|Metropolitan - 35mm microfilm camera operator at work|
image by Queensland State Archives (Image rights)
Microfilm cameras are high precision cameras which were used in industry and administration for long=term preservation of construction plans and documents, or simply to resolve lack of space in paper archives. Even computer data had been transferred onto microfilm to fulfil administrative document preservation policies. The developed document photographs are called microfiches - if on flat sheet film, or microfilm when on film rolls. For pharmacies and other businesses product catalogues on microfiche or film were popular. Microfiche readers looked a little bit like computer monitors. Microfilm cameras for big archiving projects must be photographic machines that allow high exposure frequencies.
One example is the Zeiss Ikon document registration camera made in 1937. With its partially automated film advance up to 1000 exposures could be made within one hour. At the same time the company offered the microfiche reader Ikoskop.
Nowadays digital scanners with document databases have replaced microfilm systems.
Microfilm camera makers
Microfiche reader makers
- Microphax (portable readers)
- Zeiss Ikon