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Why the NEX-7 makes M8 a tough call

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I haven't used a NEX7 yet but from what I've read the EVF is the best ever made. So I'm not sure if it lags at all. Also are you aware of the new "focus peaking" that this camera has?

From what I understand it shows a certain color where focus is actually focused. As you turn the focus manually you actually see the focused parts by a highlighted color. It sounds better than rangefinder focusing. Sometimes it's hard to tell where the perfect focus spot is in the rangefinder. Anyway.. just saying keep an open mind. Kind of early still for me to completely judge it.

 

Yes, it is pretty early, to bash on a non released camera already ;-) … but: it is not just the lag, but the overall EVF experience.

 

What did bug me the most is actually not lag, but the constant exposure pumping of the viewfinder (think PS camera, shooting with the screen - the camera is constantly trying, to boost screen/ viewfinder exposure to some "ideal" value, which is pretty confusing, shooting the camera in constantly changing light (like in the dark).

 

As I tried to explain in an earlier post, peaking or any other existing to date focus aids other than a good mechanical RF (and Leica's is the best in this regard, I used so far).

 

The mechanical RF actually gives you an indication in actual distance, how far off you are, making intuitive (and therefore very fast) corrections possible.

Ground glass focussing and EVF focussing is just worlds behind.

It might just be me though, as I concentrated myself on focussing on moving subjects for the better part of the last two years, training myself for shooting motorsports with the M.

 

Everybody is different, …

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I haven't used a NEX7 yet but from what I've read the EVF is the best ever made. So I'm not sure if it lags at all. Also are you aware of the new "focus peaking" that this camera has?

From what I understand it shows a certain color where focus is actually focused. As you turn the focus manually you actually see the focused parts by a highlighted color. It sounds better than rangefinder focusing. Sometimes it's hard to tell where the perfect focus spot is in the rangefinder. Anyway.. just saying keep an open mind. Kind of early still for me to completely judge it.

 

See focus peeking in action:

 

 

By the way, prefocusing is an integral part of the 'Leica-M' experience. It isn't easy in a Sony NEX as far as I know, and my wife has got a NEX-5N.

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See focus peeking in action:

 

 

By the way, prefocusing is an integral part of the 'Leica-M' experience. It isn't easy in a Sony NEX as far as I know, and my wife has got a NEX-5N.

 

What are the chances that something like Focus Peaking could be added to the M8?

Given my poor eye sight and back focus, it would be a blessing.

Arthur

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i carry a back up with my m...a noisy, battered ricoh gr21 film camera. well, maybe not really a true back-up..

 

can you stop drooling over the latest and greatest and steady yourself? (i mean this in a non-offensive & friendly online way, slap, slap!

). perhaps borrow someone else's before even beginning to consider trading off..it's rarely all it's cracked up to be anyway. i think menos makes a valuable point.

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Funny those recurrent comparos between apples and oranges. A rangefinder is a rangefinder. M8, M9, R-D1, film Ms, Bessas, ZIs and other RFs have nothing to do with SLRs or mirrorless cameras. Try again when/if the M10 comes with a rangefinder and an electronic viewfinder.

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I hate to say it, but those waiting for the NEX-7 as an alternative to the M8 are going to be waiting (perhaps quite) a while longer now... Who knows when we'll start seeing them in any great number after all the damage at the Sony factory. The release date has been changed to "TBD" (To Be Determined).

 

At least the M8 is already out there in large enough numbers, waiting for a new home...

 

"Adopt one today!"

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The NEX models may take Leica lenses, bit it does not handle like a Leica, have the ergonomics of Leica, or the panache of Leica. But if you want digital and can not afford Leica and already have a closet full of Leica lenses or want a small package, 35 3.5 Summaron, it seems to be attractive.

 

It shoots movies and takes Leica r lenses. M8 & 9 do not. My son wants the small camera and movie function and is saving money for his kids to go to college.

 

It is no RF camera no matter how they try to sell and/or justify it.

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In the past 6 months, I've owned and used the following cameras:

 

Leica M8

Sony NEX-5 and NEX-5N with Leica lenses and Contax G lenses

Fuji x100

Panasonic GF1

Canon 5D

 

I've also had the chance to briefly for a few minutes play with a NEX-7.

 

In my personal opinion, I still keep going back to the M8 because the overall 'experience' is better.

 

Sure, ALL of the other cameras mentioned above have much better LCD displays, high ISO capabilities, faster FPS, but photography isn't just about that. If you can't enjoy taking photos, then half of the experience is missing. As crappy as the high ISO is on the M8, I go back to it because of the whole experience, from the manual focus, to the sound of the shutter, to post processing. Not to mention, the larger sensor, depth of field and the fact that at ISO 160 and 320 is KILLS all of the other much newer cameras.

