1932 Minolta Semi

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1932 Minolta Semi

Unread postby mrgoodwood » Wed Jan 13, 2010 12:58 am

I recently got a 1932 Minolta Semi, but I can't find much info on them, or their value.
Any and all help is appreciated.


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David Kilpatrick
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Re: 1932 Minolta Semi

Unread postby David Kilpatrick » Wed Jan 13, 2010 1:44 am

The camera is not worth as much as it should be - it's the very first Minolta (named) and it does use film which you can buy now. The lens is a Tessar copy, and the camera is more or less a copy of a Zeiss Ikonta, which model I can not say precisely, but probably something like a 630/16. The main problem with the camera is the lack of lens coating and the very soft glass used for the front element - which also tends to discolor with age.


I'd value a mint and perfect boxed specimen with original paperwork at anything up to $500, but a normally used one with no box, no instructions, could be as low as $100. A realistic price would be $150-250 depending on condition.

The postwar versions have a single coated lens, but they are still not as valuable as 1950s Zeiss Ikonta or Voigtlander Bessa models, which are considered the best folding rollfilm cameras for continued use with colour film today.


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Re: 1932 Minolta Semi

Unread postby mrgoodwood » Wed Jan 13, 2010 1:26 pm

Thanks for the info and help!
I have a huge task ahead of me, as I am cleaning out the home I grew up in.
It's going on the market soon, and my Mom saved everything one person could possibly save in one house.
This camera is just one of the items.
There are THOUSANDS that I have no idea what any of them are worth.
The camera is in very good condition, and since Mom was a "saver" I'm sure I'll find all the paperwork that came with it.
When I get out the other camera's, I'm sure I will be back for more info.
This is a great site, and again thanks very much for your help!!


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Re: 1932 Minolta Semi

Unread postby Vidgamer » Fri Jul 11, 2014 3:49 am

My wife found a Minolta Semi II at a vintage camera dealer, who claimed it was late '30s, but it could be made in the '40s. I'm pretty sure she paid much less than $100. It's not in the best condition, and the shutter is about 1/3 the speed it should be, but it works. Well, it seems to -- I still haven't finished the first roll! Doh! It doesn't look like the lens is coated.

I hope most of the shots come out reasonably well, but I've had to guesstimate the timing and use an iPhone map for the metering and then I'm just not that good about keeping steady. It's fun playing with this old tech, and if it turns out decent results, I'll be impressed. It's pretty amazing to me that these mechanical devices can still work after so many years.

The Minolta has inspired me to look for something that works a bit better. I got an Agfa folder which has a more accurate shutter, so that's slightly easier to use.

Goodwood, what else did you find?

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