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Thursday, 02 November 2023


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Sexiest camera ever made.

Damn. A roll of HP5 is $9??

Glad I got into playing the guitar and quit taking pictures.

Er, with the price tag at B&H at $5695, it might make more $ sense to send in a used but decent looking M6 to Leitz and have them change the VF to an MP one, work some magic on the shutter mechanism and CLA the camera.

Very pretty. But it always amuses me, when people drool over camera design, that what they invariably show is the view from the front... In other words, never the view that an actual user of that camera will see (except when at home in drooling mode).


At one time or another since a guy called Mike Johnston encouraged me to get an M and a version iv 35mm Summicron, I have used every Leica M camera, including each generation of the digital Ms. Every film M with an angled rewind has eventually had the slotted washer under the rewind knob come loose and lock the camera up with film in it. My preferred film M is therefore an MP.


"Introduced in 1984, the M6 was an M4-P with a built-in light meter. The "6" came from its six framelines."

But the earlier M4-P had six framelines (..it was the first Leica M to introduce framelines for a 28mm lens ..except for the 80%-magnification viewfinder version, which is the one I use).

I'd thought that the M6 was called the M6 because it was the next new model (..apart from the intermediate M4-2 and the M4-P..) after its immediate predecessor; the M5.

Where can I get this camera for $2,847.50 as stated in your article?

[Sorry, no, that was just a very weak joke. It's actually twice that, $5,695. --Mike]

If I were to get another film Leica again to complement my M 240, it would be a M7 & a Summitar.

Honestly though, I'd rather just buy another 100' roll of HP5+ and keep feeding my Nikon S2. Much more fun than any of the film Leicas I owned or used. Lovely finder, beautiful shutter sound, just an all around aesthetic delight and the Nikkor 50/1.4 from 1956 is what Leica only wanted to make 😉

Dear Mike,

I have kept shooting film for myself since digital cameras have stormed the commercial photography. About 20 to 50 rolls a year, which I admit is not very much. But I truly enjoy it. I bring the rolls to Laboratoire Boréalis (Montréal, QC) which is about a 3 minutes walk from where I live. The proximity of the lab is a blessing.

For instance, I have done this photograph of Mr. Larry Towell, recently while book signing the recent reedition of his book The Mennonites. I used a Leica MP with a 54 years old Summicron 35mm on Ilford XP-2.

Hi Mike,
I recently well actually about 5 months ago now, brought myself a brand new Leica M-A in black. Because I had been looking at film cameras for some reason and had passed on a number of cheaper Silver Leica MP's and M-A's, only to realise that the price for them was about to increase by about £500 here in the UK. I realise that if I wanted one, then I had to jump or never do it. I have to say that it is the nicest camera that I have ever owned. I can head out the door with a few rolls of film and not worry if the battery is charged, as it does not use one. I do have to remember to take the separate light meter that I was forced to also buy, because my old lightmeter was dead.
There is really something to be said for using a film camera in 2023, as you rightly say it is not about trying for the perfect picture, it is more about aiming to create a feeling in the image. This aspect is actually liberating, as I have enough digital cameras for the perfectly exposed etc image. Thus my approach to making images with the Leica M-A is definitely freer, than when it was only film prior to digital.
I can see me using this camera for the rest of my life, or as long as film is still available. Even hand processing the film in the kitchen sink and then scanning it has proved a good experience and I am glad to have returned to film. It somehow feels more consequential than digital especially with the rise of Ai image making, which is about to disrupt a lot of commercial photographers working practices.
I am now still experimenting with film and developer combinations so I can find the style that I want my new Black & White images to be like. I will not be using colour film as I think digital is better for colour film and it is great to have a camera dedicate just to the art of Black & White, again it is freeing my thinking up to let me be a bit loser with what I do with the camera. And this is a good thing, I don't know yet where it will take me but it will definitely take me to places creatively that I would not try with a digital camera.

Interested to read your comment on loading the M3, I know what you mean, but I also slightly disagree with you. I own an M3 and an M5—the latter with the now standard Leica take-up spool. To load the M3 you have to remove the take-up spool and jam the film leader into a slot on the spool before replacing it in the camera; while I agree that this is somewhat cumbersome, it is failsafe and once jammed in the leader has never fallen out. By way of contrast the M5 must be watched like a hawk as, more than once, a leader that I thought was merrily wrapping itself around the take-up spool turned out to have slipped off after shutting the camera up leaving the film safely in the canister as I happily made 36 blank exposures.

“ The "6" came from its six framelines. ”
I missed the asterisk* on that.
Talk of loading the M3 brings back memories of the taste of that baseplate in my mouth, at least the Nikon F had that hole to stick your little finger through.

* the working photographers that had M5s provided to them by their employers seemed to like them very much. I thought that having both neck strap luge on one end was very cool.

The M10 Monochrom could be had with 'Leitz' engraved in script on the top. BTW, whatever happened to your review of the M10 that you had for a while around the time you got your Sigma converted?

The M4 is the one I always regret not having gotten. My M3 was excellent for me at the time (fast lenses, excellent focusing, including in conditions where I couldn't shoot even with flash on an SLR of the period because I couldn't focus reliably). I was perfectly happy using an external light meter, it was more sensitive and more flexible (I used incident metering a lot; yes I did also know how to meter off my hand with a TTL meter).

The film loading and rewinding process was absurd, but it didn't matter that much; it only cost half a minute or something, probably less, and I wasn't covering action sports. Still, any improvements to that are a good idea!

But I was one of those 35mm photographers always striving to reduce grain, and always needing to push my film; these days, film would be an absurd choice for my usual photography. (Still, best wishes to those enjoying using film today, both old users and new users. I do occasionally get annoyed when I encounter people making easily-disproved claims about film though.)

Too bad this accessory is no longer available for the MP model:


Photo of accessory installed on camera:


It's great that Leica still had the tooling and decided to make new models of the M6. However, before getting too excited, I had to remind myself of all the disadvantages compared to the SLR. (No depth of field check, parallax error, etc.)

I guess I'll just stick with my old Pentax "MMM" camera and M42 lenses, along with the K-mount lenses for my K1 II.

I'll be interested to see if and when their film camera is released sometime soon. It might be fun if the price isn't too dear.

According to Matt Osborne, in his review of the M6 reissue, the electronic circuitry is different compared to the original M6:


(Matt Osborne's Leica website: https://mrleica.com/ )

“like everything about the 2022 M6. Except of course the $2,847.50 pricetag.”

Well, that’s amazing! It is over £4,800 here.

[It's $5,695 here. --Mike]

Actually Mike, when I purchased a brace of M6s in the late ‘80s they were $1999 at B&H. Considering it’s about thirty years later the current pricing doesn’t seem too unreasonable.

"disadvantages compared to the SLR. (No depth of field check,"

There should be a depth of field scale on the lens.

Don Cox

No, no, no! Unless I’m using this camera professionally, I can’t see myself justifying spending this much money ($5700 at B&H) on a camera. I’m a hobbyist and I don’t have private-equity trader or doctor money.

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