The Supreme lenses were made by Orion, predecessor of Miranda Camera.
Lenses in Leica screw mount
Universal Supreme 5cm f/3.5
The Universal Supreme 5cm f/3.5 is only known from an article by Orima Isamu in Kurashikku Kamera Senka. In this document, it appears on a viewfinder-only Chiyoca 35, which was passed to the author by Ogihara Akira (荻原彰), founder of Orion. No other example is known, and the lens was perhaps a prototype. The serial number is 510418 — the two first digits might indicate that the lens was produced in 1951.
The lens is probably coupled to the rangefinder but this is not confirmed. The lens owner reports that it has three elements, judging from the number of reflections; this is however strange on a 5cm f/3.5 lens in Leica screw mount, where one would expect a Tessar formula with four elements.
The barrel is collapsible and has an all chrome finish. The rear part with the focusing ring is inspired by the Leitz Elmar 5cm f/3.5. Focus is driven by a tab with an infinity lock. The focusing scale is engraved in metres and goes down to 1.25m or closer. The front part is inspired from the Elmar 5cm f/2.8, and has the aperture scale on the side, graduated from 3.5 to 16. The lens has two screw threads for filter or hood attachment: an inner one around the lens bezel and an outer one. The lens bezel is engraved Universal Supreme 1:3.5 f=5cm No.xxxxxx in black on a chrome background.
Orion Seiki Supreme 3.5cm f/3.5
The Orion Seiki Supreme 3.5cm f/3.5 is only known from a lens sold at auction in 2008. It has an all chrome rigid barrel. The focusing ring has a tab and an infinity lock, and is coupled to the rangefinder. The distance scale is engraved in feet, from ∞ to 3½ft. The aperture ring is at the front of the barrel, and is graduated from 3.5 to 16. The lens rim is engraved Orion Seiki Supreme 1:3.5 f=3.5cm No.xxxxxx in black on a chrome background. The serial number of the only example known so far is 510464, only slightly later than that of the Universal Supreme 5cm f/3.5 — the two first digits are again probably related to the year of production.
To be continued.
- Orima, pp.104–6 of Kurashikku Kamera Senka no.24.
- The lens was found on a viewfinder-only camera, hence the doubt.
- Orima, pp.105 of Kurashikku Kamera Senka no.24.
- In the available pictures, the focusing tab perhaps hides the minimum distance.
- Lens sold as lot no.397 of auction no.14 (November 30, 2008) by Westlicht.
- Orima Isamu (織間勇). "Puāmanzu Raika o mezashita ga: Chiyoka 35" (プアーマンズライカを目ざしたが・チヨカ35, The Chiyoca 35, a would-be poor man's Leica). 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.24, March 1993. No ISBN number. Leica Book '93: Barunakku-gata Raika zukan (バルナック型ライカ図鑑, album of screw-mount Leica cameras). Pp.104–6. (Shows a Universal Supreme 5cm f/3.5 on a Chiyoca 35. The camera and lens were passed to the author by Ogihara Akira [萩原彰], creator of the Miranda camera.)
- Past sales by Westlicht:
- Supreme 3.5cm f/3.5 in Leica screw mount: lot no.397 of auction no.14 (November 30, 2008)
- Supreme 10.5cm f/2.8 lens head with Mirax reflex housing: lot no.365 of auction no.9 (May 20, 2006)
- Supreme 10.5cm f/2.8 in focusing barrel with Mirax reflex housing: lot no.398 of auction no.14 (November 30, 2008)
- Supreme lens head with Mirax and Focabell among rare items, among Focabell bellows and among macro lenses, at the Miranda Camera website (the lens is listed as a 105/3.5 on some places, certainly by mistake)