Category:Viewmaster cameras and mount-cutters

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View-Master produced two successive models of stereo camera to allow hobbyists to take their own stereo pictures, and also produced a special dedicated film cutter and blank "reels" to allow a developed film transparency strip to be cut up and used to assemble custom ViewMaster discs.

Promotional text:


NOW ... FOR tHE FIRST TIME, you can take personal pictures of family scenes, children, friends, travels, in the thrilling "come to life" realism of full colour and THREE DIMENSIONS! ... at actually less than the cost of ordinary black and white snapshots!

The amazing new View-Master Personal Stereo Camera brings three dimension picture taking, formerly a rich man's hobby, within the means of the average family. For double enjoyment color pictures taken with the View-Master Stereo Camera can be viewed in a View-Master Stereoscope or projected in two dimensions in a View-Master Projector. Don;t miss the thrill of three dimension pictures. Plan now to SEE ... and TRY ... the sensational new View-Master Stereo Camera.


Even the most experienced amateur can operate the View-Master Stereo Camera with ease and confidence. View-Master's revolutionary "EXPO-SURE£ CALCULATOR banishes guess-work; eliminates complicated lens-time-light calculations ... and assures bright, true-to-life stereo pictures every time.

Each step in View-Master's system of stereo photography – from taking the picture to final enjoyment of the mounted stereographs, has been simplified to save time, effort and money. The View-Master uses readily available 20 or 36-exposure rolls of standard 35mm color film. Picture cutting is done with a semi-automatic View-Master Film Cutter. Stereographs slide easily into pockets of durable, seven-scene View-Master Peronal Reels. Other features of the camera eliminate film waste, prevent double exposures, and provide automatic rewind while taking pictures. Because of its amazing simplicity, as well as low cost of operation, the View-Master is the ideal camera for family use.. Ask your Camera Dealer for literature describing the View-Master Personal Stereo Camera in detail.


The new View-Master Personal Stereo camera is a compact instrument, precisely engineered for fine three dimension color photography. Features include – sturdy, die-cast aluminium body; View-Master anastigmat f/3.5, 25mm coated, color-corrected precisely matched lenses; universal focus; synchronised, guillotine type, before-the-lens shutter; built-in automatic flash switch; and many others. View-Master Stereo Pictures, mounted in durable, seven-scene View-Master reels, are easy and safe to handle. Over 150 stereo pictures can be stored in 4×4×1 inch space. Reels and envelopes provide space for picture and subject description.


View-Master Personal Stereo Camera

The first View-Master camera ("Made for Sawyer's Inc by Stereocraft Engineering Company") was a slightly unusual-looking Art Deco affair in brown and cream, with two large horizontal dials on top for setting aperture and exposure., accompanied by a film winder wheel. The two large dials meant that there was no space for a flash "shoe"'

The camera used conventional 35mm film, but the two lenses exposed small rectangular areas on the film that were less than half the height of the strip. To reduce film-developing costs, the film was first wound through the camera using setting "A", taking interleaved stereo exposures as a strip along the bottom of the film, then when the end of the film was reached, the selector was set to position "B" at which point the camera optics switched ot exposing the top half of the film, and the winder reversed direction to take a second set of stereo exposures along the top of the film.

The film would then be developed normally as for 35 slides, but with a note to the devlopers to leave the resulting film strip uncut.

Since normal 35mm film and processing was priced according to the amount of film on the reel, rather than the number of actual exposures, the ability to shoot a larger number of smaller exposures onto standard 35 mm film was used as a selling point, with the system being touted as alowing users to take colour photogrphs at less than the cost of standard 35mm black and white images.

View-Master Stereo Color Camera (View-Master Camera Mk2)

The second incarnation of the View-Master camera was a more conventional-looking instrument (the "Trinar", made by traditional German opthalmic lens-maker Rodenstock), with a lever-based film-winder, and a top "shoe" for clipping a flash unit onto the top of the camera.

The View-Master Stereo Color Camera

Internally, the camera's design was more radical, winding the film diagonally past the two lenses, at an angle, resulting in ordered pairs of exposures staggered across the film strip. This actually made the camera simpler to use, as the owner didn't have to bother with the special A/B mode complications of the earlier camera. It did, however, require the final developed filmstrip to be cut differently.

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