The Pentacon Six System
by TRA

Publicity for Praktisix and Pentacon Six Cameras
Produced by the Manufacturer and
the State-owned Export Agency


On this page we seek to show camera publicity material produced by the manufacturer and by some distributors.  We present first the publicity produced by the manufacturers, as far as it is possible to determine this.  KW, and subsequently Pentacon and the GDR official export company, often – but not always! – printed a date code on their publicity, so we shall endeavour to present materials in date order, in accordance with this code.  Where there is no code, we endeavour to date the literature on the basis of its content.

The manufacturers and the State-controlled exporters produced their literature in a wide range of languages, both for the so-called “western” world and for other countries in the Soviet bloc.  Inevitably, most of the literature that I have managed to obtain over the years has either been in German or in English, and this is reflected on this page.  The English translations were generally good, but usually contained one or two odd phrases, not surprising when, during most of the existence of the East German Communist State, their translators were forbidden to travel to English-speaking countries.

A selection of materials produced by others, such as distributors in various countries, will be found on another page, here.

1957




[1957Q_Praksixs.jpg]

German-language leaflet   Undated.  For indications of date, see below.
The style is that of publicity literature produced in East Germany.
Approximate dimensions: 208mm × 147mm   Single sheet folded in two places to create six pages.

Click on the image here to see the front of the leaflet full size.

Indications of the date:
The leaflet states that “Interchangeable lenses from 60 to 300 mm focal length are envisaged”.  This seems to indicate that at the time that the leaflet was prepared, only the 80mm Tessar was available in the new lens mount.  When the first wide-angle lens was supplied by Carl Zeiss Jena, the focal length was in fact 65mm.

We also note the presence of the KW logo on the front of the brochure and on the front of the waist-level finder.  This continued to be used for a few years, before being replaces on the WLF and in the literature by the Ernemann Tower symbol.

The orange splash on the front cover, which contains the word “Fully Automatic”, seems to have been strategically placed to obscure the name “Carl Zeiss”, so that the leaflet could be used in countries (such as West Germany!) where the use of this name by the East Germans was disputed.



[57_Jedem_as.jpg]

German-language booklet.
Approximate dimensions: 135mm ×131 mm
12 pages

Over a period of several years, the Dresden camera manufacturer KW, which had created the Praktisix, published each year a booklet covering their wide range of cameras, with the title “Jedem Seine Kamera”. 


Click on the image here to see the front of the booklet full size.


[57_Jedem_10s.jpg]  

Page 10 of this booklet introduces the new Praktisix.

We note that it states that there are lenses from 65mm to 400mm, so it had obviously become clear that the 60mm lens announced, in advance of its manufacture, in the earlier brochure, had turned out to be not quite that wide.

We note also a reference to pentaprism, although this also appears to have been at the preparation stage.

Click on the image here to see page 10 of the booklet full size.
1958






[58_Praksix_as.jpg]

German-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 98mm × 210mm
Approximately 12 pages, including two cut-out flaps that fold out in the style that was popular with East German publicity literature of the period.

Click on the image here to see the front of the leaflet full size.

The phrase on the front is “6×6 cm mit vollautomatischer Blende”, which means “6×6 cm with Fully-Automatic Diaphragm”, something that was a world first for Medium Format cameras (but matched in the same year with the West German Zeiss lenses for the Hasselblad 500C).

As well as presenting the features of the camera, the leaflet also shows a photograph of a body with a plain prism mounted on it.

The lenses listed are the 80mm Tessar, 65mm Flektogon, 80mm f/3.5 Meyer Primotar, 120mm Biometar and 300mm f/4.5 Meyer Telemegor.

The lens in the photographs bears the name “Jena T”, so the photograph was clearly intended to be usable in countries where the GDR could not use the name “Carl Zeiss” or Carl Zeiss brand names such as “Tessar”.  However, the German version of this leaflet was clearly targeted at East Germany, since in the text repeatedly uses the name “Zeiss” and brand names such as “Tessar” and “Biometar”.  This is confirmed by the fact that one of the copies of this leaflet that I have bears a rubber stamp from Photohays W. LUX in Erfurt, which is in what was at the time the Soviet occupied zone of Germany.



