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R8 or R9

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Thinking about getting one but not sure what one to get. I can get a R8 for a really good price so are there any differences between the two?

 

Jan

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My reply isn't an answer, it is a sort of joining in the interest.

My R4, 29 years old, is giving freqent sympthoms of ending its operation. I have also an R6, but sometimes I need auto-exposure. I have to decide between a 2nd hand R8 for about 800 Euros, or a NEW R9 at about 1500 Euros.

Fernando.

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I have both the R8 and R9 and prefer the R8.

 

The R9 is 100g lighter, has a picture counter window on top (which is irrelevant if you use the digital back) and has a lock on the mode button.

 

But I happen to prefer the R8 mainly because of the not locked mode button, as I shift a lot between Manual and Auto.

 

The lock of course was added because the mode wheel is placed so that it can accidentally be turned. I've had that happen a few time, but also work so that I automatically check this as one of the points I always check while shooting (alongside battery status, number of pictures, f-stop, etc that you always "know" when shooting).

 

Some of the old R8 are not modified electronically which can cause a problem (it locks) when you attach a motor or DMR. But as far as I know Leica remedy this for free if the R8 is sent in.

 

I at one point had the idea that the R9 was smoother sounding but recently when I tried them next to each other, there seemed to be no difference.

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I must echo Overgaard's response. I own 3 R8 bodies & have owned a R9, which I traded back for my 3rd R8. The differences are few & have been cataloged above. I just like the feel & fit of the R8 better. I have never had a failure of the bodies themselves, only issue is with the DMR from time to time & that has been resolved easily. The R8 is an ergonomic wonder. If you use the larger lenses like the R19, 80 Lux, 35 Lux, the body balances out the heavy weight of the lenses. The costs have gone down. I recently held an almost mint R8 in my hands for about $625, US. I just don't need another R8 right now. You will love this camera. All the metering modes are very versatile and camera is second only to my M3, which for me is just the pinnacle of perfection. If you shoot film, this camera is second to none. The window is large, bright & extremely accurate. Get a side grip with the motordrive, I have 2. It's the same form factor as the DMR and it balances out beautifully. The side grip allows me to carry the camera in my hand while I walk, so by the time I show my goods, I have already engaged my subject personally & the camera becomes secondary. You will love this camera forever, I already do.

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Let me add that the R8 and R9 are entirely the same except from those small differences.

 

And it's a camera for life, film or DMR. On can easily forget, but roguewave's comment just made me remember just how precise and nice a camera it is as a film camera, compared to other film cameras. And as a digital as well with the DMR.

 

Now, I wouldn't get it without the motor because that is the perfect balance and size (even if you get terrified first time you see it; many do but most people say that after few minutes in the hands, it just feels very natural). And you will be able to get a motor for very small money as well. As the motor will run for 50-60 rolls of film, no spare battery is needed.

 

If you need lenses, look at 50/2, 180/3.4, 35/2.8, 35-70/4, 400/6.8 as very economical lenses that outperforms anything else. In the deeper end there's the 21/2.8 (the newest edition) 80/1.4, 60/2.8, 100/2.8, 180/2.

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Hi guys

Is the full out motor drive more balanced than the smaller drive?

I'd love to have one but have hesitated because of the extra weight and size.

Thanks !

GaryP

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Hi guys

Is the full out motor drive more balanced than the smaller drive?

I'd love to have one but have hesitated because of the extra weight and size.

Thanks !

GaryP

 

 

Gary, I'm rather prejudiced about this. At first, I thought the R8 was just a superb film camera. I used just the body & the regular strap that goes around the neck. Truthfully, that can be a bit much, after owning & using both the M3, M2 & CL. The R8 is much bigger and built like nothing else. Then I bought the DMR. What a truly awesome way to hold the camera, with a side grip and 3 different shutters! Leica is amazing. As soon as I bought my second R8 for film, after donating the first full-time to the DMR, I had to get the motordrive so that I could get the same balanced form-factor, side grip and easy of use (film advance). The real Motordrive, no the winder. Big difference. You will go nuts over the build, easy of use and just the sheer joy of cradling that piece of engineering in your hands. It looks much bigger that how it feels. Also, the automatic film loading & rewind are massively cool.

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The R8 with the 'real' motor drive looks big but feels - as said - very balanced.

 

It has the effect that you look like a 'real' photographer, so it's no M8 or Digilux 2 or D-Lux 4 you can sneak unseen around with. But you can't anyway with a R8 even without the motor anyways. So use that effect because you can't hide it anyways ;-)

 

The R8 with motor just feels right and I don't have HUGE hands or anything.

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Well I took the plunge got the R8 for 650.00 no lens but I want something that I can use long lenses on visoflex was to hard for me and my eyes not what they once where. But I still need a bright screen like my MP.

Thanks to everyone for the help.

 

I will check on a used motor drive.

 

Cheers Jan

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