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Pentacon Praktica BC1, 35mm SLR camera, sample images.

The images on this page were taken around Istanbul in March 2013 and Bishkek in April 2013. The Praktica behaved well on these trips, its compact design ensured it was taken on a relatively lightly loaded trip. It had a slight tendency to overexpose, the LED metering system is perhaps a bit too coarse, but with experience just dropping half a stop from what the meter says would probably solve it. The exposure readout in the viewfinder consists of a small window at the bottom, showing the aperture, and red LED against the appropriate shutter speed on the right hand side. In Manual mode, if the selected shutter speed is incorrect, it flashes against that, whilst a continuous LED illuminates the correct setting. The whole set of lenses was taken on this trip too, the 28mm, 50mm and 70-210mm Prakticar Zoom. I'm not a huge fan of split field focus screens, and prefer to use the Fresnel surround, as I find the shimmering much easier to see. I have to say that I dislike the 45deg split on the BC1 quite a lot, but other than that, the camera is an excellent performer. The viewfinder is bright and the metering simple to understand, if slightly coarse, and the shutter - as many Prakticas do, sounds clattery.

Turkish Tram

Blue Mosque Far left is a Vintage Tram that trundles up and down Istiklal Avenue, Istanbul. The Prakticar 70-210mm telephoto zoom lens producing this characteristically foreshortened effect. Whilst at left is the Sultanahmet Mosque, commonly referred to as the Blue Mosque shimmers in the hazy sun.

Kyrgyzstan Scenery

Somewhat further East of Turkey is the small nation of Kyrgyzstan, essentially a collection of mountains sandwiched between Uzbekistan, China, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan. The principle city of Bishkek, the scene of a coup in 2010, rests peacefully at the base of a spectacular range of mountains. So close that a 40 minute taxi ride will take you from city scape to rivers of blue meltwater cascading through rocky creaks.

Kyrgyzstan Scenery

Kyrgyzstan Scenery

Kyrgyzstan is characterized by beautiful scenery, never far from the sight of snow capped mountains. There are relatively few historic monuments compared to other countries, but one of them to the East of Bishkek is this 10th Century tower, rebuilt in the late 70s after an earthquake dropped it.

behind the tower is a field of ancient stone carvings, collected from various places and placed together.

Issyk Kul lake

Left. At a resort on the North shore of Issyk Kul lake, Kyrgyzstan, this sun shade waits on a deserted shore for the coming holiday season, when the locals flock to the lake. The mountains in the distance are beyond the South shore, some 40 miles distant.

Below left, this amazing 45 degree rock strata, is cut out by mountain streams on the South side of Issyk Kul, near Karakol. Whilst below is this freshly painted pier, nearby the sunshade at left.

Kyrgyzstan Scenery

Issyk Kul pier  
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