Any 35 mm. film, in the standard cartridge, will fit
the camera. Of course, you will choose a colour film -
first because the extreme realism of Stereo would lose
much of its effect in black and white - secondly, because
you need a transparent image, and the standard daylight
color reversal film is the easiest way to get it. A
negative colour film is less suitable.
Length of film: The films normally sold as 36
exposures will yield up to 75 stereo pairs. This length
might serve for vacations, a long trip etc.
Of course it offers the greatest economy - one or two
films might last the whole trip.
The 20 exposure films will yield 40 stereo-exposures
and is best for average use. Its economy is still so
great that you can afford to take the film out of the
camera when little more than half of it has been
Film speed: As you have lenses of adequate
power (f:2.8), you will not normally need highspeed color
films. Films of average-speed are more economical and
less sensitive to poor storage conditions.
The slower the film speed, the more detail and
sharpness your pictures will have.
1. Take the camera out of its case and check it is
empty. If the knurled knob (13) on top turns freely in
the direction of its arrow, there is no film in the
2. Unlock the camera by squeezing the two buttons (24)
together, swing cover to the right. Turn the take-up
spool (25) with a finger until the slot faces you. Lay
the camera face down in subdued light.
3. Take the film out of its container. About four
inches of film will emerge from the cartridge and from
most of this length the perforation has been cut away on
one side. Pull out about two more inches of film - this
part will be of the the full 35 mm. width, doubly
Take the cartridge in your left hand, the film tongue
in your right hand, perforation down. Now insert the film
tongue in the slot of the take-up spool (25) and make the
tooth (26) on one side of the slot engage the first
perforation. Turn the take-up spool one revolution with
your finger, so most of the tongue is tightly wound on
4. Stretch the film over the film channel and drop the
cartridge in the magazine on the left (30). Push up, so
that the shaft (29) engages the cartridge spool. Turn
rewind knob (13) a little to facilitate this. Turn the
take-up spool (25) a little more to tighten the film.
5. The full width of the film should now cover the two
sprocket wheels (27). Make sure that sprockets on both
sides are engaged in the perforations, then close
6. Press release button (14) and rapid wind button (1)
alternatively six times. This will bring fresh,
unfogged film in front of the two lenses. Allow the
rewind knob (13) to turn freely. This turning indicates
that the film is moving properly.
7. Set the exposure counter (21) to '0' by pressing
and turning to left or right. The window (20) will
indicate the number of exposures made.
Film speed setting: Turn the big central dial
(19) until an index (6) flanked by the letters ASA and
DIN appears. Hold one of serrated tongues (9) with a
fingertip or nail and turn the central dial (19) until
the index (6) points to the correct film speed either in
DIN (black scale) or ASA (green scale).
You can determine your film speed from the carton or
data sheet coming with the film.
You need never touch this setting again as long as you
use the same type or speed of film. Check occasionally to
make sure the setting has not been changed
Every quality-camera has means to regulate the amount
of light admitted to the film, depending on light
conditions and subject colour.
These consist of a diaphragm regulating the opening of
the lens (or lenses) and a shutter, regulating the time
of exposure. Normally each of these have to be set by two
separate dials and the best combination must be
The View-Master camera, too, has these means - but
only one single dial (19) to operate them. This dial
should simply be set for the amount of light that is
wanted on the film; the camera itself calculates and sets
the diaphragm and shutter time that are need -
Exposure setting outdoors: For easy adjusting,
with the camera strap around your neck, swing baseplate
up so that camera faces you upsidedown with the scales
you might need right side up.
Look at the three colour blocks (16) on the front -
they are not just a styling feature! Decide which of the
three matches best the overall colours of your subject,
the frame with the light, with the average or with the
Now look at the little window (17) in the block you
When you turn the exposure dial (19), four different
symbols will appear in succession.
- With bright sun from aside or slightly behind the
subject, use the 'hazy sun' symbol.
- For scenes in dull weather (if unavoidable!) under
open sky, use the 'shadow' symbol.
When you have placed the correct symbol in the correct
colour window, you are ready to take the picture. There
is nothing to forget - focus, lens-opening, shutter and
exposure-value have all been set perfectly,
automatically. Everything from about five feet will be in
- Shoot only from 2 hours after sunrise until 2
hours before sunset. Before or after colours will be
too red, too dark.
