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John Demastrie

92 Posts
Posted - Dec 15 2007 :  11:04:07 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Not to bore anyone (hopefully) but maybe a few would enjoy hearing from soneone who is rather new at this and went into it fast and maybe overboard?
Having shot now with 5 different (2 of the same) old Russian cameras with different lenses I wanted to personally evaluate them to decide whether or not I want to continue collecting them. My conclusion is an emphatic YES! Overall I`m quite thrilled to have returned to the classic style (method) of measuring the light,adjusting aperture and shutter speed and manual focussing.
For the past 9 years I have been caught up in the digital SLR equipment rat race chasing model after model of the latest and greatest camera ever to be made. Months ago I finally came to the conclusion that most any camera ever made can take good pictures if the user learned to understand how to get the best from it`s limitations that might be specifically inherent in it`s design and purpose.
Not that digital is bad , it is really wonderful in many many ways but I found that it does remove certain elements of basic photography and enjoyment that can only be found when using a rangefinder. I have recently discovered there are few ways (for me)to better enjoy pure classic photography than with old RF cameras and the FSU`s seem to provide the most bang for the buck. Not that they are better than others but they definitely are very capable.

My assessments are as follows:

My Fed 2 (a pleasure to use in spite of the small VF )with Industar 26 produced what I thought was the best overall image quality with regards to sharpness and contrast although the

Zorky 4 with Industar 61 was just as good. I can understand why they describe the Zorky 4 winding as "tractor-like" and the shutter clunk noise but it works and works rather well and it feels like it would last forever.

My Zorky 3C with Jupiter 8 is IMO an excellent shooters camera. Images from mine are very very good. I especially like the smoothness of the winder and quietness of the shutter.

Next is the Zorki 2C with the Industar 50. Another nice small sized fun filled user much like the Fed 2 is. Images were fine and it produces reasonably acceptable imagery. I have 2 of which neither is as good as the others mentioned above but i think that was expected. I suspect the Industar 50 was the standard packaged lens.

I have a couple Industar 22`s coming and a Jupiter 12. I hope these will be as satisfactory as all the other lenses.
Can you tell that I love these fine old cameras?


Edited by - uccmmcpo on Dec 15 2007 11:07:57 AM

Vladislav Kern
4248 Posts
My Collection

Posted - Dec 15 2007 :  11:56:25 PM  Show Profile  Visit Vlad's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Your results are very similar to mine.. I've noticed though any camera that I have that uses Jupiter 8 lens gives me consistently great photos. I was also very pleasantly surprised by the performance of my Kiev 6C, simply superb picture quality..
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29 Posts
My Collection

Posted - Dec 16 2007 :  06:35:04 AM  Show Profile  Visit seka's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Great John ! Thanks for your nice feedback !
I must admit that i'm close to your way since several years, except the fact that i use mostly soviet SLR's cameras and lenses instead of yours RF...
Have fun and good picts !
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