The PENTACON six and KIEV 60

The Myth:
According to the dictionary a copy is "A reproduction or imitation of an original; a duplicate..."

Since my research into the "budget end" of 6x6 cameras I have frequently heard the Kiev 60 referred to as a "copy of the Pentacon (six)".  This simply is not true and isn't giving the designers at Kiev the praise they should be credited with.

I would say that the Kiev 60 was inspired by the Pentacon, or based on the Pentacon, but it is not a copy in the literal sense.

Is a Ducati 911 a copy of a Harley Davidson WLA?  Both have V-Twin engines, 2 wheels and a seat behind the petrol tank.
A similar comparison can be made between the Kiev 60 and the Pentacon six TL.  Both are SLR 6x6 cameras.

The facts:
Time for a quick game of "spot the difference" - The following photo shows the upper mechanisms of a Kiev 60 (with MLU) and a Pentacon six TL.

Ok.  Here are just a few examples of differences between the two.
The physical dimensions and weight between the two can clearly be seen (The Pentacon six TL being the smaller/lighter of the two).
The Pentacon six TL can take exposures down to 1 second, opposed to the Kiev 60's 1/2 a second.
The Pentacon six TL has a self timer, the Kiev 60 doesn't.
They have *completely different* shutter mechanisms.  So different that Mirror Lock Up can be achieved on the Kiev 60 with the addition of a button, whilst the Pentacon six TL needs complex procedures involving a cable.
There is a depth of field preview lever on the Kiev which the Pentacon six lacks (due to it's lens designs).
Shutter curtain timing adjusters are located on the top of the Pentacon and the bottom (not shown) of the Kiev, which has easier access.

So *is* the Kiev 60 a copy?
I'll let the facts speak for themselves and you can come to your own conclusion.


This page was created on Tuesday November 11th 2003.