Leica M6 TTL

35mm MF film rangefinder camera

Production details

Production details
Announced:1998
Production type:Mass production
Order No.:10433 - 0.72, black chrome
10434 - 0.72, silver chrome
10436 - 0.85, black chrome
10466 - 0.85, silver chrome
10475 - 0.58, black chrome
10474 - 0.58, silver chrome
System: Leica M (1954)

Specification

Imaging plane
Maximum format:35mm full frame
Mount and Flange focal distance:Leica M [27.8mm]
Imaging plane:36 × 24mm film
Shutter
Type:Focal-plane
Model:Mechanical
Speeds:1 - 1/1000 + B
Exposure
Exposure metering:Through-the-lens (TTL)
Exposure modes:Manual
Rangefinder and Viewfinder
Rangefinder:Built-in, combined with viewfinder
Viewfinder:Built-in, combined with rangefinder
Finder magnification:0.58x
0.72x
0.85x
Actual rangefinder base:69.25mm
Effective rangefinder base:40.17mm - with 0.58x
49.86mm - with 0.72x
58.86mm - with 0.85x
Bright-line frames:28mm & 90mm, 35mm, 50mm & 75mm - with 0.58x
28mm & 90mm, 35mm & 135mm, 50mm & 75mm - with 0.72x
35mm & 135mm, 50mm & 75mm, 90mm - with 0.85x
Parallax compensation:Yes
Physical characteristics
Weight:560g
Dimensions:138x79.5x38mm
Accessories
Body cap:14195
14397

Manufacturer description #1

The LEICA M6 TTL follows the principle of classic master-works: concentration on the essential.

LEICA M6 TTL - For people who focus on creativity.

Since Oskar Bamack developed the original Leica camera in 1914, Leica has pursued a simple yet great idea. The idea that it is the creative power of the photographer that determines the actual quality of a picture and makes a perfection composition of shapes, light and colour. This philosophy is reflected completely in the LEICA M6 TTL, which is the epitome of classic, timeless elegance and a great awareness of style. It unifies high-precision technology and the optical perfection of the M lens. The LEICA M6 TTL fascinates because it offers the experience of original, creative photography by eschewing some things which although, perhaps, technically possible would only place a restriction on creativity. After all, it is the photographer who should be master of the medium and not vice versa.

Proximity to what’s happening

How are extraordinary, moving pictures taken? Through the harmonious interaction of the photographer and the camera. And through the close proximity to what’s happening. When it comes to spontaneous and inconspicuous reactions, the LEICA M6 TTL is irreplaceable: it enables the photographer to get in close. Using the LEICA M6 TTL, you don’t have to worry about the distance between you and your subject. The camera remains unnoticed and itself becomes part of the setting. The personality of the M photographer is characterised by sensitivity and an intuitive grasp of how to act discretely and with restraint. He or she has a good power of observation and is always in command of the situation. For such people, the LEICA M6 TTL – with wide-opening lenses distinguished by excellent imaging, as well as the new TTL flash exposure meter – opens up great new opportunities for creative photography in the immediate vicinity of the subject.

The right setting for your subject

The viewfinder of the LEICA M6 clearly displays all the information you need for total control of focusing and exposure metering. Unsurpassed precision gives you the assurance of immediately being able to find the correct settings in any situation. Even under difficult light conditions.

The very first look through the combined range- and viewfinder of the LEICA M6 TTL is already impressive because of its bright, crisp and contrasty image that is always of the same size. The surroundings of your subject are always clearly visible: a significant advantage for maintaining an overview of the action, especially with fast-moving subjects. When a lens is attached to the camera, a bright- line frame that corresponds to the focal length of that lens is automatically activated in the viewfinder. These bright and clearly visible brightline frames show the area of the subject covered by the respective lenses. But the different brightline frames can also be brought into view manually, without changing lenses, by means of the frame selector lever. So that you can quickly and conveniently determine which lens will give you the most effective cropping of your subject.

Pinpoint focusing

Experts consider the long-base rangefinder of the LEICA M6 to be a masterpiece. While the focal length and the aperture of the lens being used determine the measuring base in a single lens reflex system, on the LEICA M6 it always remains unchanged – regardless of the lens that happens to be attached. This permits pinpoint-accurate focusing even with low-contrast subjects that no other 35 mm camera can provide. With short focal length lenses, the focusing accuracy of the LEICA M6 is far greater than that of a single lens reflex camera. With the combination split-image and coincidence rangefinder, you can place pinpoint sharpness exactly where you want it. Quickly and effectively. Even under extremely poor light conditions.

The alternative with the larger viewfinder image

With the LEICA M6 you have the choice of two viewfinder options: one with the accustomed 0.72x magnification – and now a new one with an 0.85x viewfinder magnification. If you frequently use lenses with longer focal lengths, you will be especially pleased with this new version.

The comparison makes it easy to understand: Not only the subject itself, but also the brightline frames and the rangefinder field that are visible in the viewfinder of the LEICA M6 0.85x are enlarged by nearly 20%. And the expansion of the effective measuring base of the rangefinder from 49.9 mm to 59.1 mm increased the focusing accuracy even further. An noticeable plus when lenses with large apertures or with long focal lengths are being used.

Perfect results with selective exposure metering

Back lighting, grazing lateral light, spot lighting. Outstanding photographs often involve unusual lighting situations, and that is precisely when accurate exposure is of decisive importance. Selective through-the-lens exposure metering with the LEICA M6 gives you the assurance of rendering every subject in the right light. A silicon photo-diode positioned behind a collector lens measures the light reflected by a white spot on the focal plane shutter curtain. Thanks to its extraordinarily high sensitivity, the built-in exposure meter of the LEICA M6 measures the light conditions of any situation with great accuracy – even in extremely poor light. The glow of a single candle already suffices.

Easy exposure setting

The viewfinder provides you with an overview of the necessary indicators for setting the exposure. The exposure meter is activated by gently depressing the shutter release button, so that you can conveniently use the light balance to set the right combination of shutter speed and aperture: Two triangular light emitting diodes indicate the direction in which you must turn the aperture ring or the shutter speed dial. A round light emitting diode in the center lights up to signal when the correct setting is made.

New: TTL flash exposure metering with the LEICA M6

Metered flash exposures with an M-camera? But of course, and even better with the new LEICA M6 TTL! In combination with the new LEICA SF 20 flash unit or other SCA-3000-compatible flash units, flash exposures with an M-camera are, for the first time, metered where the picture is actually recorded: on the surface of the film.

LEICA M cameras have long distinguished themselves for their superior focusing in poor light and in low contrast situations. But even when you use ultra high speed lenses, there are always situations when you need supplementary lighting. The new LEICA M6 TTL optimally combines the advantages of super-imposed image rangefinding for accurate focusing in low ambient light with the precise control of the flash exposure by means of TTL flash exposure metering.

Simple and precise: TTL flash exposure control

Fill-in flash in low light situations? Placing accents in the foreground with light? Record every subject in darkened rooms with confidence? With the TTL flash exposure control of the new LEICA M6 TTL you have the best prerequisite for creating impressive photographs as you envision them. Confidently. Even in difficult light conditions. Because vibration is extremely low when the shutter is released, you obtain evenly exposed photographs with the LEICA M6 TTL, even with the longer synchronized flash exposure times, and the natural illumination of the background blends harmoniously with the foreground that has been enhanced with fill-in flash. And deliberate control of the flash output of the LEICA SF 20 – or of other system- compatible flash units – creates additional creative opportunities for you. Especially in situations where you must add fill-in flash in spite of high speed lenses, the advantages of the super-imposed image rangefinder and TTL flash exposure metering on the new LEICA M6 TTL become clearly evident.

Paragon of precision and dependability

Selected high-grade materials, extremely tight tolerances and strict quality control at every step of manufacture of the LEICA M6 TTL ensure flawless precision, the highest dependability and decades-long value retention.

Robust mechanisms, whisper-quiet shutter release

Impressive scenes can only be captured if the camera is ready for action at all times. Especially in unforeseen situations. The new LEICA M6 TTL offers the best premises for this purpose. It is small, handy and lightweight. And it can be made ready for shooting quickly, without attracting much attention. Its controls are arranged ergonomically and they can be operated while wearing gloves (which is practical, for instance, while skiing). Thanks to a tactile marking, lenses can be changed quite instinctively, even in the dark.

