Archive for the ‘Praktica LB’ Category

Praktica LB, DDR film camera

Posted: February 1, 2015 in film, Praktica LB
Another Solid as rock M42 Mount camera from the old “Iron Curtain” came into my hands. The “Beautiful” Praktica LB made in DDR.
I’m really happy with it and i cant wait for some film testing .

Praktica LB,with a Cosina Cosinon 50mm f1.8 lens fitted
Some Information about the camera and its origin.
VEB Pentacon was formed in 1959 from the amalgamation of (amongst other lesser brands) Kamera Werke, the makers of the Praktica, and the East German Zeiss Ikon, responsible for the Contax S SLR. In 1968 various other companies were merged into the group, including Ihagee (Exakta) and the lens maker Hugo Meyer.
In the 60s, Praktica had made steady progress in the SLR market, but reliability of the Nova series was not great, so in 1969 a new series was unveiled based around a new vertical travel metal blind focal plane shutter speeded from 1s – 1/1000, with flash sync of 1/125. This was the L series, which comprised a number of different models but with 80% of components in common.
The cameras were to a new, boxy design, quite lightweight but fairly solid. All models had a very simple but very effective quick loading system – the film leader was simply pulled under one of two wire gates, the back closed, and wound on.

A triangular indicator is visible on the left of the viewfinder if the camera is not wound on.

Shutter release on all models is on the front so as to avoid camera shake.

Models within the range were as follows:

  1. Praktica L – the entry-level model, no built-in meter.
  2. LB – as the L, but with an external selenium meter and match needle on the top plate.
  3. LTL (later MTL series, and many, many others) – with stop-down metering via a meter paddle on the front next to the shutter button.
  4. LLC (later PLC) – full aperture metering switched by partial pressure on the shutter button, with electrical contacts handling communication of the chosen aperture between camera and appropriate lenses.
  5. VLC – as LLC, but with interchangeable focus screens and viewfinders. A very similar camera was available with a different lens mount as the Exakta RTL1000.
  6. EE – the only model with aperture priority and manual exposure, and an electronically-controlled shutter.
Since Praktica LB has an uncoupled exposure meter using a selenium cell,it a “nuclear fallout” ready camera. No batteries are needed to power the exposure meter. An updated version, the LB 2, had some minor changes such as a plastic-tipped film advance lever and a chrome shutter speed dial, rather than black. Both the LB and LB 2 were usually equipped without a self-timer.

The LB was also rebadged as the Hanimex Praktica LB, the JC Penney SLR 1 and (with some cosmetic differences) as the Porst Reflex CX4.


Praktica LB  Technische Sammlungen Dresden

Manufacturer: Pentacon
Date of Production: 1972-1977
Type of Camera: SLR

Film Type: 35mm
Lens: Various (M42 Mount)
Shutter: Focal Plane (metal)
Shutter speed range: 1s-1/1000th + B
ASA/ISO range: 6-1600
Size (w*h*d): 140mm * 98mm * 48mm (no lens)

Camera’s User Manual PDF

Floral Rust

Praktica LB
Cosina Cosinon 50mm f1.8
Lucky SHD 100 B&W film
Rodinal 1:50 7min
Ilford Rapid Fixer