120folder.com          Agfa Isolette III

The  Agfa Isolette III is a 120 film folding camera, 6x6 format, one of the latest models of a whole series, built from 1938 to 1960 by Agfa Kamerawerk AG, Munich. The "III" model was first issued in the early 1950s. It has a non-coupled rangefinder. This one has an Apotar lens and a better Prontor SV shutter. There were versions with a cheaper shutter and versions with a top Solinar lens, a Tessar clone.

Size (mm): 140 x 95 x 38
Weight: 580 g
Lens: Apotar 4.5/85, closest focus 0.95 m
Shutter: Prontor SV, B, 1 - 1/300, F 4.5 - 32
Finder: rangefinder, non coupled
Film advance: knob winding by red window

Here are some photos of the camera. There is a short introduction to the use of it and how it feels at the bottom of the page.

Camera front closed. Top: film advance, viewfinder and rangerfinder window, depth-of-the-field calculator.

Seen from the back. On top: view/rangefinder eyepiece. Red window in the middle.

Seen from above. Depth-of-the-field calculator, camera opening button, accessory shoe. With the wheel in the middle you can define the distance via the rangefinder. Shutter release button and small indicator for double exposure prevention in front of film advance.

Seen from the bottom. Tripod socket.

Camera front open. Distance scale, speed setting ring. Little self-timer lever bottom right of the speed setting ring.

Seen from above, camera open. Lens: shutter cocking lever near the speed setting ring, aperture control and synchro lever.

Left side, camera open.

Right side, camera open.

Camera back open. Film chamber. Film spool sits in a cradle.

Leather case.

Leather case open. It fits perfectly.

Handling an Agfa Isolette III is easy, it's like other folding cameras. Loading film is as usual. Open the camera back, retract the winding knob and put the take-up spool into place. Put the film spool into its cradle, it's hinged, so this is very easy. Insert the film paper backing into the take-up spool and advance it using the knob until it's well engaged. Close the camera back. Open the red window and advance the film via the advance knob until the red window shows "1".

Open the camera. Look at your subject and measure the distance via the rangefinder
. Cock the shutter, set speed and aperture. Set focus by directly turning the front of the lens, focussing movements are inside the lens. Press the shutter release button. That's it. The double exposure warning will be visible and the release is blocked until you turn the film advance. To close the camera, press the hinges of the struts as usual, it will fold easily.

The Agfa Isolette is a very nice and quite sturdy camera, yet it is lightweight and easy to use. The rangefinder is a big advantage. The lens is not top class, but quite fine. The bellows are said to be a weak point. Mine were fine.

Agfa Isolette III580140 x 95 x 38NCRWColor Apotar 4.5/85 |0,95 Prontor SV, B 1 - 1/300 | 32