Is this Leica M6 TTL Authentic or Fake?

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by bryaneberly, May 8, 2018.

  1. I have been offered a very good deal on a black Leica M6 TTL with Summaron 3.5cm f3.5 lens. The thing that confuses me is that the price is an absolute deal in my favor and there is NO serial number stamped on the top plate. Below are some pictures of it. Can anyone tell me if this looks real or shady? Would love to know before I make the drive to complete the transaction. Thank you for any help.




  2. What you are having here claims to be a special edition Leica M6 TTL - the NSH special edition produced exclusively for the Japanese market (at the same time, 2000 Millenium Edition bodies were also produced): Leica M6 TTL Millennium NSH Special Edition Review by Ebb Bayarsaikhan - Japan Camera Hunter. Those cameras did not have the serial number engraved in the top plate but showed it on the hotshoe instead. Yours claims to be the NSH edition #268 out of 400 with the serial number 2680768 - which falls within the correct range for the NSH special edition. Naturally, such a special edition camera would have been delivered with a Certificate of Authenticity - if that one's missing, then I would assume that the value of the camera is somewhat compromised. The one-piece metal film advance lever, the round film rewind, the Leica script on the top plate, and the 0.85x are correct for the NSH edition; the camera should also have black paint (not black chrome) over a brass top plate (not zinc). The one thing that doesn't look right is the black Leica dot on the front - that ought to be a red one (of course, those can easily be exchanged). Whether or not the camera is authentic is for you to decide - at least the buyer isn't asking for a premium for what certainly looks like a "user" camera and not a "vault queen".

    An unused NSH edition M6 TTL sold recently on the big auction site for $4,695.
  3. I noticed the black logo myself. I have seen replacement red and black logos for sale on the internet. I have also seen other Leica's with a black logo. Is it possible that it was changed out at some point?
  4. I just edited my post above (before I saw your response) - the leica dot is rather easy to exchange. Doing it on a special edition camera certainly does nothing to preserve its value though.
  5. Thank you for the help, it has been reassuring. If I end up with it I will absolutely change the logo dot back to red. Hopefully someone else can provide more info, but if not I will take the plunge.
    Last edited: May 8, 2018
  6. Upon "shady": Yes, it seems like genuine Leica stuff. - I assume the details Dieter dug out are correct. The other questions you should answer yourself:
    • What will it mean / be to you?
    • How secure does the deal feel?
    I believe 0.82 finder & a 35mm aren't an ideal pairing to shoot with? - Is that lens meant to be used with missing goggles? - No big issue if you have a 50mm to shoot on that M6. I have no clue if Summarons are usable without their goggles. Ken Rockwell writes "no", AFAIK. - Will you be happy with the M3 styled interface on your user? - I'm not a finder variant expert and quite happy with a modern plastic tipped winding levers on my user-beater M3 & M4-P and yes, I do like the rewind crank too. If I am shooting my 35mm, it is on either the 0.72 M4-P or a CCD digital i.e. 0.68 and what is the M8 finder again? - I don't say "this won't work", I am just recommending to make up your mind if you'll like it. - I made up mine that I wouldn't like a 28mm on 0.72 finder, although I am shooting right eyed and wearing contact lenses.

    I don't know your seller. - It is up to you to trust them and believe you'll receive that camera.
    Rules of thumb: Leica labeled LTM stuff might be Soviet made. - "Fake M"s are ultra rare and more valuable than real ones for that reason. The Chinese produced a way too small run of them.
    Deals sounding to good to be true concerning Ms must be a variant of money for nothing in return, if they are scams.

    Why would somebody tape the frame lines selector into middle (=50mm) position with a 35mm?
  7. It looks like a genuine NSH special edition to me as well. Regardless, it is a genuine M6 TTL (this much you can be 100% sure of) that's being offered to you at a good price. If it is a fake "special edition" (which I don't believe it is) - so what?

    Leica MP-7 Pics 005.jpg
    Genuine Leica M7 Millennium "FrankenLeica"
  8. As Jochen says, this is a goggle Summaron without goggles. The mount brings up 50mm frame lines and as far as I know will not focus accurately. It was made for M3, and lots of folk over the years have pondered on leaving it without the goggles. It would appear to require major engineering alteration. You would have to sell the lens to someone with goggles or buy goggles.
    Camera looks OK. What's the thing with red dots? I can't see any benefit with a red dot unless you think it prettier.
  9. If the deal includes the goggles and they just aren't shown, then the Summaron ought to work rather well with the 0.85 finder, with the 50mm framelines it brings up resized by the goggles more or less as they would be on the M3. The tape on the preview lever might suggest someone has tried to make this lens work without goggles while forcing the 35mm framelines to come up, but as Jochen notes the lever looks like it's currently in the 50mm position it would return to if (e.g.) the tape was removed and replaced without holding the lever in the 35mm position. As James says, the lens won't focus correctly without goggles unless it has had major surgery. In any case, the main thing to consider here is whether the seller is offering an unusual special edition at a suspiciously low price, which can raise warning flags about how it was acquired or (if you've only seen photos) whether the seller actually has the camera.
  11. When I was looking to go digital, I actually clicked "buy" on very good price on a new Nikon digital on Amazon.

    Then came a "official looking" email, telling my to send a money order to Transylvania (I'm not kidding).

    Just saying.
  12. When I bought an M6 the red dot annoyed me. Leica USA sent a spare red dot at no charge. I painted it matte black -- over the shiny script too -- before putting it on the camera.

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