View Full Version : Should I buy an R?
I enjoy my Bessa L/25mm/4 a lot, and I like it`s small size and weight. For 50mm I use an old Ricoh KR-10 with a very sharp Pentax 50mm f/1.4. I have a Kiev 3a and a Zorki 4K, both with Jupiter 8`s. The Kiev has a quite good RF, but it`s too big and slow to handle, the Zorki has an bad RF....
I plan to use the Jupiter 8 as a start...
For those of you that have R`s, how do you like it?
I`m trying to find a reason not to get one, but..... :)
But, what? The R is a very nice camera no matter what people might say. Compared to the R2 it is perhaps less sturdy, less solidly built, etc. but it will do what you want from it for years to come for a small price tag. Comparing it to a Leica M as some do is like comparing a Seat to a Mercedes, their both cars but designed with a different set of parameters aimed at a completely different market.
If you can afford one, get one. You won't regret it. I recommend to get the SoftRelease and an ever-ready case. The SoftRelease gives you much more control over the shutter button. The body part of the case will protect the R's body from damage and gives you a nice soft but still firm grip.
I recently got a Leitz Minolta CL (with a Minolta Rokkor 40/2), which is now my main camera but both my Bessa L (with a CV 25/4) and R (with either a Jupiter-8 50/2 or a Jupiter-9 85/2, when I have found a good hood for it) are always at the ready: loaded with film and ready to be packed.
I really like shooting with the R; the viewfinder is big and bright, the exposure LED's are clearly visible and give me just the right amount of imformation, and the controls are where I want them.
I don't have any problem with the oft quoted "plasticy" feel of the R. IMO, my Eos feels cheaper and more plasticy than the R. Besides, the plastics and aluminium keep the body weight down.
I haven't experienced any of the shutter problems, misalignment of the RF problems, or the flaking of the paint problems many have mentioned. I guess I have been lucky, or perhaps I'm more careful with my R. Whatever it is, the R has served (and is serving) me well in rain and sun and dust and snow. It has experienced dust and heat and direct sunlight for weeks on end in southern India, and has been out and about in rain and sleet here in Holland. I'll take it to Mongolia in winter as soon as I have the change, though it'll first see action in the Mongolian summer.
The only thing that I could miss from this camera is that it is LTM thread, not M bayonet. Since I got the Rokkor 40/2 I wish I could put it on the R. Seems I'm forcing myself to save money to get me a Bessa R2. :)
Anyway, the R will be my beast of burden for a long time.
Yeah, what he said.
Really, you have the L so you know the quality of the construction of the R. I have mine always sitting in the bottom half of its ever-ready case and am very pleased with the handling of the camera. My only question or comment would be, if you are ever planning to use M mount lenses, then consider the R2. You will be able to use your current LTM lenses with an adaptor until you buy the new glass.
No reason not to buy an R, if you want or need one, and it is the right tool for you.
I just bought one.... :)
So now it`s time to look for good LTM lenses on Ebay....
Hope to find a good 35mm of some kind, and will of course consider the CV 35mm, but I`ve heard there are some good Canon LTM`s also..... Any info on "know good" lenses for the R is welcome....
It sounds like you have done your homework. I have not found that there is much of a cost savings in buying the Canon lenses, other than perhaps the 50/1.8. Have you checked out the info at cameraquest.com? I believe you can find a rundown of Leica LTM mount lenses there.
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