1959






[59_Fr_as.jpg]

French-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 98mm × 210mm
This is a French-language version of the above 1958 leaflet and it is dated 1959.
Approximately 12 pages, including two cut-out flaps that fold out in the style that was popular with East German publicity literature of the period.

Click on the image here to see the front of the leaflet full size.

The phrase on the front of the leaflet is “6×6 cm avec diaphragme entièrement automatique”, an accurate translation of the phrase on the original German brochure.

In this version of the leaflet, the name “Zeiss” is not used; lenses from Carl Zeiss Jena are merely named as “Iéna”, the standard French spelling of the town.  The names “Tessar” and “Biometar” are also not used, being replaced by “T” and “Bm”.  In fact, West German Zeiss never used the name “Biometar”, but it is assumed that they had registered it as a potential lens name.  The Carl Zeiss Jena name for its wide-angle lenses, “Flektogon”, was a new name and so could be used anywhere in the world, and does indeed appear in this French leaflet.  (The name chosen by West German Zeiss for their wide-angle lenses was “Distagon”, to indicate the increased distance of the lens from the film plane, in order to allow space for the SLR mirror.)


[59_Jedem_as.jpg]

German-language booklet.
Approximate dimensions: 135mm ×141 mm
24 pages

Here we show the 1959 edition of KW’s
“Jedem Seine Kamera”, the first in which the KW logo is replaced (on the back cover, not shown) by the blue Pentacon
tower logo.

Click on the image here to see the front of the booklet full size.

This is the first edition of the booklet that I have seen (and I have the 1957 and 1958 issues) where a list of the lenses available for the Praktisix is given.



[59_Jedem_18-19s.jpg]

From the use of the name “Zeiss” and brand names such as “Tessar” and “Biometar”, we deduce that this booklet was designed for distribution in East Germany and possibly some other countries where these names could be used.


We note that already in 1959 a significant range of lenses is listed: from Zeiss Jena, the 65mm Flektogon, the 80mm Tessar and the 80mm and 120 mm Biometars; from Meyer the 80mm f/3.5 Primotar and the 300mm f/4.5 Telemegor.

Click on the image here to see pages 18 and 19 full size.








1961







[61_Praksix_a_2s.jpg]

German-language brochure
Approximate dimensions: 198mm × 194mm
Approximately twelve pages, although some pages are half-width and others have fold-out flaps in the style that was popular for East German photographic brochures at the time.

Click on the image here to see the front of the brochure full size.

With this leaflet, Pentacon’s publicity department used the size and the nearly square format that they were to use for many years for most Praktisix and Pentacon Six camera publicity – though they soon abandoned the use of fold-out flaps.

A wider range of lenses is listed than in the 1958/1959 leaflet above, with the addition of the 50mm Flektogon and the 1000mm mirror lens, however, both of these lenses and the 180mm “S” are marked “in preparation”.

The leaflet avoids the use of the names “Zeiss” and “Biometar”, a clear indication that it was intended to be distributed in West Germany.  The photo credits show that one prominently-placed photograph was by a West German photographer, while other photos were from photographers in communist countries (East Germany, Hungary and Czechoslovakia).
    

[61_Prak6_a_bs.jpg]

English-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 98mm × 210mm
Single sheet folded in two places to create six narrow pages, however, here I have partially unfolded it in order to show both the front and the back of the leaflet.

Click on the image here to see the leaflet full size.


This version was printed in English and is clearly for the USA market, since it avoids using the name “Zeiss” and the lens names claimed by West German Zeiss.  These names could have been used for printed materials destined to be used in the U.K.

