Mentor LF cameras : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Hi there,

I'm interested in a recent offer on, a 13x18 Mentor flatbed camera. However, I can't find any information about Mentor cameras on the net. I know, that Mentor was a East German manufacturer, but that is about all. Does anyone here has any information about Mentor and could give me a few pointers?


-- Martin Jangowski (, May 30, 2000


Martin, I looked at one of these about 7-8 mos. ago. Very Heavy duty machine. Great for studio/indoor use. Neat feature was a built-in focal plane shutter in the front standard. Speeds up to 1/125 if I remember correctly. Uses a non-standard type of back & holders. OOps, just checked your post again, the one I saw was the metric equivalent of 8x10, so I'm not sure how much of the info pertains to the smaller size. I believe I saw a folding field version in 13x18 size on e-bay awhile back.

Good luck, Eric

-- Eric Lohse (, May 30, 2000.

Dear Martin, I bougt in Rome, second hand, two Mentor large format cameras about three years ago. One is called Mentor Studio, 13x18 cm; the other is called Mentor Panorama, 18x24 cm. Mentor Kamerawerk factory was in the ex-DDR, and before the IIWW it was the most important producer of studio camera in Germany. The two cameras I mentioned are all-metal made; the Studio has a focal-plane shutter, and the Panorama has a front-standard shutter. They use the same lens standard, and normally they are supplied with Zeiss Tessar lenses, a complete serie from 180 mm to 360 mm focus lenght. They are very heawy (the Panorama is extremely heawy, and is a monorail; the Studio is folding, but requires a really sturdy tripod). The film holder are not of the normal standard; don't buy the camera if they cannot supply also a couple of doubler-sided film holders! The cameras and the Zeiss lenses are very good; I found some failure only in the self-timer knob.Just for your information, I paid 500 dollars for the Studio including two Zeiss lenses, in exellent conditions, but this price probably is too low for the non-roman market. Here we hawe a lot of polish people wich buy the camera in Poland (or in Russia) and sells them in the flee market of Romle, at a very convenient price. Regards, Franco

-- Franco Rallo (, June 06, 2000.

Hi Martin,

My reaction may be a little late for your purposes, but for anyone with an interest in Mentor camera's (and others) see: Here you will find brochures about former DDR manufactured camera's and noticing that your email address is located in Germany you probably will not have problems to read German!



-- Fred R. Stock (, July 21, 2002.

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