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what is displayed in the viewfinder with M10 and M10-P


menos I M6
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Could someone please describe the sequence of information displayed in the M10 and M10-P viewfinder depending of exposure program and drive mode?

 

Some years ago I have used mostly Leica M digital cameras up to the Leica MM which I loved.

My MM was diagnosed with sensor corrosion upon a regular inspection of the camera and my only option as of travel plans was to replace my beloved MM with a M246.

 

I hate the M246 and the M240 based platform in general for diverse reasons and never really was able to get used to the M246.

I still have that M246 but essentially, have shot very few pictures with it and have more or less stopped using my Leica cameras for photography by large and have used film based Nikon rangefinder gear instead.

 

With the new M10-P introduced my curiosity is peaked as I like the changes Leica has done to the user interface (better finder, ISO dial, slimmer body, less buttons, …).

I was also impressed by the sensors low light performance.

 

One of my LARGEST issues with the M246 is the way the viewfinder display acts upon metering and preparing to take a photograph.

When using "A" mode the viewfinder display is completely highjacked by displaying the exposure compensation value if one is set for some time only and delays the display of the metered shutter speed just long enough to completely hold me up and break the moment of taking the photograph.

I am used to half press the shutter to wake up the meter, raise the camera finder to my eye, point the camera to an area I want to take a meter reading, lock the exposure or manually set the exposure and take the shot.

The shutter speed should ALWAYS be clearly visible in the viewfinder with internal metered cameras - if it is not I simply use a handheld meter instead and just ignore that the camera has an internal meter.

 

On all my cameras with internal meters I always use the exposure compensation to compensate for:

- planned development (film + digital)

- general light conditions (bright daylight or low light shots with development needs in mind)

The ISO dial on the M7 is the perfect example how the perfect exposure compensation user interface should be done on a camera.

I NEVER use exposure compensation from shot to shot to "brighten or darken the image" - that I do by locking the shutter speed at the right value or simply dialing in a manual shutter speed.

 

Therefore this M246 behavior goes so much against my grain (especially as you just cannot disable it).

 

If the M10 and M10-P behave the same behavior I simply cannot buy either camera and use it - it is that much of a hurdle to me.

 

So how does the M10 generation of cameras deal with the viewfinder display? Is the shutter speed visible at all times or is it ever interrupted?

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I jumped from M9 to M10 so don’t know how the timing was on the 240 series, but if you set an exposure compensation (say -.7) as you half press the display shows the comp value for about a second before again showing shutter speed. I don’t care for that either. So I normally don’t set compensation, but shift the view to include a different brightness range to get the speed I want, half press to lock it, and recompose. Same way I would use a Leica R in spot meter mode.

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13 minutes ago, menos I M6 said:

When using "A" mode the viewfinder display is completely highjacked by displaying the exposure compensation value if one is set for some time only and delays the display of the metered shutter speed just long enough to completely hold me up and break the moment of taking the photograph.

The M10 does this too...it's really annoying.

I'd also be wary about assuming that the M10 has better low light performance than the M246. The stated ISOs on each camera seem to be different. The M10 is delightful in other ways though...after a frustrating beginning, I now love mine.

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37 minutes ago, Jono said:

The M10 does this too...it's really annoying.

I'd also be wary about assuming that the M10 has better low light performance than the M246. The stated ISOs on each camera seem to be different. The M10 is delightful in other ways though...after a frustrating beginning, I now love mine.

Jono, I agree about the ISO.  After comparing the M246 and SL high ISO performance, the M10 is good, but not as good as the M246 or SL.  Having said that, I love the size and the depth in the shadows from ISO 200 to about 1600.

I also agree about the difficulty in using the 'A' mode in the display.  I either use manual, so I know what shutter speed I'm using, or just use 'A' and decide I don't care (because if I worry about the display and shutter speed, I miss the shot).

