Zeiss Ikonta M


The Ikonta M creates a square negative on 120 film, yeilding 12 images per roll.  Advancing the film requires viewing the frame number through the window on the back as is common for cameras of this age.    The shutter itself resides with the lens at the end of the bellows but there is a shutter button on the body that releases it through a linkage.  The shutter button is locked out until you advance the film, mostly preventing double exposures.   Did I or didn’t I advance the film already? 

My favorite feature of this model though has to be it’s uncoupled rangefinder.  By uncoupled I mean that it doesn’t actually change the focus, you have to remember to do that as well, but it indicates the distance on the rangefinder adjustment wheel.


The rangefinder view is a magnification of the center allowing for more precise focusing, while framing is done in a seperate viewfinder.  This is as combersome as it sounds; Find the distance with the rangefinder, transfer that distance to the lens, frame the image with the viewfinder, hey where did everyone go?  These quirks though are what makes a camera like this interesting, if I just wanted pictures I would use a DSLR and be done with it.

3 Responses to “Zeiss Ikonta M”

  • Duncan Says:

    nice, whats a DSLR?

  • Mike Cohen Says:

    Sorry, but this is about another post of yours, about the Vitomatic IIa. Could you tell me how you got the viewfinder prism off? (I’ve seen several of these cameras, all with the same defect–separation of the prism elements–& I want to have a go at separating & recementing.
    Many thanks

  • Wallace Says:

    Mike in this case it was not the prism that was at issue it was the small lens element. I have not tried to re-cement the prism elements, I do wish you success though,

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