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Johannes Knightworth

Interesting M8 Review ....

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But I have a question for you guys. If you're so secure about the choice you made, then why are you so terribly threatened by a couple of blog posts?

 

The good news is I am secure enough that I lauged all the way through at the completely biased views....

 

I had an XTi as my temporary walkabout camera while waiting for the M8 (because I did not want to lump the 1Ds2 around all the time). I sold it within a couple of weeks of getting the M8, not because I planned to (I actually planned to keep it around to lend to my kids etc), but because the quality of the results from the M8 blew away the XTi. Colours, focus acuracy (XTi is not that hot at AF and MF is not so easy through the tiny view finder), pixel quality (they push around in C1/LR/PS much better) etc etc.

 

I often found I needed to take more shots with the XTi than I do with the M8 just to be sure of getting one in focus! At least with the M8 my 'in-focus' shots are up around 99.9%, where as the XTi was down around 90% on a 'good' day, and around 80% (or less!) in poor atmospheric conditions.

 

I did like the XTi for what it was, a cheap plastic consumer camera, but it is not on the same level as the M8, and have in fact recommended it some some people, even since I sold mine. I am not defending the M8 or it's price here, nor am I criticising the XTi. The best thing about the XTi was the self cleaning sensor !! BOTH have their place in the market, but they are not the 'same' place, and the places don't even 'overlap' (just expressing my opinion here as some one who has owned both).

 

Anyway - great article for a laugh, but I really can't take it seriously

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...... If you're so secure about the choice you made, then why are you so terribly threatened by a couple of blog posts?

 

Mike - I always wondered why people here liked to say 'welcome to the forum', so I thought I would give it a try. Mike; welcome to the forum. Wow, that felt great. Now I understand.

 

If you had lost as much daylight as some of us have in following the release, call backs, glitches, and amendments to the M8 in recent months you might understand that so many of us on these forums are buying into the M8 solely for what it can do, despite knowing better than most what it can't do. I am a big fan of your blog [i check it most days, and have done so since you began it], the validity of my M8 purchase will be the work I do with it, so I am not threatened in the slightest by your blog posts on the camera. Tim Ashley felt strongly that you poorly represented the M8's capabilities, and he has a good case. Ultimately though; if you don't like it, you don't like it, and I don't think anyone here would waste time trying to persuade you otherwise. But though I found your M8 writing a 'good read' it was hardly representative of knowledgeable journalism, and the M8 has suffered a lot from that, which gets a little tiresome.

 

So I remain a big fan of your blog Mike, and trust you will continue to be engaging, stimulating, even provocative, but in future I'll keep a larger than usual pinch of salt handy for review flavour enhancement.

 

.....................Chris

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Respectfully submitted, your problem with my report is that it is not biased. You're biased, in the camera's favor. Which is understandable, and no problem from where I sit. You're "invested" in it--literally. I'm not. I'm not that interested in it and I'm not going to buy one. But I wish everybody could be as pleased with their cameras as you seem to be--no matter what they have. I hope you remain as pleased with it in the future as you are now.

 

The M8 is okay. I was pretty disappointed, is all. It doesn't even really get the basics quite right. After all the build-up and the long wait and the high cost, and based on appearances, I was hoping for better.

 

--Mike

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Sorry, I should have quoted what I was responding to, which was "I am secure enough that I lauged all the way through at the completely biased views."

 

--Mike

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I always enjoy reading Mike Johnston's Blog, but I am at a loss for words WRT his M8 report.

 

The direct comparisons with a Rebel XTI are strange to say the least. Yes, they are both digital cameras, and they both have 10MP sensors, and both will take decent images, but similarities end there.

 

Mike has always impressed me with his appreciation of ergonomic and intuitive cameras that let the photographer concentrate on the process of producing a quality image. Producing a quality image with a XTI means buying L glass, lets say a 35 1.4L for example (all of a sudden the camera kit tripled in price), now how are the erganonics compared to a M8 and 35 Lux??

