Ica Ideal is a large format film folding bed camera made by ICA and produced between 1924-26. Ideal is a continued model made by ICA that originally launched in 1908 as Hüttig's Ideal.[1]

There were various format models and lens/shutter combinations of the ICA Ideal. It was equipped with an Ica auto shutter X, an Ica auto shutter XI, or a Compur shutter. A Dominar Anastigmat or a Carl Zeiss Jena Tessar 1:4.5 13.5 cm or 15 cm was delivered with the Compur shutter. The whole lens/shutter unit could be replaced easily by another.

When opened the front standard had to be pulled along the rails of the folding bed until it snapped in at the position for focusing infinity. Other distances could be set through releasing the standard from its infinity position by pressing the distance scale inwards and turning the knurl for moving the standard forward. The specialty of this camera was its option to change the right angle position of the folding bed to a smaller or larger alternate angle. That feature meant ability of image plane tilt movement for architecture image improvement. Of course this feature needed ground glass focusing. The camera also had a brilliant finder with spirit level for snapshot photography with folding bed in right angle.

ICA Ideal 205 06
ICA Ideal 205 05
ICA Ideal 205 07

Some features[]

Data belongs to the camera in the photo on top of the article.

  • Film: glassplate, frame size 9x12cm
  • Engraving on the hand grip: Ideal
  • Stamping in the front plate: ICA
  • ICA logo on the speeds dial
  • Lens: Zeiss Tessar 135mm f/4.5, filter slip-on
    • Aperture: up to f/32 setting: lever and scale behind the lens-shutter assembly
    • Focus range: 7 feet to inf , (on single extension position)
    • Focusing: bellows focusing, by a wheel on the front cover, distance scale on the front cover
  • Shutter:Compur, speeds: 1-1/200, + T & B, setting: speed and T B I setting dials on front of the lens-shutter assembly
  • Shutter release: lever on the lens-shutter assembly
  • Cocking lever: lever on the lens-shutter assembly
  • Cable release socket: on the lens-shutter assembly
  • Viewfinders: brillinat finder that turns to left 90 degrees on its own axis for landscape pictures, w/ sprit level, and big frame sports finer w/ folding peep-sight frame on the left side of the camera
  • Bellows: leather, double extension, slides vertically and horizontally by micrometer knobs on the lens standard for parallax correction
  • Front cover and bellows opening: by a knob on the right upper side of the camera, (it is under the covering); closing: press the struts downwards
  • Flash PC socket: none
  • Back cover: as a ground glass screen with hood or plate film assembly, opens by a latch on top of the camera
  • Tripod sockets: three, one on the nright side of the camera, other two on the front cover
  • Hand grip lugs
  • Body: metal, leather covered; Weight: 1333g

Notes and references[]

  1. McKeown's pp.416-17