Art Deco Cameras

Altissa Box 200

Specification

Altissa Box 200
Altissa Box 200
Manufacturer: Eho-Altissa
Produced: 1936
Type:Box
Film Size:120
Image Size:2¼ x 2¼
Lens Type:Rodenstock Periskop
Focal Length:62mm
Focus Type:fixed
Focal Range:5ft - Inf.
Aperture Type :Multihole
Apertures :f/8, f/16
Shutter Type:Fixed Speed
Shutter Speeds:B, I(1/25s)nominal, *1/100s
Size (w x h x d):82 x 100 x 75 mm
* Measured on this camera

Art Deco Credentials

star star star Noteworthy: Worth giving special attention

Description

The Altissa Box 200 was the first of a line of Altissa box cameras having the recognisable sunburst pattern on the front plate. The list includes the 1938 Altissa Juwel and the Altissa Box D.

The camera itself is very striking with a square long box for the viewfinder. It was one of the first cameras to have this type of viewfinder.

The lens is of the periscopic type and has two meniscus lenses in a symmetrical position on both sides of the shutter and aperture. A sliding tab allows the selection of an aperture of f/8 or f/11. The red window has a metal blind that can be drawn over it. It has a tripod socket in the base.

How to Use

This camera takes 120 film which is widely available.

The aperture choice is f/8 or f/16. The speed quoted on the front of the camera is 1/25s but the measured speed on this camera was 1/100s. As the shutter speed is slow, it is advisable to use a tripod to get clear shake free images. However, holding it against a wall or other solid object would work as well. For quick snapshots, hold it firmly against your body.

The table shows how this camera will perform using ISO 100 film assuming the stated speed of 1/25s. It is based on the 'Sunny 16' rule. Modern film is so forgiving and will produce acceptable results even when overexposed by 2 or 3 stops or underexposed by 1 stop.

The tables assume that the sun is at least 30 degrees above the horizon - that's 10am - 5pm on a summers day in the UK.

Remember that the exposure guide in the manual may not be helpful as it is based on the use of old film with a low ISO value.

Using ISO 100/125 film - shutter speed 1/25s

Weather ConditionsShadow DetailApertureExposure
Sunny
Snow/Sand
Dark
with sharp edges
f/16+3 Stops
Overexposed
Acceptable
SunnyDistinctf/16+2 Stops
Overexposed
Acceptable
Slight OvercastSoft around edgesf/16+1 Stops
Overexposed
Acceptable
OvercastBarely visiblef/16Good
Heavy OvercastNonef/8+1 Stops
Overexposed
Acceptable
Open Shade
/Sunset
Nonef/8Good

However, the measured speed of this particular camera was 1/100s. This being the case, the table would have to be adjusted as shown.

It is always better to overexpose rather than underexpose so where you have a choice of apertures, one which gives underexposure and one that give overexposure, it is always best to choose the aperture which gives overexposure. Hence the choice of f/8 over f/16 in some cases on the tables.

Using ISO 100/125 film - shutter speed 1/100s

Weather ConditionsShadow DetailApertureExposure
Sunny
Snow/Sand
Dark
with sharp edges
f/16+1 Stops
Overexposed
Acceptable
SunnyDistinctf/16Good
Slight OvercastSoft around edgesf/8+1 Stops
Overexposed
Acceptable
OvercastBarely visiblef/8Good
Heavy OvercastNonef/8-1 Stops
Underexposed
Acceptable
Open Shade
/Sunset
Nonef/8-2 Stops
Underexposed
Unacceptable