This surmise is confirmed by the presence on the front of a rubber stamp from a U.S. camera store in Boston, Massachusetts – and on the back of another stamp, this one probably added by or at the insistence of the U.S.A. Customs authorities.  It states, “Printed in East Germany
U. S. S. R. OCCUPIED”.

The lens range listed is the same as in the other 1961 leaflet, reproduced to the left here, although the 180mm “S” lens is no longer marked “in preparation”. 
1963






[63_Frs.jpg]

French-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 100mm × 210mm
.
Single sheet folded in two places to create six pages.

Click on the image here to see the front of the leaflet full size.

The same lenses are listed as in the above 1961 leaflets, but now none of them are marked “in preparation”.

In addition, the rarely seen East German 500mm f/4 mirror lens is listed – the only time that I recall seeing it specified for the Praktisix.  It is usually found with mounts for 35mm cameras, principally the Praktina and the Praktica.  In fact, the 1960 Carl Zeiss Jena leaflet on it describes it as being “FÜR KLEINBILDREFLEXKAMERAS”, i.e., “FOR 35MM REFLEX CAMERAS”.




[63_Gers.jpg]

Substantial German-language brochure in the size and format used for many years for these cameras.
Approximate dimensions: 198mm × 190mm
28 pages, printed on heavy, good-quality paper.

Click on the image here to see the front of the brochure full size.

Highly illustrated, with a report showing a West German university professor using a Praktisix on a zoological expedition in Africa, and another on an East German scientist using one for close-up photography in his laboratory.

The 500mm mirror lens is no longer listed, and so it seems that it was included in the French leaflet on the left in error.
1964






[64_Praksix2s.jpg]

English-language brochure largely based on the German “owl” brochure produced the year before.
Approximate dimensions: 198mm × 190mm
24 pages, printed on good-quality paper.

Click on the image here to see the advertisement full size.

To be noted is that this brochure introduces the
PRAKTISIX II.

Lenses listed are both Flektogons (50mm and 65mm), both Biometars (
80mm and 120mm – named “Bm”), just the one Sonnar (180mm – named “S”), the 100mm mirror lens, and two lenses from Meyer Görlitz (the 80mm f/3.5 Primotar and the 300mm f/4.5 Telemegor).

The West German zoologist and the East German scientist are featured again, along with a Czechoslovak press photographer, along with studio fashion and advertising photography, sports photography and macrophotography.




1965






[65_3gleichens.jpg]

German-language leaflet.
Approximate dimensions: 101mm × 200mm
Two sheets folded in two places to create twelve narrow pages, however, here I have partially unfolded one page in order to show the information on the Praktisix II.

Click on the image here to see the leaflet full size.


The title, “Drei gleichen Typs”, means “Three of a kind”.  The other two cameras featured are Pentacon’s leading 35mm SLRs of the time, the Praktica nova and the Praktica mat.  In such a small leaflet, it is impossible to list all components and characteristics, but a good summary of the main points is given in the text and the photographs.








1966






[66_Pent6s.jpg]

German-language leaflet introducing the new version of the camera and the new name: “PENTACON six”
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 189mm
This is a single sheet folded in two places to create six wide pages.

Click on the image here to see the leaflet full size.

The title, “NEU”, means “NEW”.


The possibility of taking 24 pictures with 220 film is emphasised, and illustrated with 23 pictures plus a large “6×6”.  The lenses are not listed, but the brochure states that lenses up to 300mm have fully automatic diaphragm, which means that the 300mm Zeiss “Sonnar” must now be available.






1967






[67_Pent6s.jpg]

Brochure seen in English-language and German-language versions.
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 191mm
12 pages, printed on good-quality paper.

Click on the image here to see the brochure full size.

Comprehensive listing of lenses and accessories, which are also illustrated with photographs.  We note that the 300mm f/4.5 Meyer Telemegor has been replaced with the new 300mm f/4 lens, here still called “Telemegor”, apparently in error, as this was (subsequently?) known as the “Orestegor”.  The new 500mm f/5.6 Meyer lens is correctly called “Orestegor”.

