Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2000/05/20

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Subject: RE: [Leica] Leica MC Meters
From: Jem Kime <>
Date: Sat, 20 May 2000 18:03:53 +0100

I hope this will help. It seems like you've arrived at the Leica Nirvana 
having travelled through the land of 'I'll hold your hand-land' of cameras. 
The Leica is a basic camera, for all its expense and within that there is 
no aperture or shutter priority as there is no automation of the shutter at 
all, YOU are in control of everything.
I take it you found out how to set the ASA/DIN on the meter? Well after 
that you can choose to set the shutter speed, then take a reading and then 
transfer the aperture (opposite the needle) to the lens, OR, you can start 
with an aperture choice, match that aperture to the needle and voila! 
You'll have set the required shutter speed by doing that.

The honeycomb light screen should be used for 'reflected' light readings 
which in general could be said to be when the sun is more or less behind 
you. Of course there are other factors to bear in mind, like if you point 
the meter at snow it will suggest a reading that translates it into a dark 
grey. Conversely, if you point it at a coal heap, it will suggest a reading 
that presents a negative which prints grey rather than black. In essence 
the meter is only a tool and you have to be the person in control of the 
The white plastic 'incident light' meter attachment is used when measuring 
the light falling onto the subject rather than being reflected off it. So 
after applying it to the meter you assume the position of your subject and 
point the camera/meter in the direction of where the picture will be taken 
from tilting it up to effectively measure the light falling from that 
direction rather than the background. This then allows you to measure the 
light falling onto the subject and then you follow the match needle antics 
as before. Of course this type of reading will not be swayed by different 
coloured backgrounds as much as before.

Broadly, I would suggest that you go to any bookshop or library and start 
to read up the fundamentals of photography. You have a great camera, you 
owe it to yourself to invest some time in learning how to get the best out 
of it.

- -----Original Message-----
From:	Tony Salce []

Hello All,

I've just
purchased an M3 with an MC meter, which appears to work. I have no idea how
to use it. I have successfully been able to mount it, without scratching 
top plate, but as to its actual usage, I'm a bit lost. It appears to me 
you can only shoot in either an aperture priority or shutter priority
mode.How do you know what aperture you ought set your lens to ?

Also, I do not know whether the honeycomb type screen ought be fully 
or do I put the "incident light" attachment that covers the honeycomb 
over it ? Furthermore there is another little "gadget" in the box that came
with the MC meter. A smallpiece of plastic with two black dots and a black
line. Does anyone know what this is ?

Your replies would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Tony Salce

Replies: Reply from "Tony Salce" <> (Re: [Leica] Leica MC Meters)