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stunsworth

Another view on the M8

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Online review here...

 

Complete Digital Photography » Leica M8 Digital Rangefinder

 

Contains gems like this when discussing the size of Leica lenses compared to those for an SLR...

 

"...because smaller lenses are generally easier to engineer, Leica lenses have a reputation for extremely good quality."

 

It'll either amuse or have you frothing over your cornflakes.

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I'm all for these reviews. It keeps fools and idiots from buying the camera - and keeps them away from forums like this.

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I dunno Jaapv, I think he's pretty spot on with respect to the high ISO performance and the power switch. On the battery/baseplate issue I'm unconvinced - I always seem to have to use two hands on any camera... but why oh why is there no weather seal in the baseplate, and no battery in the grip?

 

It may be a fact that the sensor is the one that was available at the time - but today compared to the D3 it's got rubbish high iso performance for the price. Likewise, it also irritates me that the power switch can be so easily nudged into self-timer mode, or a non-functioning intermediate position. How on earth does self-timer deserve a first order manual control in a digital camera and iso selection doesn't?

If you want to shoot a digital rangefinder, or even more so a digital M, then the M8 is the camera you're going to use. If you want low-light performance, weatherproofing, a FF sensor, accurate framing or just a cheaper ride... then you really ought to be looking elsewhere. Which is pretty much how I read his review.

 

When the M9 comes, I pray it will have weather seals, a FF sensor with the ISO performance of the D3, a better designed switch (please - no damn self timer in the pole position), more forgiving highlights, a first order control for ISO, and an extra battery in the damn grip (or even better - space for a couple of lithium cells). Rock on photokina 2010 I say!

 

Until then, I'll be using my M8, and cursing it occasionally as well

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Online review here...

 

Complete Digital Photography » Leica M8 Digital Rangefinder

 

Contains gems like this when discussing the size of Leica lenses compared to those for an SLR...

 

"...because smaller lenses are generally easier to engineer, Leica lenses have a reputation for extremely good quality."

 

It'll either amuse or have you frothing over your cornflakes.

Isn t the logic for "easier to design" based on the ability to place the rear element closer to the sensor(film plane) . I always thought that it was easier to design a world class M wide angle than an R for this reason. That being said ..I would never assume anything was "easy" about it....it just makes it possible.

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This guy just rehashes the same points everyone else does including the 'cost' point.

 

The point of the M8 is that it is mechanical camera with an electronic sensor using the the minimal amount of computerisation.

 

During the film era I shot with for 30 years with a Nikkormat ftn. OK it is an SLR but it lacked all the electronics, AF and moulded grips that found their way into film cameras before digital arrived. The M8, gives me the same simplicity.

 

It is without the doubt the most enjoyable camera I have used. And by the way it is not just for 'sneaky' photographs.

 

Pity the reviewer could not remember that the M8 ships with Capture 1 not Leica raw software.

 

Jeff

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Steve

 

Thanks for a good laugh this morning.

 

I didn't really recognise my M8 from this so called review - do I have a fake or is this reviewer part idiot?

 

Ian

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OhthescaleshavefallenfrommyeyeswhatwasIthinkingwhenIcommittedtotheM8Icouldhavegotsomuchmoreimagequalityandlow-lightopportunityfromacheapSLRorapoint-and-shoot (we don't use the term "P&S" anymore, do we?

).

 

Thank you Ben Long! (Obviously not for a balanced and knowledgeable opinion on the M8 but for, as Jaap points out, keeping potential irritants away.)

 

Consider my cornflakes suitably frothed.

 

Pete.

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Guest stnami
The M8 is a very pretty camera
,,,,,,,,,,yea got that!

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I dunno Jaapv, I think he's pretty spot on with respect to the high ISO performance and the power switch. On the battery/baseplate issue I'm unconvinced - I always seem to have to use two hands on any camera... but why oh why is there no weather seal in the baseplate, and no battery in the grip?

 

It may be a fact that the sensor is the one that was available at the time - but today compared to the D3 it's got rubbish high iso performance for the price. Likewise, it also irritates me that the power switch can be so easily nudged into self-timer mode, or a non-functioning intermediate position. How on earth does self-timer deserve a first order manual control in a digital camera and iso selection doesn't?

If you want to shoot a digital rangefinder, or even more so a digital M, then the M8 is the camera you're going to use. If you want low-light performance, weatherproofing, a FF sensor, accurate framing or just a cheaper ride... then you really ought to be looking elsewhere. Which is pretty much how I read his review.

 

When the M9 comes, I pray it will have weather seals, a FF sensor with the ISO performance of the D3, a better designed switch (please - no damn self timer in the pole position), more forgiving highlights, a first order control for ISO, and an extra battery in the damn grip (or even better - space for a couple of lithium cells). Rock on photokina 2010 I say!

 

Until then, I'll be using my M8, and cursing it occasionally as well

 

Hmm..

He:

1. Makes pronouncements on lens design without the hindrance of knowledge

2. Does not know to hold his eye straight in front of a viewfinder

3. Manages to consistenly overexpose in good light

4 Judges high ISO noise on a horribly underexposed shot

 

Amongst a host of other idiocies.

 

Well.....

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Ha, reviews like this make me put a smile on my face. Why review a camera system you obviously know very little about?

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Hmm..

He:

1. Makes pronouncements on lens design without the hindrance of knowledge

2. Does not know to hold his eye straight in front of a viewfinder

3. Manages to consistenly overexpose in good light

4 Judges high ISO noise on a horribly underexposed shot

 

Amongst a host of other idiocies.

