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OPL was a French optical and mechanical company that made cameras from 1945 until at least 1967.
Société Optique et Précision de Levallois, S.A. (OPL) was founded in 1919, although its predecessor dated from 1911. It produced rangefinders, military, medical, and scientific optics, and the "Foca" and other rangefinder cameras, at Levallois (a Paris suburb) and Châteaudun (Eure et Loire).
OPL's main models were the Foca and later Foca Universel families of 35mm interchangeable lens rangefinder cameras, a French equivalent of the Leica or Contax that met some success in its home market because of the high prices for German cameras induced by the high customs duties of the time.
Sales fell off after 1961 and on 1 January 1964 OPL entered into an arrangement with Lumière. In December 1964, the company merged with Société d'Optique et de Mécanique de Haute Précision (SOM), maker of SOM-Berthiot lenses, to form Société d'Optique, Précision, Electronique et Mécanique (SOPEM, later Sopelem), now at Dijon.
35mm rangefinder system
- Foca PF1 or Foca * (painted)
- Foca Standard or Foca * (engraved)
- Foca Standard S
- Foca PF2 or Foca ** (painted)
- Foca PF2B or Foca ** (engraved)
- Foca PF3 or Foca *** (engraved)
- Foca PF3L
35mm fixed lens
- Focasport first series: I, IL, IC, IB, ID and II (1955-1962)
- Focasport second series: I, CF, C, IIF, IIC (1962-1964)
- Focamatic (1961-1964)
- Focasport third series: S, SC, SF (1964-1967)
6x6 rangefinder system
- Focasix, prototypes or pre-production models only
There are various excellent sites about Foca, of course in French:
- Roland Weber's site
- Gilles Delahaye's site
- The Foca page at Gérard Langlois site
- The Foca cameras and User manuals on www.collection-appareils.fr by Sylvain Halgand
- Lionel's OPL FOCA page at Camera Collection
- OPL page at Collection G. Even's site
- Princelle, Jean Loup. Foca Historica. Mialet, France: Éditions Cyclope, 1997. ISBN 2-910284-38-6.
- Vial, Bernard. Histoire des appareils français. Période 1940–1960. Paris: Maeght Éditeur, 1980, re-impressed in 1991. ISBN 2-86941-156-1.
- Optique & Précision de Levallois, June 1st, 2005 version of the en-Wikipedia article