There seems to have been some confusion in the publicity department, as the English-language version repeatedly uses the word “Zeiss” but is shy of saying “Sonnar” or “Biometar”, so the two Biometars (80mm and 120mm) are called “Bm” and the two Sonnars (180mm and 300mm) are called “S”.

In contrast, the German-language version happily uses “Biometar”, “Sonnar” and “Zeiss” repeatedly, but strangely calls the two Flektogons (50mm and 65mm) “aus Jena”.

The possibility of 24 exposures on one film is emphasised, and illustrations suggest the camera’s suitability for concerts, wildlife, macro, fashion and sports photography.





1968






[68_Pent6_as.jpg]

German-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
Four pages, printed on good-quality light-weight paper

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the leaflet full size.

The front cover emphasises the format and the 24-exposure capabaility: “24 Aufnahmen 6×6” means “24 6×6 exposures”.

The absence of the name “Zeiss” indicates that the leaflet was intended to be usable in West Germany.

The Meyer 80mm f/3.5 Primotar is no longer listed, and the 300mm f/4 Meyer lens is now correctly called “Orestegor”.




[68_Pent6_bs.jpg]

Here I have decided to reproduce the back cover of the leaflet shown on the left here, as it includes most of the lenses and accessories available at that time – and for many years thereafter.

Click on the image here to see the back cover of the leaflet full size.

We note that this was when the Zeiss lenses were finished in the “zebra” style, and that only the 1000mm mirror lens and the 300mm Meyer Orestegor are missing from the photograph.  The all-black lens is the 500mm Meyer Orestegor.  Meyer never adopted the “zebra” style.

The metering prism is of course also not there, as it was not introduced until later that year, but there are two examples of the Pentacon tripod, revealing some of its flexibility.


[68_TTL_as.jpg]

German-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
Four pages
, printed on good-quality light-weight paper

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the leaflet full size.

This is, strictly-speaking, an “accessory”, but I include it here since I view a metering pentaprism as such an integral part of the Pentacon Six.  It fundamentally changed the way it was possible to use the camera, and led to
the camera eventually being renamed “Pentacon Six TL”.





[68_TTL_2s.jpg]

Page two of the metering prism leaflet shows the front of the TTL prism, mounted on the camera.

Click on the image here to see page 2 of the leaflet full size.

The leaflet explains how the prism operates.

We see that the manufacturers had decided to adopt the standard English-language abbreviation for metering pentaprisms.  “TTL” means “through the lens”.  This phrase, used internationally from the late 1960s, distinguished from those cameras that did have built-in light metering, but not through the lens.  Since the 1936 35mm rangefinder Contax, also designed and built in Dresden, there had been cameras with a built-in meter that read through a window somewhere on the front of the camera, but not through the lens.


[68_flyer_as.jpg]

Multi-language flyer sheet
Approximate dimensions: 150mm × 216mm
Single sheet

Click on the image here to see the front of the sheet full size.

This is not in the style of Pentacon’s usual publicity literature, and was perhaps prepared for international commercial visitors at a trade fair, perhaps the Leizig Fair, which occurred every spring and autumn.  The description on the front of the flyer is in German and English and on the back it is in French, Spanish and Russian.  The quality of the English translation is quite poor and not up to the standard usually seen in Pentacon literature (itself far from faultless or natural-sounding, at times!).  This could point to it having been prepared in a hurry without having been checked by the usual staff at the publicity department of Pentacon or of the official Government export agency.

1969






[69_Pent6_as.jpg]

German-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
Four pages
, printed on good-quality light-weight paper

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the leaflet full size.

We note that even though the metering prism was released the previous year, and an inside page of the leaflet shows the camera with a metering prism, the camera name has not yet been changed to “Pentacon Six TL”.

The 65mm Flektogon lens is still listed.

This leaflet was clearly designed for use in markets where the name “Zeiss” and other West German Zeiss names could not be used.

The back of the leaflet has a black-and-white copy of the colour photograph on the back of the 1968 leaflet, above.




