Zeiss Ikon Ikonta C 521/2 - my golden oldie


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If not to photograph with then just to display this beauty is worth it. This zeiss ikon ikonta c was released in 1947 and shoots 120 film and 6cm x 9cm frames. It has a simple view finder and stand to hold itself up aswell as a tripod mount.

As an early christmas gift I was given a lovely vintage camera the zeiss ikon ikonta c to take on holiday with me. Being my first medium format camera it took me a little while to figure out how exactly to load it and to realise that you don’t rewind it.

However once loaded i winded on which was my next challenge as i didn’t know that you winded on for a while so i shot some shots onto the paper the first time I loaded it before the numbers arrived in the little opening in the back much to my relief, i then new i was on the right track!

When holding the camera horizontally like normal it gives a portrait shot and when holding it vertically it gives you a landscape shot. You need to prepare the shutter before you can fire a shot and there is a little silver lever next to the lens that you push down to do this. You can fire from two points on the camera the first being the obvious button next to the winding mechanism and the second being a black lever just under the lens. The button on top will only fire once and then you need to wind to the next shot where it will click and allow you to fire again however you may fire multiple exposures by using the bottom lever instead, remembering that you need to prepare the shutter each time before you can fire a shot from any point.

The aperture ranges from 6,3 to 22 and the shutter speed from 1/250 to 1/1 and it has bulb mode. There is also a ring to define distance this is in feet so if you working in metres divide by three to get the approximate distance.

The self timer works however we have been advised not to really use it to avoid it from messing with the shutter. However we have used it once just to test it!

Unsure of whether the camera was working i dropped off my first roll of kodak 400 120 film very excited and nervous, hoping for anything but blank negatives and luckily for me i had a roll of vintage looking images that came out. There is a mist in the lens that makes all the pictures look like a dream or a thought that you were thinking about. I loaded another roll before i realised this and so will have to try clean the lens from the inside when it is finished to see if it makes a difference, however i do like the romantic feel that these images give.

written by nicx on 2011-05-06 #gear #medium-format #review #old #vintage #manual #fold-out-lens


  1. willyboy
    willyboy ·

    Nice effects. What was it like carrying about?

  2. jeffr
    jeffr ·

    nice review and great photos! i just got a zeiss ikon super ikonta that i'm psyched to try out

  3. gueaut
    gueaut ·

    Very nice review. A friend of mine gave me a Pre-War model to sell but I think I've fallen in love with it. Any things to make a note of? Already checked the lenses and I think I need to get the middle one cleaned somehow. BTW, are some of those pictures taken at the Victoria Falls? Great work!

  4. erwin-tf
    erwin-tf ·

    I have one too, it's a nice camera that when it was new was not cheap.
    One thing, you realy need to clean the lens. This camera gives nice sharp and clean images.

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