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Thread: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

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    Deceased, but remembered fondly here... johnastovall's Avatar
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    Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    I'm wanting to get at least one M film body with built in metering and thought I had narrowed it down to the M6 (non-TTL) 0.85 but has had two very knowledgable Leica shooters tell me I should really give serious consideration the the M5.

    Those who have used both or use the M5 now what are it's positives and negatives? Same for the M6 (non-TTL) 0.85?

    "The market wants a Leica to be a Leica: the inheritor of tradition, the subject of lore, and indisputably a mark of status to own."
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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Negatives over M6:

    1) Larger
    2) Heavier
    3) Slower to use due to meter arm needing to swing into plane to meter then back out for exposure
    4) ??? I *think* but am not sure meter may be selenium cell and requires silver-oxide battery for best accuracy
    5) Did I mention it was bigger?

    Positives:

    1) Unique piece of gear for Leica, so definitely a conversation-piece whenever you are around other people who know about Leica (and/or care) --- IOW likely to be a center of interest at the next Leica Historical Society meeting
    2) That's about all I can think of. (Perhaps this comment should be under the negatives?)

    IF after all this you decide you want one, my local dealer had a pretty clean three-lug version, black & recent CLA, under their shelf for about $900 I think.

    ,
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Subscriber Member Chuck Jones's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    John, I carried a pair of M6's for years. The only better camera made in my opinion for film is the M7 w/the motor M.

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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    I used an M5 or a few years and enjoyed it ...but traded for the M6 ( my favorite for film) . The size and handling of the classic shape hasn t been beat IMHO.

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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    I still have my Dad's M5 2 lug. Still enjoying it. It may be the biggest M, it may be the heaviest M, and meter may damaged by some lens. Other than that, it feels good, robust, balanced... it is a workhorse & a great camera... It is an overlooked greatness. Look here ... http://www.cameraquest.com/m5.htm

    M6 non ttl... What can I say, another great M

    It is so hard to compare the M line. Each hold its own.

    Robert.

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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Quote Originally Posted by johnastovall View Post
    I'm wanting to get at least one M film body with built in metering and thought I had narrowed it down to the M6 (non-TTL) 0.85 but has had two very knowledgable Leica shooters tell me I should really give serious consideration the the M5.

    Those who have used both or use the M5 now what are it's positives and negatives? Same for the M6 (non-TTL) 0.85?
    Hi John
    I've made a pact with myself never to shoot film again . . . . . but if I were going to I'd get an MP or an M6. I don't have the faintest idea which is better, but the M6 is certainly prettier . . and we all mind about that don't we!

    Good Luck with your decision

    Just this guy you know

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    Deceased, but remembered fondly here... johnastovall's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    I have seriously considered the new MP but just spent to much time twirling that little take up post on the IIIG and the M3. When Leica introduced the new MP why they went that retro, is beyond me. The take up on the base of the M5 is interesting and I'm surprised it wasn't continued. My M4 has spoiled me for rewinding.

    "The market wants a Leica to be a Leica: the inheritor of tradition, the subject of lore, and indisputably a mark of status to own."
    Mike Johnston


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    Senior Member helenhill's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Another vote for the M5...... its kinda square Sexy Cool the M5

    BTW I recently shot a roll w/ the Zeiss Ikon and found it Brilliant.... abit lighter & the viewfinder is Spacious and BRIGHT...Truly Lovely Cam

    I can only say I'm madly in LOVE w/ my 1968 M4
    and today I got from IGOR
    a 1962 Summilux & a 1958 DR Cron
    MANY THANX John for recommending me to Igor.
    He is GREAT to do business with

    so I will now only be posting with the 50 'Frame of Mind'
    A Good Discipline for me
    Cheers! H

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    Senior Member helenhill's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    & here SHE is:

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    Deceased, but remembered fondly here... johnastovall's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    And here is my little old M4. I do like it.
    I see some of Leo or Leon's hair is on it.

    "The market wants a Leica to be a Leica: the inheritor of tradition, the subject of lore, and indisputably a mark of status to own."
    Mike Johnston


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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Hi John,

    I have been using M3, M5 and M6 for years. The M5 is by far a better 'user.' To fully appreciate an M5, I would recommend using it alone. IMHO, M5 doesn't mix with other Ms, especially the M6. As far as many negative comments about the M5, I would suspect that those users compared M5 with M6 side by side and shoot only few rolls of film with the M5. The size and the weight of M5 feel much better than M6 for extended shooting IMHO. As a user, the M5 fits naturally for both shooting styles of shutter priority or aperture priority, whereas M6 is mostly suited for shutter priority shooting style. The shutter on M5 sounded differently than that of M3 and M6, but not noisier. In fact, in lower speeds, M5 is much quieter than other Ms.

    Cheers!

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    Deceased, but remembered fondly here... johnastovall's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Jones View Post
    John, I carried a pair of M6's for years. The only better camera made in my opinion for film is the M7 w/the motor M.
    Chuck,

    Thanks, now I have a stack of night time reading on the M7. It does look sweet and the delta between it and the M6 (non-ttl) 0.85 isn't that much. But I can't use my brass Leica reloadable cassetts in it.