Holding the camera: Hold the camera firmly with
both hands. Make sure your fingers do not cover the
lenses. In the viewfinder (28) you will see a bright,
sharp line, framing your subject. Make sure the top and
bottom lines of this frame are perfectly horizontal.
- never turn a stereo camera on its side
(vertical format) or you will have to view your
pictures with the stereoscope (and your head!) on its
For really sharp pictures, steady yourself with feet
apart, press camera against nose for extra steadiness
and, - with your forefinger - squeeze the shutter button
(14) down without jarring camera.
It is a good idea to practise this with unloaded
camera in front of a mirror.
Again for sharpness, avoid excessive movement of your
subject or make it move towards or away from you.
Film advance: After you have tripped the
shutter, the rapid wind button (1) will pop up as soon as
you take your finger from the shutter button. It reminds
you that the film must be advanced before you can take
the next shot.
Simply press down the rapid wind button (1). This
- advance the exact amount of film;
- count the exposure;
- free the shutter button, which was locked to
prevent double exposure
The rapid wind button can best be pressed with the
thumb. For rapid sequence shooting, while looking through
the viewfinder without interruption, use the middle
finger for the shutter button (14) and the forefinger for
the rapid wind button (1). In this case, be especially
careful that there are no fingers in front of the lenses
or on top of the rapid wind button.
If the latter happens, it will not pop up and a blind
exposure (with the lenses covered) must be made to
prevent a double exposure.
Extra originals: Before you walk away from your
subject, consider if you will want extra pictures as
spares to give to friends etc. Remember, that your film
will not be copied or 'printed' but that the pictures in
your stereoscope will be on your own original film
(reversal processing). This is one reason for their
extreme reality. So, the best - and cheapest - way to
have spare pictures is to make them on the spot.
To have duplicates made afterwards, if it can be done,
will be more expensive and less satisfying.
Using an exposure meter: To help judging
exposure, especially in unusual conditions, an
exposure-meter will be useful - if you learn to use it
Follow manufacturer's instructions accurately. Read
the exposure value (all modern meters will have this
scale) and set exposure scale of camera (18) to this
number by turning dial (19).
Flash pictures: Indoor or whenever the light is
insufficient (exposure dial will not turn far enough,
clockwise) change to flash.
Any flash gun will work with the View-Master
camera (note: requires co-axial cable connection).
The modern, compact ones will slip into the accessory
shoe (8). Use blue flashbulbs, because you have daylight
colour films. Connect the flash cable to the 'M' outlet
(11) on top of the camera.
If you use electronic flash, connect its cable to the
'X' outlet (12).
Setting the camera for flash: Judge or measure
the distance of your subject from the flash holder. Turn
the exposure dial (19) until this distance (in meters -
black scale; or in feet - green scale) appears in window
(10) in front of blue arrow (5).
That's all! No 'guide numbers', no calculations,
nothing else to set.
Caution: if a red signal has appeared, partly
or wholly, in window (4), your subject is too far away
from the flash. Turn back the exposure dial until the red
signal just disappears. At that moment, the blue arrow
will indicate your maximum flash distance.
Non-standard flash: If most of your flash
pictures come out too light, whatever the cause
may be (high-efficiency flash unit, non-standard bulbs,
over-estimating distances, etc.) the correction is
simple. Instead of the blue arrow, use the index (5a) on
the side of the light colour block.
If your flash bulbs are mostly too dark, use
the index (5b) on the side of the dark colour
block instead of the blue arrow. The blue arrow should
generally be used for average blue flash bulbs (7000 -
9000 lumenseconds, such as the PF1-B, XM1-B, 5B, M5B
etc.) in average reflectors and for medium-sized
electronic flash units (60 - 90 Wattseconds).
For smaller blue flash bulbs (AG1-B) and small
electronic units, use index (5b). For very strong flash,
use index (5a).
Outdoor pictures with 'fill-in flash': To
brighten strong shadows (sun very high, on the side, or
even behind subject) you can use 'fill-in flash', like
the experts but without the usual complicated
- Set exposure dial (19) to match light conditions
and subject colour as if the sun were normally behind
- Read your flash distance at the blue arrow
- Put your flash unit at this distance from the
subject and take your picture
If you keep shooting until the very end of the film,
the rapid wind button (1) will meet a high resistance,
the rewind-knob will stop revolving and the exposure-
counter (20) will indicate a wrong figure. Also there are
chances that the film may be damaged and the last few
pictures double exposed.
