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Your first Leica? Tell your story...

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My first "non-instamatic" serious camera was given to me by my Dad about 1972. It was a Konica I that he bought after WWII. Essentially it was a sort of fixed lens copy of the Leica rangefinders with a 50mm lens. I used it for yearbook photography for 3 years and got hooked on rangefinder photography. Unfortunately, Leicas were way out of my price range so I used a variety of Minolta cameras, switching to electronic Minolta cameras culminating with the very nice 600si's. 

In 1998, I found a very nice little camera shop in eastern Atlanta, Ga (gone now) where the owner had all kinds of obscure cameras of bygone eras. I used to go there and look around and sometimes buy things. He said he had had a camera come in -- it was a Leica M2, button rewind with a 50mm DR Summicron. It was horribly expensive (for me) at about $1500 for the set. I bit the bullet and bought it. I slowly started to use it more and more at the expense of my higher tech 35mm cameras and bought an old 35/2 Summicron and a 90/4 Elmar. I used that for years and when the digital transition happened, much as I wanted to buy an M8, it was just too expensive.

I bought cheaper digitals while still shooting the M2 and eventually was able to buy a more modern 50/2 Summicron  and a 35/2 ASPH Summicron. After buying and using a Canon 5D for a while I actually got the chance to buy a used M8 at a pretty good price from Tamarkin Camera. I used it more and more and lusted after the M9 but couldn't afford it. I bought a Sony Nex-7 and used my Leica lenses on it for a while and was able to buy a used M9 eventually. That I used for many years as virtually my only camera till I retired about 3 years ago. I have recently bought a used M10 from Tamarkin again and am very happy with it.

Here is the M2 but with a modern lens and a MC meter (which I hardly ever use ... I tend to use the Voigtlander clip on meter). Note that it was taken with the camera I bought at roughly the same time, a Contax RTS III.

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In 1965 attached to the RAF (66th TRW) as an American, a Leica M2 with Summicron 50mm, $225 USD at the Commissary, RAF Upper Heyford, England.

Edited by pico

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