Canon R2000

The Canonflex Revisited

Canon R2000 Camera

The Canonflex is a clean well made camera with a precision feel in the hands. The viewfinder is bright and, with the lens wide open, easy to focus in good light.

Canon R2000 Camera
Canon R2000 Camera
Canon R2000 Camera
Canon R2000 Camera
Canon R2000 Camera

The Bottom Trigger Winder is clearing visible in this image of the bottom of the R2000 camera body.

Canon R2000 Camera

The winding system my be different but the camera is completely standard when you open the back.


Date: September 1960
Type: 35mm SLR
Lens Mount: R mount
Focus: Manual
Exposure: No Light Meter
Flash: Canon bayonet terminal socket
Shutter: Horizontal rubberized cloth focal plane
Speeds from 1 sec. to 1/2000th
X-synch at 1/60th sec.
ASA: Reminder dial – 6 to 3200
Frame Rate: Manual bottom trigger winding
Battery: None



The original Canonflex was launched in May of 1959. It was the first SLR from Canon which to that point had been a maker of fine rangefinder cameras. A few months later Nikon brought out the Nikon F and largely eclipsed the Canonflex lineup.

The Canonflex was in production for a year when Canon brought out the the “Flex” R2000 in September of 1960. This camera was  intended as a deluxe version of the Canonflex. It was very similar in most respects but it boasted a top shutter speed of one two thousandth of a second (thus the name) which was the highest shutter speed then available on a commercial 35mm camera.

There were apparently only about 8,800 units made and today the camera is relatively rare. Serial number range is 50646 through 59281. The normal lens it came with was the Super-Canomatic 50mm f/1.8 “nifty fifty”.

The Canon flash attached to the bayonet socket on the left edge of the camera body and FP and X-sync were automatically switched.

This is a well built camera, heavy, precise. It has a clip on the right front of the body for a light meter that couples to the speed dial and the prism is removable to accept a waist level view finder. Manuals for this camera are very rare. There were few enough cameras made and the manuals fared worse than they did. Most were just thrown out.

In the Collection I have the following example:

Collection No.:    C-117

Serial No.:           55992

Condition:           Excellent

Accessories:      Pentaprism and Waist Level Viewer

Acquisition:        24 Jul 2016


Canon R2000 Camera

The pentaprism slide off the camera revealing the ground glass and allowing for the mounting of different viewers.

Follow the Cameras on Facebook

If you're interested in old cameras, "like" us on Facebook . Get news of what we're doing sent to you when we post something new.! Facebook Page

With the Pentaprism removed the ground glass focusing screen is visible. It is a simple ground glass with no split image device to make focusing easier. However, the focusing screen is not interchangeable.

Canon R2000 Camera

The pentaprism is a precise optical device that must be treated with care and protected. Do not touch the glass surfaces!

Canon R2000 Camera

The bottom of the Pentaprism unit.

One accessory available for the Canonflex was a Waist Level viewer with built in variable focus to provide a sharp view of the focusing screen for different users. This worked well and was bright and clear. However, the image was laterally reversed which makes it difficult to use until one gets used to this effect.

Canon R2000 Camera

The Waist Level Viewer in its leather case.

Canon R2000 Camera

The eyepiece rotates to provide sharp images in the viewer.

Canon R2000 Camera

The Waist Level Viewer on the R2000 gives a laterally reversed image which is a bit disconcerting at first. However, in the types of applications for which it would be used this is not a serious probleM. One compensates quickly for it.

Canon LogoThis page is not a review of this Canon equipment but rather a record of an item in my collection. I have no connection with Canon and receive no remuneration nor benefit for this listing. It is for my own use and possibly your enjoyment!.