Ensign Reflex

Model B

British Made

Houghton Ltd London.


Single lens reflex. Ross Express 6 inch ƒ 4,5. Focal Plane shutter 1/1000 sec.

Film Pack 3 ¼ x 4 ¼  

Unlike some other Houghton cameras which were imported German product, this camera was made in Britain. 

Houghton already was in photo business back in 1840 selling Daguerreotype requisites in England. After merging with other camera makers they offered a range of all sorts of cameras i.a. Sanderson.

Before the first world war they imported the German Krügener cameras. "Ensign" was in fact the selling company of the Houghton and Butcher Ltd. and was set up in 1930. 

In the period between the two world wars, Houghton became the largest camera producer in Great  Britain. In derogation from the mass production of the Ensign amateur cameras, the Houghton Ensign Reflex was a Press Camera for professional use. 

The focal plane shutter has to be set before winding the shutter. The mirror pops up automatically after the release knob has been pressed down.

The mirror stays in the top position right under the top ground glass, until the shutter has been cocked.

Cocking the shutter is done by turning the winding key anticlockwise until its stops.

The camera has a cup shaped recessed lens board enabling to change lenses. The lens board can be removed out of the standard by pushing it towards the top and pull outwards.

The lens board itself can be tilted by swinging the geared lever down, which moves the lens board up and visa versus. There is a lens cover plate which does not have the function of a lens shade as it stays vertical after having been opened. The small clip holds the cover when closed. Focusing can be done with the focusing know on the right side of the camera. It moves the lens standard very smooth, yet precisely and steady.

The ground glass is positioned in a frame on top of the camera house and includes a tapered collapsible focusing hood.

The complete focusing hood including the clip-on frame can be removed.

The rear of the camera has a revolving back equipped with another ground glass, which can be replaced by the film holder.

The back sliding frame has two build in springs and a lock that keeps the film holder very firmly to the back allowing to pull the dark slide without the risk disturbing the position of the holder or the film pack.



Back to European Press cameras.