View Full Version : Thinking about moving up.
I am thinking about getting into the "M" class of rangefinder, my only problem is the initial cost. Based on the prices I've seen, I could probably get into a CL or CLE, maybe an M2. My thought is to build up to an M4-M6 or 7 in 2 years or so and use the CL or CLE as a second body. Any suggestions?
Todd, take a look here
maybe that M2 is for you...
Here are my brief comments: ask if you want me to expand on any of them.
CLE: a lot of people like this camera. My only real gripe with it was the lack of any metering in manual, or an AE lock. I think that was a bit of a mistake on Minolta's part - an AE lock must be a simple thing to include. A Minolta rep told me that it was going to be rectified in the CLE2, but that never appeared. The CLE didn't sell well enough to justify the CLE2. I wasn't keen on the average metering system either. However, I was using mine with Kodachrome 64 in the mountains, a circumstance in which fully auto average metering would not give the results I wanted. 28, 40 and 90 framelines (so no 50). I think that repairability is not as good as the Leica cameras nowadays.
CL: I've never owned one, but often think about getting one in place of the CLE. Beware of inoperable meters. 40, 50 and 90 framelines. The 40 framelines are useable for 35 mm lenses.
M2: I loved mine, and really regret selling it. I bought it with the 35 mm pre-asph Summilux (which is a very nice lens) and an MR-4 meter.
I'm not sure which I'd choose between the CL and the M2. The 40 mm lens is a good compromise between 35 and 50, and so it saves you from wondering which to choose! It depends what you want out of the 'second body' I guess. Similarity for compatibility (the M2), or difference for versatility (the CL).
i had a couple of cle cameras with 2 of each available lenses and loved that camera. but, like a fool, i sold them when i thought i was going to use medium format only.
i still regret selling them, the only camera i regret selling.
i would buy another in a heartbeat if i had the funds.
At that price, $500!, JUMP ON IT FAST. It will be gone. This is the seller that I bought my Chrome SP from. It was every bit as nice as he said and he threw in a 13.5cm F3.5.
Hi Todd -- You might also consider the Voigtlander Bessa-R2, similar feature-wise to the M6. It's a good camera of the same size with an excellent bright range/viewfinder.
I have a Bessa-T, a CLE, and an M2 and like them all. But I admit to favoring the CLE for two reasons... First, the AE makes it fast in action. Many have wished for manual metering, but it can be done by metering in Auto and switching to Manual. Second, the CLE is small and inconspicuous, resembling any number of compact leaf-shutter RFs.
I've had my CLE since new in 1982. The only maintenance issue has been a metering problem solved by cleaning the internal electrical contacts.
While I do wish the CLE had AE-Lock, I appreciate that it has AE... which the Bessa and M2 do not. :-)
I have a 90 Tele-Elmarit for the M2, which of course works on the CLE. Except that the CLE's viewfinder magnification is lower for the 28mm framelines, making the 90mm frames inconveniently small. This would be true also for an M-body with .58 viewfinder, I expect.
I have used the 90mm on the Bessa-T, which needs an external viewfinder. Good match! The RF is accurate, and the external finder is big, bright, and 1:1. Very nice, and the metering diodes on the back of the body are visible in peripheral vision while the eye is to the finder... or even at waist level.
Good luck in shopping!
"M" class. Sounds good. Mamiya 6 or 7 are both great. Can't go wrong, and your pictures will be better'n anything Amateur Format. Who needs "micro-contrast" at 5x the negative size?
Todd, just curious . . . What will the M-system give you that you don't already have? How many lenses do you plan to get?
Here's a Leica CL offered:
Doug, thanks for the link! And I don't mean the CL, I've been after an Oly XA for a while, let's see...
Thanks for all the replies. I bought a CL body, now I need a lens.
In response to Huck:
"Todd, just curious . . . What will the M-system give you that you don't already have? How many lenses do you plan to get?"
