Ensign
Autorange 820

Ross Xpres 105mm f3.8
Empties, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto
Back of Restaurant, Kiyamachi, Kyoto
"Elderly woman in front of the counter in a semi-large
town", Kiyamachi, Kyoto
Bicycles, Pontocho, Kyoto
Detail of image at left (which is already somewhat
cropped from the 6x9 neg) - pretty sharp for a
handheld photo!
The Ensign Autorange 820 is my favorite 6x9 folder. My
Bessa II's have mostly sat idle since I acquired this fine
camera. The Ross Xpres lens is very sharp and the camera has
a feeling of quality to it that I find exceeds even the venerable
Bessa. The only area where this doesn't hold true is the
Epsilon shutter, which just doesn't have the sharp, precise feel
of the Bessa's Synchro Compur. The camera focuses in a
novel way, by moving the entire front door/lens assembly. The
Autorange 820 also has a built-in mask for shooting 6x6.

The photos on this page are all from one dark and cloudy
afternoon in Kyoto (we get a lot of those here). I was shooting
400 speed film, but still had to use relatively slow shutter
speeds (all of these are taken at 1/25 or 1/50 sec, handheld).
The tiny low-res scans can't convey much of the level of detail
and 'depth' of the actual photos, which is quite impressive. For
example, in the photo of the elderly women at left, the negative
clearly shows the lines in her face. I included a detail of one of
the photos, below, to give you some idea.
The bulkier top plate of the Autorange, compared to the
Bessa II, is in my opinion worth it for the nice brightline
finder.
Old and new ladders at shrine, Kamigyo-ku,
Kyoto
Ceremonial salt at shrine, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto
Links:

http://www.cosmonet.org/camera/ensign_e.htm

http://www.ensign.demon.co.uk/autorange820.htm

Instructions
HOME
Folding
Cameras
======================================== Sponsored Links =========================================