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snaggs

M8.2 or MP+M9 ?

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Greetings,

 

Nikons future doesn't seem to cater to people like me (read my post Why does digital = automatic? - FM Forums here). By now they've retired all the old Japanese guys who designed the Noct Nikkor and the F series.

 

I love my FM3a too bits, and whilst I was lamenting the lack of a digital manual focus Nikon, I thought about the red dot... sure the flash technology is not there yet (I use fill flash with my FM3a all the time), but Leica have produced a digital camera without gadgets.

 

Unfortunately, the M8 has an LCD, but I can probably live with that given the rest is made like an scientific instrument as opposed to a XBOX.

 

So, my question is.. I'm still shooting film, and love looking at slides on my Leica P150 projector (with Colourplan lens of course).

 

So I'm thinkging about dumping the Nikon AF and digital stuff and moving to the red dot.

 

The question is, do I buy a body (like an MP) and start collecting a few lenses and wait for a M9, or is Leica digital going to be forever 1.33 crop, in which case.. is this the time to go straight to M8.2?

 

I dont give a toss about megapixels... my largest prints are 11x14 and anything 6pm or above is fine by me.

 

Daniel.

Edited by snaggs

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An M9 is coming. The MP+M9 combination will be much more expensive than an M8.2 though, so it is not really a fair comparison. You might also want to consider buying an MP and a used M8, and then trade the M8 up to the M9 when it comes.

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Dont bother to wait for an M9 - by the time it comes you could have lots of fun with the M8.2

 

Also, if you love film then the MP is great.

 

A dilemna I cannot help you with :-0

 

Ravi

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Except, if I bought a M8.2, the lenses all have a crop factor. I know what I love on Nikon, and thats my 35mm f/1.4 (and its not a touch on the Leica I'm sure).

 

I guess I could just use it as a 50mm in the meantime.

 

How far away is a M9, and is it confirmed yet that its FF? Can Leica M ever be full frame?

 

Daniel.

Edited by snaggs

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How far away is a M9, and is it confirmed yet that its FF? Can Leica M ever be full frame?

 

Daniel.

 

To my knowledge the development of a FF M has not been communicated so far by anyone in charge at Leica. Quite to the contrary: In an interview some months ago Dr. Kaufmann said that the wish for FF is exaggerated (if I remember correctly). Also there are significant technical/optical issues to be solved, as has been discussed in this forum some time ago.

 

One way for a potential M user could be to buy an M8 and just one lens, eg 28mm. This equals about 35mm on the M8 and is still useful on a FF M.

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I wonder if a FF M is doable without substantial changes on the camera concept, which most uf M users won't accept. Currently I arranged my self with the crop factor and I don't regret a single day of using my crop M8. Don't expect to see a M9 soon.

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Keep or buy what you like to use and what works best for you.

Sell or don't buy what doesn't work of fit your style of photography.

If whatever works for you still works and you like using it and the images you get from it then stop thinking about what may come out in the future.

 

If I liked SLR's and the Nikon D200 worked for me, or the original Nikkormat I had back in the early 70's, then I would of never bought, my first M3, or a M8.

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I just measured and the current M8 in principle allows 34x24 sensor size which is close enough to full frame, 1mm extra width should not be a major design problem if they could get a wide acceptance angle sensor to work.

 

The alternative seems to already be in the making - design wide angle M-lenses using a retrofocus design (just like with SLRs). The current 18SE 21lux and 24lux are just that - so thay are getting lined up to announce the M9 which will work with most older lenses and with the newer wide angle lenses.

 

My $0.02 cents (not Zimbawean I hope)

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First the wisdom:

Never sell gear to buy gear. Only sell what you know you will never enjoy again. I have learned this by selling and re-purchasing more gear than I care to admit.

 

Now, another path.

Shooting with an M is very different than a Nikon SLR. The closest experience is to get a small Nikon body, a fixed medium or wide lens, and go shooting using AF or hyperfocal settings. It's still different.

 

You also mention the pleasures of film. Digital is very good, but film still has an edge in certain circumstances. Dynamic range and color profiles of films are unique.

 

You may wish to rent an M for a week and see how you like it.

You may wish to purchase an older M, probably an M6, and give it a whirl. If you decide to upgrade to an MP or an M8, M8.2, or M9, you'll recover most of your investment, as will you if M photography is not for you.

 

Most of all, enjoy the hobby.

 

Eric

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Stephen, I agree the camera could take a FF sensor - the shutter is already FF but the battery intrudes into the lens throat and would get in the way - you can easily see the top and bottom of the shutter but not the left and (especially) the right hand side, viewed from the front. With a higher level of electronic integration made possible by the Maestro chip set, it might be possible to put all the electronics on a single board which would free up some space to move things around; either that, or I'd be happy with a battery running along the base of the camera.

 

One of the questions I posted to ask Leica is to confirm whether the new wide-angles make a FF camera easier to do. I can see the 21mm and 24mm Elmarits might just not work; maybe they could auto-crop based on the lens code when the problem lenses were mounted but all depends on the viewfinder frame arrangements. If we went back to a 0.72 finder, we'd be back to 28mm being the widest usable on the camera.

 

That's another reason that I want the M9 to be more than just FF. I want a new whizzy zooming finder with built-in dioptre correction. Please.