 

Then there is the viewfinder, a major feature of any camera design according to many articles Mike has previously published. Mike again has always appeared to have an excellent understanding of the need for the viewfinder to not get in the way of the photographic process. The XTI has to be one of the worst examples of SLR viefinders, and is a poor comparison to the intuitive M rangefinder.

 

Overall I found the M8 report poorly done...........I expect more from Michael Johnston.

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Guest stnami

Hello Michael ............most times on this forum and especially of late photography is a very distant cousin. Trouble is that no matter how much the cattle prod is used they still like the Leica.............................so Magenta has left and Rose has replaced her.

Mick and Broooscie from the ward reckon you are OK. ps Raelene says hi and she reckons you are a spunk but you may be biased if you barack for the NY Mets, Juventus or the Bullamakenka wombats:cool:

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I'm a fan of Mike's writing, and of his camera knowledge.

He knows more about lenses, for one, than most of us here, and deserves to be heard out on the M8.

He didn't think much of it, which shouldn't get people excited. Different cameras for different folks.

Some of what he wrote was amusingly provocative, such as the Canon XTi comparison.The most interesting question though, I think, was whether the M8 is worth $2000 more than a 5D.

I'm a - mostly happy - M8 owner and I think it is a very pertinent question, and one likely to be answered in the negative by most people. Canon doesn't succeed because it makes crap. It succeeds because it makes great cameras, and the file quality of the 5D is fantastic.

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Guest sirvine

This is like one of those auto magazines that reviews an M-series BMW and complains about cupholders and heating vents and the volume of the stereo. Aside from the damage to Mr. Johnston's credibility as a camera expert -- who really cares?

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Best manner to settle this would seem a shoot out ---- But who's brave enough to go along with this.

 

- Take 5 pictures with the M8

- Take 5 pictures with the Canon

- Similar focal lenght

- 1 set with no Photoshopping

- 1 set with photoshopping

 

Then we will have the proof of pudding, if is any

 

Judging by the feel, the look, the size of camera, the M8 will win all round, of this I am sure. But after all it's an instrument to make images ....

 

.... Edited my line about the childish, smug and un-civil comments of some forum members towards Mike. I for one take his point of view as well as his comments, his photoblog and his web articles in the most highest regard. As for loosing credibility, I think he has won credit by coming here and explaining what exactly he meant, being treated like a total fool, and still holding his "fort" in a professional manner.

 

Ask yourselves whom exactly has lost some credibility here ?

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Some of what he wrote was amusingly provocative, such as the Canon XTi comparison.The most interesting question though, I think, was whether the M8 is worth $2000 more than a 5D

 

I haven't used my 5D since getting my M8 in January and to be honest I don't feel tempted to. The M8 is a perfect fit for the type of things I shoot and the image quality is outstanding.

 

If someone blogging on the internet doesn't like the M8 then it's no great deal, it's only one individual's personnal opinion. I'd just expect them to do more than the equivalent of shooting two and a half rolls of film before forming that opinion.

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I so far enjoyed Mike's blog and will do so in the future.

He's entitled to his opinion and he's also a human being and therefore entitled to err

 

Dirk

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I haven't used my 5D since getting my M8 in January and to be honest I don't feel tempted to. The M8 is a perfect fit for the type of things I shoot and the image quality is outstanding.

 

If someone blogging on the internet doesn't like the M8 then it's no great deal, it's only one individual's personnal opinion. I'd just expect them to do more than the equivalent of shooting two and a half rolls of film before forming that opinion.

 

 

I agree....

 

teh only manner to get rid of this M8 negativeness is to actually come up with comparible shots ..... between the M8 and the 5D/30D .... then the only argumentation would be the size and looks of the M8 and everybody would know where the other stands ..... and throwing with mud-pies will of become a thing of the past.

 

Actually I for one will be very interested in a shoot-out comparison between M8 and 5D/30D, I have both the D's and a canon 16-35 2.8L IS, 50mm 1.2 and 70-200 2.8L IS

and would be willing to gladly do the test along with an M8 user....

