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Hi, I'm very new in photography. I'm now using Sony A7 and is seriously thinking of getting a Leica mp240. I'm debating if I'm 'too green' in photography to use a Leica camera. As you know, it's a lot of money to invest in Leica camera. I'm afraid i won't be able to manage the camera because I haven't reached the required skill level.

Anyone here learn the skills of photography from beginner by using a Leica camera? I'm imagining i spend a lot of money to buy an expensive camera (& lens) and turn out shooting everything out of focus....

Need your advice and share you experience please. Thanks!

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Hello! I think a Leica M is a wonderful camera to start your learning curve in photography, as it offers a minimum in automation, it will teach you the basics of the craft, instead of taking over your brain.

Of course your results will, in the beginning, be less good than they would have been with an all-singin' all-dancin' automatic camera, but if you persist a little bit, you will gain control of the process and you will find out that the photograph is taken by the photographer, not the machine.

 

This forum is a good place to learn. There are plenty of helpful folks, every single member realizes that he/she too once started out as a beginner and we will answer your questions, no matter how basic.

 

There is a large M camera FAQ at the top of the forums, which will answer quite a few questions right away, like " How to Focus an M". Or: "How to hold an M" and much more. Just disregard the more esoteric posts.

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It’s probably the easiest camera to use. With a 28mm lens it can be used as a point and shoot. Of course you will forget settings and focus from time to time but that’s how you learn. Be methodical. Before setting out check battery, format SD card, reset all settings to a known point (use a user profile), set aperture fully open, shutter to your preference or A, focus at infinity and you are ready to go.

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Welcome to the Forum.  I agree with jaapv. Remember 'back in the day' there was no autofocus  and multi point metering systems. Even sophisticated for there time cameras like the Canon A1 had split-image manual focusing and only centre wieghted metering, and we did fine with that, so you should have no problems at all. You just have to be a bit more involved in the process. Make the leap and enjoy.

Edited by pedaes
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Hi, I'm very new in photography. I'm now using Sony A7 and is seriously thinking of getting a Leica mp240.

 

Rangefinder photography is not for everyone. Why jump straight to a current camera? Try an M9 perhaps and buy a decent lens for it. If you find that you don't enjoy using it then you will lose a lot less selling it than selling a later model. And if you like it then you will have a good lens and can upgrade the body easily enough again at a low loss. Leica M series cameras are easy to learn because they have few controls. They are also unforgiving. If you get something wrong it will show. So they are ideal to learn on if a little costly.

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Digital M Leica camera might be most suitable to learn about exposure.  Exposure is combination of ISO, shutter speed and aperture. With shutter dial and aperture controlled physically on Leica it is connecting with exposure most, IMO. And with manual focus it will teach about zone focusing and DoF. Big screen on M240 will helps to review your mistakes. 

And it also works with auto ISO and auto shutter speed. You'll have to select aperture and focus.

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And don't make the mistake of splurging on lenses. Get a "modest" 35 mm like the Summarit 50, Zeiss Biogon C or Summicron 35 asph, add a (used) 90 mm lens like the Elmarit-M 90 or Zeiss Tele-Tessar 85 (you won't be using it that much) and you are set up for years, in fact it could serve you the rest of your life.

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Personally, I'm glad I learned on a Canon camera system where I could let the camera do things for me that I didn't get yet (like autofocus, for example). I'm sure you can learn on a Leica. And I agree with some that doing so will probably help you learn about exposure more quickly. But this is also doable on your current A7 system.

 

The rangefinder is so very different than looking through the viewfinder of any other camera system today. If you're going to commit to Leica early, I'd recommend that you pop in to a Leica store and at least try the rangefinder out before you buy.

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Hi, I'm very new in photography. I'm now using Sony A7 and is seriously thinking of getting a Leica mp240. I'm debating if I'm 'too green' in photography to use a Leica camera. As you know, it's a lot of money to invest in Leica camera. I'm afraid i won't be able to manage the camera because I haven't reached the required skill level.

Anyone here learn the skills of photography from beginner by using a Leica camera? I'm imagining i spend a lot of money to buy an expensive camera (& lens) and turn out shooting everything out of focus....

Need your advice and share you experience please. Thanks!

 

You most definitely won't shoot everything out of focus! BUT the Leica M is a strange beast amongst cameras

. I strongly suggest renting one for a week from an outfit like LensRentals or popping into a Leica store for a TestDrive. 
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Personally, I'm glad I learned on a Canon camera system where I could let the camera do things for me that I didn't get yet (like autofocus, for example). I'm sure you can learn on a Leica. And I agree with some that doing so will probably help you learn about exposure more quickly. But this is also doable on your current A7 system.

 

The rangefinder is so very different than looking through the viewfinder of any other camera system today. If you're going to commit to Leica early, I'd recommend that you pop in to a Leica store and at least try the rangefinder out before you buy.

