Minolta has been known as a worldwide manufacturer of digital and film cameras, camera accessories, photocopiers, fax machines, laser printers, industrial radiometric instruments, planetarium projection equipment, some of the industry’s first 3D scanners, and other optical instruments and devices.
Minolta was founded in Osaka, Japan, in 1928. It is perhaps best known for making the first integrated autofocus 35mm SLR camera system. In 1931, the company adopted its current name, an acronym for “Mechanism, INstruments, Optics, and Lenses by TAshima.” The brand stands for Precision Optics, Image Quality and Innovation.
Minolta pioneered the digital imaging industry with the launch of the first digital SLR system as early as 1995, the RD-175. Minolta introduced many other innovations that became standard in all brands. Standardized features that were first introduced on Minolta models included multi-sensor light metering coupled to multiple AF sensors, automatic flash balance system, wireless TTL flash control, TTL-controlled full-time flash sync, and speedy front and rear wheels for shutter and aperture control. Special features introduced by Minolta also included interactive LCD viewfinder display, setup memory, expansion program cards, eye-activated startup, and infrared frame counter.
Minolta is a registered trademark of JMM Lee Properties, LLC and is used in the United States by Elite Brands Inc. under license.