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Mysteriously Overwritten Files on Angelbird CFexpress B


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Shooting a wedding this past Saturday with the SL3, using an Angelbird CFexpress B 1TB card.
Looking at images periodically as I shoot, just to verify there are no issues, and to get a sense of lighting.
After the ceremony, I turned the camera off to conserve battery while setting up for family images.
Turned the camera on, shot the images, checked them, zoomed in to see if eyes were open, and went back several images to check that everything was looking good.
Note, the images were there.

Turned the camera off, got my tripod and gear packed up and ready for the couple portraits. No need to go back to the family images again. Right? Apparently not.
When I got back home, uploaded everything, all the images taken between the end of ceremony, and couple portraits, are all missing!!

Searching the forum, I found that this has happened to people using SanDisk cards. So, let's add Angelbird to that as well, I guess.
I have a data recovery team working on it now. The tech said, "this is certainly a weird one..."

Since this is now happening with multiple brands of CF cards, perhaps it's not the cards, but the camera?

 

Thoughts??

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Posted (edited)

JaySD,   I cannot imagine the agony you are going through with this issue and wedding.  I did a walk-in trial at a Leica Store, shot with a friend's Sandisk and store CF B card.  I went to download the images on my laptop in the store....Nada, Nothing.  Files were gone.  I handed the camera over to the sales person.  He tried his card, same thing.  I thanked him, walked out and decided to keep my SL2(s).  BTW, the staff had no explanation for me.  I hope your files get restored for you and most certainly for the couple.  r/ Mark

Edited by LeicaR10
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2 hours ago, LeicaR10 said:

JaySD,   I cannot imagine the agony you are going through with this issue and wedding.  I did a walk-in trial at a Leica Store, shot with a friend's Sandisk and store CF B card.  I went to download the images on my laptop in the store....Nada, Nothing.  Files were gone.  I handed the camera over to the sales person.  He tried his card, same thing.  I thanked him, walked out and decided to keep my SL2(s).  BTW, the staff had no explanation for me.  I hope your files get restored for you and most certainly for the couple.  r/ Mark

Thank you so much for sharing. I've been feeling so sick to my stomach, so I really appreciate your input and kind regards. What you experienced, and especially Leica reps not having an explanation, is unacceptable. These are not just cameras, they're our livelihoods. To have such an inexcusable defect, which it appears to be now, is far below the standard of any pro camera manufacturer, let alone Leica. I will update this with the results from the data recovery as I learn more. In the meantime, I'll be using my SL2.

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Posted (edited)

Yes it happens with other brands also. Leica knows about this issue. There is a thread in this forum about it.

I continued talking to Leica last week and also told them that many like me also lives in a small place and damage to reputation is also a factor. We loose our living because we use SL3. The person I talked to understood this of course and was sorry.

They should stop selling SL3 and warn customers imho until this is fixed. 

FEW TIPS how to use SL3 and not loose images (at least works for me)

1. Always charge via USB (never take out battery)
2. Never use suspend if remove battery or card
3. In the middle of a shoot use "reset image numbering". This creates a new folder so no overwriting. I use this when I change location / shoot etc etc

Edited by Mikko Kankainen
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4 hours ago, Mikko Kankainen said:

FEW TIPS how to use SL3 and not loose images (at least works for me)

1. Always charge via USB (never take out battery)

What an utterly useless camera if you can’t change batteries and have to wait for the camera to recharge before continuing. 

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I appreciate all the feedback. I think it's worth recovery for the clients. I would much rather try everything than not.
I will absolutely report this, and will do all I can to hole Leica accountable. Especially in light of all the information regarding others having these same issues.

Luckily I am fortunate enough to have other Leica cameras to use for my upcoming wedding this Saturday. I am way too shook to even think about bringing the SL3.
No one should feel so on edge when using their gear, always wondering if the images they just took will be there when they are done. It's absurd and just infuriating.

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I also have two other Leicas that I use, so thats good.

I have now gained my trust to SL3 so I can use it with those 3 steps to many applications. I know it's funny that I cannot take out battery to charge it, but I have a grip and two batteries in it so I manage. When battery runs out I just keep using another body.

I have taken about 30 000 pictures after that one case when I lost images and no problem since. And I'm telling this to help others, everyone makes decision is it worth the risk. I am 99% sure that if I dont use suspend and take out battery and if I create folders between shoots I'm safe.

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11 hours ago, Mikko Kankainen said:

 

They should stop selling SL3 and warn customers imho until this is fixed. 

 

They should, but they don’t. They keep silent. As an-ex wedding tog I feel the pain of every pro having this happening.

And the forum here can say what they want, due to current problems with both the m11 (lasting 2 years) and the SL3, I wont upgrade.

I hope that my m10m will last for years still, and when the SL’s die, there are many competent cameras out there which have great portrait lenses.

