Kiev 4, problem with shutter speeds?

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by escuta, Jun 23, 2018.

  1. Hello,


    I took possession of this rather beautiful Kiev 4 recently and shot a roll of Tri-X 400 using a Gossen Lunalite meter to make the exposures. I developed the photos together with another roll of Tri-X shot on a Nikon F2 which included the above shot. The Kiev photos look overexposed to me. I took a number of photos with white objects and these appear to have a halo. It that consistent with overexposure?

    Here's a shot with the Kiev:


    And here's a shot taken with the F2 a couple of days earlier at roughly the same time of day but with a yellow filter. Again, processed together with the Kiev roll:


    Shutter problem? Light leak? Please let me know if you have any suggestions. The physical appearance of the camera and lens is excellent and it was sold to me as a CLA'd machine.


  2. AJG


    It looks like there processing streaks in both rolls, and there is some veiling flare in the Kiev shot. As for exposure, how did you determine that? The Nikon meter is a lot newer and more likely to be accurate since it is through the lens and the Kiev isn't. It also wouldn't surprise me if the Kiev fast shutter speeds are a bit slow, even after a CLA. See Gus Lazzari's comments in previous threads about Contax/Kiev cameras and the complexity of the shutter mechanism. A lens hood should help with the flare--look for a 40.5 mm vented hood on eBay for $5 or so, since it won't obstruct the viewfinder as much as a standard hood.
    escuta likes this.
  3. m42dave

    m42dave Dave E.

    If you have access to a CRT screen (like an old TV set or monitor) you can check shutter speed accuracy using this method:

    You already own a shutter tester

    Sometimes, what appears to be lens flare is actually caused by reflections off shiny surfaces inside the camera (not uncommon with FSU cameras). These reflections can be minimized by applying some flocking paper or touching up with a bit of flat black paint, as appropriate.
    escuta likes this.
  4. Thanks AJG and m42dave. Exposure for the Kiev was calculated with a Gossen Lunalite and I think for that particular shot I did incident metering, although for others, with similar outcome, I did reflected metering. Yes, I have a vented lens hood on order. Would lens flare have caused that halo effect? That's brilliant, the CRT screen test, thanks, perhaps there's an old TV at work... When I finish the current roll of film I'll have a look for possible internal reflections. One thing that occurred to me last night: I don't yet have a lens cap (it's also on order) and I'm using the original leather case to protect the lens which, by the way, has a new Hoya UV filter on it. While the filter looks clear enough, perhaps the leather case is perishing and leaving fine dust on the filter. Perhaps that might cause a halo. For sure though, a hood will help and I had a hood on the F2 for that last photo.

    All the best,
  5. AJG


    Depending on the angle of the light sometimes even a good clean filter could cause flare. On your next roll with the camera try some shots with and without the filter where the shot is somewhat backlit like your example. That should tell you if the filter/lens combination is the problem.
    escuta likes this.
  6. The "halo effect", I tend to get that too with my Jupiter-8 and 8M when used at wide apertures (also in situations where flare is very unlikely - it seems to simply be how the lens renders). So if you used f/2 or f/2.8, it could be due to the lens. If it is at a more closed aperture, a lenshood could indeed be a solution.
    The Kiev shot does not look overexposed to me, actually; it just has a lower contrast (but the Nikon shot enjoyed a yellow filter) and that soft veiled look. Then again, scanning might make for a difference too here, so you should check both negatives and compare their densities.
    escuta likes this.
  7. Thanks Wouter. It wasn't wide open and I'm fairly certain it was at f/8, so it must have been lens flare that caused the glow. I took some other shots on the F2 with a 105mm lens without a filter and the sky was still much darker than those taken with the Kiev.

    Having complained so much about the Kiev/Jupiter, I did get some good shots and I'll post some tomorrow on the Classic Manual Cameras Thursday thread.

    All the best!
  8. I just got some scans back of a roll of colour film that I shot as a test. Once again, I'm not happy with the halo effect that occurs on just about anything bright in the image. I does seem that the exposure is OK (I used a Gossen meter on all shots), however the halo requires that all shots are adjusted for brightness.

    I uploaded all of the scans to a web folder. The scans are raw and were done with no level adjustment by the lab. If you can please have a look, I'd be grateful for any comments.

    Here is the link: test - Escuta (use password: "test")

    I'm still not using a lens hood, but I can't imagine that all shots would ordinarily show such flare. Notice there are 2 shots of a white bench. One is with a UV filter and the other is not, but both seem to show the same amount of halo. There's also a white garden trellis that glows madly - and the sun was practically behind my back when i took the shot.

    Is the lens a dud? If it is, at least it will be cheap to get a replacement.

    All the best,


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