Lomopedia: Kodak Retinette 1A


Vintage is the apt word to use when describing the Kodak Retinette 1A. It’s only right because this camera has seen years, 59 to be exact. This particular camera has been around longer than probably most of us here in the community and we think it’s only right that we pay respect to an icon.

Kodak Retinette 1A © James Case via Flickr, Image used under Creative Commons license

Kodak is a household name when it comes to photography. After all, they’re the most iconic brand, if not one of the most trusted names in the photo industry due to their sheer dedication to it proven by the products they put out. With that said, it’s not a surprise that their Retinette line is still regarded by some as great cameras up to now, regardless of their age.

The Retinette 1A is a 35 mm rangefinder that uses a lens with an integrated shutter. It was produced in several versions namely the Type 035 early-VERO, Type 035 late-PRONTO, Type 035/7 French Model, Type 042, and Type 044. All these different versions have slight variations in looks and components.

Aesthetics-wise, the Retinette 1A’s design was far from those of Leica, Canon, and Nikon. It had a squarish look and soft sides that offered a less serious look to the camera — completely different as to what the other brands were going for.

When it comes to performance, you can say that Kodak did a good job on their Retinette line. They are compact, sturdy, little shooters that can create photos with good image quality. It’s given that they’re not the best out there but for a camera that’s been sitting around for almost 60 years, we’d say that the photos are pretty good. The Reomar 45mm lens takes a little getting used to with the integrated controls but you can get clear images with nice contrast and clarity.

It’s a camera that can bring with you on casual photo walks and gatherings without feeling that everyone’s checking you out. It’s that simple and understated. So if you’re out in the market for something that looks, feels, and screams vintage, you might want to check the Retinette 1A out.

Photos Taken by Our Community

Credits: roldan85 & pankarmelek

Technical Specifications

Film: 135, 24 × 36 mm
Lens: 45 mm f/2.8 Schneider Reomar Lens
Aperture: f/2.8, f/4, f/5.6, f/8, f/16, f/22
Shutter: Prontor 250s - automatically cocked when the film is advanced, speeds 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250 second and Bulb
Flash: Built-in synchronization for class F and M bulbs at 1/30 second
Focusing and Viewing: Focusing - zone focusing and scale focusing 3.3 feet to infinity
Viewfinder: Projected view frame type
Rapid Wind Lever: Advances film and sets shutter with one stroke, Double exposure prevention
Construction: Die-cast aluminum body, black covering, chrome top and trim, tripod socket in camera base

All information used in this article was sourced from Camera Wiki, 35mmc, and Butkus Camera Manuals.

written by cheeo on 2018-08-14 #gear #gear #kodak #retinette-1a #lomopedia


  1. jm60
    jm60 ·

    Article reminded me of the first 35mm camera I ever used- similar in appearance, but only slightly more capable a Kodak "Signet 35". It made me want to go look to see if I even still have it, and I do. But as I recall, I had to do some rework of part of the shutter trip mechanism due to it wearing out right around 1977. They were decent enough for vacationers/ genera consumers- to whom they were marketed to, and they did have some "slip on", or "slip in" filters because they were not threaded to accept filters, as many of Kodaks were. The holder was a piece of aluminum with incised slots that either fit over the outside of the lens, or inside; to which the filters then threaded onto the holder. And, my dad even shot a few experimental images with black and white filters used with color film back in 1972.

  2. jackpumpkinhead
    jackpumpkinhead ·

    Funnily enough, I have a box and instructions for this. However in it is a vintage flash for non-sync cameras. Was going to use it with the Ilford Sportsman, but it takes a 22.5V battery, which seem to be reasonably hard to get hold of.
    Interesting artucle!

  3. ksears119
    ksears119 ·

    My first 35mm camera was a Kodak Retina. Wish I still had it!

  4. ksears119
    ksears119 ·

    My first 35mm camera was a Kodak Retina. Wish I still had it!

  5. algares
    algares ·

    Es una maravilla para mi, es la cámara que hoy mismo acabo de heredar, fue la cámara que le regaló mi madre a mi padre estando trabajando en Suiza el el año 1964, es del TYP 044 Y número de serie 357179. Fue también la primera cámara que usé prestada por mi padre a los 18 años y desde entonces para mi es mi joya de entre las más de 50 cámaras de colección que tengo. Gracias por el artículo.

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