An overview of Miranda 35mm SLR camera models
List of models (excluding sub-types)
The lineage of Miranda models is fairly complex, due to the chronological overlap between different families and related generations of cameras.
- 1) 1956 - T
- 1) 1957 - T II
- 2) 1958 - A
- 2) 1959 - B
- 1) 1959 - S / S II
- 2) 1959 - C
- 2) 1960 - D / DR
- a) 1960 - Automex
- a) 1962 - Automex II
- 3) 1963 - F
- 3) 1964 - FM
- a) 1964 - Automex III
- 3) 1965 - G
- b) 1966 - Sensorex
- 3) 1967 - Fv
- 4) 1969 - Sensomat
- b) 1969 - Sensorex C
- 4) 1971 - Sensomat RE / RS
- c) 1971 - Sensorex EE
- b) 1972 - Sensorex II
- 4) 1975 - Sensomat RE II
- d) 1975 - dx-3
- c) 1976 - Sensorex EE-2
1) The first family (1956 to 1959) were the
knob winders (comprising the Miranda T, T II, S and S II).
They had no meters, a non-return mirror, and lenses were pre-set (non-auto diaphragm) with a 44mm screw mount. The shutter speed dial spun round when the shutter was released. A major Miranda feature was the interchangeable viewfinder system. All these models had tall film advance knobs. These cameras are the rarest of all Mirandas.
2) The second generation (1958 to 1962) were the
lever winders (comprising the Miranda A, A II, B, C, D and DR).
They mainly differed from the previous generation by having a lever operated film advance, and split-image rangefinders. The Miranda B introduce an instant return mirror. The shutter release on the front of the camera body allowed the mounting of lenses with an external automatic diaphragm (known as a Pressure Automatic Diaphragm or PAD), whereby pressing the release button on the lens arm closed-down the diaphragm and then further pressure pushed the camera shutter release. The lens mount was changed to a four-claw bayonet, whilst also retaining the 44mm screw fitting.
3) The third generation (1963 to 1968) were the
modernised lever winders (comprising the Miranda F, FM, G and Fv).
These cameras had an additional and more conventional shutter release in the top plate. They supported new lenses with an internal automatic diaphragm, while retention of the front shutter release maintained compatibility with older PAD lenses. A fixed shutter speed selector no longer spun when the shutter was tripped, and there where a new selection of metering accessories: the shutter speed coupled clip-on, the direct measuring prism meter, and TTL prism meter.
4) The fourth generation (1969 to 1975) were the
Sensomats (comprising the Miranda Sensomat, RE, RS and RE II).
These had built-in stop-down, TTL metering (except for the RS). The last model - the RE II - was compatible with the newer EC lenses developed for the Auto Sensorex models, and to some degree converged the two families of cameras.
The Sensomat RE was slightly modified in 1974 to produce the Miranda TM, Soligor TM, and Pallas TM (plus a TM II). The significant change was that these cameras had a Praktica M42 lens mount.
a) The second family (1960 to 1964) started with the
The Automex and Automex II provided an internal diaphragm control, and a new series of lenses with an external small aperture coupling arm, which mates the aperture setting ring on the lens with the camera meter to provide match needle metering. This was direct measurement (i.e. not TTL) metering, and built into the camera body. The meter cell was placed above the lens on the front of the prism housing, which resulted this viewfinder system not being interchangeable with other series camera bodies. The range retained the body front shutter release, without a second top plate release. The Automex III had a CdS cell on the body in place of the selenium cell.
b) The (1966 to 1972)
Sensorexes (comprising the Miranda Sensorex, C and II) were successors to the Automex.
They had full aperture TTL metering, but retained the same viewfinder system, where a distinctive decorative plate covered the cut-out that had once housed the external Selenium cells. These cameras required the maximum aperture of the lens to be dialled-in to the camera to allow open aperture metering. The last 1972 model – the Sensorex II – adopted the revised viewfinder system of the final type of Miranda, and was compatible with the newest E lenses.
c) The penultimate cameras were the
The 1971 Auto Sensorex EE offered shutter priority auto exposure, and selectable spot metering, facilitated by the new E lens, which omitted the external arm of the Sensorex range. The front of body shutter release finally ceased to be a Miranda feature. The EE was modestly updated as the 1976 EE2.
d) Although Miranda produced one further camera type – the 1975 dx-3 – this followed a radically different design whereby electronics replaced mechanical systems, and it abandoned some features that had long been associated with Miranda cameras (such as the removable viewfinder).
The evolving line of cameras had differing lenses. From the outset, Miranda cameras aimed to provide maximum compatibility with other manufacturer's lenses. There is significant backwards compatibility between older cameras and newer lenses, although obviously the new lens features (e.g. automatic diaphragms) do not work on older camera bodies.
- Preset M44 screw lenses for the T and S.
- PAD type lenses for the A, B, C, D, F and G, with a four-claw bayonet mount.
- Sensomat type lenses. These had an automatic diaphragm.
- Automex I & II lenses. These had two new coupling mechanisms: an internal diaphragm closing mechanism was moved behind the lens (for stop-down metering), and an aperture setting ring with a small additional arm on the left side which connected to a matching arm on the camera body, which transferred information to the camera meter.
- Automex III & Sensorex lenses. These had an internal fully automatic diaphragm for open aperture metering, but still retained the external arm of the first Automex types.
- E lenses for the Sensorex EE. The external arm of the Sensorex range of lenses was dropped, and separate stop-down preview lever was incorporated. E lenses continued to use a four-claw bayonet mount.
- EC lenses for dx-3, EE-2, RE-II. These were a more compact design.
• The first set - labelled VF-1, VF-2 and VF-3 - fit all the early models up to the Fv, Sensomats, and TMs.
• The second set was for the Automex and Sensorex models, which were also (unhelpfully) labelled VF-1, VF-2 and VF-3.
• The third set was for the Sensorex II, EE and EE-2. These were labelled VFE-1, VFE-2 and VFE-3.
• Metered TTL and non-TTL prisms were made for the F, Fv and G, but worked with all previous models too.
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