Like a Brick with a Lens: Lomo Revue Auto RS

2014-01-23 3

Even on vacation I like to go to flea markets. So I did on my trip to Berlin last December. There, I found a whole bunch of mostly broken and also few intact cameras at a flea market. I knew I would actually buy one, when I saw the ΛOMO logo. Despite a similar feel, I didn’t have a brick in hand but a Lomo Revie Auto RS.

The Lomo Revue Auto RS, an export variant of the Lomo Sokol Automat (Сокол Автомат) is a rangefinder camera with automatic exposure control. It was produced between 1966 and 1978 for the market of the GDR. During this time, about 226,000 pieces were produced, one of which eventually found its way to me. The most striking feature of the Lomo Revue Auto RS is its weight (it’s quite heavy!) and the clumsy-looking appearance.

It is suitable for 35 mm films with speeds from 16 to 320 ASA or ISO. The film speed is set in the front on a ring on the lens and displayed in a small window below the lens.

The firmly-built Industar-70 lens has a focal length of 50mm and a 55mm filter thread with an aperture up to f/16. Focus and shutter speed are set. The shutter speed is 1/30 to 1/500s and allows B-Mode for long exposures with the a cable release.

To change the shutter speed, the shutter must be cocked. The ring engages in the A setting. If you want to change this, the ring must be unlocked first.

A highlight of this camera is its rangefinder. There is a small box in the center of the image that appears twice. It is slightly offset in the middle of the viewfinder image. This second figure is moved horizontally by operating the focus ring. The object is then in focus when alignment is made. This doesn’t succeed so well in portrait format therefore it is advisable to focus horizontally before shooting portrait-style photographs.

The aperture is controlled by the sensor that has 3 CdS cells above the lens. It also regulates the shutter speed or locks the trigger at imminent false exposure. To photograph with the automatic exposure control, it requires a 625U 1.5V battery. It’s a previously unknown battery format for me but it can be purchased easily at the photo shop or even at electronics discount stores.

Any flash can be attached on the hotshoe which can be triggered via the two PC slots.

Next to the viewfinder on the left side of the back, the serial number can be found. The first two digits indicate the year of production of the camera.

The Lomo Revue Auto RS was a stroke of luck, really. Of course, the Revue is no LC-A and certainly no high quality camera. But for anyone who wants to offer a new home to a nice piece of Soviet technology and likes to invite randomness to Lomowalks, the Lomo Revue is a good candidate.

Unfortunately, I had trouble with the film advance and rewind knob that my first roll of film got torn. It’s quite a shame that I can only show you a few pictures:

Credits: dopa

written by dopa on 2014-01-23 #gear #35mm #review #camera #lomo #135 #revue #kleinbild
translated by dopa


  1. alex34
    alex34 ·

    Interesting example of a camera I had not heard of. It seems to be a hybrid of different ideas/parts-rangefinder system from the Fed/Zorki series, automatic exposure maybe from a point-and-shoot. One wonders given the small overall production figures if it was a mutant made to use up spare parts-what the Russians sometimes called a 'plan camera' (a camera made to fill up a plan quota).

  2. alex34
    alex34 ·

    I since discovered this camera is better known as a Sokol. Produced in larger numbers than I first thought, though still has some of the qualities of a 'bitsa':

  3. dopa
    dopa ·

    i'm sorry @alex34, i should have told that we discussed in the german community an got this result: It is a 2nd Edition of the '69 Sokol (1). Revue was the trademark of "Quelle" a german warehouse, tagt sold it in west Germany, but most to west Berlin as part of the merchandise exchange between east and west Berlin.The Sokol was produced in large numbers, but the Revue was excspecialy for the market of the West,were it could not prevail against the competitors, in the east, however, the Russian Sokol was sold. This makes the camera relatively rare.

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