Leitz Ur-Leica versus Canon RP
Roughly a century of technological development separate the Ur-Leica and the Canon RP. The former was finished in March 1914, while the latter was presented to the public in February 2019. The Ur-Leica was the first camera to use 24x36mm film, whereas the Canon RP is build around a 26.2MP Full Frame digital imaging sensor.
Body comparison: Ur-Leica vs Canon RP
An illustration of the physical dimensions and weight of the Leitz Ur-Leica and the Canon RP is provided in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Canon RP is notably larger (31 percent) than the Leitz Ur-Leica. Moreover, the Canon RP is markedly heavier (13 percent) than the Ur-Leica. In addition, while the Ur-Leica has an integrated lens (the retractable Mikro-Summar 42mm f/4.5), the Canon RP requires an additional lens, which will add further to its weight.
Evidently, the Canon RP is the more powerful imaging tool, providing an image quality and picture-processing capability that Oskar Barnack, the creator of the Ur-Leica, probably could not have envisioned. However, there are two aspects (apart from size and weight) where the Ur-Leica has an edge over the Canon RP. The first one is power supply. The Ur-Leica is a fully mechanical camera, so that there is no risk of running out of juice during a shooting session...
The second advantage of the Ur-Leica is, well, its resale value. The camera is a museum piece, resting safely at Leica’s headquarters in Wetzlar/Germany. Collectors would probably be willing to pay several million US dollars if it were put up for sale. In contrast, the Canon RP, while surely being the better, more modern camera, just lacks the scarcity and historical importance that foster "auction madness" and drive vintage camera prices into six or seven-figure territory.
Any interest in exploring another side-by-side comparison? Just enter your cameras of choice in the search box below and you will be taken to a corresponding display. Alternatively, you can also follow any of the links further down for comparisons that others pursued.