Big Dilemma

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by Uncle Bill, Apr 29, 2005.

  1. Uncle Bill

    Uncle Bill Subscriber

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    I came to the world of Rangefinder photography through an inheritance of equipment, my Leica M3 is a user but also has sentimental value that would cause me to freak if it got seriously damaged. That is the downside of having equipment that is also a family heirloom. I am starting a fund/war-chest for a second M-bayonet body I can take out into the wilds and not worry so much. So should it be a Voightlander Bessa R2a or an old Leica M body 2/3/4?
    This purchase is not going to be made in the near term so I have time to weigh the pros and cons of both cameras. Your input would be greatly appreciated.

    Bill
     
  2. bobfowler

    bobfowler Subscriber

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    I don't own one anymore :sad: , but I always loved the M4...
     
  3. Mongo

    Mongo Member

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    Although I don't own any of the equipment that you're interested in, I have purchased backups for other equipment over the years. The best rule I've come up with is to have the back-up be as near to the original as possible. If you're happy and comfortable with the M3, then get another M3. That way there's no learning curve. I wanted a backup for my Nikon FE-2, and picked up a Nikon FE. Although they're very similar, the dissimilarities would cause me problems at the worst possible times...those moments when there's no time to think, just to react.

    If, on the other hand, you're trying to expand your selection of cameras, that's the time I'd recommend looking at other alternatives. (By reputation only, it seems you can't go wrong with any of the cameras you've mentioned.)
     
  4. Uncle Bill

    Uncle Bill Subscriber

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    That was one line of thinking, dad's camera was 2 stroke, and if I were to get another M3 it would be a single stroke. What I love about the older leicas is they are not battery dependant which sort of scares me a bit with the VC Bessa R2a, I had my Canon AE1 crap out on me when the battery died. In the end I can find an M3 here in the GTA for about $1000 Cdn. So it looks like I answered my question.

    Bill
     
  5. rbarker

    rbarker Member

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    FWIW, Bill, I would agree that if you plan to continue to use your heirloom M3, a close match would be a good idea. If, however, you're thinking of keeping it safely stored at home, other options (and the operational differences) would be less of an issue. In that case, you might consider the greater versatility of something like an M6TTL for not much more than you'll pay for an M3 in good condition. (Yes, there's a battery for the meter, but they last a long time, and a spare is easy to carry.)