Durst Automatica

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The Automatica is a 35mm viewfinder camera, made by Durst SA of Bolzano, Italy, from 1956 until 1963. The lens is a coated Schneider Durst Radionar 45 mm f/2.8 in a special Prontor SVS shutter. This has speeds 1 - 1/300 second, plus 'B', and an automatic setting, allowing the shutter speed to be controlled by the selenium meter via a part-electronic, part-pneumatic mechanism,[1] giving a very early instance of aperture priority automatic exposure. This is the same mechanism used by Agfa in the Automatic 66, although there are some differences; for example, on the Automatica, the film speed is set on the shutter body, whereas in the Agfa camera this setting is on the meter in the camera's top housing.


  1. German patent DE 923525 (C), lodged 1952 and granted 1954 to Julius & Gilbert Durst; at Espacenet, the Patent search facility of the European Patent Office.