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Leica CL: battery voltage issues


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Hi everybody,

I got a Leica CL with a functioning meter (they say, we'll see...). I read that modern button batteries have a higher voltage, messing up metering.

What is your advice?

- Getting ad adapter (called MR9) where to put common batteries to lower the voltage from 1.5v to 1.35v

- Using a 1.5v battery while tricking the camera by setting a lower (or higher?) ASA.

Which system is going to ensure me a better camera longevity (seems pretty fragile by the comments around) and a better meter reliability?

Thank you!

 

PS. Some back story: I was looking for a compact manual (or semi auto) camera to have fun, after seeing the various canonet, ricoh 500gx, yashica electro 35 etc... at prices that are honestly ridiculous (for ones in a good shape), in the end for 250 euro more I just got this tiny M mount camera in full working order.... since I already own many M mount lenses it sounded as a wise choice. Hope I won't regret it!

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Use an MR9 - just make sure it's a real one with the diode inside to reduce voltage. Also, use a silver 386 cell in it. Many other cells are the same diameter and appear to fit, but don't have the right thickness. Too thick and it doesn't fit the CL battery holder correctly. I've had a CL since the late 1970s and love the camera. I also have a number of other cameras from the 1960s-70s (such as Leicaflex & M5) that take the same cell (PX625 or PX13) and use the MR9+386 in them with good results. 

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  • 2 months later...
On 3/10/2024 at 1:27 AM, Besprosvet said:

Hi everybody,

I got a Leica CL with a functioning meter (they say, we'll see...). I read that modern button batteries have a higher voltage, messing up metering.

What is your advice?

- Getting ad adapter (called MR9) where to put common batteries to lower the voltage from 1.5v to 1.35v

- Using a 1.5v battery while tricking the camera by setting a lower (or higher?) ASA.

Which system is going to ensure me a better camera longevity (seems pretty fragile by the comments around) and a better meter reliability?

Thank you!

 

PS. Some back story: I was looking for a compact manual (or semi auto) camera to have fun, after seeing the various canonet, ricoh 500gx, yashica electro 35 etc... at prices that are honestly ridiculous (for ones in a good shape), in the end for 250 euro more I just got this tiny M mount camera in full working order.... since I already own many M mount lenses it sounded as a wise choice. Hope I won't regret it!

You can use a 1.4v hearing aid battery but an MR9 will give you the most accurate result.

If a chance arises for a CLA, ask the tech to convert the CL to accept 1.5v like I did with mine.

I've tried many fixed lens compacts over the years and I agree with you, the CL is by far the best.

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You‘ve got only 3 options:

1) use a MR9 adapter with a built-in voltage drop accommodating silver cells (1.55 volt) achieving 1.35 v

2) use an zinc-air battery, that comes already with 1.4 v

there are cheap hearing aid batteries which require a simple mechanical adapter without any voltage drop device 

Weincells come with the right dimensions, however pretty expensive 

3) use silver cells and let the meter adjust to 1.55 v

Since the camera requires a constant voltage (AFAIR), alkali batteries with 1.5 v cannot be used, their voltage drops constantly over lifetime, there is no way to adjust to that

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