It is therefore better to stop shooting at the last
exposure as indicated before:
For the 36-exposure film: stop at
For the 20-exposure film: stop at 40
Rewinding: The film must be wound back into the
cartridge before opening the camera.
- Press rewind button (3) and keep it pressed while
you rewind the film by turning rewind-knob (13) in the
direction of its arrow. You will feel the film tongue
snap loose from the take-up spool (25), after which
the rewind knob turns more freely.
- Open camera in subdues light and facing down (so
cartridge won't fall out), take out cartridge and put
it back in container.
Processing and mounting: Send the film to
processing station as advised by the film manufacturer or
Indicate clearly that the film must remain
Each stereo-pair must be cut out from the film and
inserted into two opposite pockets of a precision made,
empty View-Master reel.
There are three convenient ways to do this:
1. You can mount them yourself with the View-Master
film cutter and blank 'personal' reels. It is the
fastest, cheapest and most satisfying way.
The film cutter comes with full, easy-to-follow
instructions and will soon pay for itself.
2. Your dealer will have them mounted for you. You get
back all your usable pictures, in the order they have
been taken, seven per reel.
If you wish to, you can change the pictures from reel
to reel at will. To do this scratch-free, all you need is
a special pair of tweezers, the View-master
3. If none of the dealers in your area offer a
mounting service, any of them can give you the address of
the central View-Master Mounting Service in your country,
to which you send your film direct.
(note: options 2 and 3 are probably no longer
available. Contact a specialist 3D supplier - see
page - for up-to-date information)
All that remains to be done is to title each picture
carefully in the space provided on the blank reel and to
file the reels in View-Master albums or library boxes.
They will offer you and your friends many hours of
Tips for better
Exposure without scales - how
We explained that the View-Master Stereo Color Camera
has variable lens openings and variable shutter times
like other quality cameras - but their setting is
On the camera you will not even find scales for these
two values. For inquisitive readers, we mention then
Lens openings: 1:2.8 - 4 - 5.6 - 8 - 11 - 16 - 22,
Shutter times: 1/30 - 1/40 - 1/50 - 1/60,
Times shorter than 1/60 sec. are rarely needed and
greatly affect the efficiency of flashbulbs,
necessitating complicated flash calculations.
If you want to know exactly what lens opening and
shutter time you are using at given exposure value
settings - scale (18) - use this table:
As you see, you always use the shortest shutter time
(1/60 sec.) unless the light is so low that the lenses
reach their full opening - only then does the camera
shift itself from 1/60 sec. to 1/30 sec. gradually.
With your camera, there is no other reason to use
these longer shutter times - such as insufficient depth
of focus - see Depth of Focus.
Now you know why you only have to feed information
about light conditions to the camera, which then takes
care of the ideal settings all by itself!
Depth of Focus
Maybe you wonder why nowhere in this manual are any
measures mentioned for keeping your subject in sharp
The reason is that here, too, the camera largely takes
care of itself. The extreme short focal length of your
lenses (20 mm.) makes focussing unnecessary and
guarantees that under average taking conditions
everything from about five feet (1.50 meters) is
perfectly sharp. Even if objects closer than this
distance can be pictured sharp (see table below) it is
unadvisable, with any stereo-camera of standard
lens-separation (about 2.5 inches or 65 mm.) to approach
any subject closer than four feet. Eye strain in viewing
(especially in stereo projection) may result.
As old hands in photography know, the depth-of-focus
depends on the lens opening setting. So, if you want to
know the point at which sharp focus starts at various
camera settings, use this table.
Choosing your colour
Light Subjects: People in white or
light-coloured clothes, all unusually light-coloured
objects; also snow scenes, beach scenes, open seascapes,
scenes with white buildings or on white platforms - even
if the people or objects in these scenes are only
Average Subjects: All average-coloured persons,
fabrics, objects etc. in average surroundings
(landscapes, wide streets and squares, open fields,
Dark Subjects: Dark-coloured complexions,
fabrics, objects; dark foliage or leafless trees, dark
buildings, narrow streets and corners.
- Whenever in doubt, use 'average'
- When judging the colour group of your subject, be
certain to do this independently of the light
conditions. The choice of the colour block (16) only
depends on the subject as it is, the choice of the
symbol (17) inside its window only on the light that
falls on the subject.
