|Lomo Lubitel 166B, 120 roll film Twin lens reflex camera, 1981|
The Lubitel, pronounced lu-bee-tcel in Russian, derives its name from the Russian word for love, but in the passionate interest meaning. Hence it translates as Hobbyist or Amateur, someone who does it for the love of it , rather than professional dictates. It shares a degree of commonality with the Sputnik Stereo camera, also from Lomo. Whilst the Sputnik can be forgiven it's shortcomings as the resulting images can be viewed in 3D, the Lubitel has no such luxury. The shiny black plastic construction leads to a host of internal reflections that reduce contrast and Lubitels have a reputation for leaking light. Construction of the carcass is almost entirely plastic, including the moulded in texture. Although it is a true Twin Lens Reflex, the focus is achieved on a tiny ground and decidedly dim spot in the middle of view, a swing out magnifier at least gives the user a fighting chance. Focussing tends to be a little stiff, as does film advance, though not as bad as the Sputnik. From a photographic standpoint, you tend to get what you'd expect, this is no Rollei. However, they produce images with a distinctive quality, lack of quality in fact, which gives them a certain charm. It's this which has given rise to a cult following and the term "Lomography" applied to photographs taken with a Lomo Lubitel, and other Lomo produced cameras.
This Lubitel 166B was donated in November 2011 by Dennis Gittins, and was given a deep clean. Although a repair to the broken piece above the name badge was considered, this was rejected.
|Body No. 81445708
Shutter, Lomo diaphragm shutter, 1/15, 1/30, 1/60, 1/125 and 1/250th sec
Lens, T22, 75mm f/4.6
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