    "The market wants a Leica to be a Leica: the inheritor of tradition, the subject of lore, and indisputably a mark of status to own."
    Mike Johnston


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    Deceased, but remembered fondly here... johnastovall's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    On the M5 front I'm going to spend a few days in East Texas between Christmas and New Years with a friend who has 2 M5's so I can shoot one for several days and we can process the film in his darkroom each night. My only cost, letting him use the Nocti, the 50/0.95, the 50/1.2 and all the other goodies in my Leica Pelican case along with the M8 and RD-1. He's a film guy only but maybe he'll come over.

    "The market wants a Leica to be a Leica: the inheritor of tradition, the subject of lore, and indisputably a mark of status to own."
    Mike Johnston


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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Had an M5 for a while, and like Jack said, it is heavier, larger, needs the old Mercury batteries (that if left in the camera too long, fog the viewfinder), and my particular issue with the camera was the heavier feel to the shutter release, as the lightmeter arm swung into position. I am told by a technician that a lightmeter repair is VERY expensive!

    Having said all that, it is extremely well made.

    Personally if find the M6 Wetzlar as the best combination of features, size, balance, and build quality in the M line up.
    Last edited by Seascape; 11th November 2008 at 18:35. Reason: change battery type

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    Super Moderator Cindy Flood's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    The M5 works for me. It is heavier and bulkier, but that is made up for by the spot-on metering and the fact that the speed dial is so easy to set with the camera to my eye. Mine has been upgraded for modern batteries, so that is not an issue.
    Since you have an opportunity coming up to use an M5 for a couple of weeks, I would wait till after that to make a decision.

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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Quote Originally Posted by Ocean View Post
    Hi John,

    I have been using M3, M5 and M6 for years. The M5 is by far a better 'user.' To fully appreciate an M5, I would recommend using it alone. IMHO, M5 doesn't mix with other Ms, especially the M6. As far as many negative comments about the M5, I would suspect that those users compared M5 with M6 side by side and shoot only few rolls of film with the M5. The size and the weight of M5 feel much better than M6 for extended shooting IMHO. As a user, the M5 fits naturally for both shooting styles of shutter priority or aperture priority, whereas M6 is mostly suited for shutter priority shooting style. The shutter on M5 sounded differently than that of M3 and M6, but not noisier. In fact, in lower speeds, M5 is much quieter than other Ms.

    Cheers!
    I agree, my all time favorite M!

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    Subscriber Member Chuck Jones's Avatar
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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Quote Originally Posted by johnastovall View Post
    Chuck,

    Thanks, now I have a stack of night time reading on the M7. It does look sweet and the delta between it and the M6 (non-ttl) 0.85 isn't that much. But I can't use my brass Leica reloadable cassetts in it.
    John, with some practice you will find you can load a new roll in about 15 seconds when you need to. Or that was about average for me with my M6 & M7 bodies. It's amazing how fast reloading can get once you practice enough. Even in the dark.... not a problem.

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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    I concluded that I was never going to shoot film again so I sold both my M6TTl's to Don Hutton. One was a .72 and the other a .85. The 0.85 was in absolutely new condition and now I am sorry I sold it. Oh well, my M8 files are wonderful so I will deal with the new reality. But if anyone has a really pristine M6 (preferably 0.72) I would be happy to bid on it. Otherwise I see a new M7 or Mp in my future

    Woody

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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Quote Originally Posted by woodyspedden View Post
    I concluded that I was never going to shoot film again so I sold both my M6TTl's to Don Hutton. One was a .72 and the other a .85. The 0.85 was in absolutely new condition and now I am sorry I sold it. Oh well, my M8 files are wonderful so I will deal with the new reality. But if anyone has a really pristine M6 (preferably 0.72) I would be happy to bid on it. Otherwise I see a new M7 or Mp in my future

    Woody
    HI Woody
    or you could get Nik silver Efex . . . .

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    I liked my good old M5 with a Nocti mounted which seemed to fit visually and balanced well ... but IMO, with smaller lenses it looked goofy ... like Michael Jackson's nose.

    If I recall correctly, I had my M5 battery compartment converted to eliminate the problem. I think the meter was re-calibrated slightly at the same time to be accurate with newer batteries. But it's been quite awhile, so I may be remembering incorrectly.

    My favorite M ever was my first Black M6 Wetzlar (the version without the plastic strap protectors below the lugs) ... one of the first brought into the US. It was just about perfect.

    The only M that rivaled it was my last film Leica ... a MP-3 with retro 50 Lux ASPH ... but it was just to precious, and a PITA to rewind when "actually" shooting with it.

    When business gets better (IF it does), I may get another film M ...

    If Leica came out with a M7/MKII with the new quiet shutter to 1/4000th, I'd sell off other stuff and get one immediately.

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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    Ah, the Black M6 Wetzlar (strap rub pads added to keep it pristine).

    Mine's with me for life

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    Re: Compare and contrast M5 and M6(non-TTL) 0.85

    ...or you could get Nik silver Efex . . . .
    Nice, but it still doesn't look like B&W film.

    You might want to consider the M6TTL because it has one neat feature of the M5: the shutter speed dial you can change by feel.

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