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  1. #1

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    Recommendations for a slighter older Leica..

    Hallo there,

    I have reached the point where I am contemplating buying a Leica camera. I like manual cameras, precision and a quality lens. Living in a city I find my nikon fm3a (an excellent camera) to be too visible and a little heavy in the hands for certain photographic moments.
    And so, not having the cash to purchase a modern Leica new and after considering the Bessa T etc., I am looking at the Leica M2, the Leica M3 and the Leica M6.

    What do people recommend? And why? is there a hugh difference between, say the Leica M3 and the M6?

    I know these questions are a little broad but I am grateful for any suggestions.

    Thanks a lot.

    M.

  2. #2

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    Save your money. If you don't know what you need, then you don't need it.

  3. #3

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    Mainly I need advice, Bill.
    But I take your point. Still gonna get that camera though. And after that, a damn fine lens. I am not in this for the name. Because of circumstances I get most of my information over the net. Not always an optimal solution. But one must try. M.

  4. #4

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    My opinion is to get an M6. M2's and M3's are very nice too, but I really like having a built in meter, plus they are newer. The quality of all these cameras is very high, and they all have their fans. If a meter is not important to you, an M3 is great with 50mm and longer lenses because of the higher magniication viewfinder. Then of course M2's have nice and simple framelines. You really can't go wrong with any of them they are all wonderful cameras. Has this been any help? I have an M2 and an M6 and I use the M6 the most.

    Richard Wasserman

  5. #5
    Jim Jones's Avatar
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    disfromage covers it well. I use an M4, and have owned M2, IIIf, and IIIC. The early Leicas are very compact, but not as practical to use as the M series. The later models with a built-in meter are convenient, but meters are a potential source of problems. A greatly underestimated lens in M mount is the old Elmar 50mm f/2.8. It was one of the sharpest lenses I ever tested. Also, it makes the Leica a genuine pocket camera.

  6. #6
    df cardwell's Avatar
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    The M2 has viewfinder frames for 35, 50, and 90 mm. The M2 has always been a journalists, and street shooters camera. Very nice with a 1978 era ("Mandler") 35 Summicron.

    The M3; 50, 90, and 135. Fans of the 50mm love the M3, it has a higher magnifcation finder.

    The M6 has been made in huge numbers, and is plentiful. Available in a few variations.

    The M4 is a classic, but very much a collectable.

    The M5 is underrated, but is very big ( being the '70s metered camera )

    The M42 is despised by collectors, as is the M4P, but they are superb cameras. And usually bargains.

    The best buy is one with steady but not violent use. A Leica, like a Rolex, that was purchased new and put in a cupboard for 30 years is useless: you pay a premium and have to have a complete overhaul to clean out the gunk. But one with use, although it may need reasonable work if it hasn't been serviced in a while, will be a good buy. Like a used car.
    "One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid,
    and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision"

    -Bertrand Russell

  7. #7

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    But a new Rollei RF35 with its 40mm / f2.8 (a first class lens) costs less than any of these without lens at KEH. Then again, I'm a firm believer in end result over branding and I'm not really a RF person, so take it with a garin of salt.

  8. #8
    df cardwell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sanderx1
    But a new Rollei RF35 with its 40mm / f2.8 (a first class lens) costs less than any of these without lens at KEH. Then again, I'm a firm believer in end result over branding and I'm not really a RF person, so take it with a garin of salt.
    When you walk the path
    that winds beside the river
    Spring is your Leica.


    Enough. Gotta lick out the wine bottle and turn off the safelight.
    "One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid,
    and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision"

    -Bertrand Russell

  9. #9

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    I've owned an M3, two M4 an M6 and an M6 TTL. I would say to buy the M6. The convenience of the meter makes a quick, quiet camera even quicker.

  10. #10

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    Thanks folks.

    This is what I looking for. Small, manual, precise. Particularly in a dimly lit atmosphere ie dull light. Then again, the more I look into it and see what is available I start thinking about the R8. A slight jump but...Sturdy, AE?etc. More grist to the mill.
    Cheers M.
    Last edited by melmoth; 03-07-2006 at 03:38 AM. Click to view previous post history.

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