in the last year I have helped a troubled Arax user with his new "Arax CM" - he had bad light leaks in a brand new camera and he was frustrated on how his SE looked after a few weeks of use - the leather bruised, the black paint flaked off the chrome (one particular stupid idea that Arax copied from Hassle-Blad). Trusting the new camera he left with it for the holidays and came back with many spoiled rolls of Provia F - he sended a sample slide to Gevorg, thats where the "long time no hear" game with Kiev started.
I lost track how the thing ended, but I know that he is just selling all his Kiev/Arax-setup. :-(
>Of course they have been around longer and sold many more cameras.
I believe that these cameras are no bit different in reliability and troubles. Arax stayed clean for how long - 6 months after starting their international business? Hey, "Ms Stephe" even repeated the trouble she had with Fourman!
The only thing that can be trusted is a long-term warranty - and this has its price. Wiese has to warrant full 24 month and cover all costs and expenses on shipping for the customer in any case of mechanical trouble - and even he has a few dark spots in his fame and the cameras are expensive.
I only know of three Kievaholics at APUG. It may change. :-)