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Helios lens

Brief photo review Zenit-E M39 N68117993

Zenit-E is a camera that is difficult to have in a collection.

The seven-million circulation and the indestructible design ensure that there is always a sufficient supply of these devices in good condition at a low price. Here, it seems, I didn’t plan it, but +1 somehow happened by itself.

On the other hand, having a lot of Zenit-Es in the collection is boring. With more than 20 years of production, and at two factories, there are at least differences between the models. Monotony.

Perhaps that is why various export versions of Zenit-E, which were produced under unusual names, are popular with collectors. There were quite a few of them: Revueflex-E, Phokina, Phokina-XE, Kalimar SR200, Prinzflex-500E, Spiraflex, Delta 1, Meprozenit-E, Diramic-RF100.

But for some reason I'm calm about export versions. I would like something from the technical differences.

There is, however, one more or less tangible technical difference in the Zenith-E model range - a change in the thread standard for optics - from M39 to M42.

Zenit-E has been produced since 1965 and for the first few years these devices had an M39 thread with a working length of 45.2 mm, similar to the first Soviet SLRs from Zenit of the first model and further along Zenit-3M.

In 1968, the thread was changed to M42 with a working length of 45.5 mm. This format, firstly, was compatible with Western optics, and secondly, it gave more opportunities for creating domestic high-aperture systems.

So, I decided to get Zenith-E with M39 thread. And got it.

True, there are almost no visual differences again. It's even a little sad :o)
I will again compare the new thing with a common version of the device with the Olympic symbols of 1980 release. I had a basic review of the Zenit-E device earlier. Here is just a short comparison of the two modifications.

In the instance of 1968, the accessory bracket is removable. In this case, it just doesn't exist.

The shape of the trigger foot is different. The 1968 model has a smaller foot with teeth.

The button that turns off the shutter when rewinding the film in the earlier version is metal. The later one is plastic.

The earlier variant has no screw head on the front left.

Well, of course, the optics mounting thread is different.

Here, in general, and all.

The lens completes the picture of minimal differences. Visually - the usual "zebra". But the lens is quite interesting.

To be honest, I expected to see a white Helios-44. Although, it is known that it was with the release of Zenith-E that the optics became black. This was done so that the light does not reflect from the lens and does not blind the built-in exposure meter.

Maybe black lenses will not appear immediately, but my copy of 1968 is one of the last with M39 thread. Therefore, everything is logical.

But I have never seen black Helios-44s before. Not Helios-44-2 with M42, of which there are many, namely the black Helios-44 with M39. It turns out that there are.

Lens number 8034861

In general, Zenith-E with M39 thread may be a good option for those who want to shoot on film through white optics with M39.

The range of lenses with this mount is very good, and it is believed that the picture quality of such optics is better than that of later versions with M42 thread.

True, Zenith-3M or Crystal is much easier to find. But they have a sticky mirror. For me, this is somewhat inconvenient.

The exposure meter at Zenit-E will most likely lie, so we don’t take its presence into account.

Below are some larger photos.

That's all for me.

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