New toy-Leica R4s w Summicron 50 mm f 2
Any insight as to this camera model ?--It in near mint condition--really !!
Apparently has seen the lightest of use and appears to work perfectly and I must say it's the best 35mm SLR I've ever owned----serial # 1639781
Congrats! I'm sure you will have lots of fun with it and get great shots. There's nothing like finally being able to acquire one's dream camera!
The R4S (S stood for Simplified) and the R4SP (SP stood for Simplifed Professional) were simplified versions of the R4 without the electronic headaches. Did you get an R4S or an R4SP? If it is an R4SP it will be marked as such on the hotshoe. If your camera does not read the shutter speeds in the viewfinder, Leica USA used to be able to do that and other modifications to almost turn the R4S into an R4SP. One of the other things that Leica USA used to be able to do was to install the Mary Forcher modification for +/- adjustment for metering adjustment used for auto exposure.
The camera is quite small and light, about the size of an M series Leica with a bright viewfinder and a selection of different screens. The camera has totally mechanical shutter speed settings if the batteries fail for 1/00, flash (1/100), of a sec and B. The motor winder R4 or better the Motor winder R or one of the motor drives (R4 or R) will supply a great amount of battery power to the camera. The camera does lack a mirror lock up and does not have any TTL for flash (R5 first to have). The camera balances well, fits well into the hands and feels solid (but not as solid as an R8 or R9).
The viewfinder only shows about 96% of what is recorded on film.
The R lenses are wonderful performers with mechanical and optical quality and performance about the same as those used for you Leica M series camera (s).
Enjoy the camera, I use my Leica R4SP now as my 3rd Leica R body. It was purchased from Ken Hansen in 1988 and was my second R4 series camera. I had purchased my R4S originally in 1984, but I sold that camera years ago (it had been modified by Leica USA soon after purchase) and I also have long since sold my Leica R3 MOT.
Last edited by naturephoto1; 02-01-2007 at 09:31 PM. Click to view previous post history.
Reason: Corrected as per Lee's comments regarding Shutter Speeds
Originally Posted by naturephoto1
I believe you meant to say that the R4sP shows the shutter speed in the viewfinder, which the R4s does not. Correct? The aperture is read off the lens in both the R4s and R4sP.
Originally Posted by Lee L
I wasn't really sure which was missing at this point since when I had the R4S it had been modified in 1984 and I haven't had the camera now for about 8 or more years. As mentioned, the R4SP had both and since the modifications had been done early on for the R4S I would interchange the two cameras since they operated and metered (Leica USA calibrated the pair) identically (though there were minor differences which were not as evident since I used motor winders on both).
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I see nothing of note at the Hotshoe but it does show the shutter speeds in the viewfinder------and it is very easy to handle though I dislike the everyready case it was in which is super clean as well---Can you guys tell me how I would set the shutter speeds as I plan to use my favorite Metz 45 CL-4 as my flash--I've only used leaf shutters in the past so hopefully you can tell me how to set it up for flash sync properly !!
You most likely have an R4s. It shows the shutter speed that's set automatically in the viewfinder, or the shutter speed you should set yourself in manual mode, but the shutter speed set on the shutter dial doesn't show in the finder in manual mode. (Hope that's clearly written.) The R4sP has what I refer to as a full information viewfinder in manual mode because you see the aperture, the meter's recommended shutter speed, and the shutter speed you've set. The manually set shutter speed is missing in the R4s finder. I have an R4s, and that missing finder information is one reason I prefer another body, as I shoot in manual mode. (Well... I have used autoexposure about three times since I got a body that would do it in 1979.)
The shutter speed for electronic flash synch is the X between the 1 and B on the shutter dial. If you have the correct cord to connect the Metz 45 CL-4 to the hot shoe, the flash should set the shutter speed properly. I believe that speed is 1/100 second, but I don't use flash much, so I'd have to check that. You have two mechanical shutter speeds on the R4s, indicated by the orange markings, the B and the 100 beside it. These operate without the battery. If you do long exposures in very dim light, take out the battery and use B. The red finder LEDs can leak down to the film with fast film and long exposures.
Hope you can shoot some of your favorite slide film soon. It's nice to see exactly what the lens can put down on film, unadulterated by subsequent reproduction steps.
Contratulations on the new toy, I go the opportunitity to play with my brother's R4 kit late last Summer and it is a sweet camera system.
"Life moves pretty fast, if you don't stop and look around once and a while, you might just miss it."