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BALDA - Balda Matic II (1959-1960)

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In it in Dresde, cradle of the German optical and photographic industries, that the company BALDA KAMERA-WERK is founded in 1908 by Max Baldeweg. The factory is in good financial health and produces a lot of cameras.

At the end of the second world war, defeated Germany is splitted in two and the Max's company is on the wrong side. The factory of Dresde is confiscated by the communism state of East-Germany (RDA). Max Baldeweg went over to West where he quickly restarts a new camera production center under the mark BALDA. At the same time, the former BALDA KAMERA-WERK company is renamed several time by the East-Germany state.

So identify the exact origin of Balda cameras is confusing. The hereunder table helps to clarify between the various possible origins the Balda  cameras.

Company managed by Max Baldeweg Company controlled by
the RDA state
1908 - 1915   MAX BALDEWEG OHG
1915 - 1948   MAX BALDEWEG Gmbh
1948 -          BALDA 1948 - 1951   MECHANIK BALDA-WERK
1951 - 1957   OPTIK BELCA-WERK
                   VEB BELCA-WERK
1959 - 1964   VEB Kamera und Kinowerk Dresden
1964 - 1990   VEB PENTACON Dresden



Balda Matic II


The Balda Matic II is a small 35 mm camera produced by the company BALDA from 1959 to 1960. It is a improvement of the model Balda Matic I.

Despite this camera has been produced during less than 2 years, several variants exist with different lens/shutter associations :

bullet Color Isconar 1:2,8 f=45mm and Prontor LK
bullet Xenar 1:2,8 f=45mm and Prontor SLK
bullet Color-Baldanar 1:2,8 f=45mm and Prontor SLK  (thanks to Towermax)

The camera is equipped with a Selenium cell and information are transfered in the viewfinder.
Selection of the aperture is done using a selecting wheel located between the lens and the shutter release. Information related to the selected aperture is also transfered in the viewfinder.

Due to a clever mechanism, the depth of field induced by the selected aperture is marked on the distance range.

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