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Zeiss Ikon Ikoflex III (853/16) favori envoyer Print
Photos by MM text by MM. From the collection of MM
France Version française

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Manufactured in Germany from 1939 until 1940.
Index of rarity in France : Rare (among non-specialized garage sales)
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Inventory number: 21220

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Zeiss Ikon Ikoflex III

Traduction de Manuel M

Fortunately that classification 853/16 makes it possible to individualize this Ikoflex. Indeed, in 1938, Zeiss Ikon launch a new numbered version 852/16 of Ikoflex II, and gives it the name of Ikoflex III But, certainly offended to be outstripped by Rollei and its Automat of 1937, Zeiss launch since 1949, another Ikoflex, the 853/16, more sophisticated.

Zeiss could have called well it Ikoflex IV… no! Probably by the mystery of marketing, the 853/16 is called Ikoflex III, and “the III” precedent move down with the rank of II/III” to distinguish it from the precedent “II”. Simplicity did not seem to be acceptable at this time.

Extract of the “retro” section of P.H. PONT in “Chasseur d’images” from January-February 1999:
"People from Zeiss have many other ambitions in head: they want to surpass of one hundred cubits the Rolleiflex.Automat of 1937! What will bring us the extraordinary Ikoflex III…
On “III”, all is “disproportionate. The shutter, a Compur Rapid with the 1/400 second, of strong diameter, necessary to place the lens. The lens? An enormous Tessar 2.8, without equivalent in the Rollei range. All that weighing very heavy, one did not hesitate cast the body out of magnesium, which brings back the weight of the unit to 965 grams - i.e. exactly that of Automat 3.5. The advance of film and the cocking (coupled) of the shutter are made thanks to a crank. And the sport viewfinder “iconometer” left the place to a reflector view finder collimated type van Albada, which corrects the parallax! For the time, Rollei is really outstripped.
The bill now:  the Ikoflex III is sold 50% expensive than Automat. It is one of the reasons for which this fabulous camera, last Zeiss marvel of the end of the year thirty, will be also that which the career will be shortest: launched in 1939, it is stopped as of the following year. ”

At the time of its issuing, the 853/16 was described, on publicities and catalogues, like “New Ikoflex III” or “Ikoflex Automatique”. It is the most improved and the last of Ikoflex of pre-war period.