 

I wanted something mroe portable than my 5D and L glass. Sure the combo takes fantastic photos, but because it's so big and bulky, I missed a lot of photos because half the time I wouldn't want to lug it around. So, I set off in search of something smaller.

 

Let me also say that, I used RAW exclusively on all of these cameras, on LR3 for processing, so the JPEG engines weren't a factor. There's too much variation in JPEG engines these days, and it's unreliable.

 

The Fuji x100, was for me, the biggest disappointment. I loved the hybrid viewfinder, but the photos, even after post processing, even with nice colours just looked a bit flat and dull. Getting to certain settings through the menu seemed to take forever.

 

The NEX-5N I've hung onto, because with Contax G lenses, the results are very impressive, but I'm sill debating if I should sell it. Again, the controls and feel of the body just isn't quite there.

 

The GF1 is a fantastic camera. Even at 2 years old, coupled with the 20mm pancake lens, it's a beautiful machine, but, small sensor.

 

As for the NEX-7 I got to play with, it's nice, a bit more comfortable than the 5N, but again, the whole experience is just missing from it. I used it with the Zeiss 24/1.8. SOrry I did nto get to keep any of the shots I took with it, as it was only a few minutes. It will make a lot of people happy, that's for sure, but for those who think it will replace their M8 or M9, I don't think it will.

 

All in all, so long as you have decent fast lenses, the M8, even 5 years after it's release is still VERY capable. At low ISO's I like it even better than my 5D. Again, it all comes down to the experience, and in a compact travel package, it's easy for me to see why Leica is just so awesome as a photography tool and machine.

Edited by najibs

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Just wanted to add (as my first post) that based on Steve Huff's findings there won't be any Leica owner wanting a NEX-7 for their Leica glass.

 

Sony NEX-7 with wide angle Leica lenses – A quick test and Ricoh GXR A12 Comparison! | STEVE HUFF PHOTOS

 

I guess anyone who wants to use a 15mm lens and has absolutely no skill in processing might be off put... but anyone with an M8 must have postprocess skill to get decent color rendition anyhow.

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The images I get from my m8 are the closest I get to black and white film quality which is great as that's what appeals to me. The Epson and the old Nikon D200 hundreds are the only other cameras that come to mind.

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The images I get from my m8 are the closest I get to black and white film quality which is great as that's what appeals to me. The Epson and the old Nikon D200 hundreds are the only other cameras that come to mind.

 

I read your first sentence and immediately the thought: "But the EPSON R-D1 comes even closer!" struck me, when I continued, to read the rest

 

I still keep my EPSON as well, reminds me of dusting it off and taking it for a spin again.

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Well I got ht e5n owned a m8 and own two m9s I am a photographer,and got the5n because I needed 3200 and 6400 iso in really bad light I can focus the nex5 n with the viewfinder. I shot 1/40at f1.4 at 3200 with the 5n it worked and I could focus it fine no it does not have the feel of the m9 but I got images that were forcing me to use my canons. There is a place for the 5n with a leica system in that the crop factor can make your 90 a 135 and so on and so forth. I was abut to buy a noctilux now I will save my money and spend it on other things. I am just lucky I own the 24 lux and on my 5n it is a 35. But defend what you want the point is we have another tool at our fingers use it for what it does better and do not when it is not warranted.

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Good news, folks! Well, maybe not for the insurance company.

 

"Sony USA has confirmed reports that production of its SLT and NEX cameras has resumed, following the devastating flooding in Thailand, last month. Production has been moved from its affected Ayuthaya site to the Chonburi plant, further south in the country. A spokesman said there was no further information about the effect on product shipments, as this was still being determined. The company lowered its camera sales forecasts in its quarterly results published on November 2nd but said it had not yet factored-in the effects of the floods. However, its current assessment was that, taking into account the returns from its insurance policies, the cost of the flood damage would be around 25 billion yen ($324m)."

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Steve Huff has already did his review of the Nex 7 check out what he thinks.

The EVF is really the only thing it has going for it. Well just my opinion.

 

Jan

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i'm looking forward to getting my hands on the Nex 7.

 

not as a replacement for the M8 - this piece of camera low-tech from leicas ancient times of digital photography is simply unreplaceable (more on this one later), but from a technology point of view and maybe as a dslr-replacement (which i am absolutely NOT sure of) it is interesting to see what sony's doing.

