Help!!! Leica Film camera, which one to buy!!

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by tourmania, Mar 18, 2012.

  1. tourmania

    tourmania Member

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    I want to buy a Leica film camera, which one is best to purchase?? Recommendations Please! Thank You in advance.
     
  2. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

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    Leica MP LHSA Special Edition hammertone
     
  3. Someonenameddavid

    Someonenameddavid Member

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    Leica M6. best bang for the buck with a 35mm
    Summicron
     
  4. Paul Goutiere

    Paul Goutiere Subscriber

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    Leica M1 with Visoflex!
     
  5. BradleyK

    BradleyK Subscriber

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    tourmania: If you don't mind hand metering, I would opt for the M4 or a classic M3 (double stroke, of course); both are in plentiful supply on the used market. However, if you prefer the convenience of TTL metering, I would suggest one of the M6 models. A welcome in advance to Leicaland - home of the light wallets!
     
  6. Mustafa Umut Sarac

    Mustafa Umut Sarac Member

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    Men can not beat some electrified devices. Buy a point shoot 40 mm summicron Leica for 60 dollars and when you start to beat it :smile: use the real one :smile:
     
  7. Mark Crabtree

    Mark Crabtree Member

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    Someonenameddavid is probably right about he M6, but I still like the older cameras better. The M4 is my favorite, and has come way done in price lately (pristine ones are still high).

    Mine is the less highly regarded M4-2, and I'm perfectly happy with it (and I've had about all of them over the years); I take it some M4-2's are better or worse than others. I kept it over an M4 because at that time I needed the hot shoe. I've often regretted that decision, but have to say that this M4-2 has been the best camera I've ever owned.

    The M6 is a nice camera and extremely popular (and newer, which does make a difference). Still, the rangefinder patch flare bothered me on mine. The M4-2's also are not as good in this regard as the M4 and earlier, but mine has always seemed fine. Models earlier than the M4 often are showing their age in the rangefinder system, but can be wonderful cameras too.

    The modern MP's and variants (something I haven't had) are probably the best of all if you really do want a meter. I suppose those are still expensive.
     
  8. segedi

    segedi Member

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    It would be helpful to know:
    Budget
    Your preferred focal lengths
    If you like AE

    Without knowing those bits, people will just recommend what they like which won't benefit you too much.
     
  9. fotch

    fotch Member

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    M3 or M2, the classics.
     
  10. Mark Crabtree

    Mark Crabtree Member

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    That's almost one of each now. Only the M5 fans are missing (I'm not one of them).

    Which sort of points up the fact that there really weren't any bad M's, and functional condition is probably more important than most other factors beyond personal preference or specific needs (a built in meter, for instance).

    They're all really wonderful cameras, but each with their own quirks that you learn to live with.
     
  11. Dr.Pain-MD

    Dr.Pain-MD Member

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    If I had to get an M body, I would surely go for an M2. If you shoot with 35mm lenses, the M2 has the best-suited finder that only shows one frameline at a time which is really nice.
     
  12. summicron1

    summicron1 Subscriber

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    tourmania -- nobody can answer your question without knowing what sort of photography you want to do. A camera is just a tool -- you need the right tool for the job -- you wouldn't go to sears and say "sell me a wrench, which is best?" You'd say "I'm rebuilding a Ford and need a set of socket wrenches calibrated in inches."

    Nature? An R system camera might work best, especially if you want flowers or close-ups.

    Street photography? Either an M or an older Barnack model will do fine.

    Travel? I use my Leica CL for this -- compact, built-in meter, massive dependability.

    And so on---

    So, what do you want it for?
     
  13. tourmania

    tourmania Member

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    Hi,

    Thank you so much for all your advice, I would like to spend around $1000 and would use it to shoot street photography and landscape, I'm thinking a M3, any advice which is best?
     
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  15. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    For 1000$ you should be able to get M3 with elmar 50/3.5 (screw mount with adapter is also good). It is a nice combination :smile:

    edit: adding link

    http://www.kenrockwell.com/leica/50mm-f35.htm
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 20, 2012
  16. Mark Crabtree

    Mark Crabtree Member

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    The M3 is a fabulous camera, and I think the best of the older Leicas for 50mm and longer. But 35mm is one of the most popular focal lengths for Leica, and is compromised on the M3. The M2 has the 35mm frame lines and still performs excellently with a 50mm. The M2's compromise is at the longer end; 90 is okay (not as good as on M3 though) and it does not have 135mm frame marks.

    Most Leica M users tend toward the shorter focal lengths where a rangefinder camera is at it's best. I prefer the classic 35/50/90 frame line set up, and would appreciate an M3 as a second body for 50mm and longer. If you don't want a 35mm lens, it is not an issue. You can of course use 35mm lens on the M3 with and external finder, or the bug eye versions made for M3.
     
  17. Tim Gray

    Tim Gray Member

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    I'd go with an M6. If you have a bit more money and want auto exposure, look into the Zeiss Ikon or an M7. M7 prices are surprisingly low now. I've seen a couple sell for about $50 more than a new Ikon.
     
  18. Richard Jepsen

    Richard Jepsen Member

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    If your buying your first M a M6 is probably the logical choice. Avoids some finder problems, is a newer comera than a m3/2 but cost the almost the same, and has the flexibility of a meter.

    If your inexperienced metering, a M7 may be a better choice.
     
  19. clayne

    clayne Member

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    Haha awesome. I also had that urge to reply the same way.


    As does the M4.
     
  20. darkosaric

    darkosaric Subscriber

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    I have M6 and M3: for 50mm lenses M3 is so much better and more precise, and for 90mm and 135mm lenses M3 it is unbelievable superior - I can not use 90mm elmar on M6 any more after I used it on M3 :smile:. For 35mm lenses go for M2/4/5/6.
     
  21. peter_n

    peter_n Member

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    An M3 is a good choice unless you foresee using a 35mm lens, also if you have really good eyesight you don't need the higher magnification of an M3. An M2 is less expensive and has solitary framelines for 35, 50 and 90mm lenses. Either way, you can find good prices on the rangefinder forum (RFF) and from Youxin Ye on eBay.
     
  22. Pat Erson

    Pat Erson Member

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    "a classic M3 (double stroke, of course)"

    The definition of a classic M3 is single stroke of course...
     
  23. Thomas Bertilsson

    Thomas Bertilsson Subscriber

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    It depends on what you need the camera to do.
    Frame lines => What focal length lenses do you intend to use?
    Meter => Do you need one one the camera?

    Other than that - they're all really excellent cameras. Get a decent one, and have it CLAd, and you'll have a camera to last you a good long time.
     
  24. Spicy

    Spicy Member

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    no it's not, it's double.

    unless of course, "classic" has come to mean "the newer version"
     
  25. tessar

    tessar Subscriber

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    There is an M3 body for sale now in the classifieds section of this forum.
     
  26. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    They're all magical TM. They will eliminate improper exposures,give sharpness beyond the theoretical limits of optics, render all compositions perfect, cure warts, impotence, and hangovers, etc.
    God I am fed up with the Leica "mystique".

    That said, I'd love another M3. Or another IIIg. But I'd go for another double stroke M3, with a Summicron. You may want to look into the M4 series, they are later than the 3.