Salyut-S (or Salut-S = Салют-C) is a medium format SLR film system camera, manufactured by Arsenal Factory, in Kiev, Ukraine, former USSR and produced between 1972-1980, quantity 30.000. The meaning of Salyut is 'salutation', i.e. greeting with respect, as in a salute. It also means firework, something that rises. The name appears as Салют-С in Cyrillic, thus the model is sometimes called the Salyut-C.

First models of Salyut were probably the near copies of Hasselblad 1000F or 1600F. Salyut-S is the very modified model of the first Salyut, and featured a modified lens mount that has the same thread and adds the familiar plunger for diaphragm setting. This allows full automation of the lenses and the use of extension tubes and a teleconverter. The Salyut/Kiev 88 models are sometimes affectionately known as the "Hasselbladski" due to their resemblance to a Hasselblad.

Kiev 80 (1975-80) cameras are the export type of Salyut-S with a new name plate. Kiev 88 (1980-?) is similar to Salyut-S with a hot shoe for flash. Kiev-88 TTL is a Kiev-88 with the addition of the metered prism.

The Salyut was the first attempt by the Soviet camera industry to produce a sophisticated SLR medium format camera. The Soviets claimed that both the Hasselblad and the Salyut were derived from a Nazi prototype, however none of these supposed forerunners have ever been seen so this origin is dubious. These cameras were very expensive at 400 Rubles, which represented 6 months salary to the average Soviet citizen.


There are 2 types of the Salyut-S [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]

Type 1Edit

  • Distinctive feature of the type: Chrome label with inscription "Salut-C"

Type 2Edit

  • Distinctive feature of the type: Black label with inscription "Salut-C"


  • Film format: 120 roll, picture size 6x6cm
  • Lens: Arsenal Vega-12 B 90mm f/2.8, semi-automatic, interchangeable (standard lens)
    • Mount: Salyut B mount (Hasselblad 1600 type), filter thread 58mm
    • Aperture: f/2.8 - f/22,
    • Focus range: 0.6 - 10m, +inf.
  • Lens relese: A button on left front side of the camera
    • The shutter must be released before changing lenses to prevent damage to the lens
  • Focusing: Fresnel ground glass screen
  • Shutter: Horizontal focal plane metallic curtain, speeds: 30 -1 /1000, + B
    • Setting: Combined with cocking knob, push-out and turn the knob clockwise only
    • When changing shutter speeds, to prevent damage to the shutter system, the shutter must be cocked firstly
  • Cocking knob: Also winds the film, on the right side of the camera
    • When cocking and film winding there are some odd noises, this is normal
  • Warning signal windows: For shutter cock/release, and film non exposed/exposed, red or white, two, on the magazine and on the body, in foremost of the counter
  • Viewfinder: Waist level finder w/ a magnifying loop, interchangable
  • Mirror: Not instant-return
  • Flash PC socket: w/ X and FP settings dial, synch. 1/30
  • Back cover: As a film magazine, interchangable
  • Dark-slide: Metallic, the slot is on the left side of the camera
    • Dark-slide must be removed for cocking the shutter
    • Dark-slide must be in its slot for removing of the film magazine
  • Film loading: Via a special sliding-off part from the Film magazine, removing by a pop-up semi-circle lever, on the left side of the magazine;
    • Winding to the first frame: By turning the semi-circle pop-up lever on the right side of the film magazine
    • Install the newly loaded film magazine when the shutter cocked and dark-slide in its place only
  • Others: Tripod sockets two, 3/8inch; Strap buttons; Memory dial; Red window
  • Serial no. stamped on the back side of the body, first two digits of the serial number indicate the production year

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. According to Alaxander Komarov in Fotoua. You can also find serial numbers for dating of the cameras in this site
  2. There is another former USSR cameras classification and info by Aidas Pikiotas in SovietCams
  3. There are usefull books about cameras of former USSR and have classifications also.
  4. Pages from the the book of former USSR cameras by Suglob, Shaternik, Kochergin
  5. Discussion about clasifications in the books of Princelle and Suglob, Shaternik, Kochergin in USSR Photo Forum

Bibliography Edit

In English

  • Princelle, Jean Loup - Made In USSR - The Authentic Guide To Russian And Soviet Cameras, Le Reve Edition, 2004 (ISBN 2952252106 (ISBN13: 9782952252102) Paperback

In Russian


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