Needing a better rangefinder.

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by waynecrider, Jan 21, 2009.

  1. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    I need a different LTM body, or M style body with adapter, that has a better rangefinder and possibility of easily available diopters then my M3. What are my choices?
     
  2. Lee L

    Lee L Member

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    What kind of improvement are you looking for in the rangefinder? What range of focal lengths do you use? Knowing those things might improve the usefulness of responses.

    Lee
     
  3. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    I'm shooting a 50mm with the possibility of (big maybe) getting a 28mm at some time, and the patch is too small and I need a diopter.
     
  4. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    Will the +1.5 magnifier for the newer cameras work on the M3? That would satisfy the rfdr patch, then would you want the viewfinder?
     
  5. rpsawin

    rpsawin Subscriber

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  6. raizans

    raizans Member

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    leica diopters are $100 and widely available...or are they? anyhow, they probably cost less than getting a whole new camera.
     
  7. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    It's not just the diopter issue. It's the fact that I want a rangefinder mechanism that has a larger superimposed image.
     
  8. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    I dunno if you're gonna get it all.
    The rf base(Voigtlander) length is shorter than the M3 so in theory less accurate. I don't know about the rf patch size. Since the diopter is a magnifier for the finder it's also going to enlarge the patch proportionally.
     
  9. rpsawin

    rpsawin Subscriber

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    Wayne,

    I think the Cosina Voigtlander R3M might be of interest to you: R3M Finder 1:1 life size, 40/50/75/90 framelines

    Bob
     
  10. Lee L

    Lee L Member

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    I don't recall having seen any RF patch size comparisons or measurements anywhere. You're also unlikely to find someone with broad enough familiarity on that subject who has made a careful comparison among all the options you might want to consider. There is an RF baseline comparison at http://www.cameraquest.com/leica.htm with some comments, but not about RF patch size. He also doesn't include ZI info. I think that may be because he had the brand initially, but it was pulled from him early on to service bigger dealers with more influence.

    It's been years since I used an M3, so I don't have any worthwhile basis for comparison of RF patch size comparisons.

    I have the R3A (same basic finder as R3M) and like it a lot, but it won't do the 28mm you're considering without an accessory finder. You can use a Nikon DG-2 2x finder magnifier on the R3A, and Nikon diopter lenses for the FM and FE cameras fit the R3A. The Nikon DG-2 doesn't even see the 90mm frames though. It only sees what would be the larger central circle on the Nikon SLR finders, but it flips up for full finder viewing. That exposes a bare metal rim, so watch that if you're a glasses wearer.

    There is also a smaller 1.3x magnifier from Japan Exposures (formerly megaperls) that fits the C/V R3A/M http://www.japanexposures.com/shop/...d=112&osCsid=54bab1478b50e8604ac9b56d0e18eff2 You have to order it for your Nikon SLR because it violates a US Leica patent for rangefinder magnifier use. I don't know how much of the R3A finder it shows.

    Lee
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 22, 2009
  11. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    Lee, there is no feedback whatever on the patch sizes as I was hoping here or elsewhere. I was thinking maybe the R3-4 series might have a larger patch and with incorporate metering that would work for me. Thanks btw for that link. That is something I could use.
     
  12. Lee L

    Lee L Member

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    OK, I thought of one 'measure' that might help. On my R3A the rangefinder patch is very close to 1/5 the height and 1/5 the width of the 90mm framelines. Of course framelines vary from model to model in % coverage relative to the actual lens, but I guess this is better than nothing.

    Lee
     
  13. Chaplain Jeff

    Chaplain Jeff Member

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    Hello,

    The M5 (3 Lug) and the CLE both have 28mm framelines. They're the two cameras I use the most.
     
  14. Leigh Youdale

    Leigh Youdale Member

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    The Voigtlander R4A/M models have viewfinders specially set up for wide angle lenses. If you don't want longer focal lengths than 50mm then they're probably your best option. The occasional use of a longer focal length can be handled with a supplementary viewfinder, also from Voigtlander (Cameraquest).
    As for the rangefinder base length issue, it could be argued that it affects long focal length lenses (most people can't see the difference) but is not apparent at closer range.
    I use an R3A and the 1:1 viewfinder in that case is just brilliant. I got a +1 diopter lens for the viewfinder to help my old eyes and am more than satisfied.
     
  15. Leigh Youdale

    Leigh Youdale Member

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    I'm new to this forum. Is it usual for people to attach religious messages to their posts? For what purpose? :sad:
     
  16. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    Maybe 35mm rf isn't the place to look. Maybe 120mm format like a Mamiya 7 II or if you really want a nice big focusing image try 7"x17". You won't do much street photography, but if you want wide, "with the possibility of (big maybe) getting a 28mm, " we got wide.

    John Powers
     
  17. Chaplain Jeff

    Chaplain Jeff Member

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    Hello,

    The 3 LUG M5 bodies have 28mm viewfinders as well as 50mm. That'd be my recomendation. You can pick up a used one for a good price.
     
