Japan 1961 – Compact – 35 mm – Rare.
The Canon 7 rangefinder was introduced in 1961and is the last model compatible with the Leica M39 lens mount.
Even though Canon had already issued single lens reflex (SLR) cameras at the time, the brand wanted to produce a fast-shooting rangefinder camera for reportage in direct competition with the Leica M3. It featured a focal-plane shutter and an integrated selenium light meter.
But what made the Canon 7 a legend, was the fact that it came as a camera system with a set of 4 lenses, one of which was going to earn the title of “Dream lens” : the Canon 50mm f/0.95 lens.
This unique lens had the largest aperture in the world for photographic lenses at the time. It is four times faster than the human eye. The amount of engineering to make it possible is incredible and the lens aesthetic and size make an impression on everyone who sees it. The Dream lens is so wide it is locks to the camera body using an external bayonet and a set of winged tabs are used to lock securely to the outer mount. The rear element is so large that the glass is shaved down on one side to make room for the rangefinder cam.
Generations of photographers have written on how the Dream lens is a weapon of choice for portraits and incredible Bokeh, making it one of the most sought after collectibles ever.