For me, the M10 is about the size and external ISO controls.  I love the M246, and I love and still shoot the MD with no LCD and external ISO, which also has a very quiet shutter.  However, I still shoot and M6 and two MP's, so the M10 is just more natural because of the size.  In fact, I was disappointed that it sounds like an M10 Monochrom is further off, that would my favorite Leica yet. 

Menos, hope this helps you decide... 

Edited by Outdoorimages
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Thank you guys, this indeed is a real issue 😞

I do not understand at all how a photographer centric, very focussed camera can have such a user interface oversight - this really seems to be something so easy to fix / disable in a firmware update.

 

When I use exposure compensation it is so simply for me:

 

1) I always KNOW what EV I have set on a given camera while out and shooting

2) should I ever forget or am not sure it is simple enough to just look at the camera

 

Why does it need to highjack the one single most important information the viewfinder display should show and nags before every single shot about the EV value I know already?

 

I am so lucky - yesterday I almost bought an M10-P on a whim in a shop only to be stopped in the last second as no black body was available (this was literally the last question the shop owner asked before heading for the warehouse while already preparing the transaction) - they luckily only had silver chrome bodies on stock.

I just didn't think to check on the viewfinder EV issue during handling the demo twice (in both cases I tried the demo with manual shutter speeds only as I was checking on a handheld meter)!

 

I will have to think long and very, very hard if I am willing to try to re-learn my ways of metering and exposing one more time - with the M246 that failed miserably.

The M10 generation though granted is much more appealing as many of the issues I have with the M240 gen of cameras have been addressed.

I will be shooting my Nikon RFs for some more and see if the longing for using those lovely Leica lenses again can be suppressed some more.

Seeing that Leica never addressed this EV viewfinder issue with the M240 and it being still present in the M10 generation of cameras doesn't give me any hope that it will ever be addressed.

Thanks for the help guys.

 

Regarding ISO performance - I have no illusions regarding M246 vs M10 sensor, but then I was never impressed by the M246 sensor in particular. Sure you can crank the ISO up and somehow get usable shots at high ISO values but in true image quality in terms of tonality and acuity that translates to A3 prints NOTHING could beat the Leica MM CCD sensor or a digital medium format sensor for that matter. This is one of the reasons I never got warm with that M246.

 

I am used to shoot film only at ISO800 or maybe 1600 in a pinch in low light, so the M10 ISO performance would be plenty.

 

The few M10 raw files I made in a shop a few days ago simply have impressed me in terms of usability of color up to ISO3200 with little reservation (as long as contrast of the scene is controlled). This is something I was simply not used to from my M9 and S2.

As the M246 B&W look is nothing to write home about anyway I would be willing to replace that sensor with a further slight hit in detail and tonality for the convenience of a much better user interface of a M10 gen body but I am not really looking forward, paying 6K+ EUR again for a failed experiment in learning that I will simply not be able to adapt to a flawed finder as with the M246 😞

 

Can we not have just something as simple as a digital Nikon SP or even a digital Leica M7 without all the fuss and nonsensical features ? I have other cameras if I need the latest gadgets.

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On the viewfinder display: I tried the M240, and the exp-comp display delay was too long and part of the reason I did not get one. The M10 does show the EC briefly, but "feels" much less like an interruption, and I can shoot right through it. If Leica choses to make the display of EC user-optional via a firmware change, I won't complain. But at this point I have gotten so used to it (and also want to vary it enough, with the easy thumb dial) that I would probably keep the display set "as is" anyway.

The M10 - BTW - does "lock exposure" with a half-press of the shutter button. Additionally, the half-press cancels the EC display and goes right to the shutter speed.

__________

On ISO - Bottom line is that Bayer color filters lose one about 2/3rds of the light (red filters blocking both green and blue light, and so on.). Whatever the M10's true ISO(s), I doubt it can match the M246 CMOS Monochrom ISO(s.) Basis physics. Bayer color cameras have a built-in light loss equivalent to any color-filter "filter factor."

