5 frames with...

5 Frames with the Voigtländer Vito C – By Nigel Haycock

So this is the Voigtländer Vito C which is not to be confused with the Voigtländer Vito C. The crazy re-use of model names by Voigtländer and its subsequent parent companies is one thing about Voigtländer cameras which I don’t like.

Since seeing one of these a while ago and liking the simple minimalist design, I have been looking for one ever since; eventually one appeared at a price I could swallow and here we are with this short review

Technically this isn’t really a Voigtländer at all as it was made by Balda and sold under the Voigtländer name when they were under the guardianship of Rollei – a very similar camera under the Minox brand also exists ( Minox 35) which I understand shared the same designer.

Size-wise this is very compact ( 102×63×32 mm) and since getting it late last year I have carried it around with great ease with it snugly (and often barely noticed) in my pocket.

Pictures so far show I have a light leak somewhere in this camera so I am trying to narrow down the source of that (images shown have a slight crop).  Ignoring the light leak which hopefully I can resolve, I do like using this; it’s no replacement for one of my more sophisticated rangefinder, SLR, TLR or digital options but as a keep-handy point-and-shoot film camera it is fun and convenient to use. Sometimes I don’t want to carry a heavy camera around and just want to walk with my wife, enjoying our surroundings; then if for some reason there is an opportunity to shoot some images, it is nice that this is stuffed in my pocket unobtrusively.

Rewinding is a little fiddly (make that VERY fiddly) mostly due to the small size of everything but for a simple zone focus camera that is small and easy to carry around that is a manageable issue.  Once I fix the light leak and get more used to this little pocket rocket I may do a fuller review

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16 Comments

  • Avatar
    Reply
    Bud Lanning
    February 24, 2019 at 1:05 pm

    Re: Voigtlander Vito C, not the Voigtlander Vito C, look up the Ricoh FF1 & FF1s.

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      Reply
      NigelH
      February 25, 2019 at 3:07 am

      Ah yes another very similar design, more like the Minox I think with the accessory shoe on the top?

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    Reply
    Lilianna Elrod
    February 24, 2019 at 6:17 pm

    I adore these little cameras, wanted one for years.
    Nice work with yours! What film did you use?

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      Reply
      NigelH
      February 24, 2019 at 9:16 pm

      It’s a great little camera to keep handy for sure and the styling is really good. I should have stated the film (some how I thought I had) oh well it was Fujifilm Pro 400 which is a nice film I have used a lot but it is not very forgiving in poor light in my opinion.

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    Reply
    Charles Higham
    February 24, 2019 at 6:52 pm

    That’s a sharp lens.

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      Reply
      NigelH
      February 24, 2019 at 9:13 pm

      It is when I get the distance right 🙂 There seems to be a sweet spot at 10m which in decent light makes the maximum of the DoF

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    Reply
    James Northcote
    February 25, 2019 at 10:07 am

    Those landscapes are stunning

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      Reply
      NigelH
      February 25, 2019 at 3:25 pm

      Nice of you to say so, not sure I would go quite that far myself but appreciate your encouragement 🙂

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    Reply
    Michael R.
    February 25, 2019 at 9:39 pm

    Have two of these, really great little gems and sharp as hell!
    What I like is the big viewfinder (and it even shows the distance symbols) so I can focus without having to put down the camera from my eye. I got mine for 20€ and 5€ with flash 🙂 Just DON’T DROP them on the floor…
    I like these more than my Oly XA since its auto everything and I don’t have to think, just open focus shoot wind.

    • Avatar
      Reply
      NigelH
      February 26, 2019 at 4:12 am

      Wow! You really got a bargain at that price. In the US you can currently multiply that by 4 or even 5 these days. I will do my best not to drop them; I wish I had the wrist strap that it would have come with as that would help – its a custom fitting so looks like regular straps wouldn’t fit.

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    Reply
    Zach B
    February 26, 2019 at 2:20 am

    I have recently found myself carrying a small point and shoot when I take my Nikon SLRs with me, and have found them very handy for candid shots where the Nikon mirror slap would give me away. I own both an Olympus XA2 and a Rollei 35T; I didn’t shoot either for about 18 months, but I think they really have a place in my “street” photography. Great shots, and you’re right, with the zone focus only cameras, sometimes it is a little hard, but when you nail it, they can be quite sharp!

    • Avatar
      Reply
      NigelH
      February 26, 2019 at 4:15 am

      It’s funny how us geeky, techy, experienced photographers who have really expensive gear like the simplicity and ease of a compact point and shoot 🙂

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    Reply
    Roger B.
    February 27, 2019 at 12:06 am

    Remarkably sharp images for a “pocket camera”, on a par with those one can make with the “almost full size” Vito B.

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      Reply
      NigelH
      February 27, 2019 at 12:12 am

      Agreed. The Vito B is a more solid and better camera but this little thing is pretty darn good and it not uncomfortable in my back pocket. I need to shoot more film through it (hopefully now without the little light leak) to get a better feel for it but it is definitely a keeper and will always be close at hand.

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    Reply
    Claudio
    March 3, 2019 at 5:53 pm

    I love how contrasty these tiny Minox-like lenses are. They produce very true-to-life images. But does someone know whether this oddly-named Voigltänder has got the same electronic problem as its Minox counterpart?

    • Avatar
      Reply
      NigelH
      March 3, 2019 at 6:17 pm

      My understanding (and I may be mistaken) is that although this looks very similar to to the Minox, that’s only because it the same designer. Otherwise it’s a different camera built by Balda. I don’t know about the Minox problems but if the above is true then I would suspect that this has its own problems 🙂

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