The Canonet Junior
The Simpler More Automatic Canonet
Dates: Introduced April 1963.
Type: 35mm medium format rangefinder
Lens Mount: Fixed
Focus: Manual with no Rangefinder
Exposure: Aperture Priority
Modes: Manual, Automatic
Flash: PC Synch Plug
Shutter: Seikosha – L
ASA / ISO: ISO 10-200
Frame Rate: Manual Lever Winding
In April of 1963, two years after the introduction of the Canonet, the Canonet Junior was released. This camera was simpler to operate which means more automatic.
There is no range finder; only a viewfinder. Focus could be set on the lens and there were detents at the most useful focus distances but there was no confirmation of focus via a split image.
The film advance lever was moved to the top of the camera as was the rewind crank which can be plainly seen in the photos opposite.
In the Auto setting, both aperture and shutter speed were automatically set. Taken off Automatic only the aperture could be set. The camera would only work in manual or aperture priority mode. Shutter speed was selected by the camera at all times and could not be set by the user.
In the view finder focus setting is shown by symbols for Mountains, a group of people or a single person’s head and shoulders. At the bottom of the viewfinder is the meter needle and it indicates the shutter speed being selected by the camera.
As in the Canonet, the selenium cell light meter was wrapped around the lens which was a simpler 40mm f/2.8 optic but still very adequate for a snapshot camera and better than most on the market at the time. Film speeds were limited to ASA 10 to 200.
The shutter was made by Seikosha and is so marked under the lens barrel. Hattori Tokei-ten founded the Seikosha plant in 1892 in Tokyo to manufacture clocks and watches. The word Seikosha means “precision” or “success” depending on how it is written.
In 1930 they began to make camera shutters and in 1933 created the first Japanese copy of the Compur shutter. Eventually this company became Seikō Kōki or simply the Seiko company known the world over for watches. To this day it still manufactures camera components.
The Canonet Junior was sold in USA under licence as the Bell & Howell Canonet 28.
In the Collection I have :
Collection No.: C-70
Serial No.: 203450
Acquisition: 9 April 16