[69_Pent6_2_as.jpg]

Brochure seen in German-language and Russian-language versions.
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 188mm
12 pages, printed on good-quality paper.

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the brochure full size.

The 65mm Flektogon is no longer listed.  It would appear that the final production-run of this lens was 1,000 units, completed on 10th February 1969, according to Helmut Thiele in “Fabrikationsbuch Photooptik II Carl Zeiss Jena”, 3rd edition, 2005, page 190.




[69_Pent6_2p4s.jpg]

Pages 4 and 5 of the brochure shown on the left features the new TTL metering pentaprism.  Here I reproduce page 4.

The page title, “Neu: Innenlichtmessung dur TTL-Prisma”, means “New: Internal light metering through TTL Prism”.

Click on the image here to see page 4 of the German-language version full size.

1970






[70p6TL_as.jpg]

German-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
Four pages
, printed on good-quality light-weight paper

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the leaflet full size.

At last we see the new camera name on the front of publicity from the manufacturer.


[70p6TL_bs.jpg]

The back of this leaflet, reproduced here, confirms that it was designed for use in East Germany or other countries where the name “Zeiss” and lens names such as “Sonnar” and “Biometar”could be used.
 
There is another clue: the rubber stamp containing the shop details.  We see that it is a shop run by the East German communist government, using the Government abbreviation “HO”, which stands for the official East German name “Handelsorganisation”, perhaps best translated into English as “Trading Organisation”.  Created in the Soviet-occupied zone of Germany in 1948, “HO” collapsed shortly after the collapse of the East German communist state.  (See Wikipedia, at the time of writing here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Handelsorganisation)
 
(Another clue is the name of the street where the shop was located: “Karl-Marx-Allee”!  This would appear to be the Boulevard in East Berlin that reportedly had been named “Stalinallee” between 1949 and 1961.)

 
Click on the image here to see the back cover of the leaflet full size.
1972






[72_Pent6TL_as.jpg]

German-language brochure
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
12 pages
, printed on good-quality light-weight paper
 
Click on the image here to see the front cover of the brochure full size.

The title, “echte einäugige Spiegelreflex 6 × 6 mit Innenmessung”, means “Genuine 6 × 6 Single Lens Reflex with Internal Metering”.

Again, the use of disputed names such as “Zeiss” indicates that the target markets for this brochure were East Germany itself and possibly other Communist bloc countries where those trading with the GDR might know some German.

Were the East Germans beginning to give up on spending money producing publicity materials for West Germany, perhaps leaving it to the distributor there to produce his own publicity?  Perhaps.
1973






[73_Pent6TL_as.jpg]

German-language brochure
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
12 pages
, printed on good-quality light-weight paper
 
Click on the image here to see the front cover of the brochure full size.

The title, “Handgerechte Spiegelreflex 6 × 6”, means approximately “Hand-holdable 6 × 6 Single Lens Reflex”.

The middle-page spread illustrates and describes the various focussing screens that were available for the Pentacon Six TL and the next page includes in the photo of the lenses available the infrequently-seen 1000mm mirror lens, as well as both of the Meyer lenses.


[73_Pent6TL_bs.jpg]

Here we show the back of the same leaflet.

Click on the image here to see the back cover of the brochure full size.

The
unspoken message here seems to be,
“Both the ‘Old Masters’ and the ‘New Masters’ produce beautiful pictures, each with the tools of his trade (but the ‘Old Master’ is in the background and the ‘New Master’ is in the foreground, symbolizing the progress of the world and technology under the communist system!)”  May I be forgiven if I am reading too much into this carefully-staged image.

[73_Pent6TL_2_as.jpg]

German-language brochure.
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
8 pages, printed on good-quality glossy paper.

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the brochure full size.

At
first glance, this brochure, which was also produced in 1973, looks very similar to the previous one, but there are differences.
  Changes of layout have been required in order to squeeze largely the same text and most of the same illustrations into less pages, with only a small reduction in font size.



