Originally Posted by Scrambler
I'm glad you put your cards on the table, Mark. I was wondering where you might be going with this poll.
I haven't owned a Leica M, just a Minolta CLE and Hexar RF. The Hexar in particular I like a lot ... but it's such a different beast to the IIIc that I can't really say LIKE one more than the other.
The Barnack has that mechanical-jewel feeling that neither the plastic CLE or the techno-wizard Hexar have. The shooting style is much more slow and deliberate, which is no bad thing. You don't want to change lenses with a screw-mount Leica - or Bessa R. M-mounts tempt you with quick swaps, which can be good or bad depending on the circumstances.
I'm preparing to do some photography at a friend's wedding: I'll use the Hexar because it handles so much faster. But a few weeks ago I went around and photographed a street art festival here in Toowoomba, and for that I took the IIIc and a MF RF.
I do think it's worth posing the question as you have: either/or. I am happy with an uber-modern M (compatible) and a Barnack because they are so different. A mechanical Leica M and an Barnack wouldn't differentiate enough for me to keep both. But I don't know which one I would keep. I can tell you that I kept the IIIc and gave away the Bessa R. I didn't mind the plastic body, but the Hexar was all the bessa was and more so I wasn't using the Bessa.
I could be talked into letting the CLE go but it has it's place in the ecosystem: my 40mm lens lives on it.
Thanks Scrambler. My main concern with the Hexar RF - much like the CLE I had for a time - is serviceability. I hear horror stories of folks who bond with their camera only to find that not for love or money can they be fixed if tragedy befalls them.
Meanwhile any and every ZM I have seen sits well outside of my price-range.