Zenit ET: A Camera I Grew Up With


This is a review and testimonial to my faithful Zenit ET. For many years it was and still is a great friend and companion.

I inherited Zenit ET from my father. This faithful camera has been recording my life for almost 30 years now. When I was a little girl, my father used to take photos all the time. He also developed films and made prints by himself. I am really grateful to my father and Zenit ET for capturing the most beautiful moments of my childhood.

When I grew up, sometimes my father let me and my boyfriend (now husband) borrow his Zenit ET. We always had to swear that we’ll be very careful. I am glad that we were.

When I turned 24 my father gave me his Zenit ET for my birthday. I started using it when I turned 28. I still don’t understand, why on earth it took me so long.

Zenit ET was my first camera and my first teacher. I learnt everything the hard way. Mistakes and disappointments visited me quite often. On other hand it was an adventurous journey. Zenit ET took me where I am now – I can’t imagine my life without photography.

Credits: lighthouse_keeperess

Zenit ET was produced between 1982 and 1993 with quantity of 3,000,000. They were supplied with Helios 44-2 lens.

These are Zenit ET specifications:

  • Aperture: f/2 – f/16
  • Focus range: 0.5-10m, +inf.
  • Shutter speeds: 1/30s-1/500s + B
  • Exposure meter: uncoupled Selenium cell lightmeter
  • Self timer; Hot-shoe; Tripod socket

If you ever find Zenit ET, don’t hesitate and buy it! I think it is a wonderful, reliable and smart camera.

Credits: lighthouse_keeperess

Information and product photo for this article were taken from Camerapedia.

written by lighthouse_keeperess on 2012-04-16 in #reviews #lomography #memories #ussr #camera #childhood #zenit-et #russian #zenit #user-review #father #lithuania #nostalgia


  1. simonh82
    simonh82 ·

    Great review and some absolutely beautiful photos.

  2. alex34
    alex34 ·

    Agree on the beautiful photos. Does the selenium light meter still work?

  3. lighthouse_keeperess
    lighthouse_keeperess ·

    Thank you for lovely comments!!!
    @alex34 Yes it does! I use it every time I take a photo (sometimes I overexpose my photos; on purpose though). My father told me to keep camera in its case if I´m not using it and avoid dust. I think these are the reasons why it´s still alive.

  4. alexzenit
    alexzenit ·

    This is a great article! I have a Zenit EM that was given to me by my father and I absolutely love it. I only wish my photographs were as good as yours!

  5. lighthouse_keeperess
    lighthouse_keeperess ·

    Thank you @alexzenit! You are very kind!

  6. droogieboy
    droogieboy ·

    I found your account of the history of this camera in your family a moving testimony to the power of photography. Great photos too

  7. neanderthalis
    neanderthalis ·

    Wonderful article and fantastic photos. Thank you for sharing your father's photos too. It is a testament to the longevity of the camera.

  8. lighthouse_keeperess
    lighthouse_keeperess ·

    @droogieboy, @ponz, @neanderthalis, thank you thank you thank you so much!!! ♥ ♥ ♥

  9. plyshbel
    plyshbel ·

    Great review and photos! My father also took pictures with Zenit E(which is pretty similar to Zenit ET) in glory Soviet days:)

  10. abarusso
    abarusso ·

    Woah! Great photos! I loved the b&w one with the geese :D Great moment on picture

  11. lighthouse_keeperess
    lighthouse_keeperess ·

    Thank you @plyshbel! I also had Zenit E! It is my all time favorite camera! Sadly it broke down last month, but I am thinking of getting a new one :)
    @abarusso, thank you so much! :)

  12. screamverz
    screamverz ·

    Wow, what a Great story with beautiful Pictures.

  13. lomodesbro
    lomodesbro ·

    a delightful photographic gallery and camera testimonial

  14. egor_post
    egor_post ·

    very nice photos!

  15. phantomphoenixphotos
    phantomphoenixphotos ·

    Time and time again, I come back to this lovely article that features the Zenit ET. This article serves as an inspiration to me and my Zenit ET. :)

  16. nuhdos
    nuhdos ·

    I'm in love with Zenit cameras. This article is so beautiful, the story and also the photos.

  17. agentmushroom
    agentmushroom ·

    Zenit Et is realy great :)
    It makes beautiful photos

  18. agentmushroom
    agentmushroom ·

    Zenit Et is realy great :)
    It makes beautiful photos

  19. agentmushroom
    agentmushroom ·

    Zenit Et is realy great :)
    It makes beautiful photos

  20. af-capture
    af-capture ·

    great history...lovely pics

  21. gepo1303
    gepo1303 ·

    Divine photos. Can't wait to visit Reykjavik next Easter with my girlfriend. We'll need a lot of films I think...

  22. notoriousvik
    notoriousvik ·

    great article, great camera, great photos :-)

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