The Hobix is a series of fixed-focus cameras using Bolta film, made by Tougodo in the 1950s.
First generation: original Hobix
The original Hobix was perhaps made around 1949. It has a rounded metal body and takes 25×25mm exposures. The top plate is removable for film loading. It is attached by a screw at the left end — as seen by the photographer. The film advance knob is at the top left, and has a manual exposure counter around the base. There is also a red window in the back. The viewfinder is contained in a short casing extending towards the right. The name HOBIX is inscribed above, together with Tougodo's TG logo and the initials T.G.C.W. (surely for Tougo Camera Works).
The everset shutter has B and I settings selected by a lever at the top, and is tripped by a small lever on the right. Its front plate is marked HOBIX at the top and MADE IN OCCUPIED JAPAN at the bottom. The lens is a simple meniscus, approximately corresponding to a 35mm f/9.
The original Hobix with removable top plate is extremely rare, and the only picture observed so far is in an article by Takesaki in Kurashikku Kamera Senka.
The models of the second generation were made from about 1951 to 1954, after the original Hobix. All have the same main body with rounded edges, longer than the earlier model. The back is hinged to the right, and locked by a sliding bar on the right. It contains a red window protected by a horizontally sliding cover. The advance knob is at the top left, and again has a manual exposure counter at the base.
The plain Hobix takes 24×24mm exposures. Its viewfinder is contained in a top housing extending to both ends of the top plate. There is an accessory shoe on the right. The name HOBIX is inscribed above the finder, together with the TG logo and T.G.C.W. initials.
The everset shutter gives B, 25, 50, 100 speeds, selected by an index at the top. Its front plate is marked HOBIX at the top and COMPLETE at the bottom. The lens is said to have f/4.5 maximal aperture and Waterhouse stops. The focal length is about 38mm.
images by eBayer Yalluflex (Image rights)
- Asahi Camera (アサヒカメラ) editorial staff. Shōwa 10–40nen kōkoku ni miru kokusan kamera no rekishi (昭和10–40年広告にみる国産カメラの歴史, Japanese camera history as seen in advertisements, 1935–1965). Tokyo: Asahi Shinbunsha, 1994. ISBN 4-02-330312-7. Items 825–32, 836 and 1554.
- Sugiyama, Kōichi (杉山浩一); Naoi, Hiroaki (直井浩明); Bullock, John R. The Collector's Guide to Japanese Cameras. 国産カメラ図鑑 (Kokusan kamera zukan). Tokyo: Asahi Sonorama, 1985. ISBN 4-257-03187-5. Items 4205–17 and 4219.
- Takesaki Harutoshi (竹崎春年). "Boruta-han kamera no subete [katarogu]" (ボルタ判カメラのすべて[カタログ], All Bolta-size cameras [catalogue]). In Kamera Rebyū: Kurashikku Kamera Senka (カメラレビュー クラシックカメラ専科) / Camera Review: All about Historical Cameras no.21, June 1992. No ISBN number. Kurashikku kamera daikenkyū (クラシックカメラ大研究, studies on classic cameras). Pp.95–105.
- Takesaki Harutoshi (竹崎春年). "Sonota no Boruta-han katarogu" (その他のボルタ判カタログ, Bolta-size catalogue: others). In Kamera Rebyū: Kurashikku Kamera Senka (カメラレビュー クラシックカメラ専科) / Camera Review: All about Historical Cameras no.51, June 1999. ISBN 4-257-13024-5. Kurashikku kamera supesharu (クラシックカメラスペシャル, issue about miscellaneous classic cameras). Pp.90–3.
- Instruction manual for the Hobix S1 at www.collection-appareils.fr (in French)