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How long have you owned your Leica?

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Not how long have you used Leica, but how long have you

owned the same camera? And not just owned, but used? I am a

relative newcomer, having only become smitten in the last few

years - trouble is, I have kept swapping. Why? Does this make

me bad? Do others have the same trouble? I am curious to

know what is the longest time users of this forum have been

faithful to a single camera. What keeps you satisfied? What

would tempt you to change? Are people just too fickle these


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Bought my first Leica gear in the early seventies, thought it was great stuff, but bang for the buck, and versitility for semi-pro work had me change to Canon. Never really liked the way Canon glass did colour work, so ended up switching to Nikon as a compromise.


10 years ago moved back to Leica for the really good glass and the smooth handling bodies, now I have 2 M6's that are with me for life, and an R system that is as good as anything out there. I guess we will see what happens with digital.


So 30 years off and on, - trying other gear is fine if you learn from it. I have learnt that Leica M is a unique product, the Leica R is excellent equipment, and Leica glass is simply the best.

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M2 #1 since 1966; M2 #2 1967; M4 (blk chrome) new 1976,77?; M6 new

1988; M6 ttl new June/02


I bought my first M2 at age 18 with money I saved while working in a portrait

studio one summer. (The first time you loak 100 feet of 70mm film on a huge

Nikkor reel you perspire a bit). One of these days I'll post a formal portrait of

me at 18 with my M2, Leicavit, 21 f4 SA. (Hint: I look like I'm 12 in the


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I've got an M2 button rewind I bought used in 1971 and an M2-R I bought sometime around then when they were originally issued. Last year I sold a beat to hell M3 that I bought used in 1969 because I'd picked up a like new M3 at an estate sale for a fraction of what I sold the other for on eBay. Most of my lenses I've had over 30 years. Same for the Visoflex IIs and 65 Elmar.
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IIIa and IIIf: 1967. M4: 1971. M7's: 8 months. I've had a couple M2's, an M4-2, 4 M6's and an M6TTL over the years that I sold. Lenses, I've got the same set of 35-50-90-135 LTM's since '67 and a 35-50-90 from '71 I got with the M4 but again there've been many others bought and sold over the years. As far as use goes, of course the M7's and current lenses get used way more than the older ones.
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It seems that the forum is pretty much divided into two camps. Those of us who just keep using and using the same ancient stuff, and occasionally buy a "new" 30 year old lens. Those of us that always lust after the newest body and "improved" lens, discarding it as soon as something newer comes along, and probably make up the majority of those who are eagerly awaiting "The Digital M"!


Leica's survival is dependant on the second group because the first group doesn't buy any cameras directly. From the standpoint of a viable business model, it's amazing that Leica can hang on in the world's market. The new business model is to come out with completely new and updated stuff every few months, make it more costly to repair than to replace, and have a dsigned useful life of a few years at most.

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