OTOH, the M240(s) I tried started to show banding in the shadow noise as low as ISO 2500 (under yellow indoor light), while the M10 shows no banding until ISO 12500. So whether the M10's "ISO 12500" is 12500 - or 6400 (per DxO) or 5000 or 8000 - it still gives at least a practical 1-stop advantage over the M240. But will lose out to an unfiltered M246.

Or put another way - ISO for ISO, the M10 just about equals the noise/ISOs/banding of the CCD MM. Except with the option to shoot in color. ;)

There is much unresolved debate about where the M10 ISO really falls. Given that I use a permanent -0.7 EC to avoid blown highlights (just as I did with the M9), if I set ISO 6400, and then underexpose 0.7 stops, that means I'm getting the same shutter speed and aperture as setting the camera to ISO 10000 with no EC. Except slightly "underprocessed" by the camera, and with detail-rich highlights.

------------------------------

I do wonder, sometimes, whether Cartier-Bresson or Robert Frank would have ever had careers if they had wasted their time agonizing over camera minutiae. Somehow, I suspect they just bought what Leica was selling and learned to use it, warts and all.

The M10 has already won me two national awards (3rd place magazine cover, HM Sport Story, Best of Photojournalism 2018) for my "You go, GRRRL!" cover story (Issue 2 2017): http://www.coloradoseen.com/2017/

https://nppa.org/news/best-photojournalism-picture-editing-2018

"Nothing succeeds like success."

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24 minutes ago, menos I M6 said:

Regarding ISO performance - I have no illusions regarding M246 vs M10 sensor, but then I was never impressed by the M246 sensor in particular. Sure you can crank the ISO up and somehow get usable shots at high ISO values but in true image quality in terms of tonality and acuity that translates to A3 prints NOTHING could beat the Leica MM CCD sensor or a digital medium format sensor for that matter. This is one of the reasons I never got warm with that M246.

Menos, I had the MM CCD and the M246, both for about 2 years each.  Having spent 30 years shooting 35mm black and white film, I can tell you that a) the ISO performance of the M246 was several stops ahead of the MM.  I've shot both bodies at max ISO.  Also, until recently, my epson would print a max of A3, so I regularly print 13x19 inch prints.  The difference in megapixels between the two cameras was like going from the ASP-C sized sensor of the M8 to the full sized sensor in the M9.  A3 prints have much better resolution from the M246.  In terms of tones, I could show you two images that you could probably not select the original body from.  The tonal range, IMHO, of the M246 is better than the MM and is much more pliable in the shadows than the MM was, mostly because of the better ISO.

If your preference is to shoot using an automatic mode for setting a shutter speed, I won't argue.  There are probably easier bodies to use.  However, the image quality and the light transmission of the Leica lenses are very hard to beat.  If you are considering an M still, and it appears you have easy access to a Leica store, I suggest asking if you can attend a bootcamp to use the body, before you buy.  Leaning to use the camera from those that do every day make a big difference.  Even as long as I've been shooting, I just spent 10 days in Iceland with the Leica Store Miami and I learned a ridiculous amount about my S007.

Just some thoughts!  (as an aside, I still enjoy shooting a Nikon F2 with some old AIS glass, but the images aren't as good as my Leica)

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23 minutes ago, adan said:

I do wonder, sometimes, whether Cartier-Bresson or Robert Frank would have ever had careers if they had wasted their time agonizing over camera minutiae. Somehow, I suspect they just bought what Leica was selling and learned to use it, warts and all.

The M10 has already won me two national awards (3rd place magazine cover, HM Sport Story, Best of Photojournalism 2018) for my "You go, GRRRL!" cover story (Issue 2 2017): http://www.coloradoseen.com/2017/

https://nppa.org/news/best-photojournalism-picture-editing-2018

"Nothing succeeds like success."

 

Congratulations, Adan....and I was delighted to see that some of the excellent 'Colorado Seen' portraits were made with a 1956 Super-Isolette !

