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Got a M10R. Why would I want an M10M ?


Artin
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The M10M will have about one stop greater ISO performance improvement since the Bayer Array in the M10-R consumes approximately one stop of light.  In other words if the M10-R shot calls for ISO 1600 the M10M will need ISO 800.  Also there is a one-to-one correspondence between each sensor cell and a pixel in the M10M image.  With Bayer Array cameras each image pixel is interpolated from several (IIRC 4) sensor cells in order to generate the color information.  This means the Monochrom will resolve a bit more detail.

So performance differences, but the only reason to get the Monochrom is because you like to shoot in B&W.

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Because the M10M is wonderful!

There is some visbile advantage, particularly in low light, where the M10M is incredible. There will also be less noise in darker parts of the images even at base ISO (there must be some color noise in converted images). Whether those differences really matter is up to the user - the M10R is a fine B and W camera also. 

The thing I like the most about the M10M is that it only shoots B and W. Before using it I didn’t think it would really make much difference to the way I feel when walking around taking photos. I was wrong. 

Edited by gotium
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I was influenced by realizing that 80% of my shots were color conversions to B&W.  
Yes I still do conversions with longer lenses on other cameras and they look great too. I have found that if you are going out with a mono camera you ignore color distractions and concentrate of structure and form. But hey, if you have an M10R, you can just set the menu for B&W jpegs and achieve the same thing I would guess.

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I'm betting there isn't enough difference between a monochrome camera image and a good conversion to B&W from a normal colour sensor...that the members would be able to tell the difference, unless specifically pointed out.

However I'm sure there is a certain something nice about just using a B&W camera...that's why i have my Fuji 690sw, Pentax 645 and Leica IIIc all loaded with FP4+

Monochrome is a bit like colour...everyone has their own interpretation on what makes good processing.

...

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Yes to M10R and M10M.

The somewhat better DR and higher resolution are valid arguments, but they are not my main reason. I am better focused with an M10M, as I am not "searching" for color and B&W images. Instead, I know that I am working in B&W, similarly when I was shooting B&W film. Alan Schaller said in an interview

There is something to be said for knowing you cannot shoot in color with a camera. Over time using it helped my eye focus on the things that affect my photographs the most, these being tonality, texture, shape and facial expression.

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I have the M10M (and still M9M) in addition to the M10 primarily for the different shooting/workflow experience, not necessarily  because of discernible improvements in print quality. (ISO and resolution capabilities are real, but I rarely shoot high enough ISO, nor print large enough, to know or care).  All are fully capable of producing rich files and superb results if I do my job well, or mediocre otherwise. Viewers don’t care about gear if the pic/print is worthy and can’t distinguish gear anyway (true in general, not just color vs monochrome sensor). There are real and subtle differences at times, however, in my PP flexibility with a color based camera due to use of color channels (when used in moderation) compared to using colored lens filters for a Monochrom.  

Jeff

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Guest BlackBarn

I think we all ask ourselves these sensible questions:

I came at it from the opposite direction. Bought the M10M before the M10r came out. Went to buy the M10r for the odd occasion I shoot in colour and asked myself why buy the M10r? Changed my mind in the shop and bought the SL2 basically because it and the lenses were better weathered sealed. That was more important for me than the difference in colour sensors…..as also later there’s  post to play which may blur the difference.

I trust Leica when they say the M10M produces better results for B/W in the same way I trust them  that the M10r has a better/outstanding colour sensor although  I’m pretty confident I wouldn’t get top marks in a blind test of either. However when I am out using the 10m I am thinking and seeing in tonal shapes. When I am using a colour camera I am looking at the interrelationships of the colours and later may be  say ‘ I wonder what that looks like in b/w’…..it becomes an afterthought.

So I agree with those who say the process of shooting in b/w requires different seeing  and maybe that is more important than the finer differences.

 

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To me there is also a kind of psychological effect. Since the M9M and now with the M10M I almost enjoy the technical self-restraint of a monochrome camera. I can’t switch my attitude towards a motive if I carry the Monochrom with me nor is there any consideration afterwards if I like one shot more in color or in BW. 

With the M10-D I have the same effect on another level. No checking of images while shooting them. My dream Leica M therefore would be a M10-D Monochrom. 😜

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I am reading all of this , sounds to me that there is basically hardly any difference in the quality of the image , it is more of a personal feeling or say a discipline that one gets knowing that his or her camera is only black and white ..  my personal opinion only.. I can easily get into that mind set by just simply setting my camera to monochrome mode.  Just like when I used to chose to purchase black and white film.

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1 hour ago, Artin said:

I am reading all of this , sounds to me that there is basically hardly any difference in the quality of the image , it is more of a personal feeling or say a discipline that one gets knowing that his or her camera is only black and white ..  my personal opinion only.. I can easily get into that mind set by just simply setting my camera to monochrome mode.  Just like when I used to chose to purchase black and white film.

The difference is that with M10R, you are holding a color camera in your hand and can always choose to switch to color mode, either while shooting in preview or post.
An advantage of using M10R for B&W is that you can adjust "filters" in the post, while with M10M, you must attach them when shooting.
If possible, you should try it out. I think that shooting with a Monochrom camera is something special.

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1 hour ago, Artin said:

I am reading all of this , sounds to me that there is basically hardly any difference in the quality of the image , it is more of a personal feeling or say a discipline that one gets knowing that his or her camera is only black and white ..  my personal opinion only.. I can easily get into that mind set by just simply setting my camera to monochrome mode.  Just like when I used to chose to purchase black and white film.

There are technical benefits in terms of more acuity and better high iso performance but because the base colour sensors (i.e. the ones with the bayer filter arrays) are now already pretty good and are now high res (M10R), the differences are very marginal. When it was the M240 vs M246 or M9 vs M9M, or even M10 vs M10M, 2 stops better high ISO performance and greater detail (I suppose this could be a "perceived resolution" advantage since the effective resolution is the same with the colour version) made a bigger difference. But to be able to shoot at ISO 32000 or 50000 without too much worry - the M10R can't do that (granted, with the M10M it is a black and white image and there naturally won't be any colour noise). 

The real benefit of the M10M is the mindset as you mentioned. Kind of like the M10D, in having a screen less, no chipping mindset. I had the M10D and M10M and I could train myself not to review pictures on the go, but I've always struggled to shoot purely in black and white without a monochrom. I just never had the discipline. I feel you have to completely ignore colour photo opportunities when going out with that mindset, despite having a colour camera, and have to process your pictures in black and white despite having DNGs in colour (well you don't have to, but if one is intending to go out and shoot with a black and white only mindset, and learn what black and white only shooting can teach one in terms of light, shadow, textures and composition, i guess there should be commitment to that). Or just load an M6 with tri-x or any film camera and you get what is essentially is an M10M-D.

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