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Guest stnami

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Not saying that SLRs are bad but the M8 has been good re-training of basic skills.
... to what end? May as well get rid of all automated things in life.............are you going to wash everything by hand? Good retraining there.......

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There are actually only three essential controls on a camera; shutter speed, aperture and focus. There are those who like to control them and those who can't.

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The LCD module is 3 mm thick and I've seen thinner ones in mobile phones but of course image quality is important.

 

The best way to reduce the thickness of the camera would be to replace the two main boards used currently with a single board. The fact they have two (in the S2 too and also, for example, the D3x as well) is a tacit admission that sensors are much more likely to need replacing than the conventional computing electronics and for all sorts of reasons - heavy handed cleaning, damage from the sun, bad pixels and columns and so on. There needs to be a (relatively) economic way of replacing the sensor without writing the camera off. The danger of a single board solution is that replacing anything means replacing everything.

 

So far as we know, if you have the sensor replaced in an M8, the sensor board is replaced which has other stuff on it - timing, A/D conversion; it would in theory be possible to unsolder the sensor from the board but 60 connections is quite daunting even with a decent de-soldering station.

 

You could think of a single board solution for the camera where the sensor mounts directly onto the board but is clamped in place to allow easy replacement without binning the board itself. That would help meet our (my) desire for a camera which has the same thickness as an M6/M7 with just the lens mount slightly forward as it is now.

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How are they not improvements? All other changes are either transparent or improvements on already existing features.

 

Wow - even I'm able to see that my own opinions are subjective. Incredible the hubris and self-centeredness of some people.

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IAs I use the E-P1 I can't help wishing that Leica had chosen to develop such a versatile, relatively inexpensive, M-lens-friendly body. I really believe it would have been a smash hit and would have generated much-needed cash for other developments. Perhaps more significantly it would have provided a wonderful, much more affordable introduction to Leica photography for young people. The E-P1 is a perfect "bridge" concept between p&s, slr, and rangefinders.

 

Many of us have been hoping and asking for this for a very long time, Ken. I agree with you - and even though I hope it's not true, I fear the S2 is going to be an albatross around the company's neck.

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... to what end? May as well get rid of all automated things in life.............are you going to wash everything by hand? Good retraining there.......

 

Why better and more consistent pictures of course!

 

Automation is an important component in the process but personally I feel the benefit of conscious deliberate choice made by me and I do make considerable use of automation. Excessive in fact. My client estimates that I am approximately 10 to 15 times more efficient than my closest competitor(in my niche). Without automation, that's not possible.

 

However, I do humbly submit to the dish washer and washing machine's superior intelligence in all matters of washing

Edited by lxlim
to clarify

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How are they not improvements?

 

The most radical change are the two buttons on the back. The lack of an AE-lock button has been a complaint from a lot of shooters since the M7. The current AE lock setup works perfectly if you are taking one shot at a time, but for anyone working quickly in fast moving situations it is a major PIA.

The old misconception. The way to achieve AE lock for multiple exposures is to go to manual. Some users seem to have set the speed dial to A and then spilled Superglue on it.

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The old misconception. The way to achieve AE lock for multiple exposures is to go to manual...

 

Absolutely. And this is the point of learning photography starting with a manual system. You learn through experimentation how to control and compensate for difficult lighting situations. Even better, once more experienced you can adjust quickly to changes in the scene. An automatic camera can always be fooled by lighting (not to mention focus!), and will never be as intelligent as a trained human mind.

 

The point is, by starting with automatic cameras which do so much of the thinking for you, you never learn what real control is. Train manually, then move to a more automated format if you want. At least you'll know where the compromises are.

 

Doug

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Guest stnami

Isn't that nice someone has a client that controls his camera!!

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When I think of my friend's DSLR and my film and digital Leicas, this is the comparison that comes to mind:

 

 

vs.

 

 

If your watch has to have an altimeter AND a barometer, there's only one choice.

 

Both are more or less viable businesses. In the 60's and 70's the Swiss watch industry was said to be doomed because of the advent of quartz watches. 30 years and millions of worthless plastic throwaway watches later, quality mechanical watches are doing fine. They're not necessarily just jewellery either. Like the Omega Speedmaster above, which, straight out of the box from the local store, helped folks get to the moon - more than I can say for the other one - they can be long-lasting professional tools. The market for cheap and functionally bursting gadgets is there, no doubt, but so is the market for useable, even if reduced, functionality, as long as the other qualities (in Leica's case: ability to use old lenses, generally top quality lenses, rangefinder concept, simplicity, tradition) are valued and appreciated.

