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Aires Viceroy

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Japanese Six (6×6)
Postwar models (edit)
folding
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rigid or collapsible
Dia Six | Ehira Chrome Six | Enon Six | Flora | Flashline | Fujipet | Harmony | Mikono-6 | Orion | Ponix | Rich-Ray-6 | Shumy | Weha Chrome Six
Japanese 6×6 TLR, pseudo TLR and medium format SLR ->
Japanese Semi (4.5×6) and older 6×9 ->

The Aires Viceroy is a folding 6×6 coupled-rangefinder camera that Aires produced for export to India (some sources say southeast Asia) around 1957–8.[1] The body was manufactured by Takane and was based on that for the Mine Six (and indirectly on that for the Mihama Six), the finder and the lens assembly were manufactured by Aires (they were designed by Kodera Keiji).[2]

Description Edit

The main body is identical to the body of the Mine Six IIF, including the camera back with two red windows. The Viceroy is dual format and can take both 6×6 and 4.5×6 exposures, and the film advance is manually controlled. Only the leather covering has different patterns and markings: the AIRES CAMERA logo is embossed on the front door, MADE IN JAPAN on the back latch and perhaps something else next to the red windows.

The top cover differs from the Mine Six models. It contains a combined range and view-finder, with the eyepiece offset to the left and a bright frame, illuminated by an additional translucent window in the middle. The internal design of this finder is certainly similar to that of the Aires 35 II and III. The advance knob and body release are on the right and there is a film reminder on the left. The model name (Aires VICEROY), the company name (AIRES CAMERA JAPAN), the serial number and the film plane indicator are engraved above the top housing, on both sides of the accessory shoe.

The Viceroy has a 75mm f/3.5 lens: either a three-element Coral (produced by Aires) or a four-element Nikkor.[3] It is unit-focussed: the entire lens and shutter assembly is mounted on the focusing helical, not merely the frontmost element. The shutter is a Seikosha-MX giving B, 1–500 speeds, with a self-timer and a PC synch post.

The leather case is prominently embossed VICEROY and has the same AIRES CAMERA logo as the camera's folding bed.

All the numbers for the body and Coral lenses observed so far are in the 670xxx and 671xxx range.[4] Total production was certainly between 1,000 and 2,000.

Notes Edit

  1. Southeast Asia: Kokusan kamera no rekishi, p.376. Date: Hagiya, p.6 of Kurashikku Kamera Senka no.22, and Hattori, p.14 of the same magazine, say 1957. Kokusan kamera no rekishi, p.376, says that the Viceroy was featured in Sankei Camera October 1958.
  2. Hagiya, p.6 of Kurashikku Kamera Senka no.22.
  3. Number of elements: Hattori, p.14 of Kurashikku Kamera Senka no.22.
  4. Observed body numbers: lowest 670655, highest 671714. Observed numbers for the Coral lens: lowest 670117, highest 671160.

Sources / further reading Edit

This camera is not listed in Sugiyama.

Links Edit

In English:

In English and in Italian

In French:

In Japanese:

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