 

:)

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33 minutes ago, adan said:

On the viewfinder display: I tried the M240, and the exp-comp display delay was too long and part of the reason I did not get one. The M10 does show the EC briefly, but "feels" much less like an interruption, and I can shoot right through it. If Leica choses to make the display of EC user-optional via a firmware change, I won't complain. But at this point I have gotten so used to it (and also want to vary it enough, with the easy thumb dial) that I would probably keep the display set "as is" anyway.

The M10 - BTW - does "lock exposure" with a half-press of the shutter button. Additionally, the half-press cancels the EC display and goes right to the shutter speed.

__________

On ISO - Bottom line is that Bayer color filters lose one about 2/3rds of the light (red filters blocking both green and blue light, and so on.). Whatever the M10's true ISO(s), I doubt it can match the M246 CMOS Monochrom ISO(s.) Basis physics. Bayer color cameras have a built-in light loss equivalent to any color-filter "filter factor."

OTOH, the M240(s) I tried started to show banding in the shadow noise as low as ISO 2500 (under yellow indoor light), while the M10 shows no banding until ISO 12500. So whether the M10's "ISO 12500" is 12500 - or 6400 (per DxO) or 5000 or 8000 - it still gives at least a practical 1-stop advantage over the M240. But will lose out to an unfiltered M246.

Or put another way - ISO for ISO, the M10 just about equals the noise/ISOs/banding of the CCD MM. Except with the option to shoot in color. ;)

There is much unresolved debate about where the M10 ISO really falls. Given that I use a permanent -0.7 EC to avoid blown highlights (just as I did with the M9), if I set ISO 6400, and then underexpose 0.7 stops, that means I'm getting the same shutter speed and aperture as setting the camera to ISO 10000 with no EC. Except slightly "underprocessed" by the camera, and with detail-rich highlights.

------------------------------

I do wonder, sometimes, whether Cartier-Bresson or Robert Frank would have ever had careers if they had wasted their time agonizing over camera minutiae. Somehow, I suspect they just bought what Leica was selling and learned to use it, warts and all.

The M10 has already won me two national awards (3rd place magazine cover, HM Sport Story, Best of Photojournalism 2018) for my "You go, GRRRL!" cover story (Issue 2 2017): http://www.coloradoseen.com/2017/

https://nppa.org/news/best-photojournalism-picture-editing-2018

"Nothing succeeds like success."

Thanks a lot for that input Adan.

So to confirm the M10 gen cameras although showing the EV value at first will IMMEDIATELY show the shutter speed value the moment you half press the shutter release button?

On the M246 this unfortunately not possible - the EV value will show and STAY regardless for a predefined fixed time and cannot be overridden.

If that is the case with the M10, it is indeed a non-issue.

 

Congrats on the accolades Adan, it's always nice to see someone making a living with this and being successful.

I have no such aspirations. Photography is just a hobby to me.

 

To some of the other commenters - I have been using Leica M bodies with a range of lenses for some time. I am familiar with the system.

To suggest GAS or angst is pretty laughable I must say.

Here is a guy who hasn't used his Leica digitals for some time, hasn't bought a new Leica digital since his Leica MM (a daily user for some years in combination with a M9) and a subsequent forced swap (at cost) to a M246 which left him with a sour taste regarding digital Leica M cameras.

That guy has a genuine question about a newer Leica digital product and gets the "you wonder too much about gear questionnaire".

 

Thanks to the genuine answers guys. This is much appreciated.

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1 hour ago, david strachan said:

Dirk

I hope you can get over your angst.  You sound quite confused...perhaps too much gas, and not trying to work with what you have.

 

...

what an obnoxious comment

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Actually, I just double-checked, and my memory was wrong - but this may even be better, although a bit complex. ;)

To summarize, in M10 "A" mode:

- Shutter button not pressed: you see only the metered shutter speed - no interruption by EC, even on startup.

