Agfa's Rapid film system, which used 35mm film, appeared in 1964 as a rival to Kodak's 126 film. The film was supplied in special metal cassettes. Whereas the Rapid system used a standard film pressure plate, 126 relied on the close tolerances of its cartridge to hold the film flat. Compared to standard 35mm film, the Rapid system was easier to load, since the film did not have to be threaded onto a take-up spool. The new full cassette is simply placed in one side of the film chamber with its leader protruding, and an empty cassette in the other side. Then the camera is closed and can be used after winding to the first exposure; the film feeds into the empty cassette. The film does not need to be rewound. At the end of the roll, the now-empty cassette is moved to the other side and used as the take-up cassette for the next roll.

The Rapid film system was not entirely new, but a modification of Agfa's Karat film cartridge system of the mid-1930s. The Rapid system had the added capability of setting the camera's autoexposure mechanism (if any) to the proper film speed automatically, as did the 126 cartridge.

A similar system to the Rapid cartridge was made in East Germany, called SL System.

Rapid film cameras[]

  • Agfa ISO-Rapid I
  • Agfa Isoflash-Rapid I
  • Agfa Optima-Rapid 100 C
  • Agfa Optima-Rapid 125 C
  • Agfa Optima-Rapid 150
  • Agfa Optima Rapid 250
  • Agfa Optima-Rapid 500 V
  • Agfa Silette Rapid
  • Agfa Silette Rapid L
  • Agfa Silette Rapid F
  • Agfa Silette Rapid I
  • Agfa Isette Rapid
  • Agfa Isoly Rapid
  • Canon Dial Rapid
  • Canon Demi Rapid
  • Ferrania Lince Rapid
  • Fujica Rapid S (1965)
  • Fujica Rapid S2 (1965)
  • Fujica Rapid D1 (1965)
  • Fujica Rapid SF (1966)
  • Hanimex 101 Rapid
  • Hanimex 101F Rapid
  • Hanimex 202 Rapid
  • Hanimex 404 Rapid
  • KMZ Zorki 12
  • Lomo Smena Rapid
  • Minolta 24 Rapid
  • Olympus Pen Rapid EE.S
  • Olympus Pen Rapid EE.D
  • Ricoh EE Rapid Half
  • Voigtlander Vitoret Rapid D
  • Yashica Half 17 RAPID