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the shutter is already FF but the battery intrudes into the lens throat and would get in the way - you can easily see the top and bottom of the shutter but not the left and (especially) the right hand side, viewed from the front.
I just used sensor cleaning mode to check and in fact the FF aperture below the shutter can be viewed quite comfortably. If you imagine light hitting the sensor from the rear end of a typical lens it might even be OK as it is?

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M9 full frame will be coming, just a matter of when (maybe upwards of a year). Leica haven't announced anything official (and why should they as long as there are M8's to sell) but they have been dropping hints to dealers via reps, probably to keep interest in their brand alive to those who actually order and sell them.

 

I doubt (and hope) this time around Leica will not drop a camera on the public that isn't rock solid and therefore won't announce until this is assured.

 

I agree with the poster above who says start with a used M6 and a 35 lens and see if you actually like the rf experience. Not everybody does. Figure once you walk out of the store with a new MP or M8.2 the value drops by at least 25% on the used market. So make sure it's a style of shooting you like (ie, no indication of depth or closer than .7 meter like an slr).

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How good is the M8.2 at fill flash?

 

Daniel.

 

Definitely not in the same league as Nikon. But I find the SF-20 TTL works great on the M7 - no TTL on the MP of course. And the TTL on the M8 with the SF-24D works but only with a pre-flash for some reason. hopefully Leica will get their flash thing together with the M9 (and give us a pc socket back!).

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Standard disclaimer - my experiences, others may differ.

 

My path in the world of serious digital photography started with a series of Nikon DSLR bodies, D1, D1X, D100, D2X, D700 ... - you get the idea. For all of these, I used the corresponding SB-28DX, SB-80, SB-800, and now SB-900 flashes. All are very good at daylight and night-time fill flash out to fifty or sixty feet.

 

I purchased my M8 about 30 months ago, and have used it with the SF-24D and Metz 54MZ with M8-compatible shoe. What I have found is that the fill flash is fine in daylight, but has an odd property of switching from fill to full power past about 20 feet with the SF-24D and about 30 feet with the Metz. My hypothesis is that the pre-flash sequence and sensor doesn't receive a strong enough return to correctly calculate the fill past those ranges, and causes the flash to fire full power.

 

Bandage solution - use flashes on A and use flash exposure compensation to adjust after viewing a test shot.

 

M's are most at home without flash. My advice is still to hold on to your DSLR gear until you are comfortable with the M experience.

 

Eric

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Hmmm.. another question, will the M9 bring back a simple .85 finder? This option was provided on film Leica's, any reason it couldn't on digital?

 

I did the virtual M thing on Leica's site, and the .68 viewfinder is pretty cluttered.

 

I've long since learnt I basically need 2 focal lengths, 35mm, 90mm.

 

Daniel.

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IMHO, and a very H one at that, I don't think a FF M is possible at the same form factor. I am not an engineer but you'd have to defy the laws of physics to make a FF sensor count given the limited space available to accommodate current M lenses.

 

That said, I'd never say never but it would probably take some serious R&D dollars to redesign a new CCD, something that Leica and Kodak don't have a lot of or would want part with in the midst of a recession. They could opt for the more common CMOS sensors but that would mean re-engineering the firmware and that equates, again, to money.

 

Does that mean we'll won't ever see an FF M-cam? Sure we will. I hope I'm wrong, really I do, but probably not in 2010. (I actually made a bet with someone that I'll eat a FF M9 if it is released by next year's Photokina haha!)

 

Anyway, life's too short to go chasing next-gen's gadgets - there's always something bigger better faster on the tech horizon. The M8 is a wonderful camera. I don't remember having so much fun taking pictures again. If you don't have to sell the wife, kids and dog to get one, I'd say order one today. If you want to save money for some good glass, get a used M8 and an M6 instead, it'd make you images as good as an M7 or MP.

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For all the speculation about an M9 on this forum and others...

 

Nobody

 

Knows

 

One

 

Darn

 

Thing.

 

Any question you ask will be answered by people who know nothing about the M9.

 

So if you really want to shoot digital RF, decide which camera you want to use starting tomorrow morning (or whichever morning follows the day you can actually purchase the camera)...Not the camera you want to start shooting two, or three, or four years from now.

 

To find out if you really want to shoot digital RF, you probably need to answer a couple of linked questions: "Do you you like to shoot RF?" and "Do you want to shoot digital?"

 

Those can be answered independently. If you need to find out the answer to the first question consider getting a used M6 -- no need for a TTL, and no need for the expense of an MP. It will hold its value, and even if you decide to sell it later. And if it does lose some value, the difference between what you paid and what you'll get is called "rent".

 

If you want to keep shooting film instead of digital, then your M6 (or M7, or MP) is already in your hands. If you decide you want to both shoot RF and shoot digital, they we're back to buying the camera you'll step out the front door with tomorrow morning.

 

Crop factor? For some people, that's a major issue. Many, many more are out there shooting some darn fine pictures with "cropped" (or crippled, or whatever) lenses on their M8s. That tells me the crop factor "problem" is not technical in nature.

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Crop factor? For some people, that's a major issue. Many, many more are out there shooting some darn fine pictures with "cropped" (or crippled, or whatever) lenses on their M8s. That tells me the crop factor "problem" is not technical in nature.

 

I can't agree more. Crop is not a factor. And clearly, the majority of photographers share the same sentiment. Just do the math on the number of sub-FF cameras that were sold or made it to the market as opposed to FF ones. The only bone I got is the reduced EFOV after cropping ultra-wides, which I'd happily give up for compact size, quieter operation and, in my opinion, better pictures from Leica glass.

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