- Shutter button pressed halfway with EC set to 0: you see only the metered and now-locked-in shutter speed.

- Shutter button pressed halfway with some EC set other than 0: EC value appears for a scant second, and then reverts to now-locked-in shutter speed.

- Let up on shutter button, and EC goes away instantly and you see unlocked (metered) shutter speed.

- EC thumbwheel moved - EC readout becomes/remains visible until thumbwheel movement stops, and then reverts to shutter speed after a scant second.

- At all times, if EC is set to other than 0, you do see a tiny flashing red dot as a reminder that you're using EC, as in 1/2.000 sec.

- At all times other than setting EC, EC display/interruption is limited to a scant second.

In M10 manual mode (shutter speed set via shutter dial) the behavior is absolutely identical, except that the numerical shutter speed is replaced by the meter indicators >•<.

BTW - I may be mistaken, but don't the M240/246/262 etc. also toss ISO into the viewfinder light-show at some point? I'm pretty sure that was what really bugged me - not knowing if 1000 meant the ISO or the shutter speed, until things settled down.

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4 hours ago, menos I M6 said:

Thank you guys, this indeed is a real issue 😞

 

Before you mentioned the exposure compensation 'issue' I have to say it had barely registered in my memory that the M10 did it. I mean I see it, but it's such a brief flash as a reminder (not at all a useless feature) that if anybody had asked me what I see in the viewfinder I'd have said 'just the shutter speed'.  Perhaps try to ignore it and look for the information in the viewfinder that you want, a bit like ignoring the extra frame lines in the viewfinder? Maybe it's just me, the first thing I do is compose the picture, then look at the information, by which time the exposure compensation 'flash' has come and gone what feels like ages ago.

Edited by 250swb
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47 minutes ago, 250swb said:

Before you mentioned the exposure compensation 'issue' I have to say it had barely registered in my memory that the M10 did it. I mean I see it, but it's such a brief flash as a reminder (not at all a useless feature) that if anybody had asked me what I see in the viewfinder I'd have said 'just the shutter speed'.  Perhaps try to ignore it and look for the information in the viewfinder that you want, a bit like ignoring the extra frame lines in the viewfinder? Maybe it's just me, the first thing I do is compose the picture, then look at the information, by which time the exposure compensation 'flash' has come and gone what feels like ages ago.

+1

And, somehow, my brain seems to register the exposure compensation in that brief moment, even if I am bent on composing, all the more so, if I have accidentally left it on some ‚weird‘ setting from a previous shot.

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2 hours ago, 250swb said:

Before you mentioned the exposure compensation 'issue' I have to say it had barely registered in my memory that the M10 did it. I mean I see it, but it's such a brief flash as a reminder (not at all a useless feature) that if anybody had asked me what I see in the viewfinder I'd have said 'just the shutter speed'.  Perhaps try to ignore it and look for the information in the viewfinder that you want, a bit like ignoring the extra frame lines in the viewfinder? Maybe it's just me, the first thing I do is compose the picture, then look at the information, by which time the exposure compensation 'flash' has come and gone what feels like ages ago.

Where it becomes an ‘issue’ (for me), is when I need to take a street or reportage photo quickly, and I’ve moved the camera around to meter, pressed the shutter half way to lock in exposure, and I then want to see that locked in shutter speed as I take the photo but instead get the exposure compensation for a second or so. I’d prefer it the other way around.

It’s not something I lose any sleep over though :)

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So that means you have an exposure comp set - and are also using "meter and recompose?" Why not just use one or the other?

I guess I spent 6+ years with the M9, and from day 1 had it set permanently for "soft release" for fastest shutter response (fired with a half-press), so that ruled out locking the exposure and "meter and recompose" in any case. I just "pointed and shot," fast as could be. Counted on -0.7 EC to prevent any blown highlights.

And out of habit, use the M10 the same way. By the time the EC flashes up, I'm already firing the shutter.

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Mmmn - yes and no.

