The Kiev 17 to 20 models had Nikon mounts - perhaps the machinery is still in the Ukraine ?
It's sounding rather old-fashioned, but I doubt that the price will be. The spec seems a bit limited - synch at 1/60, max shutter speed 1/500. Unveiling (never thought I'd use that hackneyed word!) tomorrow by the sound of it.
A few more pictures in Chris’ article.
That looks very like a Kiev 19 http://camerapedia.wikia.com/wiki/Kiev-19
the Creation of a Masterpiece
An improved Kiev SLR with better QC and a touch of Exakta styling? Sounds fun, good luck to them.
This is known territory.
The Ihagee trademark belongs to SEMI Verwaltung GmbH, a company based in Koblenz.
Other trademarks owned by SEMI Verwaltung include Lydith, Makroplasmat, Nocturnus, Oreston, Primagon and Telemegor. Those are some of the names used by Meyer-Optik Görlitz, also based in Koblenz, for their lenses.
This Ihagee project involves therefore the same clique (net SE group, also based in Koblenz, Dr Stefan Immes as CEO and more) as Meyer-Optik Görlitz, Oprema Jena and Emil Busch.
They use the Ihagee trademark because the Exakta trademark still belongs to Jos. Schneider Optische Werke GmbH a.k.a. Schneider Kreuznach.
Curiously, Elbaflex doesn't seem to be a registered trademark.
Or for improved, read resurrected, and for better, read ...
Being seemingly low-spec and for what they're likely to charge, you'd be better off buying a used slr from the 70's - 80's ...
For that 'East German' fully-mechanical experience I still have a working (just about!) Pentina 35mm camera with Zeiss Jena 50mm and Meyer-Optic Gorlitz 135mm. I don't own any Nikon lenses either, so for that reason alone I won't be interested in buying this new camera.
'[The] inside of the camera has been improved by carefully reengineering some of its key components, especially some of its mechanical elements. These parts include elements of the mechanical shutter, the usage of different sealing materials of the highest quality and a new, soft stop of the mirror on a specially designed foam pad. Besides these technical changes on the inside, the team has designed a beautiful body along the line of the famous German Ihagee ELBAFLEX camera. ... The role of the German side is to ensure quality control, not only at the end of the project but by establishing a quality ensuring procedure and workflow. The German part of this project also oversees the supply of some critical materials, use and test of all other materials and technical improvements of the basic historic camera body.'
The Arsenal factory's quality control wasn't exactly legendary (or legendary for the wrong reasons) so they'll probably have a better product out of the box than a typical Kiev from the 80s. Yes, if I wanted a mechanical Nikon mount camera I'd get an FM2 or something. But that doesn't mean there's not a market for a current production camera, even (or perhaps especially) one heavily based on an old design. The low maximum shuitter speed may be a bit of an inconvenience in bright light, but if you're looking at this sort of camera in the digital era, specification probably isn't your highest priority (or why not get an F100?). I think this will do well on Kickstarter, and any active production of film cameras should be welcomed if the medium is to have a future.
Well good luck to them but thought some of the adverts were amusing e.g. "Pictures taken with Elbaflex are images full of contrast, natural and timeless, especially when shot in black and white" h'mm we all know it's the lens and film used which gives results from a MTL3 to a Nikon F6.
$500 for a re-badged Kiev 19 that's been resprayed with hammerite, new seals fitted and had the internal light meter circuit disconnected.....apparently this is a bargain because the release price will be $1500 with a cleaned up 50/2.8 lens
I feel like I should support all attempts to bring analogue photography back to the larger audience but this it taking the pee!
For comparison, a serviced Kiev 19 on ebay is about £30 delivered. Bet it still hits the Kickstarter target, though.
H'mm what's wrong with my Nikon FM for Nikon lenses
No this buzz word bingo, scam deserves to die on the kickstarter alter.
Seriously just away with you.
It's hideous. A carbuncle.
I'd rather have a Canon T70 ...... maybe.
I can't help saying that like Rab C.
See you boy!
Don't know why they went for the wood thing - a leather covered or even just a plastic grip would have looked better.
I had a load more swear words in there!
It does look very much like an exercise in hipster-scamming. I think I will give it a very wide berth.
From what I’m hearing it’s no more than a marketing exercise for a ‘brand’ by a PR company, hence the guff and lack of product quality.
I see all the hipster/scam moaning and stuff but it’s a new 35mm Camera. Like @stevelmx5 I like to back film based Kickstarters where I see merit and value and interestingness, for instance I hear there’s a new 5x4 Camera about to be launched on Kickstarter which sounds very interesting, and although the Ihagee is overpriced and a bit lacking in the interestingness department if it gets more people shooting film then that can only be a good thing IMHO.
I don’t see it as a scam, just a business opportunity.
