Moskva-5 is a Soviet folding medium format film camera that takes photographs in 6×9 and 6x6cm, produced from 1956 to 1960 at the KMZ.
The Moskva-5 camera was the last in a series of folding medium format cameras of its family. It was created on the basis of the previous model Moskva-4 and had improved characteristics. In the early 60s, this series of cameras was replaced by more advanced Iskra cameras, which could shoot only in 6×6 format.
- Type: medium format rangefinder folding camera
- Manufacturer: KMZ plant
- Production period: 1956-1960
- Format: 6x9cm and 6x6cm on 120 film
- Lens mount: fixed lens
- Lens: Industar-24 f3.5/105
- Shutter: leaf shutter with speeds from 1 to 1/250 sec.
- Viewfinder: optical parallax viewfinder not combined with a rangefinder
- Lighmeter: none
- Flash synchronisation: sync socket “X”
- Selftimer: mechanical
- Weight: 854 grams
The Moskva-5 camera, like all previous models of this family, was made for shooting on 120 film. This means that, unlike 135 film, you only have 12 frames (if you shoot in 6×6) or 8 frames (if you shoot in 6×9).
But at the same time, unlike 135 film, the frame size is several times larger, which means that you get much more detail, finer grain, more tonal transitions and overall better image quality, all other things being equal.
The Moskva camera is equipped with a very cool Industar-24 f3.5/105 lens, which is a clone of Tessar f3.5/105. If you compare the shots taken by both these cameras, you will notice that the difference between them is minimal. This lens is known for its smooth transitions from sharpness to blurriness, which produce soft, aesthetically pleasing photographs.
For a camera with a frame size of 6×9 and a focal length of 105 the aperture f3.5 is a very good good value. Like the Industar-23 lens, which was equipped with previous cameras of this family, the Industar-24 is a very good lens, giving very good resolution and nice soft bokeh. In general, the image from this lens resembles the image that can be obtained with larger format cameras.
This soviet film camera was equipped with a Moment-24C shutter with shutter speeds from 1 to 1/250 sec. This set of shutter speeds is exactly the same as that of all previous cameras of this family. For a modern photographer who is accustomed to such shutter speeds of 1/8000 sec, a shutter speed of 1/250 may seem too slow. But remember that we are talking about a medium format camera with a 6×9 frame format and produced in the 50s.
In addition, it is worth noting that the f105 focal length allows you to shoot handheld only at shutter speeds of 1/240 and 1/100 sec. To shoot at slower shutter speeds, you will need to use a tripod. And in general, the camera, like larger cameras such as the Fotokor-1, was created for shooting with a tripod. This is evidenced even by the fact that the camera has two tripod sockets, one for shooting in a horizontal format, the second for shooting in a vertical format.
Like all previous cameras, in Moskva-5, most of the controls are concentrated on the lens barrel. There is aperture switching, shutter speed switching, shutter cocking, self-timer and even a second shutter button.
The rest of the controls are located on the top panel. There is a film advance knob and a small wheel for switching frame sizes in the viewfinder, as well as a shutter button and a button to open the front cover of the camera.
On the back of the camera, you can see two red frame control windows closed with small latches. One window for 6×6 frames and the second window for 6×9 frames.
The camera is very well built. It is made of aluminum alloy and covered with a pleasant leatherette. Using the camera is very pleasant, although the shooting process is slow, and in some ways even meditative.
The shutter cocking and film advancing are separate, which means you have to do two operations instead of one. The camera does not have a built-in light meter, which means that you will have to measure the exposure yourself. There is not a single electronic element in the camera, which means that you have to do everything manually.
All this suggests that the camera is designed for really leisurely shooting. With the Moskva-5 camera you will get closer to the process of photographing of the beginning of the 20th century.
The Moskva camera is the best Soviet camera for shooting in 6×9 format. This Soviet film camera not only has a great vintage look, but it can also amaze you with the quality of the shots.
Moskva-5 was very popular among professional photographers in the USSR. It has been also used by amateurs in a variety of areas of photography, including portrait, journalistic, landscape and documentary photography. Today, Moskva-5 is considered a classic of photographic equipment.