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Guest sirvine

I will save you the time...the 5D will have lickable colors and impossibly low noise, but will fuzz out at the edges and when the pixel-peeping gets underway. The M8 will be insanely sharp, noisy (but in a way that retains scary amounts of detail), and will require a more Rube Golberg-esque sequence of IR filters and lens coding to reproduce accurate color.

 

These comparisons always result in disaster because the variables are too numerous (lens, RAW processing, color space, compression to web formats, etc.) About the only objective comparison of the two is that the M8 is smaller and more expensive.

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I will save you the time...the 5D will have lickable colors and impossibly low noise, but will fuzz out at the edges and when the pixel-peeping gets underway. The M8 will be insanely sharp, noisy (but in a way that retains scary amounts of detail), and will require a more Rube Golberg-esque sequence of IR filters and lens coding to reproduce accurate color.

 

These comparisons always result in disaster because the variables are too numerous (lens, RAW processing, color space, compression to web formats, etc.) About the only objective comparison of the two is that the M8 is smaller and more expensive.

 

 

I agree 100% with the above but would add that there is a lot more shadow detail in the M8 files too, and that they print at large sizes much more convincingly. I have both cameras too, BTW, and no longer use my 5D. I lent it to to a friend a while back and have so far had no reason to ask for it back!

 

Tim

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Frankly I expected more from this forum group than the nasty attacks on Mike's opinions that some resorted to. Disputing on technical grounds is one thing, but I sensed a certain amount of "I paid a lot of money for my M8 and will hear no disparaging remarks as to its capabilities or value" attitude which may be human nature but only subtracts from what is the most civil of photography forums.

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I'll agree with both Simon and Tim, and add that I still use my 5d (and 30 1.4L, 50 1.2L and 70-200 2,8L) because sometimes, dammit, I need autofocus and the incredible low-light performance of the 5d.

 

And I hate even weighing in here, but since Mike joined us...

 

Mike, I'm invested in Leica and Canon. I guess that makes me unbiased by dint of being invested (heavily too) in both.

 

Just looking at the regular ISO 5d files produced by the 50 1.2L @ 1.4 compared with the Summilux at 1.4 and the M8... well... whadya know--there's no comparison IN PRINT edge to edge, and the flare characteristics of the respective systems (IOW, edge condition performance) is just not comparible in the slightest. The M8 wins, hands down, filter or not, every single time.

 

BTW--I expect the overall 1d3 system to be much, much better, especially in harsh light, since it's now a 14 / 16 bpp sensor too. It's also cropped, like the M8, to use the sweetest part of the lens. We'll see, but IMO Canon lenses aren't exactly immune to loss of contrast in bright light or backlight conditions; Leica glass is much better in this regard.

 

So to me that's what you get for $2000 extra on the body plus $2000 extra on the lens; better edge performance (which is important to me as a pro) and easy to use, reliable manual focus, which is also a must-have.

 

Is that a reasonable ROI, or price/performance investment?

 

Hmmm.

 

Only the individual can answer that. In my case, I go by the look on a bride's face when she sees the M8 results from an extreme backlight situation to get *the* picture of her with her dad before the ceremony (where on the 5D AF spins or is fooled by contrast and the resulting flare washes out parts of her head).

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I would like to add two more cents.

One is a little promo of my own results with the M8, which works great for the documentary stuff I do. Here you'll find (impossibly sharp and detailed) :-) ) shots taken this week in Ethiopia, alongside other stuff from China (as well as lots of Rolleiflex work, which is a good benchmark.)

 

Flickr: Photos from A Glimpse of the World

 

Every test has its limits. And as for the proposed side by side comparison with the 5D, this would fail to take into account some of the 5D's capacities, which the M8 lacks, not to mention failing to account for the ergonomic advantages of the M8, which for what I do are irreplaceable.

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The comparisons have been done months ago. Mine were done in October. That said, file quality is only one part of the picture.

 

Cheers,

 

Sean

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