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Jake

Leica CL vs Lumix GX85

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I don't have a CL but like many I always use the raw file for superior quality images. The jpegs on my Q and X Vario are no comparison to the dng files from both. My X2 has better jpegs than I can produce after fiddling with the raw file in Lightroom. Comparing a Leica with a Lumix is a non starter in my book. Bit like a Skoda and a Roll Royce! Don't waste money on a Lumix but that's just my view!

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On 2/26/2019 at 7:50 AM, Jake said:

Yes. Yes I do. As I said, I think it's a superior camera. Yes, the DNG's need to be processed or "printed." And I'm still waiting for the damn 55-135 to become available. Hopefully in my lifetime. . . 

Yes. The interpretation of every image is subjective, but color correcting to match the human eyeball is supposed to be the goal. Granted, not every eyeball is the same, but when I see yellow and green, something is amiss. I understand my education and background make me a bit more sensitive to color, but the difference is drastic. I just never really realized how drastic is was. I have no issues in daylight. JPG is accurate in the CL. Just never really noticed how off it was in producing jpg's for indoor or low light/ incandescent conditions. 

But I acknowledge the advice here to not compare images as jpgs right out of the camera. Good advice. But I don't acknowledge that there is no such thing as pro cameras and not. It's how the industry has evolved. Prosumer, consumer, and professional categories definitely exist. It's called capitalism.     

I'm curious as to how many of the images in the CL image thread have been post processed. Or processed in snapseed or similar. 

No normal stills camera I've ever seen has tried to match the human eyeball, ever. They all try to produce their version of pleasing colour, not accurate colour. The CL doesn't produce accurate colours. Nor does the Panasonic. Nor does any other brand. One or the other may produce colours you find pleasing or more how you "remember" the scene. That's not accuracy. And we haven't even started on how your viewing these images. Do you think your phone or tablet displays colours faithfully? (hint: it doesn't.) Even a fully calibrated wide gamut display doesn't represent colours exactly the same way as we interpret them in our brain. Modern science hasn't yet worked out whether we even see colour similarly to each other and they have no way of testing if you see blue the way I see blue.

There are definitely cameras marketed at professionals. The CL isn't one of them. The SL is. The CL is an expensive consumer camera, missing many of the features expected in a modern camera for a working photographer. Can it be used professionally. Certainly! I have done so with my CL many times. But it's not even close to the "pro" level. We'd need more glass options, dual card slots, weather proofing, tethering and a few others to get into that class of camera. And a camera is a camera. A professional camera is a marketing term. A working photographer doesn't choose from the pool of "professional cameras". An amateur isn't excluded from buying one. Just like a hammer is a hammer. It's the manufacturers who make this stuff up to sell more gear. A D5 is marketed as a camera for professionals. But which ones? A studio photographer doesn't need a D5's ruggedness or build quality. Better off with a D500. Most working photographer see "professional camera" for what it is. Marketing fluff.

Gordon

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So true... The term "professional camera" is meaningless. A professional camera is a camera that is used by a professional. Any professional will use the camera tool that is best suited to the job in hand, be it a 100MP digital back or an 8 MP cell phone.

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Dealing with colour from Leica sensors generally, I tweak the white balance using a lastolite grey reflector. It’s cloth in a frame you can twist smaller so I stuff it in any pocket .Their video shows you how to get the very best out of it , it’s more than just point and read . It delivers for me the exact colours I see on the moment of image capture, and sometimes on a white wall, warm hue at the top say near a skylight, and cold hue at the bottom ,say near a piece of furniture . The eye fabricates it’s own colour inputs , white balance measurements with the lastolote creates huge opportunities to balance out the earth’s natural light , and see things truer than the eye, and make astounding colour results with any Leica sensor .

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Iphone and Ipads emit blue colour . I have special glasses with blue light filtration, and wearing them I get perfect colours off my Apple devices , lessens eye damage, and allows better sleep if IPad gazing before bedtime !

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16 hours ago, jaapv said:

So true... The term "professional camera" is meaningless. A professional camera is a camera that is used by a professional. Any professional will use the camera tool that is best suited to the job in hand, be it a 100MP digital back or an 8 MP cell phone.

Just off the beaten track , the fantastic images off your Africa portfolio show remarkable faithful colours, and it would appear CL white balance auto readings are  near as pin sharp accurate as one could imagine, unless I’m mistaken and you whipped out a Whibal card or some such manual device !!

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Captain obvious says any camera used by professionals makes it a professional camera. Captain obvious also says every one of your devices interprets colors differently. 

Capitalism creates price points aimed at those that require things like "more glass options, dual card slots, weather proofing, tethering. . . " etc. But to suggest that a camera with a non sealed plastic body, inferior glass, a small sensor, and shitty processor can still be considered a professional camera is absurd. I agree that the word "prosumer" was created as a marketing tool. It gives the amateur some of the options that are required for a professional photographer. If every camera is a pro camera, why aren't all professionals using their smart phone? I don't doubt that a point and shoot, in the right hands, can create great images - but there will be sacrifices to be made. Some sacrifices that aren't acceptable in the professional arena. . .