Checking of Film Speed
As all colour-film speed ratings are based on
undefined interpretations of laboratory tests and not
practical results, the film manufacturer's
recommendations how to expose under standard conditions
are more reliable than their indicated film speed.
(this may not be the case now ).
To check on this, act as follows:
- Establish from their data sheet what Exposure
Value the film makers recommend for average subjects
in bright sun from behind the camera (for
instance: E.V. 13).
- Set the exposure dial (19) so that the central
window (17) shows the symbol for bright sun.
- Read the Exposure Value (18) (for instance: E.V.
- In case the two Exposure Values are not the same,
change the film speed setting (6) until they are
identical (for instance: from 18 to 16 DIN)
Non-Standard Flash II
When you use completely non-standard flash, as in
professional use, the simple correction described before
will not be sufficient.
If you still want to benefit from the easy
flash-distance scale (10), use the same reversed method
as described above (Checking on film
speed ratings) to find the proper film speed
Example: You use Kodachrome type F film and PF5
(clear) flashbulbs. Your guide number is 88 (product of
distance in feet and lens opening). This means that with
the flash distance set at 11 feet, the lens opening must
be f-8, for which the View-master camera must be set at
Exposure Value 12.
These two settings will only correspond when the film
speed is set at 50 ASA (18 DIN). So, set the camera for
this film speed and your flash-distance scale will work
Note for connoisseurs: The M-delay of the View-master
stereo color camera is set at 12 milliseconds, with the
remarkable result that modern flashbulbs (time to peak 15
- 21 milliseconds, duration at half-peak to to 15
millisec.) are used, for all practical purposes, at full
efficiency at all shutter times (same as open flash).
Adjusting for Sun's
All day in winter, and early in the morning or late
afternoon in summer, the sun is lower and weaker than
usual. Compensate as follows:-
a) snow scenes in the mountains: no adjustment
b) all other scenes
- Match colour subject and light conditions as
- Read the Exposure Value (18).
- Turn the dial until this value is one point
When illumination is low (twilight, indoors, flood- or
spotlights) and you do not want to use flashlight,
proceed as follows:
- Take camera out of case, put it on a tripod at
- Screw in a cable release at (2).
- Swing lever (22) on B.
- Determine correct exposure (in lens opening and
shutter time) or Exposure Value. The best way for this
is an exposure meter, preferably a photo-electric one.
In case the meter reads in Exposure Values, the camera
has to be set as follows:
- These settings are for the shortest practical time
exposures by cable release (1 sec. or longer). If you
prefer smaller lens openings, set the Exposure Value
(18) 1 or 2 points higher, and expose two or four
times longer respectively.
- For meter readings of 8 or higher, you can make
pictures free-handed in the usual manner.
- After finishing your time exposures, swing the
B-lever (22) back to neutral. You can't forget,
because you will have difficulty in putting the camera
back in its case with the lever on B. Once in the case
it will not be possible to swing the lever to B
- For photoflood and studio lamps, use type A or B
color films. Carefully follow the instructions that
come with the film. Flourescent-tube lighting is not
If you want to expose several times without winding
the film (multiple flash, fireworks, 'ghost' and
trick-photography) here's what you should do:
When making the first exposure, hold the rapid-wind
button (1) down and keep it down. As long as you
keep it down (with a rubber band if necessary) you can
make as many exposures as you want without moving the
film. Release the rapid-wind button before the last
Better Flash Pictures
If your flash exposures are irregular (some too dark,
some too light) the chances are that you have difficulty
in judging the correct distance of your subject. Use a
tape measure or, more convenient, and photographic
rangefinder you can buy or happen to have. If your flash
unit screws into the bottom of your camera (23), you can
slip the rangefinder in the accessory shoe (8).
Use of Filters
Filters are seldom needed for colour photography. If
you want to use filters, according to the instructions of
the film manufacturer, you need slip-on filters, size 27
mm., or series V filters in adaptor rings 1 1/16
Keep Your Lenses Clean . .
. . . this will keep your pictures brilliant. Use a
soft chamois leather or lens-tissue and wipe the
protective filters (15), in front of the lenses,
carefully. Clean the front and rear lenses of the
viewfinder in the same way. To clean the rear lenses
inside the camera, set central dial (19) to 8, ever (22)
to B and press the shutter button (14). Use only a soft
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