Fifty Years of Fujifilm Mirrorless Medium Format Cameras

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Un Vaillant Martien

Yep, 51 actually. Back in the 1960s, unlike all its rivals in the medium format camera market at the time, Fujifilm decided to concentrate on rangefinder designs rather than reflexes. And, of course, rangefinder cameras are mirrorless, right?

As has been the philosophy behind the GFX 50S and now the 50R, Fujifilm’s key objective back then was to combine “carrying ease” with “handling speed” hence the decision to package the 6x9cm format in a 35mm-style rangefinder body.

The Fujica G690 was launched in March 1968 at the Tokyo Camera Show and went on sale in the December of that year. It was compact for a 6x9cm format camera and had interchangeable lenses. An internal mask covered the film gate when lenses were being changed. It had a coupled rangefinder and the viewfinder also incorporated frame lines which not only adjusted for parallax as the lens was focused, but also the…

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