Many film photography fans are fascinated by cameras (and lenses) produced behind the so-called Iron Curtain, in countries of the former Warsaw Pact. The DDR (or GDR) between them has created brands as Ihagee, Praktica, Pentacon (which has absorbed the first), synonymous with high quality construction mechanics, along with names such as Carl Zeiss Jena, Meyer-Optik and the same Pentacon with lenses even at the highest level of quality. Speaking of cameras, robustness is one of the main qualities. The reliability of the models built in eastern Germany is also much higher than that of her contemporaries and even valid Soviet models. It is not uncommon then, to come across more than fifty years old cameras, which seem to come from the factory today and fully functional.
Voigtlander is another of the names that made the history of photography. It produced many cameras and lenses with the classic German quality. Models such as the Avus and Bessa folding, or the whole Vito series (with various Vaskar, Lanthar, Skopar and Ultron lenses) are well known to fans. The brand still exists but it is not the original manufacturer.
Who knows why, for some reason, every time I used a Leica, was never mine? The first time, an M7 with Summicron 35mm, I was entrusted by the magazine which I collaborate with (Fotografia Reflex), the second time, a D-Lux 6 (Digital), directly from the Leica factory itself. You can see some of the results on the Leica official blog. This time, I had the opportunity to test one R5 with the Vario-Elmar zoom 35-70mm f/3.5, thanks to a friend who had just bought it. Basically, I’m doing the beta-tester for him! Sooner or later … I’ll have to decide to get one of my own … 😉