With film, I never used autoexposure of any kind, for the first 15 years or so. Didn't exist in the cameras I used (Used Leica IIIc, Nikon SP, Canon P - "new" Canon FX, Nikon F/F2, Canon F-1 original) except via clumsy add-on devices for the F2/F-1. I didn't even use ttl metering much until the F-1, just an external meter. Usually incident, so it was measuring the light, and couldn't be fooled by the subject tones. Or the FX's external-cell reflected meter, which had to be read off a scale on the top plate, not through the finder. Not unlike the old Leitz hot-shoe add-on meters, except more built-in - meter first, look through finder and take picture second.

Film box said "400" - I set the meter to 400 and waved it around, and if it read "1/250 at f/8 " that's what I set on the camera. If I wanted to push the film 2 stops in dim light, I set the meter to 1600 and waved it around, and if it said "1/60 at f/1.4" that's what I set on the camera. And unless the light changed obviously, might shoot a whole roll with one exposure reading.

When I did use ttl manual metering (Pentax Spotmatic, Canon F-1, Canon AT-1, Nikon FM2) I just pointed, adjusted aperture or shutter speed to center the needle, and shot. Once I got a Nikon F3, FA or FE2 with autoexposure, I pointed and shot. Still never used Exp. comp., since film (especially B&W neg) doesn't "blow highlights" the same way as digital.

On Leica Ms, I started on 2001 with an M4-2, later M4-P and M4 classic. Used "Sunny 16" (1/250th @ f/6.3 with Velvia in sunlight - easy-peasy) or a hand-held reflected meter with a wide enough view (~full-frame 50mm field of view) to work for averaging. When I moved up to an M6 as my "last 35mm film camera" I used it just like the FM2 - point, adjust shutter/aperture to center the indicators, shoot. Theoretically, not a good idea, since the metering patterns are different. But I never lost any shots - film could handle a little under/over, especially over.

Wasn't until the M8 that I started getting pickier, using "A" mode more often - digital was a different animal, the M digital metering pattern was a different animal. So I just dialed in -0.7 exp. comp, and pointed and shot, and if needed, pulled up the shadows in processing. Same for M9 (although the dark LCD fooled me for the first month or so - didn't use the required -0.7 EC setting, blew some skies). M10 works about the same, except with a bit more available for "rescue" in the shadows.

When I do shoot film today (6x6) it is "2001 (or 1971) all over again" - Sunny 16 or hand-held incident meter - wave it around, see what it says, set that on the camera.

Edited by adan
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5 hours ago, adan said:

So that means you have an exposure comp set - and are also using "meter and recompose?" Why not just use one or the other?

I guess I spent 6+ years with the M9, and from day 1 had it set permanently for "soft release" for fastest shutter response (fired with a half-press), so that ruled out locking the exposure and "meter and recompose" in any case. I just "pointed and shot," fast as could be. Counted on -0.7 EC to prevent any blown highlights.

And out of habit, use the M10 the same way. By the time the EC flashes up, I'm already firing the shutter.

good question

I usually have -0.3 or -0.7 EC dialed in depending on the light, and have the camera set up so that EC is changed via thumbwheel +front button. I usually only change it if there's a major change in ambient contrast, and for me it seems quicker to keep negative EV permanently dialled in rather than adjust it on/off when I'm metering & recomposing (which is not that often unless the light is problematic and my subject is relatively static).

Your question made me think though. I'm still on a learning curve with using the M10...especially with regard to the M10's high ISO & metering, and also trying to match my M10 photos with the 'look' of earlier output from M9, MM1, M246, M240 and Q. 

 

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Andy is right, if you have to take a photo quickly there are faster ways to do it. With street photography often you will want to ensure a fast shutter speed, so an alternative method that uses the M10's excellent ISO abilities would be to set the shutter speed manually and use ISO on Auto to expose the shot, this way you wouldn't need to meter and recompose which wastes time.

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