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Julian Tanase Photography

My Minox journey continues…

Meopta Mikroma II

Meopta Mikroma II

Meopta Mikroma II is a metal camera, 16mm film format, produced in Czechoslovakia starting the 1960’s by Meopta factory. It was preceded by model I. The factory also produced a number of other cameras, accessories and other photographic equipment.

Size is only 74mm x 35mm x 28mm, weighing only 225 grs. It sports a 20mm Mirar lens, in a 3.5 Cooke triplet style, with a distance dial marked in metres:  0.5,0.7,1, 1.2;1.3,1.5,1.7,2,2.5,3.5,50,10,infinity.  The apertures are selectable via the dial on the lens collar, between 3.5 and 16; the shutter speeds are from B (bulb) to 1/5, 1/10, 1/25, 1/50,1/100, 1/200, 1/400. The frame counter dial has 50 exposures to show.

It takes 16mm film, in two metallic cassettes, also fabricated by Meopta. Best choice is to use single perforated film, for the sprockets are engaged by a single tooth on the upper side of the film frame, and it is advisable to have 2 cassettes, one loaded and another for take up.

However, I am using unperforated negative, and this works because I tape it onto the take up spool, and when the take up reel is engaged by the transport mechanism it drags the film over the frame as well. Basically, I just skip the tooth engaging the sprockets, other than that it works like a charm.

Advancing the film is done by a slide lever, on the back of the camera, which transports the film and upon its release, cocks the shutter. A sturdy mechanism, simple but reliable.

Also, if you are in a pinch, you can use just one cassette, the take up one: just roll you film in the camera, engage the film through the gate, put the take up spool in its place and close the back plate. The film will transported normally to the take up spool. Of course the film may get scratched, but I already said “if you’re in a pinch”. Other than that, one of the best cameras I ever had, 16mm format that is.

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