The Mamiya-16


The Mamiya-16 Super Model III has perhaps the most features available on any mechanical 16 mm camera its size. Measuring only 6.5 cm x 4.5 cm x 3 cm, the total volume is about equal to a Minox C. The dials and markings on the top make for a very cool looking camera as well. When I saw a picture of one on the Sub Club, I knew I had to have one. And, hey, it takes pictures, too!


Lens: 4-element, 25 mm Cute f/3.5. V-blade aperture continuously variable to f/11.

Shutter: 1/2 s - 1/200 s and B

Focus: adjustable 1 foot to infinity

Film: 16 mm.


Misc: Leather wrist strap, screw-in flash coupling on the bottom, sport-finder with parallax-correction marks for close-up photography, built-in filter which can be changed out, memo dial for film ASA, shutter release threaded for cable release, and a metal lens protector which also locks the shutter when slid into place. All-metal construction with black leatherette for that "built-like-a-tank" feel.



According to Jerry Friedman*, the first Mamiya 16 had no focusing scale, a feature added with the Super 16 I. Other improvements included an expanded shutter range and the built-in filter. The Automat added an exposure meter, and the Automat EE coupled the meter to the shutter speed selection. The Deluxe is a very different looking camera, with a smooth look rather than the metel, dial-covered appearance of the others.



McKeown's** lists the Mamiya-16 Super Model III value at $50-$75 as of 1997/98 publication. My experience is that you'd be lucky to find one with cassette at less than about $100, however.


My Observations:

1. A very good lens capable of producing excellent negatives and useful copy work.

2. The dial-encrusted, all-metal appearance sets this camera apart from most other subminis. A contender (in a different ballpark altogether) would be the Compass Camera.


*The New Subminiature Camera and Darkroom Guide by Jerry Friedman, Double J Small Camera Works, 1996

**McKeown's Price Guide to Antique & Classic Cameras 1997/1998, Amphoto/Watson-Guptill, NY