Leica R6 or Minolta XD-11 ?

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by gus_lazzari, Mar 18, 2012.

  1. From my past comments as it relates to these two camera models.
    I thinks it's obvious why I'm asking this rhetorical question...
    Alright folks, quickly, which one is which ?
  2. Top, my guess is based on motor drive contacts.
  3. I'm not aware of the prior comments you made, Gus (I've only lusted after an SL or SL-2, but never made the jump to an SLR from RF), but the finish on the metal parts on the right of the bottom one and the seeming greater neatness of assembly reminds me of the hardened metal internal pieces that I seem to remember seeing on an M4-P, so I would guess the bottom is the R6. Both cameras apparently had motor winders or motor drive accessories. Heads or tails?
  4. Mmm... Looks like Minolta is on top... Fancier electronics, while mechanical parts on the bottom looks like ones of better quality... :)
  5. Fun snowy day quiz...being a Minolta guy, the bottom bottom is a 3rd generation XD-11 (...just to be on the safe side, did open up my XD-s to double-check, lol).
  6. Top is R6 is my guess.
  7. So is the R6 and the Minolta pretty much the same all around?
  8. I don't know, I don't see any red dot!
  9. By the hand written number, I would guess the top one is the Leica. I didn't realize they were so similar.
  10. Top is Leica. Cables are better tucked in and seems to be plastic free!
  11. I guess Jason is right and Starvy's remark is what I was also thinking but did not give enough credit to. What is interesting, as Michael says, is how apparently similar the two are, but sold at different price points. I guess that Minolta built some pretty fine machines at reasonable quality to price ratios during their lifetime. I recall our former camera society president swearing by the old Minolta SRT 101 cameras and its very good optics and never changing to more modern systems. So the R6.2 is primarily a Minolta. I wonder how much better were the SL and SL-2 Leica cameras, before Leica decided (I presume) that they would be too expensive to continue that quality in updated models.
  12. What about the Minolta CLE - arguably a higher spec camera than either the CL or the M4-P of a similar vintage?
  13. Robin, the M4-P and the CLE (or the Leice designed but Minolta crafted CL) are very different cameras with consequently differing specifications. While the M4 and even the later M4-P have not all the features of a CLE, their build quality is superior, as is their operation, for some users. You should compare the CLE to the M7, which is a closer fit in terms of a more automated camera.
  14. Ok, Gus. Which is which but more important provide us with a comparison and an analysis.
  15. I say top is Leica.
  16. top is R6
  17. The R4 ,R5, R6 and if I remember correctly the R7 were all related to the XD11. The R3 was also related to another Minolta.
  18. Minolta and Leica shared a lot of tech back in the 70s. Compare the XE-7 with the R3, for example. I wasn't aware that the later Rs were related to the XD-11 (which happens to be my favorite Minolta).
    The Leica is on top because the XD-11 does not have 3 contacts for the winder.
  19. R3 is a sister of Minolta XE series cameras.
  20. Top because of the neat wires.
  21. Yes, the top one is the Leica.
    I did this to illustrate the nonsense pricing of the R6 models vs. let's say the Leica R5 units.
    Why is there so much of a following and price premium for this "mechanical" Leica R ?
    Like the bargain R5, I typically receive the R6 units in the shop for their mechanical failures, not electronic ones.
    Don't get me wrong, the DNA sharing Minolta XD & XE units along with the Leica incarnations, are fine cameras. In fact, Leicas having among other things the superior viewfinders, a wonderful spot meter choice, and of course the R mount. Just remember that the R5 & R7 does everything the R6 can do, but with even more capability! (Concerns of battery failure & loosing the full range of shutter speeds, can easily be remedied with a spare set in your pocket)
    If you wish to truly go "mechanical", go for the unequaled incredible precision and abundant hard metal of a pure German Leica. In other words, any of the three Leicaflex units.
    My main point being, the perceived higher quality and/or reliability, shouldn't be the reason to pay more for a Leica R6...
  22. Gus, I'm under the impression that the reason people pay 'too much' for Leica cameras is because the cost is essentially the door fee for using Leica lenses - not because the cameras are better. Many people are unaware that Zeiss and Voightlander make m-mount camera bodies, and as good as many Minolta lenses are, very few of them are in the same league as a comparable Leica version from the same era.
    That said, I really like the XD-11 as well. If those extra-special Minolta lenses happen to be the ones that you would use, I honestly don't think there are any better automatic exposure, manual focus bodies on the market for you in a remotely similar price range. Plus it mounts the 58 f/1.2, which is my favourite lens ever to use with black and white film.
  23. Gus, I agree the prices of the R6s are ridiculous. The advantages of the later Rs are their smaller size and less weight than the old 'flexes. The lack of low light meter sensitivity on the SL is a disadvantage compared to the later Rs, but I enjoyed the SL for many many years. Still on balance I still preferred the R6/R6.2 for every day practical use. I didn't opt for the R7 in 1991 as it was bigger than the R6 and I like small, but it is a good machine. I notice you have not commented on the R8 or R9?
  24. Love your subtle tape work, Gus! :)
    Very eye-opening to those here who do not unscrew bottom plates before breakfast like you - let alone those of such 'interesting twins'!
    Do the parts' metal surfaces really look that different or is this effect more due to differences in lighting?
  25. Hey Gus, I was the first to respond. I guessed quickly, as you requested, and was a good guesser. Do I win anything?
  26. Yes Harley, no doubt the MD contacts should have been the most obvious to viewers, good job on your observation.
    As for the prize, what did you have in mind?
    Material differences: The Minolta (Bottom one) shows use of the more costly brass rivets on the large blade switch; when on the Leica they're steel. So it isn't as though strength was a concern on that component. A large Pan screw for the XD-11 instead of a nut. Basically in this area of the camera system except for the meter circuit, the differences are subtle and may be attributed to different Minolta production dates rather than a Leica factory specification.
    Keep in mind, the R6 usually shows up just like the Minolta with foam failure and it's contamination of internal systems, including Mirror Box lube failure. Electronics and mechanism are for the most part sound.
    Now, Leicaflex units don't have either issues. They utilized black yarn for dust & light traps, and as far as lube failure in the Shutter, Mirror or Transport systems, it powers right through it...
  27. Gus, How about a $1.00 off of a future CLA.
  28. Wow Harley, you're a cheap date.
    I'll double that repair coupon to two dollars !
  29. I was one of he first to notice the similarities of Minolta-Leica SLR! I never opened the boxes.It's good after all these years to see price does NOT guarantee higher quality. The Minolta was fine quality.
    Gus, wish i'd known about you when i lived in Newport Beach..
    The next poser which are the real Leica lenses? Some R-lenses were Minolta and a zoom or two..rather not say!
    Your question was fascinating, as was the Summicron 35mm glue mess! I remember a Leica Rep. saying how poorly made, my then very new Spotmatic. In terms of usage and reliability, the Spotmatic, never needed a service.Sorry Gus! It was way more reliable. My daughter still uses it occasionally having moved to Nikon digital.I use cameras and lenses.
    The results more important than badges. Very interesting!

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