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class="style10" Russian 16mm Camera

>Published : 8th Feb. 2006

>Hi, I'm interested in purchasing a Russian 16mm camera made by Krasnogorsk. I think it's called a Krasnogorsk-3. I have heard that you can get them for very cheap, and I'm wondering if it's worth getting one.

>Does anyone know anything about these cameras and if they've had any major problems with them?

>Benjamin Peters
Learning Cinematographer
Hamden, CT


class="style11">>Does anyone know anything about these cameras and if they've had >any major problems with them?

>I recently brought one of these cameras and they seem okay.

>Due to their wind-up nature, they're only good for MOS. You used to be able to get a crystal sync motor for them, but they're no longer made. I think this was mainly due to the fact that the camera had to be extensively modified in order to fit the motor.

>If you do get one, it might be a good idea to send it away to have the film path professionally polished and the camera given an all-round service (I did see somewhere on the net that does this).

>Another point to note is that the internal light meter battery for these are no longer available, but you can buy a little brass doodad that adapts normal zinc-air cells so that they fit.

>Chay "thou shalt covet thy neighbour's Aaton" Donohoe
LD / Wannabe Cinematographer


>I've had students of mine buy much better quality Bell & Howells and Bolexes on Ebay for everywhere from $50 to $300. I'd go that route.

>If you do buy the Russian camera, which has some nice features for the price, I'd recommend you get it from one of the importers who goes over each one and makes sure the thread path etc is good.

>And, check the archives.

>Steven Bradford
Film HD Program Chair
Collins College
Phoenix Arizona


>Chay Donohoe writes :

class="style11">>the internal light meter battery for these are no longer available, but you >can buy a little brass doodad that adapts normal zinc-air cells so that >they fit.

>Zinc-air cells are readily available and cheap, but their life is quite short compared with silver-oxide and alkaline cells.

>The Krasnogorsk looks like a nice cheap camera -- with a mirror shutter, no less! But what kind of lens mount does it use? Can't be a standard C-mount.

>Dan Drasin
Producer/DP
Marin County, CA


class="style11">>But what kind of lens mount does it use? Can't be a standard C-mount.

>You've got me there. I have a bayonet mount on mine (screw mount ones also out there, too).

>(out come the vernier callipers) The inside diameter of the lens port is roughly 43mm and the FFD is even more roughly; 52mm.

Any ideas?

Chay Donohoe
LD / Wannabe Cinematographer


>I bought a Krassie a few months ago, but haven't been able to use it because the viewing prism fell out. It seems like a good camera and I'll hopefully be able to get it fixed so I can find out.

>Any ideas on how to fix this problem?

>Michael Nease
Learning DP
Florida


>The factory mount on the K-3 is a Pentax Screw mount. Go to a place that sells old still camera lenses and you might be able to scrounge up some interesting optics for cheap, but I wouldn't bet the farm on it.

>Better to spend the very little bit of money to get the American made adapter to mount Arri Bayonet lenses. Does Reel Trading still exist?

>I used to know one of the guys who retrofitted the K-3 cameras on the side. With an Arri Bayonet adapter this camera could be useful as a crash cam, although the value of the lens will still likely exceed that of the camera behind it.

>Mitch Gross
NYC DP


>the camera may not be the greatest, but for what it gives for $300 (what I paid for mine) it's not bad. In fact, I have some footage shot with my camera that I actually think is pretty beautiful. I'm even thinking of buying a super 16 gate for it. I mean, a super 16 camera for $500? That's not bad, I don't care where you are.

I got mine from a previous owner in the US, and it's turned out pretty well, but I can see being worried about buying a camera from Russia.

Paul Niccolls

NYC


class="style11">>the internal light meter battery for these are no longer available, but you >can buy a little brass doodad that adapts normal zinc-air cells so that >they fit.

>So? Would you really want to use an internal light meter? I don't remember Arri's or any other professional camera coming with an internal meter. Better to use an incident or spot meter, and work on your metering technique, no?

>Paul Niccolls


>Greetings,

>Paul Niccolls writes :

class="style11">>Would you really want to use an internal light meter? I don't remember >Arri's or any other professional camera coming with an internal meter.

>Most professional 16mm cameras have the option of an internal light meter. On the last three TV shows I worked the three different DoP's insisted on the Arri SR3 with the light meter. It is not that uncommon and it is not limited to Arri.

>Michael Nease writes :

class="style11">>I bought a Krassie a few months ago, but haven't been able to use it >because the viewing prism fell out.

>On the smartgroups there is a Konvas mailing list; amongst some Russian camera experts and dealers you might find a solution.

>Regards
Emmanuel, London

>Camera Assistant
Munich-London


>Chay Donohoe wrote:

class="style11">>The inside diameter of the lens port is roughly 43mm and the FFD is >even more roughly; 52mm. Any ideas?

>I understand it to be the old Pentax screw mount, although I could be wrong. It comes with its own "Meteor" branded Russian Lens, which is okay, but not great by any stretch of the imagination.

>There are many mods out there, that allow the use of other lenses (I think I've seen Bayonet and Arri standard conversions).

>I thought Spike lee used a few for "Get on the Bus"

>They are usable, but given the option, I'd find a Bolex.

>Steven Gladstone
New York Based D.P.
www.gladstonefilms.com
East Coast CML List administrator


>Steven Gladstone wrote :

class="style11">> They are usable, but given the option, I'd find a Bolex.

>I'm inclined to agree with you on that one. I brought a Rex-1 off Ebay a few weeks back, just waiting for it to arrive. I've heard lots of good things about them and can't wait to get stuck in!

>Chay Donohoe
LD / Wannabe Cinematographer


>Paul Niccolls wrote :

class="style11">>So? Would you really want to use an internal light meter? I don't >remember Arri's or any other professional camera coming with an >internal meter.

>Arri had the APEC - Arri Precision Exposure Control. Arri also offered the ability to have the light meter control exposure with the built in Lightmeter. This was with the SR 1 and 2.

>Aatons as well have a built in lightmeter (but no way to automatically control the iris by it.)

>There is a value to the built in light meter, if you wish to use it.

>Steven Gladstone
New York Based D.P.
www.gladstonefilms.com
East Coast CML List administrator