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Leica SLR Film Cameras

A Guide to Leica SLR Cameras

Since being founded in 1914, Leica has been manufacturing a number of different types of cameras. Many of their products fall under the SLR category. When you are taking pictures of nature, friends, family, or your adventures, you may want to know what they are capable of and the right one for you.

What sets a SLR apart from others?

When you take pictures with an SLR device, youll know exactly what your image will turn out to be. Thats because the users view matches up exactly with what the lens sees. The mechanism through which you can see the same thing as your lens involves the use of a mirror, a piece of translucent glass, and a prism. The image:

  • Bounces off the lower mirror thats positioned between the shutter and lens.
  • Travels through the translucent glass.
  • Gets flipped through the prism so that you can see an upright view of your subject.
What are some of the early models that were made?

SLRs became widespread in the 1960s. Some of the early models included:

  • Leicaflex: This camera is also known as the "standard." It has a built-in external light meter, and various lenses can be mounted to it via a three-lug bayonet mount.
  • Leicaflex SL2: This version has a relatively more sensitive exposure mirror than the original Leicaflex does. It has a split image rangefinder, an aperture read-out in the finder, and illumination in the viewfinder.
  • R3: This camera was first made in 1976. It has TTL integrated or selective exposure metering and three different exposure modes. The viewfinder is noninterchangeable, and the focal plane shutter is made out of metal and has an electronic component to it.
What are some of the later models available?

Companies have continued to make SLR cameras. Some of the latest versions are:

  • R6: The R6 has a mechanical shutter and manual exposure settings. Batteries are used for the built-in light meter.
  • R7: With flash automation, this camera provides more versatility than its predecessor. This is one of the first cameras of its type to be under the control of a microprocessor. Shutter speed can be seen on the viewfinder in digital format.
  • R8: This camera can be transformed into a digital one since it is fully compatible with a Digital Model R back. It has three metering modes and five exposure modes.
  • R9: This is similar to its predecessor. Differences include the available anthracite color on the top plate, an LCD frame counter on the top plate, and a lock on the mode selector dial.
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