The Be Lomo Elikon 535 is a small compact 35mm camera, that produces very similar results in my opinion to the LC-A.
After sorting out my box of negatives, I came across some which I shot when I first got into film photography. Back then, I still shot color film.
I came across this camera by accident while searching ebay. I bought it in the original box with instructions from a seller in Russia. I didn’t know anything about it but I hoped for the best.
When it arrived it came in a tiny cute little box. In excitement, I ripped the box open got the camera out and began to play. The first thing I noticed was how light the camera was and how cheap it felt. I fired the coupled shutter a few times, and adjusted the aperture a few times to make sure it was all okay. Unfortunately, the shutter sometimes got stuck when it was set to 3.8, but hey, I didn’t care.
Here are the specs of the camera:
- Produced: c.1989
- Name: „Эликон 535“
- Producer: BeLomo
- Frame size: 24×36.
- Lens: Minar-2, 3.8/35.
- Shutter: estimated by weather symbols
Did you notice the name of the lens? It’s believed to be the second incarnation of the legendary Minitar 1 lens found on the LC-A, and when you see the results, I think that it definitely is.
The camera is kind of aperture priority, you set the aperture, and that aperture is coupled with a set shutter speed.
These are the aperture shutter speed combos: 1 / 90 at 3.8; 1 / 97 at 4.6, 1 / 130 at 5.6, 1 / 206 at 6.3, 1 / 325 at 7.1, and 1 / 512 at 8.0,11,16.
Anyway, the camera is great for just throwing into a pocket to take it everywhere. You’ll forget it’s there and when you need it, it’s everready.
Here are some results from my travels
As you can see from the results, particularly the image with the horse, the colors that the lens produces are lovely, and they pop out of the image. It also does vignettes sometimes. I was surprised to see that the images are actually quite sharp.
All in all, it’s a great camera that is very similar to the LC-A. However, I wouldn’t say it’s a substitute. I wouldn’t call this a “poor man’s LC-A” as some people do, as it’s a different camera that produces similar results. My only problems with this camera is the reliability and build quality.
I sold the camera when I had a big clear out of my film camera and gear, though I now regret selling it as looking back through the images, I really like them.
Thanks for reading this review! Keep shooting!