 

i agree with most of the items from your pros and cons list.

 

what i'm missing on the pros part is:

- full-HD recording capabilities,

- smaller, lighter, easier to handle,

- Tiltable display,

- 100% "wysiwyg" viewfinder.

- Better and bigger LCD

- no problems with SD-Cards

- More Frames per Second (10fps)

- easily accessible sd-card and battery compartment

- Far better JPEG Engine

- Long telephoto, macro and superwideangle lenses useable without drawbacks.

- almost any lens ever made is adaptable.

- no trouble with rangefinder accuracy

- ability to hold longer shutterspeeds when using lenses with image stabilizer inside.

- sensor cleaning system inside

- internal flash with wireless flash trigger capabilities

 

what i'm missing on the cons part is:

- RAWs are more than double the size of an M8 image (which clogs up your HDD or SSD immediately - prepare to purchase a new computer along with your Nex 7 to process and store your new images...). and don't tell me you could save half-sized RAWs - you simply don't throw away quality. you never did and you will not start with this kind of nonsense now.

- not as simple to use as an M because of more features and more controls

- its not a leica. people love to be photographed by a leica.

- design is not as nice and zen-style as the M's

- the 7 probably might not bitch as much as an M8 does, but i love that meanwhile. it gives the M8 such a lovely character. almost like a tamagotchi or a pet.

- the 7 won't force you to think before you shoot - which an M does always and finally leads to much better images on the high end and worse images on the low end.

- you have to look through a TV kind of thing in order to see your subject. you dont see it directly through a glass.

 

apart from that i think, that the difference of the so called crop-factor is definetely an argument against or for the M8 with M lenses. at least from a creaming and focal length point of view.

 

DOF for an equivalent focal length is equivalent at around f1.8 (1,5x) = f2.1 (1,33x) = f2,8 (1x, KB). so instead of a summicron 35 you will have to carry a 31 or 28/1.4 around with you

 

Also your focal lengths behave differently on a smaller sensor. if you're used to a 50mm on an M8 being a light tele lens for portraits you might not notice too much difference except standing 30cm further away from your subject. or the space around your subject will become a little smaller.

 

but from a wideangle point of view my loved VC 15mm is no longer a 20mm super wideangle (19.95mm) anymore but closer to a 24mm focal length (22.5mm). sometimes ~3mm make the difference between a pano and a single shot image.

 

so for me, the nex 7 is definetely something i will have a look at as soon as it's available - but it will never be able to replace my loved and hated M8 (or maybe M9-p, if it should become available one day and i get a flawless cam).

 

maybe if sony or someone else publishes a Nex 7 kind of camera with a 36x24mm sensor i will think about replacing.

but i guess the UI of such a cam will still be too complicated to consider it a real replacement.

 

one of the key features of the leica M is that there are no features, except the ones you really need to take a good picture. intentionally old-school and for that reason simply superb.

 

by the way: i use my M8 up to ISO1250, also under low-light conditions. together with LR3 this works perfectly. you just have to make sure you don't have to push your high-iso-images.

Edited by kafenio

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I think the NEX7 will be joining my stable - not for my M lenses The M8 and M9 are still unbeatable - but as a light-weight R solution next to and maybe even partly replacing my DMR. A 105-280 Vario-Elmar on it? A wildlife dream I think.

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There's a couple big pros to the NEX-7.

 

1) Focus shift is a thing of the past.

 

I just had to send off my Nokton F1.1 because it developed over an inch of focus shift. This is a common problem with Noctilux and Summilux lenses as well. When you're seeing focus through the lens, the focus shift is never a problem again. Focus shift recently wrecked a shoot, and now I'm out at least $200 and without my lens for at least a month while it's being repaired.

 

2) Macro

 

I use almost nothing but my M8 for work now, but when I need to take a close-up of a model (the 3D scaled representation kind, not the hot female kind) or even just shoot photos for an eBay auction, I have to go find another camera because there's no macro focus. The NEX might not let you focus close enough for that with a Leica lens, but I could just swap on the kit lens for a shot instead of having to keep a separate camera for the job.

 

3) Video

 

I know, that's blaspheme, but EVERYONE is requesting video now. All of our sales guys have iPads and want to show clients video on the iPad or open their presentations with a video. I have a separate video system, but I've already paid for all these really fast Leica lenses. It would be nice if I could use them for video as well.

 

All that being said, seeing the leaked photos of the new Fuji interchangeable lens camera has me wondering if I should go with that instead of the NEX-7 since the Sony has been delayed anyway.

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