The Rollei history roller coaster took another turn for the worse in 1960 when the second founder, Reinhold Heidecke, passed away.The company missed a huge opportunity as the trend among professional photographers shifted toward single lens cameras.Read on to discover how this company became the Rollei that photography fans know and love today.Their first camera was not actually the realisation of Heidecke’s vision, but rather a stereo camera called the Heidoscop, named after one of the founders.If you’re a lifetime fan of their cameras or if we’ve piqued your photography interest, we recommend your next stop to be Catawiki’s special Rollei Camera auction where you’re sure to find the camera of your dreams.The "Rolleiflex" name is most commonly used to refer to Rollei's premier line of medium format twin lens reflex (TLR) cameras.The next leader of Rollei took a risky approach; he decided to not only focus on one single product but to explore all possibilities of photography.While this chaotic approach led to further financial trouble, there were some great successes during this period.
Just one year later the company was split into three separate parts.
Rolleiflex cameras have used film formats 117 (Original Rolleiflex), 120 (Standard, Automat, Letter Models, Rollei-Magic, and T model), and 127 (Baby Rolleiflex).
The Rolleiflex TLR film cameras were notable for their exceptional build quality, compact size, modest weight, superior optics, durability, simplicity, reliable mechanics and bright viewfinders. The high-quality 7.5 cm focal length lenses, manufactured by Zeiss and Schneider, allowed for a smaller, lighter, more compact camera than their imitators.
Failure to produce a camera to meet the demand meant falling short of the competition.
A few years after Heidecke’s death, the company name was changed to Rollei Werke Franke & Heidecke.