 

Well.....

 

Well yes... The lens design bit is funny - odd how they managed to make those big R lenses so good. I did wonder about the parallax example, and the exposure/iso example shots are lame. It reads as though he picked up on some actual issues (maybe from these forums) - but wasn't quite able to find them for himself. (I still agree with him on the daft switch though).

 

Anyway - for those of us that own one, it's all moot. To paraphrase a friend of mine - the best camera for photography is the one that you have.

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Gads! Until I read this review, I had no clue about the following:

 

1. Cameras with rangefinders don't let you see through the lens (unless, of course you unmount the lens and look through it, but then everything gets all distorted and upside down)

 

2. You have to set the aperture yourself and not let the computer in the camera do it for you, The horror!

 

3. You have to actually know how to properly expose in order to get a properly exposed shot! Who'd a thunk it?

 

4. A reviewer can write a lengthy review about something they know nothing about. I think I might try my hand at writing a review of an ICBM, if I could only get my hands on one...

 

Thanks for the link!

 

John

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Online review here...

 

Complete Digital Photography » Leica M8 Digital Rangefinder

 

Contains gems like this when discussing the size of Leica lenses compared to those for an SLR...

 

"...because smaller lenses are generally easier to engineer, Leica lenses have a reputation for extremely good quality."

 

It'll either amuse or have you frothing over your cornflakes.

 

You must keep in mind the author also made the following statements in another publication; the emphasized text was particularly interesting:

 

"When you change the shutter speed from 1/125 of a second to 1/60 of a second, you double the amount of light that strikes the focal plane, because the shutter is kept open for twice as long.

Similarly, when you change the aperture from f/8 to f/4, you double the amount of light that strikes the focal plane because the size of the aperture at f/4 is twice as large as at f/8. (Obviously, moving the other direction, from 1/125 to 1/500 or from f/8 to f/16, results in a halving of the light.)

Each of these doublings (or halvings) of light is referred to as a single stop, and you’ll often hear photographers using the word stop as a measure of light. A simple way to think about f-stops is to remember that a smaller aperture stops more light from hitting the focal plane, as does a faster shutter speed."

 

The emphasized text is a perfect example of so-called experts in the digital age who have no concept of exposure, most likely never used a light meter, and probably think the "P" setting on their dSLR stands for "Professional." Such repeated mistakes would not come from one with intimate knowledge of photography; not even if asked upon waking up without the benefit of a first morning coffee.

 

I have avoided posting here after dealing with some similarly "expert" posters on this forum, but felt any further discussion of this article should be tempered by the author's previous articles.

 

I must get back to lurking...

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The reviewer is also a contributor to MacWorld magazine and makes equally wonky mistakes in that publication.

 

Larry

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Bottom line: If you can think while holding a camera buy an M8. If you can't think or understand about what you're doing while holding a camera then buy an automated SLR. My M8 prints speak for themselves - period.

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Guest rweisz
I'm all for these reviews. It keeps fools and idiots from buying the camera - and keeps them away from forums like this.

 

Bottom line: If you can think while holding a camera buy an M8. If you can't think or understand about what you're doing while holding a camera then buy an automated SLR. My M8 prints speak for themselves - period.

 

Bwaaahhhhaaaaaa! ROTFLMAO! Oh, lordy, some of the lines on here are more hysterical than 70's sitcoms on TVL.

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Does it really matter what Long says if you like using the M8 as it is, warts and all? Why does anyone care so much?? Some of his arguments have been made since rangefinders were first compared to slrs 50 yrs ago. Some are newer issues but just obvious differences between two differing systems, should we be mad about that? Are we argueing about which is better a blond or brunette? Each has their own perks!. It is unfortunate that as a writer Ben was so wrong about factual things, i.e. his statement re: shutter priority useage, he just contradicted himself and just shows how wrong many articles are today, poor editing, poor writing..he does not have singular ownership on that fault. I am always amused today when I see this sort of thing, given modern spell checkers and folk who are supposedly getting paid to actually edit articles. Don't really care what Ben thinks, and anyone who does will evaluate him or herself what the pros or cons are of the M8...jmho...

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Oh my... The frothing... Even Jaap. Oh my... So the guy's a cluck. Let it go.

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Well yes... The lens design bit is funny - odd how they managed to make those big R lenses so good. I did wonder about the parallax example, and the exposure/iso example shots are lame. It reads as though he picked up on some actual issues (maybe from these forums) - but wasn't quite able to find them for himself. (I still agree with him on the daft switch though).

 

Anyway - for those of us that own one, it's all moot. To paraphrase a friend of mine - the best camera for photography is the one that you have.

 

I have had Zero problems with the function switch, either selecting the correct position, and have never had it move from one position to another. The detents on my M8 are very positive. It is now over a year old and not one problem at all. As far as ISO noise, it is better than my D200, which I have given to my wife as it is not even close to the camera the M8 is, my opinion.

 

Gene

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Doug Herr wrote a clear comment:

 

"There are too many glaring errors in this review to grant it any credence."

 

Couldn't have said it better. I like to be taken seriously when reading a review. Criticism is fine. Even if I own the thing. Nothing is perfect. But in this case there are so many facts incorrect that I can't take the positives and the negatives serious.

 

One example:

"There’s no autofocus, no automatic exposure, and very few other automated settings or features."

 

There is automatic exposure! Aperture priority.

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