leica iiig review ( with elmar 90mm f4 black & white film)

leica iiig elmar 90mm f4

There are many models of Leica L39 cameras that look very similar. The biggest feature of IIIG is the two square windows in front. The Leica M3 was introduced in 1955, followed by the IIIG in 1956, and IIIG production continued until 1960. With the development of the Leica M camera, the Leica L39 camera gradually withdrew from the market.

Japan has always had a lot of L39 camera enthusiasts, and for some time Leica produced L39 lenses exclusively for the Japanese market.

leica iiig elmar 90mm f4

A large number of Henri Cartier Bresson’s photos were taken with the L39 camera, and many of his own portraits also carry the L39 camera. The Leica camera that really experienced World War II is not the Leica M, but the Leica L39 camera. It can be said that the Leica L39 camera is the spiritual origin of Leica.

I think Leica is reluctant to discontinue IIIG, why? Because there are no accessories. After World War II, Leica IIIG’s design drawings and production processes were lost, and qualified workers could not be found. Due to lack of means of production, the quality of IIIC IIIf shrank seriously after the war. Instead of continuing production, it is necessary to rebuild the production line, and the various costs are simply not as good as rebuilding a system. This gave birth to the Leica M.

However, in order to meet the needs of a few users, Leica continued to produce a small amount of IIIG, and eventually used up all the stock parts. However, these are my personal guesses.

leica iiig vs leica m3

leica iiig elmar 90mm f4

Functionally speaking, all the functions that M3 has are available in IIIG. There are 2 biggest differences in function:

  1. M3 has merged the viewfinder and focus windows into one window.
  2. M3 has merged the shutter dial and slow-gate dial into one disc.

M3 is an upgraded version of IIIG, which had epoch-making significance at that time. In addition to the two upgrades just mentioned, there are three changes:

  1. The M3’s back has added a back cover that can be lifted to facilitate film loading.
  2. The film transition from the original rotation to a wrench increases the film speed.
  3. The top of the machine is more concise and neat.

IIIG also has advantages:

  1. Large focusing window, easy to focus with 90mm lens.
  2. Ultra-light weight, not tired to hang on the neck, nor to sink in the pocket, the essence of Leica
  3. Cheap price, the best IIIG is the price of ordinary color M3.
  4. Easy maintenance.
  5. The diopter adjustment is gone on the M machine, while iiig is kept. iiig disadvantages

It is inconvenient for L39 camera to install film. The film needs to be cut on one side, otherwise it cannot be loaded into the body.

Compact lens

leica sa21mm f/4
28mm 6.3
elmar 35mm f/3.5
summaron3.5
summicron 50mm f/2
elmar 50 3.5
elmar 90mm f/4

L39 lens


The Leica L39 camera is arguably the best L39 camera in the world. Imitations are everywhere in the world, and Canon, Nikon and other companies have also produced a large number of L39 lenses. In addition, Ricoh, Minolta, Pentax and other companies have also produced a large number of L39 limited edition lenses.

L39 camera It represents the mechanical art of Leica.

leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4
leica iiig elmar 90mm f4

more simples:

leica iiig + summicron 5cm f/2
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