And you are likely to be especially pleased with the whisper-quiet sound of the LEICA M6 shutter when you need to take pictures inconspicuously. The hinged mirror that flips up and the spring-loaded iris diaphragm that are needed for single lens reflex camera operation are absent. This, furthermore, allows the shutter to be released without vibrations, enabling you to take photographs with considerably slower shutter speeds while still holding the camera by hand. With the real-time shutter release of the LEICA M6 – which is nearly 10 times as fast as that of a single lens reflex camera – you can always capture that “decisive moment” in real time. And since you advance the film manually, you don’t have to endure the disturbing buzz of the automatic film advance after you release the shutter.

Quality “made by Leica”

With a LEICA M6 you can immediately sense the exquisite precision with which it was manufactured. And with the selection of raw materials, only the very best will suffice. When you hold the new LEICA M6 TTL in your hands for the first time, it will have already passed its toughest inspections and tests.

  • For instance: longevity tests. Even after you have exposed several thousand films with your LEICA M6 – the shutter will operate as accurately and reliably as it did on the first day.
  • In vibration tests, the LEICA M6 has to prove its extraordinary shock- and impact resistance.
  • In climate tests, the LEICA M6 is exposed to repeated extreme temperature fluctuations, after which it must still function flawlessly.

The “made by Leica” standard of quality is present in all the details of this camera. For example, the LEICA M6 is not merely lacquered, instead it is plated with black or silver chrome in accordance with a proprietary process developed by Leica especially for this purpose. This robust camera will not let you down. The camera body as well as all LEICA M lenses were built for heavy duty use.

Manufacturer description #2

Plus points of the LEICA M system at a glance

  • The LEICA M system stands for reliable performance in all situations, for value retention and for longevity.
  • The combined range- and viewfinder is always bright and brilliant and it clearly shows the surroundings of the subject. Even dynamic subjects can quickly be framed in the picture.
  • The long-base rangefinder with its constant measuring base permits fast pinpoint focusing even in low contrast situations.
  • Selective through-the-lens exposure metering guarantees accurate results even in poor light conditions.
  • The new TTL flash exposure metering feature expands the possibilities of LEICA M photography and it makes flash photography more accurate and convenient.
  • The mechanical shutter release is gentle and quiet, and it is vibration-free: ideal qualities for inconspicuous photography.
  • There is no delay in the release of the shutter, so that “decisive moments” can be captured in real time.
  • The robust precision mechanisms operate extremely reliable, even under the harshest conditions.
  • With its handy shape, the LEICA M6 is an ideal companion – for both serious amateur- and professional photographers.
  • Leica offers a large assortment of high performance lenses for the LEICA M6, with focal lengths ranging fro 21 to 135 mm and speeds as fast as f/1. Excellent sharpness, extraordinarily high contrast performance and strictly neutral color rendition are their outstanding characteristics.
  • Leica customer service and more than 100 Leica representatives all over the world, as well as a large network of authorized Leica dealers ensure qualified Leica service most anywhere.

Manufacturer description #3

06 - 08/2000 - New at photokina: Leica M6 TTL 0.58

The new Leica M6 TTL with 0.58x viewfinder magnification is a useful alternative to the two successful models of the rangefinder system camera model with 0.72x and 0.85x viewfinder magnification. This version is particularly suitable for wide-angle photography and for eyeglass wearers. With the development of this new wide-angle version, Leica Camera AG, Solms, is responding to the increasing use of short focal length lenses on professional rangefinder cameras.

Users of a Leica M6 TTL 0.58, particularly those who wear eyeglasses, will benefit from a clearer view of the 28mm and 35mm frames. In addition, more of the area surrounding the subject can be seen at all focal lengths. This is a particular advantage when capturing moving scenes, as it allows the photographer to react immediately to changes both inside and outside of the picture and define the best picture area just before releasing the shutter.

The viewfinder frames are indicated in pairs for the focal lengths 28 and 90mm and 50 and 75 mm. The frame for the commonly used focal length 35mm, on the other hand, is indicated separately on the new Leica M6 TTL 0.58. There is no frame for the telephoto focal length 135mm, as there is no point in using the special wide-angle version of the Leica M6 for the longest focal length of the Leica rangefinder system.

All the proven advantages of the high-precision rangefinder system have been incorporated. Even when using the wide-angle finder of the new Leica M6 TTL 0.58, perfect focusing is possible under the most difficult light conditions with a high-performance lens such as the Leica Noctilux-M f/1/50 mm or the Leica Apo-Summicron-M f/2/90 mm ASPH.

