The Argus C-3 Camera aka "The Brick"

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Uploaded 12 Nov 2008 — 79 favorites
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© Sarah Terokowskie
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Likes 3
Favorites 79
Comments 81
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Photo Info
UploadedNovember 12, 2008
TakenNovember 12, 2008
Exposure1/20 sec at f/2.8
FlashNo Flash
Focal Length5.8 mm
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Photo license: © All rights reserved

The Argus Camera Company (formerly known as IRC for either International Research Company or even earlier, the International Radio Company) of Ann Arbor, Michigan produced the C-3 for 27 years from 1939 through 1966.The Argus C-3 was the first brick to feature its own flash unit. Early model C-3 cameras were synchronized for flash bulb exposure only, with no provision for electronic flash. Colormatic C-3s which feature color-coded shutter speed, rangefinder and aperture dials were the first C-3s that were synchronized for electronic flash.

The camera was the best-selling 35mm camera in the world for nearly three decades, and helped popularize the 35mm format.

Who else had a Brick? LOL

81 responses

  • Erin Elliott

    Erin Elliott said (12 Nov 2008):

    wow..what a great camera and a great shot of it!

  • Carl Kuntze

    Carl Kuntze gave props (12 Nov 2008):

    Awkward in design, it was a reliable optical instrument for those who knew how to use it.

  • Ulli Koenig

    Ulli Koenig (Deleted) gave props (12 Nov 2008):

    I love vintage cameras. Excellent shot!

  • Patricia Shanahan

    Patricia Shanahan gave props (12 Nov 2008):

    Great vintage shot ! COOL camera !

  • Robert Armstrong

    Robert Armstrong (Deleted) gave props (12 Nov 2008):

    Love it! Great shot and nice story to go with it!

  • Diane Peterson

    Diane Peterson gave props (12 Nov 2008):

    Do you ;have any shts taken with this on your pages? Would love to see some examples!

  • Sarah Terokowskie

    Sarah Terokowskie gave props (12 Nov 2008):

    You know...I think I do have some pictures from this camera. But not on the site. I can scan a few and post them :)

  • Sonia Adam Murray

    Sonia Adam Murray gave props (12 Nov 2008):

    Great photo and thanks so much for the information, I learned something today!

  • Steve Wilson

    Steve Wilson (Deleted) said (12 Nov 2008):

    I have 5 or 6 "Bricks". The one on my office file cabinet is a regular black model, but I have at least one "color match" model. I have one instruction book, and the way you positioned your book in this photograp[h is right on.
    Most people don't know that the lenses are interchangeable.
    Just...never drop it on your foot...

  • david ong

    david ong gave props (12 Nov 2008):

    well done!!

  • Jim Theriault

    Jim Theriault gave props (13 Nov 2008):

    Well thought out pic, great job!

  • Ted Opderbeck

    Ted Opderbeck gave props (13 Nov 2008):

    Very creative arrangement - nice lighting

  • Nathan Morison

    Nathan Morison (Deleted) said (13 Nov 2008):

    I want one. Camera/self defense object lol

  • john rodrigues

    john rodrigues gave props (13 Nov 2008):

    Perfect Still life of a old classic

  • Penny Haviland

    Penny Haviland gave props (13 Nov 2008):

    Love it!!!! Great detail and comp!

  • Clayborne Kasserman

    Clayborne Kasserman gave props (14 Nov 2008):

    Hey! That was my first camera! Still have it sitting around. (Haven't shot with it since I bought a Nikon 20 years ago ;-)

  • Lynn H

    Lynn H (Deleted) gave props (14 Nov 2008):

    SUPER entry!!

  • Stefanie Baltzell

    Stefanie Baltzell gave props (14 Nov 2008):

    Great shot, love the is amazing how much a person can learn on jpg. :) Nice composition too!

  • sayoga wicaksana

    sayoga wicaksana said (14 Nov 2008):

    nice shot...and great narrative...

  • pdtnc

    pdtnc gave props (15 Nov 2008):

    very nice :)

  • Ken McElroy

    Ken McElroy gave props (15 Nov 2008):

    Nice Capture - one resides in my classic camera collection - wish they'd do an old camera theme.

  • Chris D'angelo

    Chris D'angelo gave props (15 Nov 2008):

    Just an awesome look to this and great composition. Love it.

  • Jim Thomas

    Jim Thomas gave props (15 Nov 2008):

    It tells me a story. My favorite kind of picture.

  • Ninas4otos

    Ninas4otos said (15 Nov 2008):

    wonderful my vote!!!

  • Sam Ashcraft

    Sam Ashcraft said (15 Nov 2008):

    oh yes! twinz! i found my argus in an antigue shop. It's wonderful, isn't it

  • Hector Ortiz

    Hector Ortiz gave props (16 Nov 2008):

    love it.

  • marilu

    marilu (Deleted) gave props (17 Nov 2008):

    Great composition & lighting! Fantastic shot! I really liked your description too!

  • Sheryl McNeel

    Sheryl McNeel said (17 Nov 2008):

    Awesome image!

  • John Sweeney

    John Sweeney gave props (17 Nov 2008):

    Wonderful shot!

  • Ari Yordan Mendrofa

    Ari Yordan Mendrofa said (17 Nov 2008):

    great camera!!

  • Nicholas Freeman

    Nicholas Freeman (Deleted) gave props (17 Nov 2008):

    great shot.. i love this, and fun gadgets too

  • DonBaird

    DonBaird gave props (17 Nov 2008):

    Very cool. Ugh, I'm old enough to remember when this came out!!! LOL

  • Geralyn Montambault

    Geralyn Montambault gave props (18 Nov 2008):

    Very nice vintage shot with interesting information too!

  • Christie Patient

    Christie Patient said (18 Nov 2008):

    gotta love old cameras. the photo room at my old highschool has them hiding all over the place, from bricks, to brownies, and large format cameras. even some very very old pin hole cameras. i love playing around with them. this is an excellent shot and narrative.

  • art siegel

    art siegel said (18 Nov 2008):

    my first camera as a teenager! What a blast from the past.

  • Jake Booher

    Jake Booher gave props (19 Nov 2008):

    love it!

  • William McDonald

    William McDonald gave props (19 Nov 2008):

    awesome composition, brilliant photograph!

  • Nik Oncam

    Nik Oncam gave props (20 Nov 2008):

    Color and texture are very attractive here.

  • Karen Lynch

    Karen Lynch gave props (20 Nov 2008):

    Love it, Love it, Love it!

  • Perceptual Bliss

    Perceptual Bliss gave props (20 Nov 2008):

    This is such a great shot. Thanks for the information, I never knew of the C-3.

  • Respect Nature

    Respect Nature gave props (20 Nov 2008):

    cool! love rangefinders and film!

  • Warren ~Mangione~

    Warren ~Mangione~ gave props (20 Nov 2008):

    I can see how it got the name "brick" haha This is a great shot and thanks for the education. Well done.

  • Jim Robertson

    Jim Robertson said (21 Nov 2008):

    I remember my father having one of these when I was a child. I need to find out if he still has it. Great shot of this brick too!

  • Christopher J Chalk

    Christopher J Chalk gave props (21 Nov 2008):

    Great entry, looks easier to use compared with out D/SLR cameras, simple dials:)

  • Matt Mcdonald

    Matt Mcdonald said (23 Nov 2008):

    i found one of these at a thrift store
    its so cool
    grate picture

  • Craig Fraizer

    Craig Fraizer gave props (23 Nov 2008):

    I have one of these bricks, but now it spends its days sitting on the shelf as an out of work vintage camera with a broken shutter. still an awesome camera

  • Allan Meek

    Allan Meek (Deleted) gave props (25 Nov 2008):

    Stunning photography

  • Mike Hodgson

    Mike Hodgson said (25 Nov 2008):

    Ah Yes, good ole Argus, I have a few on my window sill in the photo gallery.
    Nicely captured.

  • joanne lee

    joanne lee gave props (26 Nov 2008):

    a beautiful gadget in a beautiful shot.

  • Domenico Scoca

    Domenico Scoca gave props (28 Nov 2008):

    fantastic shot

  • cstarr

    cstarr (Deleted) gave props (29 Nov 2008):

    nice composition. well done

  • andy cole

    andy cole gave props (30 Nov 2008):

    Awsome camera!

