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scott kirkpatrick

Beyond 1.102 -- time for a new laundry list?

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Firmware, like wine, takes time, and if we are to see problems partly solved in 1.102 fixed in the next release (late summer?), now is the time to identify the issues that bother enough users to get them prioritized, fixed, and released into beta test...

 

My current candidate is the WATE focal length setting process, which only partly works, and has some funny side effects. It's a consequence of the fact that in the "lens detection ON" and "lens detection ON+UV/IR" settings, the firmware behaves differently, but the two paths interact with each other.

 

Scenario 1: Switch the camera on with "lens detection ON" enabled. In the dialog box, select 21 mm (or 16 mm). If you exit the dialog by pressing "play" or the shutter, you get 18 mm for that shot displaying in info and EXIF and for all subsequent shots until you go through the focal length selection dialog again. When you do, it prompts with the last properly selected value -- 21 (or 16) -- but not with 18 mm.

 

Scenario 2: In "ON+UV/IR," use the dialog to set 21 mm (or 16 mm). then switch to "lens detection ON" and shoot. The info and EXIF will read 21 mm (or 16 mm). Switch the camera off and then on again. Since you are in "ON," no focal length dialog will appear, but you are now showing 18 mm in info and EXIF.

 

I don't know whether vignetting corrections are those for 18mm when this default has been forced on me, or for the last validly selected value, presented in the focal length dialog, but I will test to see if I can tell.

 

A minor point -- because of a typo somewhere in the firmware, the maximum aperture appears as 1.0, not 4., when a WATE is mounted.

 

Summary: the problems are lack of a focal length selection dialog in ON, and the forced default to 18 mm. At other places in the M8's menus, if you exit without completing a valid selection (say choosing ISO), you get the last valid setting. Here you get something you did not choose.

 

Anyone else bothered by this?

 

scott

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Scott,

I've observed the exact same things and yes, I'm bothered by this.

 

In fact, on the D2 you could set a parameter in the menu by pressing the shutter (or the 'set' button) which would also take you back into shooting mode. This quickly became a habit as it is a nice feature. The fact that the M8 "escapes" if you press the shutter keeps causeing me a lot of 'grrr...'

 

Wish: Pressing the [info] button should directly bring up the info screen. Pressing [play]+[info] is cumbersome.

 

- Carl

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Yes, I have the CV 15 coded as WATE and it is pretty annoying that it asks all the time and that it reverts to 18.

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With 1.102 I'm still getting the 'venetian blind' effect occassionally and a jumpy selection when using the left/right control buttons for reviewing. Not deal killers, but damn annoying when working under pressure. I have to say though, this camera has (sadly) replaced ALL my other cameras, (for work) which is an extensive collection. Can't bring myself to sell them though. Faithful servants and all that. So much for sentiment, that's my attitude.

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I have the same problem as Carl and Scott:

 

- Switch the camera on with a WATE mounted

- Ignore the lens focal length menu (which lets say has remembered your last selection as 16mm) and just take a picture

- Images show 18mm until you go back and re-select the focal length you are using.

 

Also, with the menu displayed, pressing "play" displays the menu (why is the play button not disabled in this case?) and also bypasses the focal length selection process.

 

I think the focal length menu should pop up whether or not you are using IR filters to allow the user a simple way of getting the EXIF data correct when lens detection is set to "On".

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Late summer?

I was hoping much earlier.

There are things (flaws) that 1.102 did not an should have solved:

for example The Fat Green Stripe.

for example menu glitches and zebras and ...

for example i need SDHC

and:

shorter startup time

easier EV comp

 

Those all things....

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Late summer?

I was hoping much earlier.

...

 

My thinking is that beta testing something like firmware takes a month or more, so the choice of features tends to freeze before then. We've had about a month to learn what works and what doesn't in 1.102 and to remember what didn't get addressed. (e.g., fat green stripe, funky AWB for which Leica said they would take a ground-up redesign). So if we prioritize these things in May we might see some of them by the end of July, assuming that development is ongoing, things take a month to finish and another month to test...

 

scott

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I think we all went to sleep about it after last fmw.

Cyan corners were solved (not many people have filters, though), but lots of things people were protesting about are still here...

So I think we need to talk about things here, (and help developers out).

M8 is still not complete, although I am pleasantly using it.

 

also, the thing that happened with DMR firmware (as I heard)...issues are still here,

makes me afraid that they might neglect all this, and pretend everything is ok, since nobody is complaining...

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Yes, I have the CV 15 coded as WATE and it is pretty annoying that it asks all the time and that it reverts to 18.

 

 

Jaap, if you hand-coded your CV15 and it keeps reverting to 18mm, that's probably due to light hitting the coding sensor. I put a little piece of black tape on the lens preventing light to come between the coding on the lens and the sensor and now it's fine. It keeps asking everytime i switch on the camera, but it stays on 16mm so you only have to hit shutterbutton to switch off the display.

 

 

Hans

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No, Hans it is coded as the WATE so it behaves like the WATE. John's adapter.

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Shorter start up time. As it is if you happen upon the shot of a life time while the camera is off you'll have time for a cup of coffee before you are ready to shoot.

 

Also a feature that could be selected to be on or off in the ISO and EV menus that when you have the shutter depressed to metering mode that the up and down arrows can control EV and the left and right arrows ISO.

 

I won't mention the user selectable profiles as that has already been discussed ad nauseum. I would think Leica has heard all sides of that issue in microscopic detail

 

Not a firmware issue but a very compact travel charger would be nice.

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I think we all went to sleep about it after last fmw.

Cyan corners were solved (not many people have filters, though), but lots of things people were protesting about are still here...

So I think we need to talk about things here, (and help developers out).

