Canon FTb

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Canon FTb

The first-generation 1959 Canon SLR line (1) was not the success Canon had expected. A second line (3) followed in 1964, with a third line in 1971 (4). In this lineup, with the newly introduced FD mount, The professional bound flagship F-1 led, with the FTb following as a mass-market model. The electronic A variants of 1976 (5) were the last classic, all-metal bodies before the T plastic model line.

The FTb had most attributes of the F-1; the main difference was the horizontal cloth shutter instead of the vertical metal in the F-1. In essence, it was a slightly modified FT. It accepted the full FL lens range and the friendlier FD line. For complexity’s sake, the mirror lockup control and the step-down button were moved to the self-timer cluster. The step-down control works when the lens is set to A.

The FTb comes in two versions, where the 2nd, still engraved as FTb, is catalogued as FTbN. Differences are cosmetic, with a plastic dressed winder arm, covered sync ports and a smaller self-timer cluster.  See the images below.

Canon early manual SLR models:

  1. R mount: Canonflex, Canonflex R2000, Canonflex RP, Canonflex RM.
  2. Fixed lens: Canonex.
  3. FL mount: FX, FP, Pellix, TL, EX, FT.
  4. FD mount: F-1, three slightly different models, FTb, EF, TLb, TX, EX.
  5. FD mount: AE-1, AT-1, A-1, AV-1, AE-1 P, AL-1.
List number 1549
Brand Canon
Model FTb Kit
Manual Buktus
Value FTb Black
FTb Chrome
FTb Gold
FTb cutout
Format 35mm
Introduced 1971
Country Japan
Qty made
Initial price 74,000 yen (w/FD 55mm f/1.2),
57,000 yen (w/FD 50mm f/1.4),
49,800 yen (w/FD 50mm f/1.8),
35,000 yen (body)
Type Compact SLR
Body material Metal
Mode Manual, meter assisted
Weight 740 gr,  Body only
Class average weight 620 gr,  Body only
ASA range 25-1600
Kit lens 1,4/50, 2.0/50, 1.8/50
Lens make Canon
Filter size
Lens mount Canon FD
Mount size FD Mount
Shutter Focal plane cloth horizontal
Shutter make
Light meter TTL CdS
Winder Lever
Lock Yes
Speeds B, 1-1000
Mirror Auto return
Viewer Fixed eye level prism
DOF preview Yes
Exposure lock No
Exposure compensation No
Shoe Hot
External sync Yes
Sync speed 60
Timer Yes, mechanical
Battery, original 625
Battery, replacement 625
Battery voltage 1.35
Integral flash None
Service / repair links See
More Ken Rockwell

FTb variants:


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