Nissei is a brand of Japanese leaf shutters, about which little is known.

Early Nissei[]

The early Nissei shutter has been found on one isolated example of the Roavic (with T, B, 1–400 speeds)[1] and on a Flora 6×6cm prototype camera (with T, B, 1–500).[2] In both cases, the cameras have a Nissei Anastigmat lens, with a low three-digit serial number. They were certainly made in the immediate postwar period.

The casing of the Nissei is surrounded by a herringbone pattern, recalling a double helical gear. The name NISSEI is engraved at the bottom of the rim, and there is a small nameplate screwed above the lens. This plate is engraved n.m.k. Nissei, at least on the shutter found on the Roavic — this surely indicates that the shutter was manufactured by the company using these "n.m.k." initials as a logo. The same initials also appear at the front of the Flora's top casing.


The Nissei-Rapid (ニッセイラピッド) shutter was advertised on the Mizuho Six V and Ofuna Six c.1953–4, with B, 1–500 speeds.[3] At least one example, found on an Ofuna Six, might have 1/400 top speed instead.[4] The external aspect is quite different from the previous Nissei, and the two shutters are perhaps unrelated.

Current Nissei companies[]

Various Japanese companies are called Nissei. One of these is K.K. Nissei (㈱ニッセイ), which currently (2010) makes gears and gear motors under the GTR brand. This company was founded in 1942 as Nihon Mishin Hari Seizō K.K. (日本ミシン針製造㈱).[5] It was originally making needles for sewing machines, and was an offshoot of Nihon Mishin Seizō K.K. (日本ミシン製造㈱, currently Brother Industries, Ltd.).[5] However it only started making gears and other precision parts in 1955,[5] too late to account for the production of the Nissei shutters.

Another potential candidate is the company Nissei Technology K.K. (日精テクノロジー㈱), which currently (2010) makes lenses and precision parts. It was founded in 1923 as Tsujihana Seisakusho (辻花製作所) and became Nissei Kōgyō (日精工業) in 1953,[6] and could have made the Nissei-Rapid shutter.


  1. Example observed in an online auction.
  2. Example pictured in Sugiyama, item 3247.
  3. See Mizuho Six and Ofuna Six.
  4. Example pictured in this page. The top speed is not clearly legible on the picture.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Official history of the current Nissei GTR company.
  6. Corporate profile of the current Nissei Technology company.


In Japanese: