Chris's camera pages
Kodak Retina IIIS (type 027) for sale
The Retina IIIS was manufactured from 1958 to 1961 and it was the first, and arguably the best, rigid-front Retina model Kodak ever produced. The IIIS is built on the same basic body casting as the Reflex S, and so it is slightly longer than the folding Retina IIIC cameras providing more area for the fingers of your right hand to grip the body.The IIIS used the same 'S' series interchangeable lenses as the Retina Reflex S, III, or IV. It has multiple frames visible in the viewfinder, which are automatically selected by inserting the lens, and the camera has a coupled single range meter. The shutter is a Synchro-Compur with speeds from 1 second to 1/500th second, it is synchronised for bulb or electronic flash, and it has a built-in self-timer.
This example is fitted with the Schneider Retina-Xenar 50mm f/2.8 lens. As you might know, the Retina IIIS can also to be found with the 50mm f/1.9 Xenon lens, but the larger lens makes the camera slightly cumbersome to use, and the extra stop isn't anywhere near as useful on a rangefinder camera as it would be with an SLR.
The Retina IIIS is a nice rangefinder to use, the camera handles well, and the viewfinder is bright and clear, with automatically-selected framelines for the 35mm, 50mm, 85mm, and 135mm lenses. The lenses are fairly easy to find, and are generally reasonably priced, although they were certainly much cheaper before people started using them on their DSLRs! This camera and lens have just been freshly serviced by me, and as a result, everything is working as it should be.
This is a nice example, the chrome top is really good, the leatherette could be better, but it is all there. Complete with good ever-ready case, it is for sale at NZ$350. Insured airmail shipping to the US or Europe will cost NZ$35.