In 1955, the Soviet plant the name of Felix Dzerzhinsky decided to upgrade the FED-1 camera and created a second model, calling it FED-2.
The FED camera was the very first Soviet clone of Leica II, which gained immense popularity in the USSR. In 1955, the plant decided to upgrade the camera and created a second model, calling it FED-2.
This camera was produced from 1955 to 1970 in various versions. The very first version was fundamentally different from the last in appearance. Nevertheless, the latest version was not a big step forward compared to the very first version of FED-2 in technical terms.
From the very first versions, FED-2 received a viewfinder combined with a range finder, diopter correction, and a removable back part. The 69mm rangefinder base made focusing as accurate as possible.
In 1956, FED-2 get a flash sync port and the ability to set the shutter speed before the shutter cocked, and in 1958 the camera received a self-timer.
In the USSR, FED-2 was considered a middle price category camera, which was technically more complicated than Zorki-2 but simpler than Kiev rangefinders.
The FED-2 camera was equipped with an Industar 26M f2.8/50 lens. As with most Soviet cameras, the FED-2 had an M39 thread mount inherited from Leica II.
All versions of the FED-2 camera had “Leica shutters” with shutter speeds of 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250, 1/500 and B. For the mid-50s, this is a pretty good row of shutter speeds, but not for the late 60s.
We believe that FED-2 camera is one of the best Soviet rangefinders. Yes, there are not many shutter speeds, but this is quite enough to take photos without any difficulties.
There is no light meter and any modern features, but they are absolutely not needed. The camera has everything for a leisurely but very exciting shoot. Ergonomics are perfect. All controls are in place.
The Industar-26 lens gives very good photos, although the quality of the lens is inferior to the Industar-61 lens. The camera can also be equipped with any other rangefinder lens with an M39 screw mount.
As we have already said, FED-2 is a very simple but very worthy camera in order to get acquainted with film photography. It is good for its simplicity and minimal but sufficient functions for a novice photographer.