December 21, 2011
Taken with Canon 5DII
The Leica M7 is the best 35mm film camera ever made. It is a manual focus rangefinder camera with an electronic shutter and a built in light meter. Manual focusing with a rangefinder is far easier to do than with an slr. There is a small square in the middle of the viewfinder that shows two superimposed images, one is fixed and the other moves when you turn the focus ring on the lens. When the object you are looking at in the square has both of it’s images aligned, the object is in focus. It is extremely easy to tell when this happens and with a little practice, very quick. The light meter looks through the lens and can control the shutter speed (aperture priority mode). Since the focusing mechanism operates without needing to look through the lens, the mirror needed on an slr isn’t required and the lens can be mounted very close to the film. This allows the lens to be smaller, which allows it to be lighter and sharper. Even with a 50mm f/1.4 lens mounted, the M7 is quite small and light making it easy to carry around your neck for long periods of time. If you can justify the cost, this is the camera to get to shoot 35mm film.