[73_Pent6TL_2_bs.jpg]

The back of this brochure has a newly-produced photograph of the Pentacon Six system, with metering prism and all the East German lenses, plus a range of colour filters for the standard lens.

Click on the image here to see the back cover of the brochure full size.

We
definitely see the signs of an active publicity department, constantly seeking to improve the literature that they produce (and no doubt also, to control costs!)


We note that the exporter details state: “Exporteur: Kamera-Film Export-Import Volkseigener Außenhandelsbetrieb der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik”, which means “Exporter: Camera-Film Export-Import Peoples Own Foreign Trade Organisation of the German Democratic Republic”.
1977






[77_Pent6TL_as.jpg]

German-language brochure.
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
8 pages, printed on good-quality glossy paper.

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the brochure full size.

Largely based on the second 1973 brochure shown above, but with all equipment photographs re-shot to show the new all-black style of the Zeiss lenses.


[77_Pent6TL_bs.jpg]

Click on the above image to see the back cover of the brochure full size.

The back cover of this brochure shows a re-design of the system photograph.  Here are the new all-black-finish Zeiss lenses, although the 50mm Flektogon and the 120mm Biometar seem to have rubberized grips that I have never seen.  Perhaps they were prototypes that didn’t make it to serial production.  We observe that the 1000mm mirror lens is not in the photograph, perhaps because there were plans to produce an all-black version, but these lenses had not yet been  produced.
 
We note that the exporter details now have a new name, “Exporteur: HEIM-ELECTRIC Export-Import Volkseigener Außenhandelsbetrieb der Deutschen Demoktratischen Republik”, which means “Exporter: HEIM-ELECTRIC [DOMESTIC ELECTRIC] Export-Import Peoples Own Foreign Trade Organisation of the German Democratic Republic”
.
 
As well as being governed by five-year plans, communist ideology and what would be acceptable to their masters in the Soviet Union, East German industry was plagued by constant reorganisations and re-brandings, probably reflecting the ebbs and flows of power of competing groups in a country that was riven by discord and the constant danger of public denunciations and being declared an “enemy of the People” or a “saboteur”or an “enemy agent”, which resulted in sentences that ranged from lengthy terms in prison to the death penalty.


It would have been wonderful if Pentacon had produced a special “Twentieth Anniversary” brochure on the camera in 1977 – or even a special “20th Anniversary Edition” of the camera! – but apparently no-one in Dresden thought of that.
Pity.  And a missed marketing opportunity.

1979






[79_Sp_1s.jpg]

Spanish-language brochure.
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
8 pages, printed on good-quality glossy paper.

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the brochure full size.
 
This is a Spanish translation of the above 1977 brochure.  The quality of the Spanish is good, and this text may have been produced by a native speaker.
 
This reminds us that communist East Germany had strong links with the communist government in Cuba, and when I was living in East Germany in  1981, the only source of  “fresh” fruit such as oranges, even in the summer, was apparently Cuba.  Unfortunately, most of the ones that reached the shops even in major cities were small, brown and generally inedible.  East Germany clearly needed to sell cameras and other products to Cuba, to cover the cost of its imports.


[79_Sp_7s.jpg]

Rather than repeating the back cover of the brochure, which is the same as in the original German version, apart from the date and language references, I am here showing page 7 of the brochure, which shows a close-up set-up using the bellows and the special aperture control ring, along with the double cable release and the angle finder on the metering prism, all mounted on a Pentacon tripod.

The special aperture control ring (see here) is not really necessary, since the front cable of the double cable release can of course be screwed directly into the bellows in order to maintain lens aperture automation, and the socket for this can be clearly seen on the front of the bellows, just below the socket on the special aperture control ring.  This ring can of course be used to maintain aperture automation when the lens is mounted in reverse on the bellows.  This can be seen here.


Click on the image here to see page 7 of the brochure full size.
1983






[83_Pent6TL_as.jpg]

German-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm

Single sheet folded in two places to create six pages
Printed on good-quality glossy paper.