I challenge anyone to shoot a wedding using last year's iphone exclusively, and see how satisfied your client is after they get prints that don't exceed 4 X 6 and are grainy and blunt/ harsh with on board flash. Or use a 10 megapixel camera with a plastic digital zoom lens for a 5K HDTV advertising commercial to be shown on a 65" OLED. Tell me what your client says when their product is blurry and/ or pixelated. 

Also, there is a thing called Kelvin temperature, which is based on science. The human eyeball can detect the difference. Suggesting that color is totally subjective is preposterous. Tell that to Josef Albers (or any other artist, really), or any physics professor. To a certain degree? Sure. Side by side comparisons will show slight differences, and one might be more pleasing to one person than to another. I'm not talking about that. My experience shows the CL produces a very yellow jpg under incandescent conditions. Period. 

But I'll bet that very same CL that if I post pictures of identical subject matter that have a distinct difference in color temp, most everybody here would be able to tell the difference. The only way to define "natural" light is to use the human eyeball (and the sun) as a benchmark, because humans are the end user. Not dogs, or birds, or insects.  If one wants to alter color using artistic license? So be it. But even your local hardware store offers white light bulbs vs yellow indoor bulbs. Theatrical designers use color filters for dramatic effect.  And flash? Why does your camera have the option to change white balance or temperature? Having this conversation with argumentative nit picking photographers that can remember different types of light sources, color correcting filters for different film, under different lighting conditions is baffling to me. 

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2 hours ago, Petercoll said:

Just off the beaten track , the fantastic images off your Africa portfolio show remarkable faithful colours, and it would appear CL white balance auto readings are  near as pin sharp accurate as one could imagine, unless I’m mistaken and you whipped out a Whibal card or some such manual device !!

Thank you very much :)AWB is a decent starting point, but - I have a fully colour-managed workflow, with my own camera profiles, calibrated Eizo  CG monitors, etc.

But I will admit that the CL is as easy a camera to get right as I ever had. i rarely take it off AWB. The GX8 I shoot in tandem is much harder. But in general I manage to match it to the CL.

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, Jake said:

Captain obvious says any camera used by professionals makes it a professional camera. Captain obvious also says every one of your devices interprets colors differently. 

Capitalism creates price points aimed at those that require things like "more glass options, dual card slots, weather proofing, tethering. . . " etc. But to suggest that a camera with a non sealed plastic body, inferior glass, a small sensor, and shitty processor can still be considered a professional camera is absurd. I agree that the word "prosumer" was created as a marketing tool. It gives the amateur some of the options that are required for a professional photographer. If every camera is a pro camera, why aren't all professionals using their smart phone? I don't doubt that a point and shoot, in the right hands, can create great images - but there will be sacrifices to be made. Some sacrifices that aren't acceptable in the professional arena. . .

I challenge anyone to shoot a wedding using last year's iphone exclusively, and see how satisfied your client is after they get prints that don't exceed 4 X 6 and are grainy and blunt/ harsh with on board flash. Or use a 10 megapixel camera with a plastic digital zoom lens for a 5K HDTV advertising commercial to be shown on a 65" OLED. Tell me what your client says when their product is blurry and/ or pixelated. 

Also, there is a thing called Kelvin temperature, which is based on science. The human eyeball can detect the difference. Suggesting that color is totally subjective is preposterous. Tell that to Josef Albers (or any other artist, really), or any physics professor. To a certain degree? Sure. Side by side comparisons will show slight differences, and one might be more pleasing to one person than to another. I'm not talking about that. My experience shows the CL produces a very yellow jpg under incandescent conditions. Period. 

But I'll bet that very same CL that if I post pictures of identical subject matter that have a distinct difference in color temp, most everybody here would be able to tell the difference. The only way to define "natural" light is to use the human eyeball (and the sun) as a benchmark, because humans are the end user. Not dogs, or birds, or insects.  If one wants to alter color using artistic license? So be it. But even your local hardware store offers white light bulbs vs yellow indoor bulbs. Theatrical designers use color filters for dramatic effect.  And flash? Why does your camera have the option to change white balance or temperature? Having this conversation with argumentative nit picking photographers that can remember different types of light sources, color correcting filters for different film, under different lighting conditions is baffling to me. 

I assume I'm Captain Obvious. If so I'm going to need a cape to go with my tights......

I get it. You don't like the CL colours under some lighting conditions. Most people don't. Leica don't make the best jpegs.

Iphone weddings have been done, many times. Jerry Ghionis even won the AIPP album of the year shot entirely on an iPhone. I have 2 meter prints in my studio shot on a Canon 5D and a consumer zoom. But yes, an iPhone is probably not the ideal camera, most of the time. The point is that "professionals" mostly don't use cameras labelled professional by camera companies and marketing people. You're far more likely to see a D500 at a wedding than a D5. Wedding photographers use m43, APSC, 35mm and medium format interchangeably. Some shoot expensive glass. Some cheap consumer zooms.