M8 is still not complete, although I am pleasantly using it.

 

also, the thing that happened with DMR firmware (as I heard)...issues are still here,

makes me afraid that they might neglect all this, and pretend everything is ok, since nobody is complaining...

 

Filters are rampant and 1.102 solved nearly all problems. What specific complaints are you referring to?

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It keeps asking everytime i switch on the camera, but it stays on 16mm so you only have to hit shutterbutton to switch off the display.

 

Look more carefully. If you switch off the lens focal length display by pressing the shutter button when it says 16 mm, you have just switched it to 18 mm.

 

scott

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No, Hans it is coded as the WATE so it behaves like the WATE. John's adapter.

It shouldn't revert to 18mm. My dymotapecoding thing doesn't.

I haven't seen John's adapter yet. Could it be that there is a little bit of space between the adapter and the sensor? Try holding it in some really bright light and see if the menu for the wate comes up on the display.

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It happens when the camera has been used with a different coded lens. Replace the CV15 and the camera asks which focal length: 16,18 or 21, with the default for 18. After that it is OK for as long as one uses it.

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Guest guy_mancuso

Was thinking the same thing this morning. Nice start Scott, yes the WATE on /on/IR filter issue can be solved. Let's continue this list like we did before and i will put it together to give to Leica. Just got a not from Stefan this morning i something i reported. Need to follow up on that one and also add it too.

 

So again folks we where pretty successful with our last list so let's continue as we all know some can be fixed in time for new firmware and somethings are very hard to pin down and get pushed . At some point leica will be able to nail almost all of this but i think we all can agree they have come pretty far and we are mostly at some stuff that maybe easy to fix.

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Guest guy_mancuso

I am going to add this one from David as this is the one I sent to Leica last week. Just don't want to forget it and i want to test this out myself

 

I believe that I have figured out what is going on with the occasional overexposure on my M8. It appears to be due to the camera cacheing the last measured value prior to the meter passivating. It then seems to attempt to use that value if you take a shot without first 'waking' the meter by tapping the shutter.

 

To reliably reproduce:

1. activate the meter;

2. cover the lens with your hand;

3. wait for the meter to passivate (about 8 seconds or so);

4. uncover the lens and point the camera at a bright scene;

5. take a shot immediately, without pre-activating the meter;

6. look at the amazing white preview

 

I presume you could also cause this by leaving the aperture fully open until the meter passivates, and then stopping down prior to taking the shot - since the camera would have no way of knowing that the lens had been stopped down.

 

If intentional, I assume this was intended to allow a shot to be taken without having to wait for the meter to start up, with the idea that the last measured value would most likely be close to correct. The problem is that the last thing the meter is looking at in many cases is the inside of ones jacket, or the ground, hence the tendency to overexpose.

 

A better solution might be to cache the last measured value that was actually used to take a shot. This would in my experience be much more likely to be near correct than the EV of whatever the camera was pointing at when the meter passivated after 8 seconds of inaction. Of course if the meter is actually able to wake up without delaying the shot - it would be better still to not cache a value and to use the new EV as metered.

 

David.

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I imagine Ventian Blinds (only happened to me once - though had me scared for a moment!) is already on the list. Wake up time I don't find a major issue. If I'm working I have it on auto power down after 2 minutes - battery life could be better but isn't a disaster ... Only serious improvement for me (really!) will be the AWB.

 

The more I use the M8 the less I want to use anything else. Also, it's interesting how things we thought could be deal breakers (on the fly ISO changing, no "top" window to check settings) seem to have become non issues. As it is, the visibility - even in extreme light - of the menus continues to please and surprise me + the excellence of focus (on my bodies) along with the clarity of the focus screen (portrait or landscape) is making the M8 a continuing pleasure to use.

 

Next things are likely to be hardware variants... I'd love to have one body with the framelines for up 135 and one where I could go down to 21 ... Oh, and yes - PLEASE a new, compact charger - there's surely no reason for anything larger than the one that comes with the 5D ...

 

Great that this list is helping Leica gives us what we want.

 

Best

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The more I use the M8 the less I want to use anything else. Also, it's interesting how things we thought could be deal breakers (on the fly ISO changing, no "top" window to check settings) seem to have become non issues.

 

It's true arguing about specs on paper or initial impressions is different then using the camera long term. The camera is on balance such a magnificent photographic tool that those things which you might want changed/improved/added don't seem quite as urgent as before. Especially now that a most of the reliability issues have been dealt with.

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Guest guy_mancuso

Just sent a note to Leica with this thread and also told them I am working on a new list.

 

If the forum members could try tonumber a request so it is a little easier for me to pick up on.

 

Now just so everyone knows some of these bugs have been reported already

 

Venetian Blinds both red and white

Play back skipping on last frame

Fast scrolling

and one or too more

 

Also on features Leica did recieve our feature list, which I sent awhile back so they do have that one also. Here is that list

 

1. Lens selection option "in menu"

 

2. Optional 16 Bit setting like the DMR or better option

 

3. EV/ISO option with controls of either arrows or wheel , protect or set buttons. Whatever is fast and confirmed. Idea flash in VF what was set when confirmed

 

4. B&W optional b/w review, without having to write JPEG

 

5 Warning of non coded lens

 

6. Full name of lens in EXIF data sample 50mm summilux 1.4 as it is read by the coding

 

7. 15mm F4, 24mm 1.4 or F 2 , 28 1.4 ( some really fast wide angles )and than a line of lenses like the 28 2.8 that will be less costs like a 75 2.8 , 90 2.8 or think about 1.33 image circle digital specific lens

 

8 SDHC compatible or new standard *This is not a leica call per say but industry standard

 

9 Travel charger smaller

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