Fed 5B - My First Russian Rangefinder

2013-11-24 5

Jokingly known as the great lens with a horrible rear lens cap, this camera delivers very nicely!

So I decided to get the Fed 5B and took a gamble on eBay. One of the things that attracted to me was the fact that it uses a Leica Thread Mount. Technically, I can put on a Summicron (if I can afford it one day) but I’d probably get a Leica body as well. Anyway, the camera arrived and it came in a nice carrying case. I learned that it’s for good reasons. Although I do have a nitpick with this camera, they decided not to include strap lugs. I think the strap lugs are necessary since this camera is quite heavy.

The body showed its fair share of wear but still looks sturdy and is definitely tough looking. I’d bet if I were to drop it, I wouldn’t have to bother checking for any parts falling off (except many scratches on the lens.)

Loading is a bit of a hassle – you have to remove the whole back (like the Diana) so that makes street photography a bit time consuming. The timer works great and the lens is excellent. The lack of a light meter does knock a point off for the Fed5 but it’s not a deal breaker for me. Being a manual camera, you will learn a lot about photography and not just simply taking snapshots with the Fed5. Overall, the camera is solidly built, it has nice features and produces quite interesting results and effects. It’s a great purchase.

P.S. I almost forgot. Always remember to cock the shutter before changing the shutter speed!

written by muhamad_haiz_shamsudin on 2013-11-24 #gear #rangefinder #review #industar-lens #manual-camera #leica-thread-mount #clasic-cameras


  1. herbert-4
    herbert-4 ·

    These are pretty good cameras. The most reliable FED is a FED 2. The best FED with the slow shutter speeds is a FED 3a Type 1. You want the one that has a shutter dial that rotates on a center shaft when you change speeds and has the speeds engraved on the dial and not on the camera body. The FED 2 and the earliest FED 3 had a more modern shutter mechanism the the Soviets quit using with slow shutter speeds because it was harder to machine. Central planning and little care for consumer convenience.

  2. muhamad_haiz_shamsudin
    muhamad_haiz_shamsudin ·

    Wow, I wasn't informed my review was approved and submitted! Thanks @LSI

  3. muhamad_haiz_shamsudin
    muhamad_haiz_shamsudin ·

    @herber-4 You're right man. This may not be the best of the Feds, but they're one of the cheaper ones I could get off eBay. I got a deep appreciation for these Russian rangefinders now. No worries, Just got a Fed2 typeB heheh...cheers!

  4. cheeo
    cheeo ·

    @muhamad_haiz_shamsudin sorry about sending the email just now. nice, review. had fun reading and editing.

  5. sirio174
    sirio174 ·

    And the Industar 61L/D is VERY sharp!

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