Amigo Werk

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Amigo-Werk was a label of the a German precision engineering company Gustav Amigo[1] based in Berlin.[2] Products principally associated with the company are loudspeakers[3] and movie cameras.

As far as can be ascertained, Amigo never produced their own optical glass for their movie cameras but bought in the lenses from third-party manufacturers, chiefly from Rüdersdorf (likewise based in Berlin). Despite this, documented are lenses inscribed both Amigo–Werk, Berlin and Amigo–Anastigmat (either in lowercase or in capital letters) have been observed on Japanese cameras of the late 1920s or early 1930s. They were reportedly mounted on Mikuni[4] and Rubies cameras in the 1920s.

List of known lenses

List of known lenses and attribution of cameras:[5]

  • Amigo-Anastigmat 10.5cm f/4.5
    • no. 51395, lowercase markings?, with a Vario shutter on a plate folder presented as a Voigtländer[6]
    • no. 52847, lowercase markings, with a Compur shutter on a plate folder presented as a Mikuni[7]
    • no. 53030, capital markings, with a Perfect shutter on an unknown camera[8]
    • capital markings, with a Vario shutter on a plate folder presented as a First[9]
    • no. 53099, capital markings, with a Vario shutter on a plate folder presented as a Rubies [10]
    • no. 53151, capital markings, with a Vario shutter on a plate folder presented as a Fuyōdō Rubies [11]
  • Amigo-Anastigmat 13.5cm f/4.5
    • no. 51160, capital markings, with a Vario shutter on an unknown plate folder[12]

List of known movie cameras

  • Amigo Model A (1921) tropical 35mm camera for 60m cassettes manufactured in 1921 fitted with
  • Amigo Model B (1921). 35mm film movie camera
  • Amigo Superb (1923). 35mm film movie camera
  • Amigo-Kino (1924). 35mm film movie camera with Rüo f/3.5[15]
  • Amigo Narrow (1932). 16mm film movie camera
  • Amigo Elektra (1933). Electric-powered 16mm film movie camera, fitted with Astro Berlin Tacharett Astro-Kino-Color IV f/1.5 25mm [16]
  • Amigo Elektra Olympic (1934). electric-powered 16mm film movie camera for 30m cassettes, fitted with an Anastigmat f/3.5 25mm. A 50mm lens was also available. [17]


  1. Gustav Amigo was a founding member of the Deutsche Kinotechnische Gesellschaft.—See also his involvement in setting standards for 35mm movie film.
  2. A systematic search of the address books of Berlin 1907-1940 failed to find an entry for 'Amigo-Werk' but found entries for a Gustav Amigo, Automatenhändler (merchant automatic machines) in Ritterstrasse 88, Berlin S42 listed in 1908 (Berliner Adreßbuch 1908. Erster Band. Einwohnerverzeichnis. Berlin: Verlag August Scherl Deutsche Adreßbuch-Gesellschaft, p. 28; 1909, p. 30) and then as Automatenfabrikant (maker of automatic machines) (1910, p. 31; 1911, p. 33). In 1912 he is listed at a new address in Brandenburgstrasse 48, Berlin S 42 (1912, p. 34). He moved again and from 1913 is listed as Automatische Apparate (automatic machines) in Stallscheiberstrasse 24-25, Berlin S14 (1913, p. 34; 1914, p. 36; 1915 not listed; 1916, p. 33); in 1917 he is listed as Mechaniker (mechanic) (1917, p. 32). In 1918 he moved to new premises and is listed as Feinmechanik (precision engineering) in Ritterstrasse 41, Berlin SW68 (1918, p. V Nachtrag; 1919, p 32; 1920 not listed; 1921, p. 34; 1922, p. 37; 1923 p. 37; 1925 p. 38; 1926 p. 36; 1927 p. 39). In 1928 he is listed at the same address but as Lautsprecherfabrikant (maker of loudspeakers) (1928, p.39). The year after the firm had moved to Fürstenstrasse 3, Berlin Kreuzberg S12 (1929, p. 40; 1931, p. 38; 1933, p. 31; 1934, p. 29). From 1935 Gustav Amigo is listed as 'Mechanische Werkstatt' (mechanical workshop) at the same address (1935, p. 30; 1936, p. 30; 1937, p. 31; 1938, p. 32; 1939, p. 31). In 1940 Gustav Amigo is no longer listed but a Manfred Amigo Metallwerkfabik continues at the same address (Manfred, presumably Gustav's son, is listed from 1935 to 1939 as trading in motor car accessories at the same address).—The company is listed among a compilation of Jewish firms in Berlin (Jüdische Gewerbebetriebe in Berlin 1930-1945) as a company founded in 1928 and liquidated in 1945.
  3. Amigo Dux speaker and Amigo Horn both in—Older grammophone speakers seen in a Polish on-line auction 2010.
  4. Lewis, p.44.
  5. This listing is continued here in its original form until the nature of the lenses has been ascertained for certain. Then these entries can be moved to endnotes.
  6. Ken Frecker Auction May 2004 Lot 2258
  7. Lens pictured in this page at Handmade and Classic Camera.
  8. Lens pictured in Tanimura, p.97 of Kurashikku Kamera Senka no.12.
  9. Lens pictured in Sugiyama, item 1042.
  10. Seen on Yahoo Auctions Japan, October 2012
  11. Pleasure Classic Lenses
  12. Lens observed in an online auction.
  13. Model A;Amigo movie camera via flickr; 35 mm Filmkameras aus frühen Zeiten.
  14. Photo Rahn Auction 22 Lot 3 with Rüo Kino f/3.5 5 cm N°. 5778
  15. Frerk, Friedrich Willy (1927) Lichtbildkunde. Berlin: G. Hackebeil. p. 171.
  16. Katelle, Alan (2000) Home movies: a history of the American industry, 1897-1979. Transition Publishing. P. 381.
  17. Prospectus for the Amigo Elektra Olympic held in the Deutsche Kinemathek