Like its sisters, the new Leica M6 TTL 0.58 is available with either professional black or classic silver chrome finish. It is also possible to retrofit already owned Leica M6 TTL cameras with the new viewfinder with 0.58x magnification on request.

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Copyright © 2012-2022 Evgenii Artemov. All rights reserved. Translation and/or reproduction of website materials in any form, including the Internet, is prohibited without the express written permission of the website owner.

35mm full frame

43.27 24 36
  • Dimensions: 36 × 24mm
  • Aspect ratio: 3:2
  • Diagonal: 43.27mm
  • Area: 864mm2

14195

Protection cap, for camera body with LEICA M bayonet mount.

14397

Protection cap, for camera body with LEICA M bayonet mount.

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Image stabilizer

A technology used for reducing or even eliminating the effects of camera shake. Gyro sensors inside the lens detect camera shake and pass the data to a microcomputer. Then an image stabilization group of elements controlled by the microcomputer moves inside the lens and compensates camera shake in order to keep the image static on the imaging sensor or film.

The technology allows to increase the shutter speed by several stops and shoot handheld in such lighting conditions and at such focal lengths where without image stabilizer you have to use tripod, decrease the shutter speed and/or increase the ISO setting which can lead to blurry and noisy images.

Original name

Lens name as indicated on the lens barrel (usually on the front ring). With lenses from film era, may vary slightly from batch to batch.

Format

Format refers to the shape and size of film or image sensor.

35mm is the common name of the 36x24mm film format or image sensor format. It has an aspect ratio of 3:2, and a diagonal measurement of approximately 43mm. The name originates with the total width of the 135 film which was the primary medium of the format prior to the invention of the full frame digital SLR. Historically the 35mm format was sometimes called small format to distinguish it from the medium and large formats.

APS-C is an image sensor format approximately equivalent in size to the film negatives of 25.1x16.7mm with an aspect ratio of 3:2.

Medium format is a film format or image sensor format larger than 36x24mm (35mm) but smaller than 4x5in (large format).

Angle of view

Angle of view describes the angular extent of a given scene that is imaged by a camera. It is used interchangeably with the more general term field of view.

As the focal length changes, the angle of view also changes. The shorter the focal length (eg 18mm), the wider the angle of view. Conversely, the longer the focal length (eg 55mm), the smaller the angle of view.

A camera's angle of view depends not only on the lens, but also on the sensor. Imaging sensors are sometimes smaller than 35mm film frame, and this causes the lens to have a narrower angle of view than with 35mm film, by a certain factor for each sensor (called the crop factor).

This website does not use the angles of view provided by lens manufacturers, but calculates them automatically by the following formula: 114.6 * arctan (21.622 / CF * FL),

where:

CF – crop-factor of a sensor,
FL – focal length of a lens.

Mount

A lens mount is an interface — mechanical and often also electrical — between a camera body and a lens.

A lens mount may be a screw-threaded type, a bayonet-type, or a breech-lock type. Modern camera lens mounts are of the bayonet type, because the bayonet mechanism precisely aligns mechanical and electrical features between lens and body, unlike screw-threaded mounts.

Lens mounts of competing manufacturers (Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony etc.) are always incompatible. In addition to the mechanical and electrical interface variations, the flange focal distance can also be different.

The flange focal distance (FFD) is the distance from the mechanical rear end surface of the lens mount to the focal plane.

Lens construction

Lens construction – a specific arrangement of elements and groups that make up the optical design, including type and size of elements, type of used materials etc.

Element - an individual piece of glass which makes up one component of a photographic lens. Photographic lenses are nearly always built up of multiple such elements.

Group – a cemented together pieces of glass which form a single unit or an individual piece of glass. The advantage is that there is no glass-air surfaces between cemented together pieces of glass, which reduces reflections.

Focal length

The focal length is the factor that determines the size of the image reproduced on the focal plane, picture angle which covers the area of the subject to be photographed, depth of field, etc.

Speed

The largest opening or stop at which a lens can be used is referred to as the speed of the lens. The larger the maximum aperture is, the faster the lens is considered to be. Lenses that offer a large maximum aperture are commonly referred to as fast lenses, and lenses with smaller maximum aperture are regarded as slow.

In low-light situations, having a wider maximum aperture means that you can shoot at a faster shutter speed or work at a lower ISO, or both.