As the rangefinder has a bit of a learning curve, a short spell in a store will not be very helpful for finding out whether one likes it or not.

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Learning how to use a Leica is as difficult as learning how to enjoy real ale. One half pint and you never want anything else. 

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Of course your results will, in the beginning, be less good than they would have been with an all-singin' all-dancin' automatic camera...

 

 

I slightly disagree with that statement.  I'd replace "less good" with "equally bad"  

  I say that because manual focus is not much harder to learn than figuring out eleventy seven autofocus modes and how they work and why you may need to change the mode as the scene changes.  Hmmm, manual focus may be easier.

 

Exposure controls are about a wash -- but then my default shooting mode is Aperture priority on all my cameras.

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Thanks for all the useful replies!

Yes, I'll try the Sony A7 in manual mode. Now, I mostly use it in aperture priority mode, i set the ISO and WB, the camera autofocuses. By manual mode, does it mean I can set all exposure meters (aperture + shutter + iso) and MANUAL FOCUS as well? (Pardon my stupid question)

 

If I gonna dive into Leica, I'll probably buy used one. Are there anything I need to keep in mind if I buy from eBay?

Totally don't want to buy so expensive thing from eBay , but a new one is way too much investment for me at this stage.

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Hello! I think a Leica M is a wonderful camera to start your learning curve in photography, as it offers a minimum in automation, it will teach you the basics of the craft, instead of taking over your brain.

Of course your results will, in the beginning, be less good than they would have been with an all-singin' all-dancin' automatic camera, but if you persist a little bit, you will gain control of the process and you will find out that the photograph is taken by the photographer, not the machine.

 

This forum is a good place to learn. There are plenty of helpful folks, every single member realizes that he/she too once started out as a beginner and we will answer your questions, no matter how basic.

 

There is a large M camera FAQ at the top of the forums, which will answer quite a few questions right away, like " How to Focus an M". Or: "How to hold an M" and much more. Just disregard the more esoteric posts.

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Hi, I'm very new in photography. I'm now using Sony A7 and is seriously thinking of getting a Leica mp240. I'm debating if I'm 'too green' in photography to use a Leica camera. As you know, it's a lot of money to invest in Leica camera. I'm afraid i won't be able to manage the camera because I haven't reached the required skill level.

Anyone here learn the skills of photography from beginner by using a Leica camera? I'm imagining i spend a lot of money to buy an expensive camera (& lens) and turn out shooting everything out of focus....

Need your advice and share you experience please. Thanks!

 

A camera is a tool. Think more about why you're interested in making photographs and less about the specific features of any particular tool. Ask: why this picture as opposed to another? Don't lose sight of your personal goals. Articulating your goals will aide in the selection of tools ... not the other way around.

 

If I gave you the same materials as van Gogh would you produce "Sunflowers?" And, even if you could, what would that say? Or, if "art" isn't interesting to you, then choose any human endeavor and rephrase the question.

 

Just an observation ... 

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Thanks for all the useful replies!

Yes, I'll try the Sony A7 in manual mode. Now, I mostly use it in aperture priority mode, i set the ISO and WB, the camera autofocuses. By manual mode, does it mean I can set all exposure meters (aperture + shutter + iso) and MANUAL FOCUS as well? (Pardon my stupid question)

 

If I gonna dive into Leica, I'll probably buy used one. Are there anything I need to keep in mind if I buy from eBay?

Totally don't want to buy so expensive thing from eBay , but a new one is way too much investment for me at this stage.

Welcome to the forum. I am not going to repeat the excellent advice above and instead will comment on eBay question. I would not go for eBay for this costly a camera. There are other reliable online used camera equipment sellers. I had good experience with KEH. What I like about them is that their equipment description is quite accurate. You can also call them and speak to them about a particular item you are interested in. (Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with them)

 

Enjoy your journey.

Edited by jmahto
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Hi, I'm very new in photography. I'm now using Sony A7 and is seriously thinking of getting a Leica mp240. I'm debating if I'm 'too green' in photography to use a Leica camera. As you know, it's a lot of money to invest in Leica camera. I'm afraid i won't be able to manage the camera because I haven't reached the required skill level.

Anyone here learn the skills of photography from beginner by using a Leica camera? I'm imagining i spend a lot of money to buy an expensive camera (& lens) and turn out shooting everything out of focus....

Need your advice and share you experience please. Thanks!

I couldn’t agree more with jaapv, the moderator. If you don’t know much about photography but want to get a good grasp of the basics, by a good camera with the lease automation and a Leica M is a good place to start. With the camer’s meter, you set the aperture and shutter speed yourself for your preferrred ISO sensitivity - the three basic variables for the right light exposure. You focus on your subject and take the picture.

 

Everything else is secondary.

 

- Vikas

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