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Leica M5 Users


Active Member
Are you kidding? Don't you know that the M5 was the worst camera Leica ever made? You should be embarassed to have one around your neck. How could you ever imagine taking photographs with one? The body is too big, totally un-M-like, it has the wrong number and wrong strap placement, it's ugly, and the meter stinks.

Did I mention it was ugly?



Dear Ebenezer,

I use an M5 but not exclusively.


Other than the appearance, which is a personal opinion, why do you say the M5 was the worst camera Leica ever made? Like you I prefer the size and shape of the other M cameras, but having owned my M5 for thirty years are unable to fault it. I certainly prefer the precise metering to the diodes of the M6 and MP.




Dear ebenezer
Sorry for my english !
I use exclusively a M5. I go directly from M3 to M5 in 1974.(Mine jumped 10 times from an paratrooper airplane I lose it, it was stolen in 2003)
Leitz manufacture just 3 real great leica :
IIIx, M3 and M5 and perhaps CL.
After just design "avatars".
M5 is the only leica design for summicron lens :
I fix aperture never more 5.6 and i adjust speed easy.
Exposure spot meter is whith a needle and not by a stupid japanese diode.
M6 and M7 go back for speed change to a M3 old crazy switch.
In France in 1974 all pros cry for 3 lugs and we had, Leitz is not stupid and change.
Ok Ok I am a M5 aholic but I have a good psy


Active Member
Dear Jacques

I have used my M5 for nearly 20 years and just had it CLAd by DAG.

It was the first RF Leica to offer TTL metering and in that sense it is a pioneering model - that still works.


Joseph Low


Dear friends,

i look for a chromium one... In the discussion one should not forget: M5 is the only M with a selective metering of light! (Like in the small CL.) That is something which is i.m.o. really better than the M6 and later or CLE.



Active Member
I gather from the above that M5 users are male sexists. From some,however,one really, it's the worst M camera ever made. The fact that the rewind is larger and faster, the shutter-speed control can be changed with the eye still in the viewfinder, the meter more accurate than the M6 and equally sensitive, its slightly (very slightly) extra size makes it friendly for those who have larger or arthritic hands, makes it the"worst" M camera ever made. Yea Right!!
Oh, by the way, it takes outstanding images at relatively slow shutter speeds. now it's time for Jay to tune in.


Active Member
Dirk -

Thank you! I was beginning to think humor had died. :)

I don't own a M5 but I do own its little sister, the CL and I love it. It has all of the flaws of the CL and all of its benefits (great selective meter, actual meter needle instead of diode, easy shutter adjustment). etc.




There is no humour in the M5, these are serious cameras.

Ugly old men (well I'm ugly) need ugly old cameras. They compliment us perfectly.



Active Member
You are correct Craig. I'm both ugly and old, having passed 50 years in the company of a Leica Camera. There is and, if humanly possible, will always be one or more within easy reach, day and night.



As our top decks start to dull and the silver grey begins to show through, so it also is with our faithful old M5 companions as they age gracefully with us. Like us they are forever dependable faultlessly continuing to perform their tasks without any hint of fuss.

Funny how you never see a forum thread along the lines of…

“M5 film loading problems, help!â€, or

“Metering Problems with M5, help!â€

No, only threads about how the M5 is big, ugly and that it hangs the wrong way. And now, courtesy of Karen it has the wrong number. (BTW Karen I quite enjoyed your earilier post)

In a world full of really big very ugly SLRs and DSLRs it is a bit rich to call our sleek slender bodied M5s, ugly. And even a really badly dinged up M5 that has been totally abused for 30 years is positively handsome looking alongside a Voigtlander Bessa. (I mean one of those new things, not the real ones from the 1930s)

My answer to the original question is no, the M5 was my third Leica. After 2 M3s.



Active Member
My first was a IIIF, then came an M3DS(I still have it and use it with my visoflexes) then an M5. I tried an M6TTL and soon realized that the M5 was my true love. The M6 is long gone, the IIIF is still here as a reminder of the beginning(you always remember the first one). Now there is an M5 wherever I am, all of them used regularly. Thanks to Sherry they continue to be in fine condition. I'd be in tough shape without her.


New Member
i snatched a leica m3 and a leica m5 from my father recently. the m5 is in better shape (cosmetically), but i like both to be honest.

since i’m a beginner (an absolute one, that is), i just started tracking down all kinds of info about leica and i began buying some basic equipment for the cameras to ensure that their condition won’t deteriorate any further.

and i study in marburg | lahn, which is only 30 km away from wetzlar and some 50-50 km away from solms (the company’s current headquarter).