Sociedad Ibero-Americana de la Historia de la Fotografia Museo Fotográfico y Archivo Historico "Adolfo Alexander"
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Two Zeiss SLR proto 

1)     Very curious and interesting 35mm SLR prototype created by Carl Zeiss Jena around the last 1940 years. Speculations propose in being the never seen Syntax camera Project.  Uses the same M42 thread mount lenses sharing those now developed for Zeiss Ikon Dresden Contax S, Its shutter derives from Leicas and it is very simple to operate, being a typical design of early German post-war cameras, The idea was offering a lower priced reflex camera for the amateur. This camera lacks flash synchronizer, self timer, integrated prism finder and slow speeds. A curious feature is that the mirror is lowered through the “copper color” knob immediately in front of the release. The lens is a black aluminium Biotar 2/5.8cm T no.342446. This number denotes 1952 manufacture which should be of later manufacture.


The number 22 195a and logo indicates to belong to an internal Zeiss department for testing purposes. The camera was not commercially made but we can feel its shades in the first original Zenit cameras from 1950 and again on Chinese Zi Jin Chan from 1959.


Front view



Back view



Top view


Bottom view


Opened for loading and seeing the forerunner of M3 Leicas


The lens




The finder


The controls



Zeiss Jena also prepared an accessory pentaprism that could be used in postwar FX Prakticas.







Zenit prototype 1950


More pictures at:


Zi Jin Chan produced around 1959 1960

Exact the same mechanical lay-out of Zeiss Jena reflex camera.

More can be seen at

and   and and  





2) At same time at Zeiss Ikon Dresden the much more famous Contax S were been built. Here one of the first examples without self timer and Dresden Zeiss Ikon Sonnar lens coming with Leica adapter ring.


The camera


The lens


Ad leaflet from the first Contax S series


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