Praktica Nova

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Praktica Nova

The Praktica Nova is a 35mm SLR film camera made from 1964 to 1969. It was a thorough design rework of Praktica IV and Praktica V, the first Praktica models with fixed pentaprism eye-level finder.

The Praktica nova got a lower body than its predecessors since its rapid film-wind lever was moved from bottom to top and the pentaprism housing was lower. The camera's shutter release button was repositioned ergonomically into the front side, a feature taken over from the Contax S of Zeiss-Ikon. A characteristic feature of the Nova series was the little film type reminder dial on top of the film advance lever. The camera's constructor was Herbert Welzel.

The camera's Jena 1:2.8 50mm standard lens had an own depth-of-field preview lever. Other lenses for the M42 42mm screw mount could be used instead. Partial pressure on the shutter-release stopped down the lens for depth-of-field preview.

The camera had a focal plane cloth shutter. On its speed dial it had a second dial to activate the slow speeds. These were 1/2 sec, 1/4 sec and 1/8 sec.. The normal speeds were 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, 1/250 and 1/500 sec. plus bulb mode. A triangular red indicator appeared in the top-left of the viewfinder when the shutter required winding.

Praktica Nova B

The Praktica nova B's built-in selenium meter was not coupled to the actual shutter speed and aperture dials. Instead it was coupled to the analog exposure value calculator around the film rewind knurl. When the film speed in both ASA and DIN values was preset with the inner ring light measuring could begin. While letting the camera lens point towards the image subject and watching the meter from above the outer ring of the calculator could be turned until a little diamond symbol matched the position of the meter's needle. Then the scales on the exposure calculator's rings showed appropriate aperture/shutter-speed combinations.

The Praktica Nova were succeeded by the Praktica PL nova I and the Praktica Nova B was replaced with the Praktica PL Nova IB.