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M9 USB remote exposure revisited


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Per,

The shutter speed dial appears to be either a rotary encoder or a switched resistor array. There appears to be no mechanical link to the shutter as seen in 'that' video showing an M9 being dismantled prior to being painted pink! That being the case, the shutter speed dial must therefore change the speed in software just as the other buttons do for ISO etc. Therefore setting the shutter speed should be as trivial via PTP as it is for ISO etc.!

 

Indeed, I agree that it should be technically possible. I was trying to make the point that Leica would dislike a situation where the dial is indicating 1/125 while the shutter is actually doing, say, 1/250. That wouldn't be WYSIWYG, very un-Leica

 

Regards

Per

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Exactly what do you need to do? I can write a program that can trip the shutter and download the image relatively easily.

 

What *I* want to do is to fire the camera normally and have the image download to the computer automatically (tethered shooting). I wrote such program for the Olympus E cameras called E-Capture but alas such a thing is not possible (AFAIK) for the M9 :-(

 

This is possible. The M9 sends back events after an object (photo) gets written to the SD card or internal RAM disk, also if you shoot the camera manually whilst connected to the computer. If you respond in the software to these notifications you can then pick up the photo from the camera and transfer it. The M9 is just a bit limited PTP wise, but the most important functions are controllable, including tethering with manual shooting. M9Tether (for Windows 7) has this functionality.

 

I do suspect more is possible with the M9 - there's vendor specific PTP functionality in there - but unless Leica publishes specific details about these functions, it's hard to figure out what they do or how to use them.

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FYI - I downloaded M9Tether and installed it on a Mac Pro (running OS 10.6.8) with VM Fusion 3.1.3 and Windows 7 Professional (64 bit with Service Pack 1). It works.

M9Tether allows the user to set:

  ISO,

  Exposure Compensation,

  Format (DNG, jpg fine, jpg basic, DNG + jpg fine, DNG + jpg basic)

  Resolution (1 Mp, 2 Mp,4.5 Mp, 10 Mp, or 18 Mp)

  White Balance (auto, tungsten ...)

  Advance Mode (Standard, Soft, Discrete, Soft+Discrete)

  Flash Sync (1st Curtain or 2nd Curtain)

  Self-Timer

  check-box to Store capture on PC

  check-box to Preview JPG with internal viewer

 

I attached the M9 with a 10 foot usb extension and a 5 foot usb cable.

Download times to the computer were slow about 1 minute with DNG (18 Mp) + jpg basic (for the preview). The time was cut to 15 sec if I left the DNG in the camera and just downloaded the jpg for preview.

M9Tether does have a remote setup using iTunes but I have not tried this yet.

 

This setup would not work for a commercial shoot, but it does work. I thought I would try it as M9Tether is free and I already had VMFusion & Windows7 on the computer to run 2 programs that I have not found Mac alternatives for.

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FYI

I attached the M9 with a 10 foot usb extension and a 5 foot usb cable.

Download times to the computer were slow about 1 minute with DNG (18 Mp) + jpg basic (for the preview). The time was cut to 15 sec if I left the DNG in the camera and just downloaded the jpg for preview.

M9Tether does have a remote setup using iTunes but I have not tried this yet.

 

Hey Roy,

 

Download time seems a bit too slow. Although the latest firmware hasn't helped, on my PC, DNG + JPG and no noise reduction takes about 11 seconds to be transferred and displayed (the JPG). DNG only takes about 8 seconds. Using RAM disk mode cuts especially the DNG download time back quite a bit, to about 4 seconds. Can only guess why your setup seems so slow, but might have to do with the USB port (slower protocol?) or the cable length or the simple fact it's Windows on top of Mac OSX.

 

But good to know it holds up in even such a complicated setup.

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Thanks Josh for the heads-up on the new firmware! Obviously Arty has added the M9 shutter release code since the firmware I had in my Promote! Now if he can get the code for changing EV so I can finally do HDR on the M9, that would be great! What would be even better would be Leica enabling the changing of shutter speed via PTP in a firmware update!

I can but dream of the day!

 

You can have auto-bracketing in C mode on the M9. Would that suffice for HDR? I have had some bad results with bracketing ISO when it extends into high ISO. Perhaps its my post-processing error.

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You can have auto-bracketing in C mode on the M9. Would that suffice for HDR? I have had some bad results with bracketing ISO when it extends into high ISO. Perhaps its my post-processing error.

