Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1998/12/22

[Author Prev] [Author Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Author Index] [Topic Index] [Home] [Search]

From: thibault collin <>
Date: Tue, 22 Dec 1998 20:03:51 +0100

Lucien and Walt,

I've had nearly all of the photomics,

The FTN(3 of them), then the DP1 (5 of them), DP2, DP3, DP11 and DP12.
The most accurate was the DP3 but it broke quite rapidly. The DP12 was crazy
but was ok after being repared. The DP2 did not even work! Finally, the most
reliable were the old FTN and DP1 which I guess are nearly identical except
aesthetically...I have an old used up F with its FTN which is still accurate!

I agree with Walt that the F possesses some magic the F2 does not! 
However, the MLU mechanism is much better on the F2. I think it's the F's
weak point. 
But all of these camera do not feel as "silky" as the SLs....I know it's
just a matter of feel...

At 11:52 22/12/1998 -0600, you wrote:
>Well, I thought that photomic-bashing ought to be given a rest!
>I've owned and used them since i bought one new in l974 or so....
>They were fairly good meters, most of them haven't stood the test of 
>time too well, but I still use one occasionally, and I like the 
>"rugged Photojournalist" look to them......
>that said, they do mess up the aesthetic beauty of an F/F2, and I HAVE 
>to believe that the camera's lines and controls were designed without 
>a thought to TTL just wasn't an issue in l957 (about the 
>time I'd guess the F was being designed.........
>I also didn't go into why I think the F2 isn't the camera the F was -- 
>even though I like the looks (only) of the F2......too much heresy 
>in one day is not a good thing.......but there were NO photographic/ 
>reliability improvements in the F2 -- just more for the sake of more....
>more widgets, many more parts, more options for failure, u-name-it.....
>so it has to be the "second" best SLR......don't bother me with motor drive 
>discussions, we dinosaurs don't use them, think they're evil, etc....real
>you know the thread.......same for photomics.......give me a Weston or a 
>Spectra pro or a (gasp) sekonic 398, an F and M4, pack o' smokes, and a
pickup truck.....
>Happy Holi-overeating-days, 
>On Tue, 22 Dec 1998 16:32:01 +0100 thibault collin 
><> wrote: 
>> Hi Walt,
>> I noticed that you didn't say anything about the photomics!
>> I'd like to know your opinion about them.
>> TIA
>> Thib.
>> At 07:39 22/12/1998 -0600, you wrote:
>> >Hi, Lucien, and many thanks.
>> >
>> >Yes, the SL series was BEAUTIFUL....and I'm sorry to say that 
>> >at least mechanically, the Leica R lenses have quite an edge 
>> >over Nikkors (even my favorites, the late "F" non AIs from '66 thru
>> >'74 or so).  My only bitch about the SLs was that IF you had 
>> >shutter trouble or mirror-box problems, it was a write-off at 
>> >worst, an EXTREMELY expensive repair at best.  Call me simple-
>> >minded, but if things can be done equally well with half the 
>> >parts, half is better!
>> >
>> >I'm so glad you noticed the quality of finish of the F-F2.  It's 
>> >>nearly< up to 60s Leica standards, MUCH better than today's 
>> >finishes.  Internally, the same applies....  As for the black 
>> >ones, I prefer chrome---although I have a somewhat brassy black 
>> >one, and used to really like the "rough & tumble journalist 
>> >look"!! I guess I'm getting old, but I like the chrome Leicas 
>> >better, too....I've gotten over the "black-paint envy".
>> >
>> >I also formed biases due to a couple years in a repair shop....The 
>> >Nikons of the era were "built for servicing" -- as are the M-leicas, 
>> >tho neither needs much repair.....they each have a few Achille's 
>> >heels -- slow speeds and curtain brakes/sync on Leicas, and 
>> >Finders/screens/advance-rewind clutch on Nikon Fs.....both easily 
>> >correctible, tho.....  And the biggie -- >WHEN< is Leica going to 
>> >change to titanium curtains?  A RFDR camera with cloth curtains 
>> >is the dumbest thing I've ever seen.....I do hope, however, that 
>> >Leica resists the temptation to go to a modular (vertical) shutter 
>> >in the M7-M8 -- but it'll eventually come to that-just so they 
>> >can advertise higher sync speeds-flash has become the standard 
>> >detriment to journalistic photography!
>> >
>> >I realize that some folks are offended by this "Nikon" talk, but 
>> >if they're REALLY interested in the finest cameras from the past, 
>> >the SP, F-F2 simply MUST be handled and looked over, as you have 
>> >obviously done....remember, the F-F2 and the SP were concurrent 
>> >with the M-2-3-4-SL-SL/2, and the price differential was MUCH smaller 
>> >then than now, particularly on the lenses, so there was a reason 
>> >folks brought up on Leicas "strayed" from the marque.....
>> >
>> >I'd have to put the fit-finish-function of the late-SP-F-F2 
>> >solidly in-between "Leica then-and-Leica Now".  However, if you 
>> >want/need electronics in your camera (some DON'T!) -- the R-series 
>> >is DEFINITELY my choice, by default.  Todays competitors don't 
>> >even come close to the quality of R.  Today's students, even 
>> >mine, can't imagine a non-metered camera, and the younger ones 
>> >have never SEEN a non-AF 35mm camera!  
>> >
>> >BTW, the price gap is narrowing between a clean SL/SL2/R-whatever
>> >and a minty Nikon >WITH< standard finder!  Try to find one 
>> >under $4-500!-- I have!-- and they're being hoarded like Ms were 
>> >15-20 years ago!  History will sort it out.
>> >
>> >Best over-eating wishes to all, 
>> >Walt
>> >
>> >