  18. T42

    T42 Member

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    Greetings, Forum.

    With respect to the original post, one thought that comes to mind is that if a diopter is connected to the M3's viewfinder lens, and all becomes clear with it, then viewing without glasses may become a problem when the eye is taken away from the viewfinder window ... or so it was with me. I put a protective ring (made from black vinyl electrical tape) around the metal collar of my M3's viewfinder lens so that I can use glasses without scratching them. Now I can see the scene, dials, and scales all clearly when taking the eye away from the finder. I suppose that contact lenses would solve it all, but I just don't want to wear them. With my Kiev 4a I have done the same, but its finder is but a wee little peep hole. I use a Voigtlander Kontur finder with it. Takes a bit of getting used to, but it works pretty well with glasses.

    In the spirit of our purpose, we probably should try not to do that. But then again, some do seem to talk as though they believe in the devine origins of Lords Leica, Linhof, and Hasselblad. I, for one, have learned to trust Nikon, regarding 40 years of trouble free service as somehow a miracle. And then there are the Saints people talk about: Saint Ansel, Saint Henri, and so on. Personally, I believe that the F2 is the reincarnation of the F, having ascended from a factory somewhere near Tokyo. Right now, I am thinking that adding a new D700 would be just heavenly, and the answer to my prayers. I understand that my majestic old Nikkors can be used with it. That would breathe the breath of new life into my classic F mount optics. But be assured, I have no conviction with respect to a wholesale conversion to digital.

    Kidding aside, I think we should not have a thought police which precludes people from adding value here by speaking their minds truthfully. On the other hand, and as far as practical, we should abstain from using this PHOTOGRAPHY FORUM as a platform for propagating and/or debating non-photographically related subjects and issues.

    :smile:

    Henry
    A certified dinosaur using F, F2, M3 & K4a
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 2, 2009
  19. Leigh Youdale

    Leigh Youdale Member

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    Getting my cataracts done made the most difference but putting a 1+ diopter lens in the viewfinders of both my Nikkormat FTn and my Bessa R3A also helped greatly and pretty well overcame the issue of wearing glasses while using either camera. I'd had to stop using the SLR until my eyes were fixed as I couldn't get clear focus.
    As for the "other", nicely put. :smile: However, as a practicing atheist I don't think I'll burden the forum members with my thoughts, even if others choose to do so. The real issue might be contained in part of your reply - "adding value" ???????
     
  20. k_jupiter

    k_jupiter Member

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    Leigh,

    The only RFs I use these days are Zorkis and old old Retinas. Since I am always down in the f11-f16 range, perhaps the issue of patch size and sharpness has never come up in my old eyes.

    As far as Wayne and his tags, he is an important part of the forum, been here about forever and has never actively recruited me nor any one else that I know of. So live and let live.

    As far as being an atheist, I don't have to even practice anymore. Someday you will get there too. I don't see Wayne's tags as any different than my somewhat zen like tag that often appears at the bottom of my posts.

    And remember, there are three kinds of engineers in the world, those who can count, and those who can't.

    tim in san jose
     
  21. T42

    T42 Member

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    Glad to learn that has worked for you, Leigh, and that a weak diopter did the trick. My eyes require +2.5 diopters just to see clearly at infinity, and more than that to see clearly at one meter, the distance that a common SLR's viewfinder is designed to present to the eye. So, when I remove my eye from the finder with such a diopter, I see shapes and no detail mostly. Can't read print on a camera or lens in that case. Hence the solution that involves glasses.

    I suppose that our various views about such things would be worthy of a good and thorough discussion on an appropriate forum. Having said that, Wayne's tag does not bother me at all. I am not even aware of his brand of pursuasion. :smile:

    Yes, I think so, Leigh. The most salient issue is about adding relevant value. IMO, in whatever we do we should try to make things better than they would otherwise be, and leave things better than we found them.

    Happy day.

    Henry
    A certified dinosaur using F, F2, M3 & K4a
     
  22. T42

    T42 Member

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    Patch Size

    Hello Wayne.

    Do you suppose that a clear view of the viewfinder might alter the requirement? I've used an M3 for some time, and the size of the patch never seemed to be an issue at all. Why is it that a larger one is needed?

    Henry
     
  23. Chaplain Jeff

    Chaplain Jeff Member

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    Did I really post that twice??? I must be losing it.

    In the words of Rosanna Rosanna Dannah, "Nevermind." :D
     
  24. Leigh Youdale

    Leigh Youdale Member

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    Over and Out.

     
  25. waynecrider

    waynecrider Member

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    When I was shooting my M3 the first time it popped my contact lens out of my eye and was lost in the grass. I really didn't even notice it at first as I guess my other eye sort of made up for the difference and I moved the tripod before I noticed something wrong. I have since gone to glasses and it's not as good.
    The patch is a little small for me. It's much harder for me to focus then my SLR. I thought there might be something with a larger patch in another brand. I was also very interested in a metered body as well. Maybe I'll either try the HK diopters on E'boink and see how that fares or I'll just sell the camera and supplement my existing kit.