 

The question of whether a company can finance its "prestige" product by hacking out "volume" products and exploiting every available marketing opportunity has been answered to some extent in the affirmative by Porsche, a company I have a little contact with. On the other hand, as I believe the current Porsche crisis shows: being too smart and money-oriented can sometimes backfire. Porsche ended up being more an investment manager than a car maker. And, as so often happens with gamblers, the last gamble they made lost them more money than all their previous intelligent decisions had made them. And, in my opinion, their cynical marketing culture has taken them far away from their more sincere engineering tradition and lost them some respect among sports car lovers.

 

It's a legitimate and debatable question, and maybe it does take a cynical volume product to make a great niche product possible. But even then, I wouldn't want to mix the two. Let the other guy buy the volume stuff, I'll take the M.

 

I can't say what it takes for Leica to survive and thrive, but I am very grateful that the company appears to have owners who respect and maintain their M-camera tradition without trying to build in an altimeter and a barometer and give it a new shock-resistant ergonomically efficient rubber case.

 

Just my $0.02

 

Best, Guru

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When I think of my friend's DSLR and my film and digital Leicas, this is the comparison that comes to mind:

 

I'm a Speedmaster guy. I don't need any Nuclear Engineering Degree to look at my watch.

Nor a 250 pages manual. And don't need any barometer either, if you se shadows there is the sun, if you see none it's cloudy...

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The old misconception. The way to achieve AE lock for multiple exposures is to go to manual.

 

That's another misconception. Having an AE lock that holds across multiple exposures makes automatic almost as good as manual, and makes it possible to do a quick sequence of shots with consistent exposure without either the delay involved in switching to manual or the uncertainty involved in trying not to let the shutter button up too far during the sequence.

 

Some users seem to have set the speed dial to A and then spilled Superglue on it.

 

Yes indeed.

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without either the delay involved in switching to manual

 

There's zero delay if you always use manual.

 

Someone remind me what the Latin phrase is for this sort of arguing technique - that is, where you argue against a proposition that your opponent has not proposed. I don't remember any of the Latin I learned in school.

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I my case the delay would be switching to AE from the standard manual setting. It is, after all, just a digital M6 with AE stuck on as a marketing ploy.

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Thrid, I have to ask why have you added all of the extra buttons? There already is an exposure lock on the shutter release, and couldn't the scroll-wheel or a pair of the arrow buttons be used for ISO setting rather than yet more buttons?

 

I primarily shoot reportage type work, so my subjects are not static.

 

The problem I have with the M7 / M8 is that you lose the stored AE reading, once you take the shot. If you want to take a second shot you need to recompose to take the reading again, store the reading, recompose to take the picture. Repeat as many times as needed. Not an ideal setup and you are prone to missing the moment, plus you're going to get a headache from swinging your head all over the place...

;-)

 

If we had a dedicated AE lock button you would take the reading once and it would be stored until you let go of the button or maybe pressed it again.

 

 

I quite like the idea of the battery pack though, although it may make getting at the SD card more awkward.

 

Shouldn't be any worse than the baseplate... Besides, you can get about 150 shots on a 4GB card.

How often do we really need to swap?

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.........Steve they are yet to figure out what to do with the camera .

 

Ok, put your money where you mouth is. Let see your pictures.

 

Here are mine

 

ELAN FOTOS

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Interesting thread this the diehards are fighting back. Ken Tanaka mentioned the EP-1 but it does not have viewfinder. The optical-mechanical viewfinder is an essential feature of the M camera, lets hope Leica dont move away from it because then they will become another me-too company.

 

Lets hope that the S2, another 'different camera', is also a succesful endeavour for them.

 

Jeff

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Guest BigSplash
Artz, frankly that's a more serious problem than the M9. The M9 has got a whole bunch of experts looking into those issues but who have you got? It would be off topic but for a fellow M8 and possibly M9 user, perhaps we can be allowed a digression?

