Misuzu Kōgaku Kōgyō K.K. (三鈴光学工業㈱) was a Japanese company based in Azusawa, To


The company was founded by Mr. Suzuki (鈴木正一) at an unknown date. Misuzu Kōgaku hired Arae Taikichi (荒江泰吉), designer of the Altair SLR prototype announced in early 1955 by Arae Kōgaku, certainly after he abandoned that ambitious project. Before entering the company, Arae was making the Altair bright screens on his own account — these were originally designed by his friend Kurebayashi Juichi (樽林寿一). Prior to that, he worked on binoculars at Tōkyō Kōgaku.

The production of the bright screens was taken over by Misuzu, under the same Altair brand name, and Arae presumably developed Misuzu's Altax binocular line.

In September 1957, Misuzu Kōgaku released the Alta, a Leica copy. This camera was produced by the former manager of the Reise factory, maker of the Chiyotax, who entered Misuzu with a team of workers, certainly after he lost financial backing from the distributor Chiyoda Shōkai.

The Alta camera was an evolution of the Chiyotax IIIF, and was already viewed as backward when it was released. It was not a commercial success, and was abandoned in mid-1958. After that date, the company prospered for some time by producing bright screens for 35mm SLR cameras, evolved from the original Altair screens for TLR cameras. Its final fate is unknown.

At least one source suggests a connection between Misuzu Kōgaku Kōgyō and Misuzu Shōkai. This is wrong, and the Japanese characters used in the two names are completely different (Misuzu is 美篶 for the trading company and 三鈴 for the camera maker).