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Does anyone know the history of this model ? For example how many were made . I believe it was the last Ensign to be produced in 1958 .
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I found this a while ago. Not a lot of info about the specific camera but some interesting history of the company. I've had a 16-20 and a 12-20 and they were both superb cameras, unfortunately, being colour-blind, I struggled to see through the red window so I could not tell if I had wound on to the right spot on the film....drove me mad.
and a little info about prices (US site I think)
Ensign were folded up in 1961 and the 820 was their last camera. Sadly they thought 35mm would not catch on so continued with medium format only, shame as for a while they were considered to be one of the finest camera/lens manufacturers in the world.
Hope this is of some help
Thanks very much Andy . I am staggered by the current market value of this model. Perhaps
being Ensign's final piece and a limited production run has some bearing , and it is an unusual
camera. I can see how it might have seemed old fashioned in the face of the developing 35mm and SLR
market of the late 50's.
It was actually pretty expensive when you consider it was twice the price of a Selfix equivalent with the same lens but was a coupled rangefinder which made it pretty unique. Has yours got the Epsilon shutter or the Prontor? The latter would be more desirable.....and they are pretty desirable even without!!!
I've been after a Commando for some time but every time I get near one at the right price, someone snaffles in before me.
Wallace Heaton's 1955 Blue Book advertises the Autorange at £50 and 7 shillings , extra for the case. In some parts of the UK you could buy a house
for that ! Not used a Commando , I have my grandfather's Ranger which still takes quite good snaps. the Ensign top of the range cameras seem similar to the Ikontas. The factory is still there over in Walthamstow but it's been re-clad. I've often wondered what happened to the Ensign archives
when they folded.
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