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Olympus: Going Where no Camera has Gone Before

The Pain in the Butt Camera

World's tiniest Twin Lens Reflex?

As photographers,  eventually most of us are asked to photograph someone who is a real pain in the butt.  It's usually awkward at best, as we bite our tongues to keep from telling them what we really think.  Olympus did photogs the favor of actually designing a special camera for such subjects, the pain in the butt camera, aka "Gastro Camera with Fiberscope."  The instruction book proudly proclaims this the first fiberscope attached to a gastrocamera.   "A long cherished dream of endoscopic researchers has now been realized."   So, it would seem Olympus was not afraid to go where no camera company had  gone before. 

Who says Olympus didn't make a Twin Lens Reflex?  Here you have the reflex viewing prism alongside the fixed focus taking lens. 

The film  is miniscule, 5mm wide.    I wonder if it has other uses, photographing around corners perhaps. 


Although the instructions have no date, the 32 ASA Anscochrome film has an expiration date of June 1967, suggesting this Olympus Twin Lens Reflex is a vintage '60s camera.  Over its long life of almost half a century, there is just no telling where this camera has been, or what  it has seen.


The Olympus Gastro camera arrives in its own factory custom case, with power cord, 18 page 8x10 color instruction manual, several dozen long expired film cassettes, spare illumination bulbs, and tons of laughs as you explain to your photographic subject how you are about to photograph their innermost thoughts, well maybe not thoughts.....   Oddly enough, the camera seems to be out of lens cleaning tissue, but I am sure you can find more of that, official Olympus or otherwise.    Alas, this example it no longer has its power pack to power the illumination bulb, so the exposures may be a bit on the long side.   As for getting more official "Olympus Color Film for Gastro Camera" your chances are pretty well down the toilet.

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Revised: November 26, 2003 Copyright  2003  Stephen Gandy. All rights reserved.    This means you may NOT copy and re-use the text or the pictures in ANY other internet or printed publication of ANY kind.  Information in this document is subject to change without notice.  Other products and companies referred to herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies or mark holders.