Every firm can have such problems, sadly, and it is how the company react to it. Leica keeps silent, and that’s a terrible thing. They let their customers down.

But hey, we got an app. You don’t need a SL anyway.

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Leica has never been good at putting out notices for potential issues. They do seem to work on them quietly in the background but I don’t thank they get how much damage it does to their reputation and the damage it can do to users who answer to clients. Japanese companies would immediately apologise. It’s a cultural thing. That’s not really the European corporate way but it’s something they could learn from their Japanese cousins.

I think Leica need to look seriously at who’s writing the firmware currently and work out once and for all why camera after camera is let down by the software writers. Surely as part of the L2 thingy they could get some more expertise from Panasonic on this. Releasing cameras with beta software is just not good enough.

It’s not good enough.

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Posted (edited)

Very sorry to hear about the loss of files Jay. SD cards always seem to get the blame for issues maybe they are the culprit but it would be almost slanderous (by Leica) to suggest one manufacturer or another's cards are at fault. When rumours start like this, it's most likely many people shift to another brand resulting  drawers full of unused SD cards. It's unfortunate the process to rectify the issues can take so long.      

Edited by Ken Abrahams
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Leica was quite successful in carrying the flash bug from Q to Q2 to SL2, even if they had fixed it on Q2 it took a year to get it fixed on SL2. It was a big deal too

I think losing images should turn on the red blinking lights and alarms at headquarters. And find a fix it quickly.

They talked about the M8 and M9  issues of the red cast and corrosion was a big deal that would compromise the company.

that should not ignore the issue. The US team was more responsive than Germany. 

I am not using the SL3 for important events anymore. I can't trust it.

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The more I read these comments, the more I'm convinced it's absolutely the camera. If it were one particular brand of card, that would be one thing, but it's various brands, and it's just not logical for the cards to take the blame.

I should have learned my lesson from my M11 malfunctioning a week after I got it. That too happened at a wedding. Went to check images and ~30 images were half blacked out. The shutter got stuck halfway down. Good thing I checked. Leica rep said it was happening to a select few, and they were expediting the repair on M11's with that issue. Had to send it in for 3 weeks. Turns out there were a lot of bad shutters. The SL3 and M11 are most likely products that were released too fast.

I think they didn't want a repeat of what happened with the S3. They took way too long to release it, and it messed with their sales. So, now they are releasing things too early.

Anyway. Thank you all for the input, well wishes, and help.

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Is there any importance in when these cameras that have this problem were released? Were they early in the release or toward the tail end? They were still making cameras when the early release and public release began, so corrections may have been incorporated with cameras of later releases.

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6 hours ago, Rmccoole said:

Is there any importance in when these cameras that have this problem were released? Were they early in the release or toward the tail end? They were still making cameras when the early release and public release began, so corrections may have been incorporated with cameras of later releases.

Hard to tell. For the M11 I picked mine up on release day and have had few issues. Others from the same day have regular freezing. And I know of people who got their camera a few months later who are fine. The latest firmware seems to have fixed most but not all users issues. And how representative of the issue are forums? Could be every issue is coming here to let us know or could be almost none. So you can’t even say if it’s a widespread issue or not. Lot’s of M11’s out there now.

The SL3 lost files appears to be related to the sleep function and/or pulling the battery. Maybe in combo with certain memory cards. I’ve not had it but I tend to work in a way where I wouldn’t notice it. But this is not the thing you need to be thinking about when shooting a wedding. When I shot weddings I pulled many batteries without turning the camera off.

It looks ,like Leica are working on it. But they should 1) say so and 2) inform us of any workarounds they have found. I have questions.

1. Is it just CFE cards? Or SD cards as well?

2. Is it when one card ir writing files? What happens if two cards are set to both write files? Or DNG to one and jpeg to another?

3. Seems to happen when the camera is asleep and battery pulled. What if power is on a battery pulled? What if completely off? How long do I need to wait?

4. Is it card brand or size or speed that’s involved.

5. Is it related to the SoC of the battery?

Many many question….

Gordon

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4 hours ago, FlashGordonPhotography said:

3. Seems to happen when the camera is asleep and battery pulled. What if power is on a battery pulled? What if completely off? How long do I need to wait?

Not in my case, I didn't put the camera to sleep or change batteries.

It would be interesting just to use the SD card and it if it is the same.

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When I tried to reproduce I only used SD and managed to loose images. 
I think that others that has told their story has used sleep->battery out but of course it could be something else. 

And when it actually happened (I lost images) camera was set to write to both cards, dng’s. 

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Has anyone been able to rescue this type of lost file? The data tech I spoke with said there's a chance the files may not have been completely overwritten since data doesn't always write in the same order (not like writing in a book). But others are saying it's absolutely lost. I'm hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst.

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