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agreenspan

New Firmware; Does anyone know???

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As far as I'm aware my my M8 is perfectly and totally usable, and I've been using with great pleasure for over two and a half years.

Okay, may be I get carried away by my frustration at seeing Leica turning their back on a camera I just bought, and which is only two years old. Like I said, I like the M8.2, and I liked my first M8. But why the flaws? Why not correct them once and for all? Talk about stubborness. And, again, bad communication, and bad image from Leica. They are not going to sell me an M9 if they abandon the M8 just like that.

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I really don't think my M8 is flawed. It's just quirky. Mine does have a focus problem, but I learned to compensate to get around the problem and my pics turn out great, so I'm happy with my camera. I didn't pay list price for my M8, though. I bought it used, so I understand how an original owner who paid list price would get upset over their purchase.

 

My mortgage owed is just a little over the cost of an M9, so I'm counting down the months to getting my M9. Hopefully by then the M9's flaws will be fixed and I can buy one with confidence. If not, I'll buy a Nikon D3x.

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LX-3, funny you should mention that. Panasonic's v2 firmware almost created a new camera. Yeah, I know there are some bugs but none that affect anything I use the camera for and I've been extremely happy with the v2.0 update, which I installed the day it was released. The willingness of Panasonic to invest in offering - for nothing - owners a whole series of new functions is really outstanding, in several senses of the word. Unfortunately, I think that few companies have been or will be willing to do the same, and I don't see Leica and the M8 as an exception...more is the pity, especially in light of the way the M8 and Leicas in general are sold, and their price point.

 

Is this a syndrom of «the emperor's new clothes»? What is it with this Leica optimism and leniency? Just because we're Leica fans and Leica is SUPPOSED to be the best camera company in the entire universe, we should have to put up with a flawed $5,000 plus camera that the Leica people consider «finished», even if we are still complaining about high ISO banding, terrible jpegs, etc...? Give me a break! Wake up! I am sorry, but they are scr... us if they don't end up with a real solid and functional M8.x. I mean, my Nikon D700 is pretty much perfect, at half the price. So is my Lumix LX-3, and so on. They have their indiosyncrasies, for sure, but they are perfectly and totally usable as they are. The M8.x, good as it is - AND I LIKE IT! - has way too many flaws for its price and the reputation of its company. What is it with Leica people that they think they can get away with fobbing us off with their lame machine, and just go «Sorry folks, it's finished. Just content yourselves wiht it.»

 

We're not talking about improvements, we're talking about fixing the issues that should never have been there in the first place. Not in a Leica camera. And not at that price. It's been three years now, for crying out loud!

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Leica, please remember us. Buying the M8 we helped you keeping your head up the water in the last 3 years, even if the m8 was - as we knew -not perfect in all points. Would be a great "thank you" offering a update. Even if it costs.

 

lg from Willich/Germany

 

Dieter

 

+2:)

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Yes Please Leica...

 

 

 

 

 

More details here: David Farkas Photography Blog

 

although i dont think i like to say please,i prefer to say as is agreed.

Of course the unlocking of the compressed DNG files as well.

 

+2

Edited by Angelos Viskadourakis

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Yes, I mean firmware updates (not upgrades.) Correcting the flawed auto WB and the flawed jpegs in firm. 2.004 would be correcting initial bugs, not upgrading to a better camera.

 

And that the M8 be a discontinued product after three years and $5,000, when it was touted as the flagship camera for Leica, is totally nerve-wrecking. Who says the M9 isn't going to be discontinued in three years, without firmware support? Or two years? Or one year, for that matter? It's as if the digital M was some sort of cheap mass DSLR or P&S. These, you replace. But a M8 or M9?

i have very close to yours emotions.

 

PS;the initial price of M8 was 4500 euros + glass shutter upgrade ????? euros +coding 4 lenses ???? euros and so on......total around ???? euros

Edited by Angelos Viskadourakis

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Leica's silence on this matter is the most worrying aspect of this. I won't vilify Leica (yet) for not providing a firmware upgrade to the M8 to bring about a seemingly trivial thing like manual lens selection (which has probably been requested almost since the first day that 6-bit coding was announced), but I must say, for a product that used to be its flagship product and that was marketed to, among other audiences, professional photographers and which is still marketed as a camera that will last for "longer than a lifetime" (their words, not mine), some form of official announcement as to their future plans for the M8 firmware would be more than welcome. As it stands, however, it seems that we effectively have an orphaned product with no official support moving forward.

 

Personally, all I'm asking for is some communication here. If Leica tells us they won't be releasing anymore firmware upgrades, that's fine by me. If they tell us that firmware upgrades will be limited to supporting new lenses for the next 10 years, that's fine. If they tell us they want to charge for new firmware releases, that's fine, too. But at least communicate the details to us ASAP (or tell us that some announcement is forthcoming if Leica doesn't yet know what to do, which I suspect is the case) so that we don't feel like we're being jerked around.

 

 

+2:),i join my voice in a similar way.

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i have very close to yours emotions.

 

PS;the initial price of M8 was 4500 euros + glass shutter upgrade ????? euros +coding 4 lenses ???? euros and so on......total around ???? euros

The M8 I bought does not need a shutter upgrade (which in fact is a shutter downgrade unless you really need stealth, which I don't). In fact all the socalled upgrade stuff was a waste of time for me and I decided I enjoyed having the camera more than sending it away on holiday to Solms.

 

Coding of an old 90 mm lens cost me about 50 euro but that was only for simplifying the workflow, picture quality was not a factor.

 

So in fact I am happy enough as so far I have 'lost' about 1000 euro per year, and this will become less as time proceeds. My guess is that the M8 will still be competititive as a picture taking machine in about 3-5 years from now, and the price of about 2000 euro is pretty much the going rate for the forseeable future, so it will cost me about 250 euro per year or less. That is not expensive as a hobby for an amateur like me.

