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I am new to the forum and looking to make the plunge into a film camera to keep me on my toes when I am out on my own.

 

I normally shoot a 5D MK2 and I have a GF1 too. I work professionally on all kinds of jobs but am more concerned with how lazy digital has made me - and from what I have read on other sites, others too!

 

I am aware of the size and weight issues with the RF vs the SLR in the M6, R9 debate, BUT, I can't decide as they are vaguely the same in price at the moment for a 2nd hand model.

 

I would most likely have 21mm, 35mm and 50mm lens on either. If I was to go for the M, Carl Zeiss would have to be the lenses due to budget.

 

I have never used a RF but I am keen to 'go right back' to the traditional stuff and I think there is more nostalgia attached to them - I think I would feel better 'inside' using one.

 

Does anyone who has used both, have any advice.

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Welcome!

 

The two cameras you have chosen are totally separate "beasts", not even from the same "generation" in Leica history. Handling, layout, even philosophy are different. Price should be the least of your guiding criteria.

 

From some of your other comments, particularly regarding your lens choice I would personally counsel going down the M-route. It also occurs to me that you should consider an earlier model such as an M2; the viewfinder is less cluttered and really all you are losing is the meter from the M6. This may give you more budget for Leica glass. Bear in mind, however, that you will need an external viewfinder for a 21mm on an M but not on an R.

 

BUT - and it is a HUGE but - what do I know? You have given little guidance as to your tastes or styles. I suggest that you go to a friendly dealer and try out some M (and R) bodies for yourself rather than take the word of a bunch of muppets on the internet

 

Regards,

 

Bill

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Thanks Bill.

 

I know it's an irritating question and to be honest, I am probably looking at the R as an 'affordable option' as an entry into the Leica system(s) when I know in my heart of hearts that the M's are the way to go!

 

For a few of my images, have a look here:

Antigua - a set on Flickr

 

They were taken on a 3 week trip to Antigua while my brother was rowing across the Atlantic!!! They were shot on my Panasonic Lumix GF1 (Micro 4/3) which I love for its size and subtlety

 

I am so familiar with SLR's is the other option BUT I love the older fashioning and history to the M range. I'd go for an MP but can't afford it. I am worried the R9 will be too big as I bought the GF1 as my 5D MK2 is large and the lenses are too heavy altogether.

 

The other dilemma is, "glass, then camera" or "camera then glass".

 

Is there much of a quality comparison?

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Rupert,

 

Welcome to the forum.

 

It sounds like your heart has already made up your mind for you; get the M.

 

Yes, I'd agree with Bill look for an M2, which are reasonably priced just now, and only buy one lens. Don't even spend time worrying about which lens, buy anything that happens to be in the dealer at the time which suits your budget. Go and play with that combination for a few weeks and see how it suits your way of seeing and working.

 

If you hate it you will probably recover your investment in full, if you like it then there are endless discussions about "which lens for...." which you can start partaking in.

 

Enjoy

 

Michael

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It's been a few years since I was in Dickinson Bay, but I have spent some happy months there. I think you have had very good advice about going with an M2, a 35 or 50 lens, and an external meter. It won't cost an arm and a leg, and you'll have some fun. You might even find you want to take it further (and that can mean a lot further!

)

 

Chris

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M2/M4 or R8/R9.

 

The advantage of the R lenses is that you can use them also on the 5D-II with adaptors.

John.

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Rupert,

I have both systems and I use them at the same time

The R8 may be easier for framing but a bit big (but the grip is excellent)

M (9 & M8) is more compact but the framing is less accurate (especially for the M8) but you get used quickly.

It's the "telemetry" system and not reflex.

Henry

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...except, I think we're just talking about film, here Doc.

 

Rupert, you have had some further good advice. Having slept on it I'd definitely go for the M2; it handles like an MP, and is built like a tank without the irritating need for goggles or external finders of the M3 and the angled rewind crank of the M4 onwards. Also, as has been said, you are unlikely to lose money on the deal, and it takes you back to photography as an exhilarating pastime rather than a computer game

 

Here's a couple of other thoughts for you:

 

Rangefound: Unplugged...

 

Rangefound: Rangefinding

 

Whatever you choose, do let us know.

 

Regards,

 

Bill

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I have the R9 and the M6 (TTL in my case). If you're shooting with a 21/35/50, then get the M6. RF cameras are made for shooting wide angles up to short telephoto lenses (say 90). Focussing a SLR prism with a short lens is hard (different of course for long lenses where the R9 is fab).

 

If I were you, I would get a 35 summicron and either the M6 (if you like metering on board) or a M2 (if you're happy using an external meter). The M6 wins on convenience (metering and film loading) and the M2 wins elsewhere as it just feels different (better VF and buttery smooth winding).

 

Good luck,

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If I were you, I would get a 35 summicron and either the M6 (if you like metering on board) or a M2 (if you're happy using an external meter). The M6 wins on convenience (metering and film loading) and the M2 wins elsewhere as it just feels different (better VF and buttery smooth winding).

 

I'd tend to agree, but substituting a 50 Summicron for the 35 (personal preference

). It's worth pointing out that my lightmeter lives in my desk drawer and I generally rely (successfully) on Sunny-12 (Sunny-16 outside of the UK) and get very acceptable exposures on Kodak 400CN. Finally, you can get a quick-load kit for the M2, which does make loading a bit easier, although I grant my M7 (and before that my M6es) are quicker still.

 

Regards,

 

Bill

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Hi

 

Welcome, good thing you only gave us two options.

 

I use a M2 & as Bill suggests with a quick load kit, partly cause I'm spoilt by a M4, partly cause I re-load while I walk.

