Thinking about buying a Leica body but you are uncertain which model will fit your photography needs best?
This little page conveniently lists the specifications of all ‘regular’ Leica film models, made from 1955 to 2003.
The tables shown below are also downloadable as a PDF file (see below), or you can (right-) click them to download them to your computer.
Prices are estimates from 2013. With Leica cameras, prices greatly vary with camera condition and provenance. Old, run-down camera’s with rare specifications or provenance by a well-known photographer can be real jaw-droppers, both for their looks as for fetched sales prices! In the future, I might extend these lists with the rarer models, but prices on those cameras vary even more since collectors are interested in them.
So if you have or want a camera that isn’t that ‘standard’ and you want to know what it’s current price would be, try camera dealers or completed eBay listings to assess the price. Remember, camera dealers often offer a warranty (which comes at a price), and eBay drives up prices due to commission and PayPal charges, so for private sales, knock 15 to 20 percent off the prices you find with camera dealers, eBay and online auctions. Venture in the cost of a CLA (Clean, Lubricate and Adjust).
In case you’re wondering where the Leica CL listing is: it’s not there since technically, it’s not a Leica M. But, after having received some questions about its specifics, I’m including them here.
The Leica CL (order nr. 10700) was produced from 1973 to 1976. 65,000 were made. It has TTL exposure metering, but flash needs external metering. Its frame lines are suitable for 40, 50 and 90mm lenses. It was also badged ‘Leitz Minolta CL’, made for the Japanese market. When the CL was discontinued, Minolta bought the design, improved on it and launched the Minolta CLE.
That’s it on the CL. Oh, and don’t worry about the weight of it, it weighs next to nothing, being a very capable camera at the same time! Nowadays you can find them cheap, often with a broken meter but it’s a fully mechanical camera so if you leave the battery out, it’ll work just fine with a hand-held meter. Improves on the M3, M2, M4-kinda feel of it!
Download the above tables as a PDF here.