Closest focusing distance

The minimum distance from the focal plane (film or sensor) to the subject where the lens is still able to focus.

Closest working distance

The distance from the front edge of the lens to the subject at the maximum magnification.

Magnification ratio

Determines how large the subject will appear in the final image. For example, a magnification ratio of 1:1 means that the image of the subject formed on the film or sensor will be the same size as the subject in real life. For this reason, a 1:1 ratio is often called "life-size".

Manual focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Manual focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Electronic manual focus override is performed in the following way: half-press the shutter button, wait until the camera has finished the autofocusing and then focus manually without releasing the shutter button using the focusing ring.

Manual diaphragm

The diaphragm must be stopped down manually by rotating the detent aperture ring.

Preset diaphragm

The lens has two rings, one is for pre-setting, while the other is for normal diaphragm adjustment. The first ring must be set at the desired aperture, the second ring then should be fully opened for focusing, and turned back for stop down to the pre-set value.

Semi-automatic diaphragm

The lens features spring mechanism in the diaphragm, triggered by the shutter release, which stops down the diaphragm to the pre-set value. The spring needs to be reset manually after each exposure to re-open diaphragm to its maximum value.

Automatic diaphragm

The camera automatically closes the diaphragm down during the shutter operation. On completion of the exposure, the diaphragm re-opens to its maximum value.

Fixed diaphragm

The aperture setting is fixed at F/ on this lens, and cannot be adjusted.

Number of blades

As a general rule, the more blades that are used to create the aperture opening in the lens, the rounder the out-of-focus highlights will be.

Some lenses are designed with curved diaphragm blades, so the roundness of the aperture comes not from the number of blades, but from their shape. However, the fewer blades the diaphragm has, the more difficult it is to form a circle, regardless of rounded edges.

At maximum aperture, the opening will be circular regardless of the number of blades.

Weight

Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

Maximum diameter x Length

Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

For lenses with collapsible design, the length is indicated for the working (retracted) state.

Weather sealing

A rubber material which is inserted in between each externally exposed part (manual focus and zoom rings, buttons, switch panels etc.) to ensure it is properly sealed against dust and moisture.

Lenses that accept front mounted filters typically do not have gaskets behind the filter mount. It is recommended to use a filter for complete weather resistance when desired.

Fluorine coating

Helps keep lenses clean by reducing the possibility of dust and dirt adhering to the lens and by facilitating cleaning should the need arise. Applied to the outer surface of the front and/or rear lens elements over multi-coatings.

Filters

Lens filters are accessories that can protect lenses from dirt and damage, enhance colors, minimize glare and reflections, and add creative effects to images.

Lens hood

A lens hood or lens shade is a device used on the end of a lens to block the sun or other light source in order to prevent glare and lens flare. Flare occurs when stray light strikes the front element of a lens and then bounces around within the lens. This stray light often comes from very bright light sources, such as the sun, bright studio lights, or a bright white background.

The geometry of the lens hood can vary from a plain cylindrical or conical section to a more complex shape, sometimes called a petal, tulip, or flower hood. This allows the lens hood to block stray light with the higher portions of the lens hood, while allowing more light into the corners of the image through the lowered portions of the hood.

Lens hoods are more prominent in long focus lenses because they have a smaller viewing angle than that of wide-angle lenses. For wide angle lenses, the length of the hood cannot be as long as those for telephoto lenses, as a longer hood would enter the wider field of view of the lens.

Lens hoods are often designed to fit onto the matching lens facing either forward, for normal use, or backwards, so that the hood may be stored with the lens without occupying much additional space. In addition, lens hoods can offer some degree of physical protection for the lens due to the hood extending farther than the lens itself.

Teleconverters

Teleconverters increase the effective focal length of lenses. They also usually maintain the closest focusing distance of lenses, thus increasing the magnification significantly. A lens combined with a teleconverter is normally smaller, lighter and cheaper than a "direct" telephoto lens of the same focal length and speed.

Teleconverters are a convenient way of enhancing telephoto capability, but it comes at a cost − reduced maximum aperture. Also, since teleconverters magnify every detail in the image, they logically also magnify residual aberrations of the lens.

Lens caps

Scratched lens surfaces can spoil the definition and contrast of even the finest lenses. Lens covers are the best and most inexpensive protection available against dust, moisture and abrasion. Safeguard lens elements - both front and rear - whenever the lens is not in use.