Zorki 4b Zorki 4b DSC_5242

Vital Statistics

  • Film Type: 35mm (135)
  • Lens: LTM (Leica Thread Mount)  – Here in this image I have a 35mm Jupiter 12 f/2.8 mounted. Also a non-vintage lens hood.
  • Focal Range: 1m – Infinity with the Jupiter 12 mounted.
  • Shutter Speeds: 1/1000, 1/500, 1/250, 1/125, 1/60, 1/30, 1/15, 1/8, 1/4, 1/2. 1 sec  & “Manual” B.
  • ASA: N/a – I keep a spreadsheet of what film is loaded in each camera at any given time, tedious but worthwhile!!!
  • Viewfinder: Coupled rangefinder
  • Exposure Control: None, You will need a separate meter.
  • Weight: 520g with no lens attached.
  • Other: Double Cloth Shutter, Hotshoe, Self Timer & Diopter Adjustment.

About

Well, here it is, the Zorki 4b, another fine example of Russian rangefinder. This is of course a copy of the Leica II made at the KMZ factory in Krasnogorsk. It is also to all intents a Zorki 3c with a self timer. At the end of WWII the KMZ factory benefited from the generosity of the Red Army when they were effectively handed the contents of the Zeiss factory in Jena, great news for the Russian camera industry……ok, also great news for us as we now we have great lenses like the Jupiter 3 and 8 available for very little.
Zorki 4b with 35mm Jupiter 12 f/2.8 and Original Leather Case
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As I seem to have developed a “thing” for Russian rangefinders this was a logical purchase. (Not everyone in this house would agree with that statement). I find this camera a joy to hold, it fits my grip perfectly. The viewfinder is clear and quite large in comparison to some other rangefinders. I purchased my particular camera from eBay, my Zorki 4 arrived with only the Leather case, no box with this one, I usually try to purchase with the boxes. Additionally it was without instructions, however an English copy of those instructions can be downloaded online from here.  
Zorki 4 with 35mm Jupiter 12 f/2.8 – Lens Hood & Turret Viewfinder
Zorki 4b DSC_5419-Version-2
I believe the Zorki 4 originally shipped with the Industar 50 or Jupiter 8 lens, mine was purchased with the Industar 50, which I am yet to use, the Jupiter 8 of which I have two copies (Black & white) is a superb lens which I will cover seperately. I use my Zorki 4 in conjunction with the Gossen Pilot Light Meter, this is a great combination and not as inconvenient as you’d think. The viewfinder on the Zorki 4 is of course fixed for 50mm lens use, if you going to mount anything else you will require a separate viewfinder like the Turret in my images, set to 35mm for the Jupiter 12.
Zorki 4 with 35mm Jupiter 12 f/2.8 – Lens Hood & Turret Viewfinder – Rear
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To me it’s even attractive from the rear……..the Turret takes a little getting used to but no real drama.
Zorki 4 with 35mm Jupiter 12 f/2.8
Zorki 4b DSC_5228

Common Issues

It is imperative to “cock” the shutter before you change film speeds. Any Change of film speeds without tensioning the shutter can cause damage to the shutter.

More Info

More technical info and fixes for the most common issues and repairs can be found here.
A selection of images taken by Zorki 4 users can be found here.

The Last Word

Whats good:
Typical of Russian rangefinders of this period it’s a “Looker”
Ergonomically for me at least its superb.
Whats not so good:
The Zorki 4(b) is distinguishable by the lack of engraving, the name and settings are painted on, this can result in them rubbing off over time.
To sum up the Zorki 4 I’d have to say if your a collector of Rangefinders its another banker.
Sample Images – To Follow Shortly