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Question re: M Lenses/Adapter & Aperture on SL

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Sorry for the newb question, I'm considering an SL to go with my 240 and have read lots online but I'm trying to clarify something about using my M lenses with the adapter:

 

1) Does the SL "know" what aperture an M lens is set at, and reflect that in the data displayed in the EVF? If not, do you set your aperture on the M lens and then manually change the settings to match that on the SL body or....?

 

2) Does the EXIF metadata in the file of a shot taken on the SL with an M lens via the adapter show the correct lens & F stop information? 

 

I tried figuring this out at B&H when I checked out the SL but the salesman was clueless - the camera was in A mode and although the 50 1.4 M Lux I had mounted was wide open, the SL was flickering between 1.4 and 1.7 depending on where I aimed it. I assumed that in manual mode it would reflect what was actually set on the lens itself but would really appreciate an answer on how it works from someone actually using an SL with M lenses.

 

Thank you!

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The operation of the aperture in an M lens is strictly mechanical. You turn the ring and the aperture opens and closes. The setting is not transmitted to the camera, not even to the M body. There is no way for the lens to transmit anything at all. Digital M cameras (up to the M (Typ 240)) guess at the aperture set in the lens by comparing the brightness measured by a tiny "eye" above the lens with the amount of light reaching the sensor. 

 

I don't know how the SL does it, but by your description I would presume that the SL does it in the same way. I don't know if the SL writes the guessed aperture value into the EXIF data; all digital Ms with the exception of the M10 do it.

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it writes the badly guessed aperture value into the EXIF

 

in this case f/2.0 was written into EXIF as f/4.8

 

shows the correct lens/ISO/shutter speed etc

 

i personally don't care what f/X.X it writes, though it is amusing at times

 

 

The operation of the aperture in an M lens is strictly mechanical. You turn the ring and the aperture opens and closes. The setting is not transmitted to the camera, not even to the M body. There is no way for the lens to transmit anything at all. Digital M cameras (up to the M (Typ 240)) guess at the aperture set in the lens by comparing the brightness measured by a tiny "eye" above the lens with the amount of light reaching the sensor. 

 

I don't know how the SL does it, but by your description I would presume that the SL does it in the same way. I don't know if the SL writes the guessed aperture value into the EXIF data; all digital Ms with the exception of the M10 do it.

Edited by frame-it

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The operation of the aperture in an M lens is strictly mechanical. You turn the ring and the aperture opens and closes. The setting is not transmitted to the camera, not even to the M body. There is no way for the lens to transmit anything at all. Digital M cameras (up to the M (Typ 240)) guess at the aperture set in the lens by comparing the brightness measured by a tiny "eye" above the lens with the amount of light reaching the sensor. 

 

I don't know how the SL does it, but by your description I would presume that the SL does it in the same way. I don't know if the SL writes the guessed aperture value into the EXIF data; all digital Ms with the exception of the M10 do it.

Thank you, very helpful! Curious now what the M10 does?

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it writes the badly guessed aperture value into the EXIF

 

in this case f/2.0 was written into EXIF as f/4.8

 

shows the correct lens/ISO/shutter speed etc

 

i personally don't care what f/X.X it writes, though it is amusing at times

That's hilarious! I only care about what f-stop it is because it's helpful for my ongoing education & improvement as a photographer.

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I think the f stops allocated by the SL to EXIF should be considered 'quite open' and 'quite closed', though I have had a few aberrations on it - a Summicron 50 reported as f8 when it was f2. Whether the subject matter is light or dark seems to influence it.

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Thank you, very helpful! Curious now what the M10 does?

 

The M10 does not show the aperture of M lenses.

The reason is simply that too many users asked too many questions and were making a lot of fuss about the "missing perfection" of the displayed values (the aperture guesses).

For many years the M cameras showed approximations (as explained above a real value is simply not possible, because the M lenses are not constructed for transmitting data). So did the SL when it came out.

A few months ago the M10 came out and some designer found it better to hide the guesses for the aperture. And since there was an update for the SL at the end of May there the same design principle has been used as well. (With the small difference that in the EXIF the data is still existing).

 

In short this is an example where the loud reactions of (not too clever) users had an influence on the offered functionality. I still think that a guess is better than no data at all and I regret the current situation.

It is important to know that the guess has no influence on the results. As the camera computes the correct value without taking the guess into account.

So this guess was only invented for the good of users. And the unwise behaviour of other users has now led to the disappearance of this guess.

 

What a sad story.

Edited by steppenw0lf

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When are the guesses correct ?  When the light falling through the lens and the light falling onto the sensor (sitting on the body surface) is identical.

So I know that cases like macro show bigger differences, just as cases of tele usage.  Both cases are not very typical for many occasions (with M lenses).

Is this a problem ? Not for me.    So I would like to get the aperture guess back.

 

When are the differences the biggest (and the guess worthless)? When you hold the camera so clumsily that one of your fingers sits on the sensor. Again is this a problem ?  Not for a clever user.    So give us the aperture guess back.

