Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/06/25

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Subject: Re: [Leica] cams
From: Doug Herr <>
Date: 25 Jun 2001 11:32:56 -0700

On Mon, 25 June 2001, lea wrote:

> What are "cams" relative to the R system, what do they do, why are they
> important and does their presence or lack thereof mean certain lenses
> can't be used with certain bodies?
> Do cams only show up in the R system?
> --
> Lea Murphy
> Whiny Dog Press
> 816-333-9111


The cams are the lens' communication with an R body's metering system.  For the most part a lack of a cam meant the body will not meter correctly with the lens.  One of the major exceptions is any ROM lens cannot be used on any Leicaflex body:
) a 1-cam lens is for the original Leicaflex
) 2-cam is for Leicaflex, Leicaflex SL and Leicaflex SL2 with a couple of exceptions, explained below.
) 3-cam lenses works on any Leica reflex body, Leicaflex or R, with the exceptions explained below.
) 3rd-cam lenses have only the R-series meter cam and will meter only on these bodies, but may fit on a Leicaflex. (same exceptions, below).  Some people don't know the distinction between 3rd-cam and 3-cam.  A 3rd-cam lens lacks the metering cams for Leicaflexes.
4) ROM lenses are for R bodies only.  They have the 3rd cam and also an electronic contact strip that is used for some of the R8's functions.

The exceptions:  some lenses, for example the 24mm Elmarit-R, the 16mm Fisheye, and the old 80-200 f.4.5 Vario, require more clearance between the mirror and the back of the lens than a Leicaflex or Leicaflex SL has.  If not a ROM lens, these can be used on a Leicaflex SL2 but not on the earlier Leicaflexes.


Doug Herr
Birdman of Sacramento
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Replies: Reply from lea <> (Re: [Leica] cams)