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Tell me about: my new Voigtlander Vito II
Old 08-28-2011   #1
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Tell me about: my new Voigtlander Vito II

So I came across a voigtlander vito II camera yesterday in a flea market and fell in love with its beauty and compact design. I'm not really into folders especially scale focus cameras but I figured for 20$ I couldn't pass it up.

I'm looking for anyone who has used this camera to maybe fill me in on some things they've noticed while shooting with it. Also some sample pics would be great!

I've done some reading online and found the manual and it seems like this camera is nothing to sneeze at! When I noticed the skopar lens I knew right away I had to have it. The shutter speeds all seem relatively accurate to me ear as well!

I've posted some photos of the camera below

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Old 08-28-2011   #2
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Sample pictures... Oh dear, my talents as a collector of decrepit gear far outweigh my abilities as a photographer - but I expect I have some somewhere.

Anyway, suffice to say that the Vito is a pretty damn good camera. The shutter lock and knob rewind are a PITA, but no more so than any other camera of the time with them, and the Color-Skopar lens really is as good as people say. Add to that that it's pocketable, and you are laughing.

It's just a pity that the clip-on accesory shoe is so ugly, and makes such a mess of your chrome...

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If http://www.flickr.com/photos/gray1720/ are the ones I let people see, what on earth are the rest like?
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Old 09-23-2011   #3
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There is a page about the Vito II on my web site with some picture I made with it in NY and in Greece a few years ago.
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Old 09-23-2011   #4
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I have one and used to use it now and then. I agree its avery pretty little camera. It turned in very nice photos. The color skopar lens is basically the same as the tessar or the elmar and being very simple (only 4 elements) performs very well within its design constraints. (Simple lenses like this were common in the days before coating - and especially multi coating facilitated the design of more complex lenses with many elements.) The only reason I did not continue to use it was that it needed servicing and the shutter kept sticking. This is pretty common in these cameras. (Not surprising given the age of them.)

Last edited by peterm1 : 09-23-2011 at 22:09.
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Old 09-24-2011   #5
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Nice find and a good price!

The Vito II is one of my all-time favorites. If you can live with the tiny finder (just usable for me, I wear glasses) there is nothing more pocketable until you get to the Rollei 35, and those plastic/electronic wonders from Minox, Olympus, and so on. As I've said before, Brooke Shields could have carried one in the back pocket of those CK jeans. I particularly like that, unlike a Kodak Retina, you can fold it up at any focus setting. Also, the lens is well recessed and doesn't need a hood.

You have the manual so you may already know but for "posterity":

- Shutter only works with film loaded
- For 1/500 only, you must set the speed first, cock the shutter second. If you forget, stop down, or even sacrifice that frame.

Here's what's not in the manual:

- Opening and closing the back takes a little practice but the advantage is that this style clasp will never catch in your clothing.
- I like to put it in my pocket with the advance wheel first, and my index finger covering the little swivel over the counter wheel. This way, nothing can catch when you whip it out in a hurry.
- Watch out for the two black tabs that unlock the lens for folding. Those are only glued and the glue is brittle by now. In fact, on my "user" Vito II, I broke them off intentionally and put them in a safe spot. I'll glue them back on if I ever sell it (not likely) but it's just as easy to fold the camera with the bare metal tabs.

Oh, and +1 on the accessory shoe. It's ugly, inconvenient and will mar the finish. Outdoors - 200 speed film, sunny-16 and guess-focus will serve you fine. Indoors - use a different camera.
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Old 09-25-2011   #6
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I had one and definitely liked the lens and the compact form factor. Not too crazy about the shutter release on the lens door rather than on the main camera body.
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Old 09-26-2013   #7
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I just picked up a 1949 in almost pristine condition including the leather case yesterday. The sapphire coated lens is a jewel. Today a friend gave me a light grip and had to laugh as the Vivatar 283 was bigger than the Vito. Haven't had the chance to shoot a roll yet but looking forward to.
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