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Retina IIS

Retina IIS

Style, film format Fixed-lens 35mm rangefinder, coupled single-range meter

Lens, shutter Coated 45mm f/2.8 Schneider-Kreuznach Retina-Xenar, Synchro-Compur

Photo quality Very good

Ergonomics Very good, but focusing tab is a bit too small

Kodak replaced the folding Retinas with rigid-front models in the late 1950s and early 1960s. This smaller model with a fixed lens is identical in width and height to the Retina IIIC. You can see the strong resemblance from the lens up.

This is a friendly camera with a good Schneider lens and the always reliable Compur shutter. The film advance was still on the bottom and was to remain there for the rest of the run of the real Retinas.

The single-range selenium meter is easy to use and is coupled to the aperture and shutter speed dial. The same caution about the connecting cord in the Retina IIIS applies to the Retina IIS.

The viewfinder is bright, and objects snap into focus easily. I would like a larger focusing tab on the lens. You can see it in the photo on the right. It's at the 6 o'clock position under the lens.

Other than this minor quibble, the Retina IIS is a very nice camera to use, and because of its light weight, it doesn't put a dent in your neck.