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the leaflet full size.

References to “Zeiss” and to lens names used by West German Zeiss show that this leaflet was not intended to be used in West Germany.  By now, most sales of the Pentacon Six TL were to other “Ost Bloc” (communist) countries.

We can also clearly see that the Sonnar on the front page is labelled “MC”.


[83_Pent6TL_bs.jpg]

The back cover of this leaflet.

Click on the image here to see the back cover of the leaflet full size.

The publicity department at Pentacon has clearly re-shot the image used in their 1979 brochure, above – all the way down to including the unnecessary special aperture control ring!  It is clear that the people who set up and took these shots didn’t actually personally do any macro work with the Pentacon Six!  (But we have seen exactly the same sort of problem in publicity brochures for the West German Exakta 66 of 1984-2000!)

1984






[84_It_1s.jpg]

Italian-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm
Single sheet folded in two places to create six pages
Printed on good-quality glossy paper.


Click on the image here to see the front cover of the leaflet full size.

This is, as far as I can judge, a translation of the 1983 German leaflet above.

This reminds us that the Pentacon Six was very popular in Italy, and the Italian importers even added a special “Pentacon Italia” sticker to the cameras that they distributed.  (See here.)



[84_It_3-4s.jpg]
   
Rather than reproducing the back of the leaflet, which is the same as the original German version, apart from the date and language references, I am here showing the photo spread over pages 3 and 4 of the leaflet, which is a new shot of the Pentacon Six TL outfit (complete, apart from the 1000mm mirror lens).

Click on the image here to see the photograph full size.


I note that the text of this Italian leaflet carefully avoids using the name “Zeiss” or other West German Zeiss lens names.  However, the sharp-eyed reader will be able to see the name “Zeiss” and the lens names “Sonnar” and “Biometar” in the photographs on the cover and on these two pages.

1985






[85_P6p2s.jpg]

German-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 190mm

Single sheet folded in two places to create six pages
Printed on good-quality glossy paper.

This is a reprint of the 1983 German leaflet shown above.  The front cover is the same as in the original version, so we have chosen to show page 2 here.

Click on the image here to see page 2 of the leaflet full size.




[85_P6p5s.jpg]

Again, the back of the leaflet is unchanged apart from the date, so here we reproduce page 5.

Nowhere do manufacturers guarantee that the photographs in their publicity brochures were actually taken with the cameras featured.  However, for about 30 years the Praktisix/Pentacon Six had been the only Medium Format camera manufactured in East Germany, so there is a good probability that this picture was indeed taken with a Pentacon Six.

Click on the image here to see page 5 full size.

1988






[88_Pent6TL_as.jpg]

German-language leaflet
Approximate dimensions: 200mm × 285mm

Single sheet folded once to create four pages
Printed on good-quality glossy paper.

Click on the image here to see the front cover of the leaflet full size.

Here, the publicity department has abandoned the tradition of more than 25 years to produce a totally new brochure in a totally new shape.

It is good to see that they are still promoting the Pentacon Six TL system, twenty years after it reached its definitive form and name.

The use in the leaflet of names such as “Zeiss”, “Sonnar” and “Biometar” shows that they do not intend to use this leaflet in West Germany.



[88_Pent6TL_bs.jpg]

The back cover of this leaflet.

The East Germans have cleverly named the street where the headquarters of the organisation are based “Carl-Zeiss-Str.” (“Carl Zeiss Street”), which enables them to insist on it being used even in correspondence from abroad.

A year later, the citizens of East Germany rose up and, after weeks of peaceful protest, breached the Berlin Wall and then started tearing it down.  Within another year, “The First Farmer and Worker State on German Soil” was dead, to be followed soon after by the collapse of most of the markets where Pentacon and Carl Zeiss sold their products.

It was the end of the line for the Pentacon Six, in its East German form.


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© TRA August 2018, Revised September 2018