Where can I find Leica manuals, books & catalogues?
Online copies of Manuals
Joe Chan has searchable-text PDF format versions of the original Leica M2, M3, M4-P and R7 manuals at:
Since April 2003 Canadian David Young has collected a host of Leica R & M manual copies on his www site at:
(Tip - once the page has loaded, click on the "Leica Instruction books" item on the LHS navigation bar.)
Currently Mr Young has manuals for Leica CL, R4, R5, R6 and R7 with links to the M4-P, M5, If, IIf, and IIIf, as well as the Leicaflex SL. As well, there are links to PDF files for the M2, M3, M4-P, M6 and R7 - with more being added all the time.
Meanwhile another copy of the Leica If-IIf-IIIf manul can be found at:
Printed Manuals & books
In no particular order, the following all have a good range of instruction manuals (originals and copies), books, catalogs and magazines:
|Chris Ozdoba's List of Leica books||<ozdoba.net/leica/leica_lit_e.html>|
|Hove Photo Books||<hovebooks.com>|
|Finger Lakes Photo Books||<photobooksonline.com/…>|
|Clyed's Camera Stores||<clyeds.com/leicabk.htm>|
Photo/ACR Book Service
|Photo Eye Books||<photoeye.com>|
|The Printed Image
|The Leica Gallery (NYC)||Contact Information…|
See also the separate entry in this FAQ for Hove Books above.
Specific Leica reference books
If money is no object and you are looking for the authoritative reference to all the Leicia goodies ever made, then look no further than the three volume Leica: An Illustrated History by Jim Lager. Volume one deals with the cameras; Vol #2 lenses and Vol #3 accessories.
In June 2004 Petra Kellers sent me the following note about the Lager books:
We are now the sole owners and distributor for the "Leica - An Illustrated History" books by James Lager. Therefore we are able to offer the set for a great price: U$325 for the set (new/sealed). The books are also available as single copies for $129.00. Orders can be placed through our website at CameraBooks.com.
An alternative to the Lager books is the single-volume reference book by Paul-Henry Van Hasbroeck called "The Leica: A History Illustrating Every Model And Accessory" (London Southerby Publications 1993 ISBN 08 5667 4303).
Alternatively, a more up to date (2002) compact reference is the Leica Pocket Book, 7th ed. by Hove Books. Each page contains a individual, straightforward summary of a lens or camera body - so it's easy to find what you're looking for.
Finally, Laney's Collectors Guide is also useful, although of course much less detailed.
Print Leica manual copies
If you looking for a manual for a current-production Leica, then you can always call your local Leica distributor (ask for publications). For a small fee - sometimes free! - they will send you a photocopy of what you want. This is particularly convenient if you are looking for a manual for the used M7 or R9 you just bought.