 

For a profesional a depreciation rate of about 1000 euro per year should be factored in anyway (the M8 economic value is presumably set at 5 years by the tax guys).

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The M8 I bought does not need a shutter upgrade (which in fact is a shutter downgrade unless you really need stealth, which I don't). In fact all the socalled upgrade stuff was a waste of time for me and I decided I enjoyed having the camera more than sending it away on holiday to Solms.

 

For a profesional a depreciation rate of about 1000 euro per year should be factored in anyway (the M8 economic value is presumably set at 5 years by the tax guys).

 

 

As the thread is about Firmware evolution i clarify that i had to upgrade my shutter anyway because the first shutter in M8 was the loudest ever made and was turning discreet photography into totaly impossible,the sapphire glass is a most usefull factor especially for someone like you and me who wants to operate an M digital camera every day and for long time.In general Firmware or Software upgrade is not manadatory and if someone does not have the need is not doing it but from the many hundred usrs that i personally know is heavily needed and even more heavily expected soon ,very soon.

Edited by Angelos Viskadourakis

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So Panasonic issued firmware update for LX3 3 weeks ago and it was faulty now they have already released the upgrade to iron out the bugs. Let this be a lesson to you Leica we are waiting for firmware upgrade to Dlux4 and more importantly the 8.2.Why so long

 

 

 

 

Zenfolio | David Sampson Photography

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If it provides and (dis)comfort to you, I believe Leica never incorporated the changes in the LX-3 v1.3 firmware. I would not hold my breath waiting for a v.2.x update for the DL4. Whether that tells us anything about the M8 family, I couldn't do more than guess.

 

So Panasonic issued firmware update for LX3 3 weeks ago and it was faulty now they have already released the upgrade to iron out the bugs. Let this be a lesson to you Leica we are waiting for firmware upgrade to Dlux4 and more importantly the 8.2.Why so long

 

 

 

 

Zenfolio | David Sampson Photography

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The M8 is an «older model»? Geez! After three years! And they won't support it anymore? What a lesson for the future. Why would it be any different for the M9? Beware, friends!

 

Spot on - my M8 is still within (extended) warranty, so I would expect continous support for it. Not really a great way to push me in the M9 direction.

 

Dirk

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reply from leica

 

There will be future firmware updates for the M8 and M8.2, but unlikely

that features of the M9 will be integrated due to a new electronics

platform in this model, even if the menus do look very similar. It would

not be a simple "copy/paste" but a work from scratch.

 

Kind regards

 

Nobby Clark

Photographic Consultant

 

mine sent back

 

Dear Nobby

Thank you for your reply but I must admit that I find this hard be totally true. I have noticed the Panasonic LX3 (sister to the leica dlux4)has recently had a firmware update that substantially changed some of its features and even though there was a bug in this it only took them 3 weeks to sort it out. I am concerned that leica will not support the *.2 top of the range digital camera when Panasonic are able to do such things for a small pocket compact

 

------------

 

anyway apart from anything else if panasonic can do this for a pocket compact i would have thought leica could have done something for the m8 which up till a month ago was their flagship camera!!

 

 

 

Zenfolio | David Sampson Photography

http://www.dpsampson.plus.com

Edited by viramati

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Thank you for your reply but I must admit that I find this hard be totally true.

 

Why? As I've said before, without access to the source code it's impossible to say whether a modification is easy or difficult. Just because it _looks_ as if something ought to be simple, that doesn't mean that it is. The Panasonic is a totally different camera, so there is not necessarily any direct comparison. Also I would imagine Panasonic have a lot more resource to put towards amending the firmware.

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Maybe true but sorry the LX3 cost a few hundred pounds and the 8.2 £3500 so even if leica is a smaller company I feel totally justified in asking for and expecting a good service. Why make excuses for them

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I'd be very surprised if the total sales value of LX3s wasn't hugely greater than that of the M8. It isn't a question of making excuses, it's about being realistic about what Leica can achieve with the resources they have at their disposal. Panasonic probably have more people designing lens caps that Leica have in total.

 

Plus no one seems to have considered that there may not be enough internal memory in the M8 to allow for the changes that have been requested.

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Plus no one seems to have considered that there may not be enough internal memory in the M8 to allow for the changes that have been requested.

 

Steve - I'll just address the two issues that I've discussed, and leave others who may know better to discuss their own favored changes:

 

1. The M8 'natively' captures 16bits (or rather 14 in reality). These are downsampled by internal postprocessing to the 8bit files we are limited to by the current firmware. The only additional processing or memory needed in this change would be a menu item to determine which bit-depth is currently chosen, and the ability for the camera to implement and remember that choice.

 

2. The camera already has an internal register of lenses - that's how the 6bit coding works, of course. It would always have been a simpler task for Leica to implement the mounted lens as a menu item, without the electronics involved in reading the coding, but the external 6bit coding was an additional revenue stream.

 

Though the changes to the menus may mean additional development time, I really don't think they're a problem for the camera, in itself.

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Though the changes to the menus may mean additional development time, I really don't think they're a problem for the camera, in itself.

 

My guess would be that you are correct, the development time is the unknown.

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Email reply today

 

I take on board what you are saying, however I can only report to you what our Director of Product Management in Germany tells me. Let’s hope at least some of the new M9 features will be backwards compatible with the M8/8.2.

The upgrades to the Panasonic LX-3 will be available for the D-LUX 4 in due course, and downloadable from the Leica website. Although I understand these are only improvements to existing camera functions.

 

Kind regards

 

Nobby Clark

Photographic Consultant

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