 

 

The other sad point is that now all "foreign" lenses are treated in the same way as M lenses. Also R lenses or lenses from other sources (Contax, Nikon, etc.). So we suddenly lost also the general ability of an aperture guess for all possible adapted lenses - how stupid.

With a R lens on a R body I could of course see the real aperture (the lens was constructed to give this data to the body). Just as with any other SLR lens. But now the missing functionality of the M lenses has been found as a reason to cripple also the usage of all other lenses.  

As said, what a sad story.

So stop crippling all other adapted lenses by this ridiculous/unfounded design decision. Give us the aperture guess back.

Edited by steppenw0lf

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I hate the estimated and usually incorrect aperture readout. I'm so glad it's gone. It implies that my lovely, beautifully engineered, precision Leica is a sloppily conceived machine. No data is much better than bad data.

 

Edited by ramarren

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Well, I'll speak up on behalf of sloppy data.  It's better than no data at all.  I do know how to make allowances.  And I sometimes use tricks like covering up the blue dot with a finger to force the full aperture corrections into use.

 

scott

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LOL! I was writing tongue in cheek, of course. Honestly, once I take the photos, I never look at the EXIF data other than to post the capture specifics as annotation to photo forums.

 

The discussion of its "importance" reminds me of the interaction I had over at the optician the last time I had glasses made: 

 

...

ME: "Hey, what's that gizmo there?"

SP: "When you're ordering your glasses, we fit it onto the glasses frame and take a couple of photos of it. An app analyzes it and gives us all the measurements required to within a half a millimeter so the glasses fit you perfectly. It's really cool!" 

ME: "That's amazing. What happens when a set of frames come in and the fit is slightly off? I'm sure it happens."

SP: "Oh yeah, it does. We take out the pliers and bend the frame until it fits." ...

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How often does it really matter to know the aperture that was used?  If its that important, use a pen and notepad...

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Leica put forth the effort to build in the light sensor and the ability to guess the aperture. They didn't build in a clip for pen and notepad, for good reason.

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When are the guesses correct ?  When the light falling through the lens and the light falling onto the sensor (sitting on the body surface) is identical.

So I know that cases like macro show bigger differences, just as cases of tele usage.  Both cases are not very typical for many occasions (with M lenses).

Is this a problem ? Not for me.    So I would like to get the aperture guess back.

 

When are the differences the biggest (and the guess worthless)? When you hold the camera so clumsily that one of your fingers sits on the sensor. Again is this a problem ?  Not for a clever user.    So give us the aperture guess back.

 

 

The other sad point is that now all "foreign" lenses are treated in the same way as M lenses. Also R lenses or lenses from other sources (Contax, Nikon, etc.). So we suddenly lost also the general ability of an aperture guess for all possible adapted lenses - how stupid.

With a R lens on a R body I could of course see the real aperture (the lens was constructed to give this data to the body). Just as with any other SLR lens. But now the missing functionality of the M lenses has been found as a reason to cripple also the usage of all other lenses.  

As said, what a sad story.

So stop crippling all other adapted lenses by this ridiculous/unfounded design decision. Give us the aperture guess back.

 

"So I would like to get the aperture guess back."

 

Agreed!

 

"So stop crippling all other adapted lenses by this ridiculous/unfounded design decision. Give us the aperture guess back."

 

 Also agreed.  Better yet, give us the ACTUAL aperture for R lenses, since the lens already tells the body!  I'll even buy an updated R Adapter L !

... And, Leica, grab the occasion to "upgrade" its price to $850.00.  (Yeah, I know, nothing is free in Leicaland)

 

Guy

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I prefer it gone. Maybe it could be toggled (buried somewhere deep in the settings - a place you go once).

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For the first 18 months nobody had a real complaint about the aperture guess. It was easy to ignore the value as so many others on display.

Then suddenly a design change was made. (because of M users ?)

 

It's a bit like driving with a stick. Some like it, some (less frequent drivers) hate it. But nobody is so cheeky and says "from now on all cars have to have automatic gear".  Instead of finally fiixing the endless LENR issue, Leica has opened another unnecessary "construction site".

 

It is like introducing a black and white SL: By simply turning off all colors in a new firmware release - not by introducing a new model and giving users a choice.

 

And I agree, it is just a minor issue. So why not simply turn it back to normal and it's finished. How stupid to insist on taking away functionality that was there for 18 months. (What a poor style).

Edited by steppenw0lf

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How do you know that for 18 months no one had a real complaint about the aperture guess?

 

I've seen a number of questions here and elsewhere about it, including many who think an M camera actually reads the aperture while the SL has it constantly jumping around.

 

Leica probably heard a lot about this so they changed it. I would prefer a choice but I also don't assume no one was complaining.

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I can see logic in the 'guess' not being present when composing a photo ..... as it is inaccurate and dependent on a number of variables it could lead you to getting a much greater or shallower DOF than you expected..... or using a higher ISO than you require. As a lazy excuse for checking the setting on the lens it is more trouble than it's worth.

 

The estimated F stop in the EXIF and replay screen on the camera is less of an issue ...... some record of the rough setting used is handy for future reference. 

 

For most users this is a marginal functional change with little consequence. 

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