Kiev II, 1956, Black Body Finish

The Kiev II is a true Contax II copy and was in production at Arsenal factory in Kiev in 1950-1955. Some quantities were also made in 1956, this is one of them.

Kiev II is practically identical to the Contax II - it even features a stabilizing foot on the bottom plate.

The camera is one of the last Kiev II made, serial number starts with 56xx. It is a later version with the Kiev engraving in Russian and English.

Technical Characteristics

Kiev II Body

Shutter Speeds

B, 1/2 - 1/1250

Shutter Type

Focal plane, metal/leather curtains, vertical movement

Rangefinder Base

Viewfinder Magnification


Flash Synch


Film Type
35mm film in standard cassettes


9 to 15 seconds

Lens Mount
Contax Rangefinder Bayonet. Internal and external bayonets fully compatible with Contax II, III, IIa, IIIa
Body Finish
Black Enamel, Leather covering


Lens: Jupiter-8M, 50/2, CZJ Sonnar 50/2 Copy

Focal length

50 mm


1:2, settings from 2 to 22

Angle of Coverage


0.9 m - Infinity

Filter size


Optical Design
6 elements in 3 groups, click to see drawing

Optical registration (back focus)

31.85?0.02 mm

Contax Rangefinder Bayonet (Internal). Will fit all Kievs, Contax II, III, IIa, IIIa
Polished chrome

This camera is special, it is finished in black enamel, as was its grandmother (or grandfather) - the Contax I. There were no black Kievs produced by the Arsenal factory; this is a great and detailed work of a skilled repairman/restorer from Odessa, Ukraine. The camera was disassembled, all chrome panels were painted with a high quality enamel. New finish is baked in a controlled temperature chamber; the resulting finish is tough and durable.

The camera comes with a metal lenscap.

The Kiev II is much less common than its successors - Kiev IIa and 4a. It is a good user and a desirable and attractive collectible camera.


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