 

I carry a Weston exposure meter and meter when I detect the light changing, i.e. at least once a day, mostly I use C41 color.

 

Most of the lenses I use are Cosina Voightlander, cause they are smaller and lighter (f/2.5 and slower), and they are cheaper as well, the smaller and lighter is for the gbag. If you want to shoot in the dark this is still true, but the lenses wont be small...

 

With a rangefinder most people can move in closer than with a SLR, so I'd suggest a 35mm, i.e. most people 'visualise' the shot more with the rangefinder, and step into the real world...

 

M2s are easy to get apart from £, the small CV need some looking for by comparison, but are still cheap, some not available new like the CV f/2.5 5cm.

 

Voigtlander Lenses Leica Mount

 

Don't forget you only need one lens, one of HCB books had a note about equipment '...all the photos were taken with a 5cm lens'.

 

Noel

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...except, I think we're just talking about film, here Doc. Bill

I also have M7 (but not M6) sorry not tell you

Regards

Henry

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I suppose we can only suggest what we subjectively find works for us and with all your photographic experience you'll find your own way, too. But I concur with most of the previous suggestions. Here is my own view.

 

My favourite M is my MP, but that is a recent acquisition. My first was an M6ttl and it has been my most constant Leica companion for years. I've not used an M2, although I've been tempted, but, no meter. I find the M6 handles well and feels good, if not quite up to the MP.

 

Having previously been used to in-camera metering for many years, I would be reluctant to do without it, especially when on the move.

 

My most used lenses are 28mm and 50mm. I've never really seen the point of using non-Leica glass. Yes, I know, cost is a key factor, but 50mm 'crons are not too dear, nor is the wonderful new 28mm Elmarit ASPH. For me it is the lens that shapes the image and Leica glass on a non-Leica body makes more of a Leica picture than the other way round.

 

Good luck with your search and I hope you find the Leica to suit you.

 

Tim

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If digital makes you lazy, it is your own fault. There is really not much different except you get instant feedback with digi which gives you an opportunity for a reshoot.

 

Put as much effort into getting it right the first time and digi will not be easy.

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If digital makes you lazy, it is your own fault. There is really not much different except you get instant feedback with digi which gives you an opportunity for a reshoot.

 

Put as much effort into getting it right the first time and digi will not be easy.

 

Tobey, You're quite right, except NOTHING beats a top class silver gelatin print, not even the best baryta fine art papers with Epson Ultrachrome K3.

 

I find I can take my M anywhere without it being obtrusive and the M glass is wonderful (even the old stuff). At the end of the day a camera is a small light proof box; granted the Ms have a lovely feel and are built beautifully. But the Leica glass is stunning - that's why we pay so much money for it.

 

Best wishes,

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You have an SLR, but if you want to get serious, go for the M. Forget that Leica has

abandoned the R with some vague promise that it'll provide a solution "sometime" -

dive headfirst ito the M series and move forward.

I would suggest the following plan - buy the best 35mm M lens you can afford (a favorite of mine is a pre-asph summilux but which one is not significant) and use the "left-over" money to buy an M body of any flavor. The good news is you can't make a bad choice,

but you can usually recover all or most of any "mistake" you make on the used market.

Use that one lens until you feel you've mastered it or until you tire of trying to do so. Then

pick a second focal lenth, (I would pick the 75mm summicron, but plenty of folks on this forum would argue) and repeat the process. Now you've got a great walk-around system and you can augment it with the 21 or24 (with their appropriate external viewfinders) on the wide end or the 50 in the middle to complete the "system".

No matter what you choose, you'll experience the the sharpest, most subtle images you're

likely to create, and if you're like the rest of us, kindle a burning search for incremental

improvements that can drive you to instability or the poor house - or both. But what a

wonderful ride!

Wouldn't life be grand if - like choosing Leica lenses - even a bad decision can be wonderful?

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you can't really lose - get the R9 (or R8) and splurge on a full set of lenses, or, if you're nostalgic, get a rangefinder; you'll be happy either way . . .

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...rather than take the word of a bunch of muppets on the internet

 

Regards,

 

Bill

 

See: http://images3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20070212211437/muppet/images/1/1a/Ewcameras.jpg

 

I agree you can't really go wrong, since if you feel unhappy with your choice down the track you can re-sell your gear without a big loss -- unlike digital of course.

 

Carl Zeiss lenses are excellent, but you could also opt for some second-hand Leica glass.

My recommendation would be an M6 with a 35 or 50 Summicron to start with.

Edited by NZDavid

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I am aware of the size and weight issues with the RF vs the SLR in the M6, R9 debate, BUT, I can't decide as they are vaguely the same in price at the moment for a 2nd hand model.

 

I have never used a RF but I am keen to 'go right back' to the traditional stuff and I think there is more nostalgia attached to them - I think I would feel better 'inside' using one.

The R9 feels like a sophisticated modern 35mm SLR, basically because that is what it is - if you want to get back to film and tradition I'd suggest that an EOS1n would be a 'comparable' and far cheaper route. I'm far from sure that an R9 would be a substantial move towards a traditional route if that's what you are really aiming for.

 

On the other hand ANY film M will take you back to a very traditional photographic way of working. I would suggest that you concentrate on just one or two good lenses if you go to an M - 35mm and/or 50mm would also be quite 'traditional' - before adding wides like a 21mm. If you look around there are still good value Leica lenses to be had very reasonably if you aren't worried about the odd cosmetic 'flaw'. This would be the route I'd suggest but you really need to handle the equipment to see how you feel about it - it will all take excellent photographs in the right hand.

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