120folder.com          Balda Super Baldax

The  Balda Super Baldax is a 120 film folding rangefinder camera, 6x6 format, built in the mid-1950s by Balda-Kamera-Werk, BŁnde. Before WWII the factory was based in Dresden, it produced a wide range of cameras. It's speciality was to produce cameras for many other firms, German and international, which sold them under their own brand.

The Super Baldax is the top model of a whole series, from a simple folder to this coupled rangefinder with automatic film advance and double exposure prevention. It's one of the smallest and lightest full featured folders.

Size (mm): 135 x 101 x 47
Weight: 700 g
Lens: Baldanar 3.5/80, closest focus ~ 1 m  |  variants: Scheider Radionar 80/2.9 and Ennit 80/2.8
Shutter: Prontor SVS, B, 1 - 1/300, F 3.5 - 22
Finder: coupled rangefinder
Film advance: automatic, first frame via red window

Here are some photos of the camera. There is a short introduction to the use of it and how it feels at the bottom of the page.

Camera front closed. Top: rangefinder window, shutter button, viewfinder window,
opening button and film advance.

Seen from the back. On top: Film advance, film number reset, viewer. Red window in the middle.

Seen from above. Film advance, opening button, shutter release button, indicator for double exposure prevention and depth of the field calculator.

Seen from the bottom. Tripod socket.

Camera front open. Speed setting ring around the lens. Big lever: focusing. Little lever: shutter cocking. Camera opens sideways.

Seen from above, camera open. Focusing Lever at infinity. Tiny lever for aperture control at max. open.

Right side, camera open. Front (lens): shutter cocking lever, aperture scale, distance scale (feet). Under the film advance: film counter window.

Seen from the bottom, camera open. At the lens: synchro selector.

Camera back open.

Film chamber.

Original leather case.

Leather case open.

Handling a Balda Super Baldax is easy, it's like other folding rangefinders. Loading film is as usual, very easy because of the hinged film cradles. Open the camera back, retract the winding knob swing the cradle out and put the take-up spool into place. Same procedure for the film spool. Insert the film paper backing into the take-up spool and advance it using the knob until it's well engaged. The film winding requires alternate movements clockwise and counter-clockwise. Close the camera back. Open the red window and advance the film via the advance knob until the red window shows "1".
If the numer "1" isn't already in the film counter window, hold the reset lever and make a counter-clock movement until it shows. Resetting is important as the sophisticated mechanism has a compensation, according the turns to the film number, so spacing will always be correct.

Open the camera.
Cock the shutter, set speed and aperture. Set focus by the lever near the front of the lens, focusing moves the lens out. Press the shutter release button. That's it. The double exposure warning will be visible and the release is blocked until you turn the film advance. To close the camera, set focus to infinity, press the hinges of the struts as usual, it will fold easily. Turn the film advance first counter-clockwise and then clockwise. It stops automatically and shows the next number.

The Super Baldax is a very nice and quite sturdy camera, yet it is lightweight and easy to use, with good lenses and shutters. 
It's one of the smallest and lightest full featured folders.

Balda Super Baldax700135 x 101 x 47CAuto, DEPBaldanar 3.5/80 | ~ 1Prontor SVS, B 1 - 1/300 | 22