Kodak Duo Six-20
The Duo Six-20 is a 4.5×6 horizontal folder made by Kodak AG from 1934 to 1940. As the name implies, it utilized 620 roll film.
The original model has a folding optical finder (though some f/4.5 models had a simple frame finder without optics) and a key for film advance on the left of the top plate. On the right side of the top plate is a depth of field calculator dial. Informally referred to as the "art deco" model, the top plate is painted black and metal parts are nickel plated. Produced from 1934 to 1937, it originally sold for $57.50 (app. $900 USD in 2007).
|Kodak Duo 620|
with 7.5cm f/4.5 Kodak Anastigmat lens
image by Jack Hufnagel (Image rights)
The Duo Six-20 Series II, has modified folding struts, a chromed top plate and metal parts, an advance knob replacing the original key, and an accessory shoe (USA models only). The shutter release was moved from the lens mount (where the cable release socket remained) to the top plate.
The Series II cameras have been found labled as both Duo 620 (an early 1937 example with f/4.5 Kodak lens) and as Kodak Duo Six-20 Series II (a 1938 example with f/3.5 Kodak lens).
Produced from 1937 to 1939, the Series II model also originally sold for $57.50 USD.
The non-rangefinder Duo-620 was available in two shutters, the Compur and the Compur Rapid. A number of different lenses were offered:
- Zeiss Tessar f/3.5 7cm
- Schneider Xenar f/3.5 7.5cm
- Schneider Xenar f/4.5 7.5cm.
- Kodak Anastigmat f/3.5 7.5cm
- Kodak Anastigmat f/4.5 7.5cm
|Kodak Duo Six-20 Series II|
with 7.5cm f/3.5 Kodak Anastigmat lens
by John Hufnagel
The f/4.5 lenses utilized front element focusing, while the f/3.5 lenses were unit-focusing.
There is some confusion over the origins of the Kodak Anastigmat lenses on cameras on cameras imported to the United States. There are numerous claims that the lenses are simply re-branded Xenars, while Kodak (in 1938) clearly described the f/3.5 lens as a triplet. To further complicate the issue, the f/4.5 model pictured here has a triplet lens, while the f/3.5 model pictured has a 4 element lens like the Xenar.
There is a rare rangefinder model evolved from the Series II, with a combined range- and view-finder under the top housing. This model's introduction occured in the same month that Germany invaded of Poland (September of 1939.) Few of these cameras were made, as all camera production was halted by Kodak AG for war materials production in mid 1940. It originally sold for $84.50( app. $1300 USD in 2007).
The rare RF model appears to have been sold in the United States only, with a Compur Rapid shutter and a Kodak Anastigmat f/3.5 7.5cm.
- History of Kodak Cameras at www.kodak.com
- Kodak Lenses and Shutters
- McKeown, James M. and Joan C. McKeown's Price Guide to Antique and Classic Cameras, 12th Edition, 2005-2006. USA, Centennial Photo Service, 2004. ISBN 0-931838-40-1 (hardcover). ISBN 0-931838-41-X (softcover). P. 491.
- Brian Coe, Kodak Cameras - The First Hundred Years, Hove Foto Books, 1988
- Duo Six-20 story and article about Amelia Earhart's camera at Kodak Classics by Mischka Koning
- Duo Six-20 with rangefinder at Pacific Rim's Photographica pages
- Classic folding rollfilm cameras, a page by Ross Alford with a picture of a Duo Six-20 Series II
- Two pictures of a Duo Six-20 Series II in Nina Terese's Flickr page: here and here
- History of Kodak Cameras at Kodak's website