 

For me the AEB as provided is useless. I shoot spherical panoramas, and as such I need to take the same exposure set for each turn of the panoramic head. The way the M9 AEB works, it would set a different centre exposure per image set. The software I use to stitch it all together would never see the images as an HDR set.

As for ISO bracketing, dont do it! The only thing I change is the shutter speed. Everything else has a knock-on effect elsewhere such as that that you have already experienced. The only other setting I would change is the WB, but shooting in RAW obviously allows for that in post!

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For me the AEB as provided is useless. I shoot spherical panoramas, and as such I need to take the same exposure set for each turn of the panoramic head. The way the M9 AEB works, it would set a different centre exposure per image set. The software I use to stitch it all together would never see the images as an HDR set.

 

This is off the topic, but which lens do you use for the spherical panoramas ? I've been shooting them with a Canon 5D and a 15mm Fisheye. I'd love to shoot them with the M9 but haven't figured out which lens would be best.

 

Thanks,

Roy

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This is off the topic, but which lens do you use for the spherical panoramas ? I've been shooting them with a Canon 5D and a 15mm Fisheye. I'd love to shoot them with the M9 but haven't figured out which lens would be best.

 

Thanks,

Roy

 

I use either an 18mm or 25mm Zeiss. I might one day try the Voigtlander 12mm!

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For me the AEB as provided is useless. I shoot spherical panoramas, and as such I need to take the same exposure set for each turn of the panoramic head. The way the M9 AEB works, it would set a different centre exposure per image set. The software I use to stitch it all together would never see the images as an HDR set.

As for ISO bracketing, dont do it! The only thing I change is the shutter speed. Everything else has a knock-on effect elsewhere such as that that you have already experienced. The only other setting I would change is the WB, but shooting in RAW obviously allows for that in post!

 

You should not change the shutter speed, aperture, WB or anything else! You MUST keep the exposures between frames the same. You screwed up. Try again.

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You should not change the shutter speed, aperture, WB or anything else! You MUST keep the exposures between frames the same. You screwed up. Try again.

 

What? So, going by your suggestion above, just how am I meant to create an HDR panorama? In fact, how have I managed it for a few years now and how have the thousands of panographers managed it too? And what purpose does the Promote Remote Controller fulfill, if not to change the shutter speed? Might I suggest that it is you who 'screwed up' in your understanding of my post!

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I have done several HDR panoramas and agree with supertrogg. Shutter speed is the only thing you change - everything else - WB, aperture, ISO, should remain the same. Polarizing filters will also throw off the stitching. It is best therefore to set everything manually.

 

Supertrogg - is there a site where I can see some of your pano's ?

 

Roy

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Supertrogg is right. For HDR panorames, the only thing to change is the speed.

Also I would not use a polarizer, mostly because of the ugly "trough" effect it may create in the sky.

 

But I do not understand why M9 AEB would not work; when everything except speed is set on manual (a breeze with the M9, a pain with DSLR's),

the only thing that is changed is the speed around a centre exposure. Only in extreme situation would that fluctuate from picture to picture.

 

I let Photomatix batch-process the HDR results and PtGui do the stichting from those HDR's.

Doing all in one program has not worked for me, result wise, until now.

Edited by vanhulsenbeek
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But I do not understand why M9 AEB would not work; when everything except speed is set on manual (a breeze with the M9, a pain with DSLR's), the only thing that is changed is the speed around a centre exposure.

 

Sander,

 

For AEB to work on the M9, the shutter dial needs to be set to A, as well as making the appropriate choices in the menu along with actually turning it on in the SET menu. The problem with the M9s AEB is that that centre exposure changes as you rotate the camera! PTGui would therefore never see the images as being an HDR set!

An AEB mode that works the same as my old D300 (sold to make way for the M9, via an M8) would be all I need! Well apart from a way to disable that useless 'Let me guess the aperture you used so I can annoy you by getting it wrong every time' feature! Just let me set it in the menu if I want to or leave it on 'Auto' if I dont care! I always shoot at f8, so that would be ideal for me!

 

 

Lee

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  • 1 year later...
I'm looking for usb remote controle with intervalometer for my M9. Someone can help me to find one ?

 

M9Tether M9Tether does provide this functionality (Windows only). I have not tried it as I am 100% Mac and have neither Boot Camp, nor Fusion + Windoze installed.

 

Wilson

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