Photographica Pages

An online guide to collectable cameras and related stuff

Ihagee Exakta Varex VXIIa (VXIIb)

The Exakta Varex Iib with 58/1.2 Taika Harigon 

After six years, it was time to replace the VX Iia with a new model. Once an innovative camera which created a new market, it was primitive in comparison with everything else being offered at that time. Unfortunately, Ihagee did not have a new design, so they made a few small changes to the VX Iia and marketed it as the VX Iib.

Most of the changes were cosmetic, and even these were minor. The slow speed dial was restyled. The film speed reminder was eliminated, making room for an Ihagee logo to be engraved on the top cover. And the design of the tripod socket was changed.

Functionally, the rewind crank was given a folding lever. The shutter speed progression was changed to match the industry standard. The slow speed mechanism was improved again. The flash system was changed to accommodate FP style bulbs. The biggest functional change was to the finder system. The lock on the front was eliminated. The finder locked when you pushed it in, and a spring catch would release it when you pulled it out. Unfortunately, some times the finder would release at inopportune times and fall out. This was the only model without the lock, as it was reintroduced on succeeding models.

Although it was badly outclassed in the market, the VX Iib was in production until 1967 without any running changes made during production. Serial numbers ran from 1005000 to 1125000.

Like the previous Varex models, the Varex Iib was not sold in the US due to a trade name restriction  They were marked VX Iib.