The only requirement of a working photographer is the cheapest camera that can get the job done. Regardless of whether it's labelled professional. Just like Full Frame sensors. All sensors are full frame. All cameras can be use professionally, and probably have. And more enthusiasts have "professional" cameras than the professionals do. Basing a camera's performance on price is like saying a Ferrari is more professional than a pick-up because it costs more.

I remember Kelvin. I think we had a beer together once. Here's a dress. Is it gold and white or blue and black? (here's a hint: 70% of people are wrong... including me.)

 

Gordon

Edited by FlashGordonPhotography

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Ahh yes. Color puzzles and optical illusions intended to deceive to make your point. 

Keep splitting hairs, my friend. You haven't hit the microscopic level yet. 

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On 2/28/2019 at 7:26 PM, jaapv said:

Thank you very much :)AWB is a decent starting point, but - I have a fully colour-managed workflow, with my own camera profiles, calibrated Eizo  CG monitors, etc.

But I will admit that the CL is as easy a camera to get right as I ever had. i rarely take it off AWB. The GX8 I shoot in tandem is much harder. But in general I manage to match it to the CL.

I bought a TL2 late last year, but the DNG’s look inferior to my Leica T , so next week I hope the final step is a CL , and Leica store Manchester have some pre owned 60 macros in stock....

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That’s great you use all the available post production technology. Leica equipment deserves it.

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Just to reiterate what others have said, it's generally preferable to use the DNG's than to rely on in-camera jpegs. For every camera I own apart from the Fuji X10 (a very jpeg friendly and raw unfriendly camera) I use the raw files, and process with Lightroom. With experimentation, you can make a custom preset for any of your cameras which will give you pleasing images. You can tweak them further from there.

I'm reading this thread because I own a GX85 and a Leica M9, among others, and I'm considering a CL as an alternative to the M9 for travel. The GX85 is pretty darn good, but it's obviously not a M9 in its output. Numerous posts suggest that CL image quality rivals or betters the M240 and even M10, so I'm looking at it very carefully.

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On 4/3/2019 at 1:40 PM, Archiver said:

Just to reiterate what others have said, it's generally preferable to use the DNG's than to rely on in-camera jpegs. For every camera I own apart from the Fuji X10 (a very jpeg friendly and raw unfriendly camera) I use the raw files, and process with Lightroom. With experimentation, you can make a custom preset for any of your cameras which will give you pleasing images. You can tweak them further from there.

I'm reading this thread because I own a GX85 and a Leica M9, among others, and I'm considering a CL as an alternative to the M9 for travel. The GX85 is pretty darn good, but it's obviously not a M9 in its output. Numerous posts suggest that CL image quality rivals or betters the M240 and even M10, so I'm looking at it very carefully.

I don't know about "better". In IQ order I prefer my M10 to the CL to the M240 but other may disagree. I tend to use the CL most though and that's the camera I would keep if I were allowed only one choice. The differences are subtle in image rendering but the CL offers great usability, AF, more flexibility in focal lengths and is smaller/lighter than the M.

Gordon

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On 3/1/2019 at 11:37 AM, Jake said:

Ahh yes. Color puzzles and optical illusions intended to deceive to make your point. 

 

 But the relevant point is that people see, perceive and react to colors differently. Scientific findings have reversed age old beliefs about how individuals ‘see’ colors.   Google “people see colors differently” and a host of interesting articles contradict your simplistic notion about “color correcting to the human eyeball”, which isn’t the same for everyone and can’t be discussed without considering brain complexities.  Color photos don’t just involve kelvin readings, but color differences and juxtapositions based on real life subjects, not trickery, and then differing observer interpretations.  

It’s interesting, and relevant, that you apparently thought the CL colors were fine until you juxtaposed them with the GX85.  Funny how those perceptions work.  And even more interesting that someone who seems so concerned with color would rely on JPEGS in the first place rather than a fully color managed workflow starting with RAW/DNG.  Leica has never touted JPEG  output anyway.

Last, all Leica gear is expensive; that doesn’t make it any more pro oriented than top notch, far lower priced gear from a variety of current manufacturers.  There are many superb choices these days, at widely disparate price points, that are capable of delivering astounding IQ (using RAW). The most important differences reside behind the camera, and between the ears.  As always.

Jeff

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Color OOC does matter to me, whether shooting JPG or DNG.  For casual stuff I shoot with a Fuji because they have the most pleasing JPGs.  I now use a Hasselblad X1D for my more considered work because it produces the most accurate colors (to my eye) in DNG and it makes my post-processing work easier, which in turn allows me spend more time to go out and capture images. If you are primarily a JPG shooter perhaps you could give Fujifilm a try.

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