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The Photorette is a camera for 31mm-square images on 35mm cine film, made in Austria by the Photorette Apparate GmbH (Photorette Camera Company Ltd) from around 1923.[1]

The only example of the camera seen was sold at Westlicht;[2] The camera has a 42mm f/6.8 Laack Polynar, with three aperture settings (fixed apertures in a swinging plate), f/6.8, f/9 and f/12.5, set with a knob below the lens. The camera has an everset shutter, which is shown in the patent sketches with speeds 1/25 - 1/250 second, plus 'B'. The camera has a focus control set in the top; the focus dial turns an eccentric wheel inside the camera, which pushes a slotted plate, attached to the lens/shutter unit, forward or back. The focus scale goes down to 0.3 metre. There is a wire frame viewfinder, which slides into the shutter housing when not in use. This has a 'targetting aid'; a peephole on a folding arm at the back of the camera, to show the correct eye position. Both parts of the finder are missing in the example at Westlicht, but the holes for it in the shutter unit can be seen.

The film is fed by a sliding, toothed plate attached to a button protruding through a slot in the back of the camera. It passes from one cartridge to a second one. There is also a frame counter on the back; up to 70 images may be taken on one roll.


  1. Austrian Patent 99498, Photographische Kamera, applied for in September 1923 and granted in March 1925, and French Patent 588619, Appareil photographique, applied for in September 1923 and granted in May 1925; both at Espacenet, the patent search facility of the European Patent Office.
  2. Photorette, with 42mm f/6.8 Laack Polynar, sold together with a similar camera, also Austrian and from the same time, the Amourette, at the 25th Westlicht Photographica Auction (now Leitz Photographica Auction) in March 2014. The example is in poor condition, with the shutter speed selector broken and viewfinder missing.