One of my cameras is a Canon AE-1, and I love it for the most part. However, I'm in the market for a different FD-mount camera after finding that once the battery dies, the shutter doesn't function. Will any of the FD-era cameras function with a dead meter battery?

In any case, I imagine that other cameras out there might be more feature-laden. What are some of the "better" cameras that Canon offered? I imagine the New F1 and the A-1 might both be improvements, but I can't find a side-by-side comparison of all the Canon cameras.