  • Deborah Downes

    Deborah Downes gave props (1 Dec 2008):

    Wonderful capture of a classic.

  • Cassy Randle

    Cassy Randle (Deleted) gave props (11 Dec 2008):

    Very cool photo

  • Frederic Frognier

    Frederic Frognier (Deleted) said (12 Dec 2008):

    Nice stuff

  • NiteRunner

    NiteRunner gave props (13 Dec 2008):

    Wow, thats an awesome looking piece of equipment. Nice shot. How much does a camera like that cost?

  • brett garwood

    brett garwood said (20 Dec 2008):

    well done. This one is stunning.

  • Rob Roy

    Rob Roy (Deleted) gave props (1 Jan 2009):

    Brings back memories... my dad had one-- waaaay back!! Good image!!!

  • Jory Vander Galien

    Jory Vander Galien (Deleted) gave props (13 Jan 2009):

    All I can say is sweet camera

  • Alexander Bussey

    Alexander Bussey said (15 Feb 2009):

    i love old cameras, nice shot.

  • Tom Mertens

    Tom Mertens gave props (16 Feb 2009):

    Great dof and focus!!

  • Adam Ash

    Adam Ash (Deleted) said (17 Feb 2009):


  • John Williamson

    John Williamson gave props (20 Apr 2009):

    C-3 "Bricks".. have a few, but want a retro digital Brick!

  • Dan Ross

    Dan Ross said (13 May 2009):

    I don't know about you guys, but my brick keeps me satisfied with some pretty nice images.

  • Lori Smaltz

    Lori Smaltz (Deleted) said (14 Jun 2009):

    I had one of these! Wow, very kewl shot. I've been looking for a photo of one for awhile. Thanks!

  • Jaclyn Touchstone

    Jaclyn Touchstone (Deleted) said (10 Jul 2009):


  • Juanita Ruffner

    Juanita Ruffner gave props (17 Aug 2009):

    Awesome camera and setup!!!

  • mike

    mike (Deleted) gave props (21 Nov 2009):

    i love classic camereas.

  • Chad Dalke

    Chad Dalke said (16 Jan 2010):

    Great little camera, I have my great grandfather's and many of the photos he took with it.

  • Catherine Hadler

    Catherine Hadler gave props (5 Feb 2010):

    cool - do you still use it?

  • Robert R. Gaines

    Robert R. Gaines gave props (28 Mar 2010):

    How fondly I remember my Brick! The first deep and meaningful relationship I had with a camera. I fed it rolls and rolles of Agfa 50 and it rewarded me over and over.

  • dennis william gaylor

    dennis william gaylor said (16 May 2011):

    just sold the C3 Brick I had and was sad to part with it. Despite the extremely retro look and feel, it shot exceptionally well, great for multi-exposures!

  • Robert R. Gaines

    Robert R. Gaines gave props (7 Aug 2011):

    Oh what memories. My first serious camera and I loved it. The 44 mm lens did an excellent job and the camera was bone reliable too.

  • Marc Melander

    Marc Melander gave props (26 Dec 2011):


  • Donna Mullins

    Donna Mullins (Deleted) gave props (4 Oct 2013):

    Unreal how many of us have one of these great old cameras. I bought mine at an estate sale. It has earned a place on the bookshelf beside my Ansco and Duaflex II cameras. Voted for this cool old camera!

  • Carlo Pagan

    Carlo Pagan gave props (5 Oct 2013):

    WoW!! Superb! My vote!

  • Saroj Swain

    Saroj Swain gave props (11 Oct 2013):

    what a great shot.....Outstanding in all respect for Vintage camera!!!

  • Saroj Swain

    Saroj Swain gave props (11 Oct 2013):

    back to vote!!!

  • John Linton

    John Linton gave props (30 Oct 2013):

    Oh YEAH! Rad!

  • John Linton

    John Linton gave props (14 May 2015):

    Congrats on making Member of the Week!

  • John Orolin

    John Orolin said (15 May 2015):

    My 2nd camera was a brick (it still sits on a shelf in my office) I think I paid $60 for it in 1950. I had a 135mm lens for it. I replaced it later with an Exakta V, also a great camera, they were both reliable workhorses !!

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