Zenit-B

The E types little brother.


You don't read much about the Zenit-B. It could even be that this is the only article on the internet that tells something about the B. In short it is a Zenit-E type without the lightmeter. It has the same specs and speeds as the E. Speeds are B, 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250 and 1/500. Lensmount is M42. There are some B's that came with M39. These are scarce. All came with the instant return mirror.
It has some advantages over the infamous E type. No lightmeter means lesser change of lichtleaks when the foam aside of the prism gives out. If it has lightleaks, they are usually near the viewfinder or on the sides of the camera and are easily repaired. Also because it has no lightmeter you don't have to worry about it being still ok. You are stuck with a handheld meter.
A closup of the Industar 50-2 50/3.5 mm lens. Sharp but not fast. But a reasonable lens none the less. It's also capable of making nice macroshots if you have the M42 macrorings. Not much to say about the Industar 50-2. Some came in aluminium versions but most were black and like its Industar 50 zm39 lens it's ugly. But it gets the job done.
Instead of the lightmeter you have the filmreminder. It's there. Just for show, because no one actually uses it.
889.000 B types were made in all variations. Allthough this is a lot of units produced it is dwarfed by the enornmous number of E types built 12.500.000 plus.
This one is an export version. All info on the camera is in Latin and not in Cyrillic.
Some B types came with the faster Helios 44-2 58 mm lens. This was an option. You could get the "classic" Helios instead of the plain Industar. The Helios certainly looks better than the Industar.
Is it a good user camera? Yes. If you like manual cameras that is. It takes all the M42 lenses except for the auto ones, that's the ones you can not set to manual. Some people say that it is the ultimate purist camera.
A zenit B fitted with a 135/2.8 mm Vivitar Telephoto lens, this was used to make the butterfly shot below. These are only a few sample shots made with the B. In the other shots a Helios 44-2 58 mm was used with a polarisation filter. In the buildingshot a strong bluefilter was also used and in the first catshot a sepia filter was used to darken the upper background. In the last shot the background was faded by setting the camera to an aperture of 2.8 at a speed of 1/125. So all attention is fixed on the cat.



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