Leica IIIg viewfinder clearness/tint question
Old 02-11-2017   #1
paniolo
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Leica IIIg viewfinder clearness/tint question

Hello Photographers,
I am using a serviced IIf right now and I am realy happy about it. Except when it comes to the viewfinder, which is, compared to my M2 and M4p too small of course but with the advantage to be 100% color neutral and bright.
The M2's viewfinder is compared to the IIf dimmer and features a slightly blueish tint to achieve a higher contrast for the brightlines + patch. The M4p's finder is a bit brighter and more color neutral, but not as bright as my IIf.
Can anyone tell me how bright and color neutral the IIIg's finder is?
On pictures through the holes it looks a bit like yellowish and dim -2 f-stops, like on a M body. Of course it depends on age and cleaning but besides that, how good is it realy?

One sitenote, I've found a picture that shows a direct view through the finder and the image looks slightly blueish + heavy distortion of the framelines to the center.
--> is that how it looks?
(link for the viewfinder picture)
http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...d.php?t=150502
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Old 02-11-2017   #2
Robert Lai
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No tint no distortion
Bright view in 3G
If you want color neutral M then try m4 onwards
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Old 02-11-2017   #3
Robert Lai
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Also realize that the viewfinder field around the rangefinder patch is deliberately dimmed slightly to give the rf patch highest visual contrast in an M camera. Thus the M viewfinder will not be as bright as that on the 3G as the LTM cameras have no neutral gray tint in the viewfinder.
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Old 02-11-2017   #4
davidnewtonguitars
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I don't have a lot of experience, but after so many years wouldn't the condition of the viewfinder and rangefinder be individual for each camera, even within the same model?

Isn't rangefinder cleaning & service fairly inexpensive?
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Old 02-11-2017   #5
lawnpotter
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I had a IIIg about 4 years ago, beautiful camera but mine had a slightly dark yellowish tinge. It bothered me, and that is one of the reasons I sold it. I think my view finder issue may have had something to do with the balsam changing colour through age( maybe Youxin Yee told me that, I am not sure) Any how I have read that others have a clear view finder with their IIIg. My viewfinder was really not that bad, it bothered me but others may not have a problem with it
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Old 02-11-2017   #6
sreed2006
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Well, I didn't put scientific instrumentation on it, but the IIIg viewfinder is close to the M3 as far as brightness is concerned. The IIIg has a yellow cast, where the M3, M2, and M4 all have a blue cast. The M4 is the brightest, and has the least color cast.

The thread you pointed to is mine. The 50mm frame lines are in fact very straight on all the edges. I lined them up with a door frame just now to see if there was any bulge. The bulge of the frame lines in the picture I posted was caused by the camera I used to take that picture.

In my experience with the IIIg when I am taking pictures I do not notice either the color cast or the slight dimness through the viewfinder. It's just a great camera, and a really fun one to use.

P.S. I added a note to the post which has a picture through the IIIg viewfinder to say what I did above - that the frame lines in real life are actually straight.
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Last edited by sreed2006 : 02-11-2017 at 15:26. Reason: added a note
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Old 02-12-2017   #7
paniolo
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Thank you guys for your answers. I will try one out and see if it suits me. I have used all different M models till the M7 and never felt home until I discovered the Screwmounts a few years ago. Well, lets see if the IIIg will do it.
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Old 02-12-2017   #8
jcb4718
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I echo the comments of sreed2006. I have a IIIg and a IIIf. The IIIg viewfinder is a little dimmer and has a slight yellow cast. The IIIf viewfinder is definitely brighter and has a more neutral cast, in fact no significant cast. However the IIIg has great parallax corrected brightlines and the magnification is 0.7. The IIIf does not have brightlines and the magnification is 0.5. The IIIf viewfinder is clearly not 3:2. It seems that the viewfinder includes the view at infinity and close up and you have to decide what part of the viewfinder to use according to the subject distance. If you use a clip on brightline viewfinder (with 1:1 magnification) there is a dotted line for the close up limit, at least on one side. All-in-all the IIIG is a much better viewfinder. I personally like the separate focus and view finders. It makes the IIIg viewfinder minimalist: just a parallax corrected rectangle floating in the view.
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