I guess it's one of those personal choices you make based on your taste/needs. I use Nikon SLR equipment because I enjoy the quality I get from the system, I have a Fuji S2 DSLR (F mount) because I love the results it produces (and all my lenses fit it). I shoot a 'blad for medium format as well as a Koni Omega 6x7 with outstanding results. I guess an "M" system is just another "tool" in the bag.
BTW, I think I got a pretty good deal on the CL (below $375) now I need to go lens shopping, I'd like to start with a 35mm at a decent price.....any ideas?
Originally posted by toddhanz
...I think I got a pretty good deal on the CL (below $375) now I need to go lens shopping, I'd like to start with a 35mm at a decent price.....any ideas?
Congratulations! That'll be a sweet little rig to carry. The "natural" choice would be the 40mm Summicron or Rokkor; you could scarcely do better, and it's extremely light and compact.
If you can manage the cost, by all means get Leica glass. After the 40 Summicron, maybe the next best would be a 35 Summicron. Asph or pre-Asph is of course another issue; just to note the Asph is larger and more expensive but with improved wide-open performance.
Todd, I've recently taken an interest in the new Rollei 40/2.8 Sonnar. The price isn't modest - $1000 from B&H, but it is a Rollei manufacture of a Zeiss design (on license from Zeiss). This design is an update of the lens that was used on the fixed focal length Rollei 35 back in the '60s-'70s & was considered a spectacular lens in its day (also a Zeiss/Rollei collaboration). I think that one of the unheralded benefits of using a rangefinder is that it allows us to shoot with lenses that can't be designed for an SLR. The Sonnar is one of these designs. Pictures taken with this lens have a particular look that is different from that of other lenses in the normal/moderately wide range. It would work perfectly on the CL. And you would than have a camera that represents a collaboration among 4 different manufacturers. LOL.
On its website, Rollei says to look for pricing specials. So, I called their New Jersey offices to ask about this & was told that a representative is coming from Germany within this coming week & that information will be available it I call back next Monday or Tuesday. (Ask for Bernd.) I was told that this is one product that they would sell direct from their corporate offices. (Normally, no company would undermine their retailers in this way, but this item has not been moving here as evidenced by Adorama's recent price reduction.) I'm hoping that the combination of a price reduction notification from Germany & buying direct from the distributor might result in an attractive wholesale offering.
Congrats on your purchase of the Cl. Enjoy it in good health!:cool:
There's a new M-bayonet mount 35 f/2.5 from Voigtlander just coming out. Here's a few comments on it from Tom Abrahamsson...
The lens sounds great...
Also he has a sample of the new 28/35mm minifinder, and the Contax/Nikon RF mount 50mm f/3.5 Heliar
Thanks for the replies,
The 35/2.5 sounds like a good match for the CL, I don't think I would get the benefit of a much faster lens with the CL's shorter RF base anyway. Does anyone know when that lens will be available?
I have my eye on a 40mm C right now and from what I've read and seen posted it is a must have.
I just answered my own question, it's available at Cameraquest now.
Todd, from another CL user, hearty congratulations on your purchase! It's one sweet little camera. Mine came with the Summicron 40. Can't say enough positive things about the lens.
I've added a couple of Cosina Voigtlander lenses to my kit: 21/4 and 90/3.5. Both have been excellent performers though I'm finding the 21mm a bit too wide for me. I rather wish I had purchased the 25mm instead. Others, though, love this focal length.
Enjoy, and looking forward to you posts in the Gallery.
I have seen some of your posts in the gallery and they are really nice, in fact I looked at yours and Doug's before buying the CL, I hope I can exhibit the same quality as the both of you.
I like the perspective I have seen with the 21mm, if you ever decide to sell it let me know, it is on my want list!
Thanks, Todd! And as I recall, a lot of Graksi's gallery pics are with a CL and 40mm, looking very good...
Didn't mean to forget Graski, yes his are also superb!
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