 

Good point and congratulations I think to you Artz....maybe you will have many little photo opportunities in the future

 

Looking to the thread and your "hopefully" valid point that "Leica has a whole bunch of experts looking into the issues" I would ask:

 

Are these Leica "experts" serious commericially minded business people that also understand and can relate to BOTH the needs of the Leica photographer AND what will drive sales (ie cause professionals and / or amateurs to buy the product).

 

I worry that history has shown that Leica seems to have a long history of getting it wrong commercially.

 

Specifically I would point to:

 

> Not exploiting technology that they developed in house first

eg Autofocus...here they had a leading patent position, but did not exploit untile these had lapsed!

 

> Not responding quickly to obvious (with hindisght perhaps) needs of the photographer

eg Ten years late for commercialisation at Leica of: SLR, TTL, Digital Technology

 

> Not marrying in house technology and bringing quickly to market exciting new items not available elsewhere

eg 0.92 Noctilux should have been around in 2006, and ASPH lens line up only now has a 18mm and there has been no 15mm since 1976

 

> Too often Leica has chased new product adventures that do not appear to be commercially "explosive "

eg If today the Summarit family of lenses represents only 50% of the more expensive high luminosity types in units shipped this has to be a commercial disaster for Leica compounded by the initial "costly" marketing plan for the Summarit series that apparently as a sales initiative simply did not work and was withdrawn. (Are these the Leica market research "experts" referred to above...??)

eg Today's strategy to attack Hasselblad (with the S2) must be risky at best

 

Frankly this thread has drifted towards talking about how easy or difficult it is to change ISO numbers via the viewfinder, or the M9 potential body size that could "perhaps" be reduced to one from two circuit boards and a easy to replace socket mounted sensor.

 

I believe that the actual product implementation is the job of the Leica R&D dept. that have a long proud history of excellence.

 

They have in my view been repeatedly let down by various CEO's and executive management who do not seem to get the commercial bit right over a long history.

 

Dr Kaufmann has been and remains the big hope for Leica and he cannot be accused of not trying. He has invested heavily and is in for the long haul. He also has made strategic decisions which are hopefully correct, but increasingly this is becoming in my view less and less obvious. The economic crisis has obviously not helped.

 

Dr Kaufmann stated, it is reported, that Leica needs 250M€uros in annual sales against a backdrop of 150M€uros in the last reported annual results, where it was also reported that sales had dropped by 50% in the quarter to June 2008. We are now in a much worsened economic worldwide crisis, but Dr Kaufmann is in for the long haul (5 years).

 

I want Leica very much to succeed. Given what we see here in the forum with respect to product roadmap, discontinuing R series, blind hope for the S2 (as communicated out of Solms), a Phase One alliance that has stalled, a less than perfect product quality leaving the factory, an after sales service that believes that 80% of all repairs and service is achieved within 5 days (not true in my experience and that of so many others)......well commercially, operationally, and product roadmap / marketing wise there is still a lot to do I think.

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Nicole, I agree with you. There is not need at all for those new +/- buttons because the arrow buttons in the scroll wheel are unused in shooting mode. One pair could be used for ISO, the other for EV (which is more important in my view).

 

Well, there is a big difference in handling between a dial and button.

 

Operating a dial takes more attention than pushing a button. The dial requires a sustained attention span, where as a button press is a shot burst.

 

One button push would effect a change of -/+ 0.5 EV. Pressed twice would mean -/+1 stop.

You could even do this without taking your eye off the viewfinder,

 

A dial doesn't allow that sort of blind control. You need to pay attention to it, unless it has strong indents like the shutter speed dial. Then you can operate it blindly, while paying minimal attention.

 

What you described works for casual picture taking, where you are making a single shot, but if things move quickly that system falls apart.

 

 

 

Besides, the more buttons you have, the more they headache of weather-proofing the camera.

 

I'm sorry, but that just makes little sense. I studied industrial design and if you are already building a sealed camera, adding two more o-rings is not a big deal.

 

 

I don't believe we can have a FF camera with the battery pack in its current position because it intrudes into the lens throat. Also, the width of the M8 battery pack is more than the thickness of the camera, so unless the M9 is going to be thicker than the M8, such a battery pack as thrid describes could not hold two M8 battery packs. If anything, I'd like to see the M9 thinner than the M8.

 

Ok, so in that case the pack gets it's own dedicated battery.

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Guest stnami

My links are obvious so think before you flap your mouth next time

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