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All images by Bellamy Hunt, the Japan Camera Hunter. Used with permission.

If anyone in the world runs across rare and unique camera items, it’s Bellamy Hunt. Recently, he shared an image of a rare Leica IIIc Red Curtain Rangefinder with Nazi Navy/Marine markings on it. It’s worth it to note though that none of these cameras came out of Leica’s factory with the engravings. In fact, they were all added later on.

This particular rangefinder has the Nazi symbol with M underneath it–signifying that it was a camera for someone in the Navy. Bellamy tells us that the engraving was most likely done by a jeweler for the owner. But he also thinks that the symbol was added after the specific trend of engraving a Nazi symbol onto the camera was booming–which could potentially make it a fake. In fact, many fake copies came out of Russia.

While this is a real Leica camera, he still believes that the engraving was added after the trend (though still manufactured during war time) because the font isn’t just like the one used on many other cameras out there.

You can check this and other items out that Bellamy has for sale at this specific page.

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Leica M Jony Ive Front

A while ago we told you about a one-off Leica M Typ 240 desined by Apple’s Jony Ive and designer Marc Newson, the guy who styled the Pentax K-01 camera. We didn’t think that this unique Leica was considerably pretty back then. Well, now the camera has been sold at Sotheby’s, and guess what the final bid was … Oh right, we already gave it away in the title. So there you have it. An incredibly ugly Leica M that will be technically obsolete in a couple years was sold for almost two million dollars.

But consider this: it was a charity auction, with all proceedings going directly toThe Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. So whoever placed that final bid will be reminded of their good deed each time they pick up their new camera. That is, unless it’s going to be put in a safe so nobody can steal it. Which we think would be a really good idea, because you wouldn’t want to be seen with that ugly brick in your hand.

Via Leica Rumors

Felix Esser The Phoblographer Leica M Typ 240 Review Front Slanted View

When we recently wrote about our first impressions with the Leica M Typ 240, we were pretty smitten with it. So much so in fact that we were almost certain we wouldn’t have much else to say in the final review besides what we said about it in our first impressions article. So what we’ll do is to give you some extra image samples from the camera and various lenses, go a bit more into detail about the overall image quality, as well as take a look at the camera’s video functionality, which makes it stand apart from all the M-mount rangefinder cameras that came before it.

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Felix Esser The Phoblographer Leica M Typ 240 Review Front Slanted View

Weeks ahead of Photokina 2012, the Leica world was abuzzz with rumors about the upcoming new M rangefinder, then believed to be called ‘M10′, analogous to the sequential numbering scheme of the models that came before it. But when the camera was actually announced, it made people scratch their heads: its name was simply ‘M’. In order to make it distinguishable from future M models, Leica added the suffix ‘Typ 240′. And just like they broke with the naming convention, Leica also broke with the essential M system philosophy, by introducing both live view and a video mode. These are our very first impressions with this entirely new kind of M rangefinder camera.

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Picture "Leica M3" by Rama via Wikimedia Commons

Picture “Leica M3″ by Rama via Wikimedia Commons

Leica M-mount rangefinder film cameras have always held a special place in photo history. For one, because it was Leica who started the 35mm film revolution. Then, because the M3, the first M-mount rangefinder camera that Leica made, started a series of incredibly popular photographic tools used by countless professionals and amateurs alike for decades. And finally, because Leica-made M-mount lenses can be considered to be some of, if not the best lenses there are for 35mm film cameras. In this article, we take a look at what we deem the five greatest M-mount film cameras that were ever made. Not necessarily all by Leica, though.

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Photographers that still want to get into rangefinder film photography and want a brand new camera in M Mount may have to look towards Leica. Last year, Zeiss discontinued their Ikon series, and we just found a scoop that Voigtlander discontinued their Bessa A series rangefinders last month. This tip came from the FilmWasters forum–who further claims that Voigtlander makes this statement on their website. Upon checking out the website, the news indeed holds true.

While checking B&H Photo’s website, we see some conflicting information–but that could just mean that the retailer needs to update their page.

So what’s so great about these rangefinders? Well, they had bright viewfinders, were the most affordable way to use M Mount lenses, and were built like tanks in addition to be reliable. Don’t want a brand new one? Then spring for one on eBay.

Also be sure to check out our guide to affordable film rangefinders.