Classic camerasPolaroid ProCam

Polaroid introduced a new film type in 1986 called Image in Europe and Spectra in the US. The film was essential the same as 600 film but with a rectangular format instead of the square format of previous integral films. There were three basic models: The original Image camera had a variety of control on the back allowing things like the automatic flash and automatic focus systems to be overridden, together with a self-timer and a socket for a remote control. There was also a distance readout in the viewfinder that reported the distance reported by the sonar autofocus system. The Image 2 was a simplified model with all the controls from the back of the camera removed other than the lighten/darken control (I would avoid this basic Image 2 and all similar cameras). And the Image Pro took the original Image specification and added an LCD status panel, manual focusing mode, multiple exposure mode, and an intervalometer. All cameras had a 3 element 125mm f10 “quintic” lens. Most Spectra cameras that followed were based on these three specification levels.

One of the exceptions was the Polaroid ProCam featured here.

This camera has a completely different body style (and I’ve never quite worked out how the mirrors inside the ProCam actually work!) and a new 90mm 4 element lens that gave a semi-wide angle view. The infinity lock AF override, auto flash over ride and and lighten-darken controls are there, but the other controls from the original Image specification are missing to be replaced by data imprint function (that is annoyingly difficult to set!). A close-up lens was included as standard, which is unfortunately missing from this camera.

This camera is a bit rarer than the other Image models, and is therefore quite sort after, but to be honest I have always been a bit disappointed by this camera and it doesn’t get a lot of use.

Detailed Polaroid ProCam photos

This is the camera in it’s closed state. It is a bit bulkier than other Image cameras.

This is the back of the camera. The viewfinder sticks out and looks like it would prevent the camera from folding, but it cleverly folds out of the way .

I've never really been able to work out the light path inside this camera between the lens and the film. The camera opens in an unexpected direction with the mirror angled in what looks like the wrong direction!

Photographs taken with the Polaroid ProCam

Film: Polaroid Image Soft Tone

Location: Glasgow/p>

One of the reason I love Image cameras is this film. Polaroid Image Soft Tone colours always seem to adjust to suit the subject perfectly.

Film: Polaroid Image Soft Tone

Location: Glasgow

Film: Polaroid Image Soft Tone

Location: Glasgow

Film: Polaroid Image Soft Tone

Location: Glasgow

Film: Polaroid Image Soft Tone

Location: Parliament Square, Edinburgh