Newman Sinclair Autokine 35mm cine camera, c 1927.
© National Media Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
This camera was manufactured by Newman and Sinclair, London from 1927 onwards. Invented by Arthur Samuel Newman (1861-1943), it is constructed of duralumin, a lightweight metal. It is powered by a spring-driven motor which could run a full 200 feet load of film continuously, and works at speeds between 10 and 24 frames per second. It also has a variable shutter which can be adjusted to create 'fade in' and 'fade out' effects and a direct vision optical viewfinder. Because it is light, hardwearing and can be used hand-held, the camera was popular with newsreel and documentary film-makers for over three decades. Famous documentary-makers such as Robert Flaherty, Basil Wright and Humphrey Jennings used these cameras.