I don’t know who’s launching a brand new 5x4 system but that sounds amazing ;0)
As to the Elbaflex, I’m really struggling not to see the lack of depth in the product. It’s essentially an old SLR (the campaign suggests people are ‘sourcing’ them in the Ukraine) that’s been tarted up and sold for a ridiculous profit. I’ve got no issues with a business making money but I do find it hard to be excited by the fluffy pitch and even more surprised by the number of people who have backed them already.
Having heard this morning that a PR company is contacting various industry bloggers etc, it smacks even more of a cash grab scheme which frustrates me more.
I'm right there with you until the Ihagee. This is a cynical cash grab by people who have no interest in community or mindfulness or anything other than parting a fool and their money and that will ultimately harm the brand of film and photography once people realise they've been thoroughly ripped off, buying a third rate piece of ex-soviet garbage for the price of a reasonable Leica. $50k wasted on this would help support a lot of film sales which is ultimately what "we" need to keep doing what we do.
Well IMO the best answer for these 35mm cameras has already been posted i.e. new cameras to solve a problem that doesn't exist ATM. With so many good S\H 35mms around why spend a lot of money and looking in the future if the S\H market dries up or you can only buy at silly prices, then the choice Joe public would make is:- I have a good digi camera shall I pay £400-£1000 for a S\H or new film camera to try\play with film.
I don’t think there’s anything wrong with taking an existing camera, performing a CLA/customisation then selling it on. The problem is that this brand are trying to sell the Emperor’s new clothes as if it’s some groundbreaking new design. If they were selling them for £1-150 I could probably understand the plan but they’re clearly trying to part idiots from their money (and annoyingly some are actually backing it).
Even more frustrating are those people that fail to see the reality of the product. A guy was angrily defending it as a new camera and demanding proof from everyone that questioned it. Even when people shared images of Kiev 19’s alongside it and stated the fact that the KS video shows that the camera being shown is clearly used (scratches inside the film chamber etc) he still wouldn’t have it. Of course, he’d already backed the campaign so maybe he was trying to save face!
Buyers remorse and post purchase justification are the main reason I give little weight to amazon reviews.
I think I will stick with my £5 Zenit E....
Is selling a tweaked version of an old model at an inflated price with some slick marketing so very different to what Leica does today with their film cameras? The Leica MP is to the old M6 what the Elbaflex is to the Kiev 19 - essentially the same camera with a few internal technical improvements, slightly restyled. According to Leica:
The Leica MP is a supreme tool. Handcrafted, created for the photographic artist. Designed to deliver the essentials. Focused technology for focused photography, without the distraction of automation. It's for making pictures only a true photographer can see, frame and record. Not a quick fling, but the camera for a lifetime.
This Supreme Tool will set you back £3,800. If you want a 50/2 to take some pictures with it, that will be another £1,900. Leicas have always been expensive, but the prices rocketed around the time they started to re-invent their image as a boutique brand.
Yes, Leica also follows the same, “made with our own special unicorn tears” marketing waffle but at least their cameras are possibly made with some more care and are their own designs. I struggle to justify their costs either but at least they make the actual cameras (apart from their rebranded Panasonic’s but that’s another thread entirely!)
Also, I’m not sure if I’ve missed the link before but I’ve just done some digging and the I-hagee.com domain is registered under Stefan Immes of net SE. That happens to be the same person who’s been the CEO of Meyer Optic Goerlitz since 2014. I don’t see that mentioned anywhere in the campaign and it kind of reduces the impact of the “special offer” from Meyer Optik!
“"German lens maker Meyer Optik has agreed to make a special offer along with this camera"
That's good of them..
At least what Leica do is their own "heritage" its their camera, they can support it, oh yeah and its new not refurbished. But yeah they are stupidly expensive.
Don't knock it Steve,
The Chroma, hand crafted by elves from unicorn tears and rainbows.
I’ll have you know that it’s fully assembled in a dark cave on the Wirral by the hands of a slightly sarcastic artisan ;0)
If S\H or new 35mm film cameras become very expensive it would ruin our argument of digi ver film running costs ..while there will always be individualists like us unfortunately Joe public controls the market and unless any new camera introduced sells for a low price I can't see them taking off.
Indeed, I made the same point but digging from the trademarks and not the domain:
The fact that this so-called Ihagee Elbaflex is a revamped Kiev 19M (a camera designed and manufactured from 1988 onwards at the Arsenal factory, Kiev, Ukraine, then Soviet Union) without its light meter and with a wooden grip replacing the original plastic one is admitted by the Ihagee people themselves, see the Comments section of the Kickstarter project:
“So, yes: the design is based on the Kiev 19M but you are getting a brand new camera with a guarantee.”
A bit of fun:
This is one of the photos from the press kit:
You can download it from the following URL:
Not only are the 'Ihagee' and 'Elbaflex' logos obviously photoshopped...
...but they forgot to photoshop the '19M' (from Kiev 19M) out of the reflection!!!
So are these new cameras, from scratch or left over bodies that are being finished?