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Debunking online myths


Riccis

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So I was able to put the M9 to the test in a wedding this weekend and after seeing the resulting files, I'd love to get a bottle or two of whatever the folks stating the M9 sucks at high ISO are drinking.

 

IMHO, the files are 2 stops better than the M8/M8.2 and even if they are less than that there is no reason why anyone can't make images that are equal or better than those made by the darling digicams that every techno-geek is comparing the M9 to.

 

I shot up to ISO 1600 (even though I did not need to go higher than 1000) and, while I will still continue shooting B&W film, from now on all my color work (specially in low light) will be shot with the M9.

 

I shot a lot with the Noctilux ASPH and loved pairing "the beast" with the M9. I did not see any focusing issues and shot most of the time wide open, even when people were dancing... Unfortunately the exif data shows 35mm since I used a 35 cron that was not 6-bit coded and forgot to turn the lens detection to "Auto". I already expressed to Leica that it will be nice if we can eventually have the manual lens detection set to Auto whenever a coded lens is mounted to the camera (not a big deal for me but I'm sure someone will organize a rally and bring out the pitchforks because this is not available now)

 

Here are some images (straight RAW conversion, color balanced, no noise reduction applied) but please understand that the privacy of my clients is extremely important and I can't post as much as I would like to.

 

Hopefully this thread does not turn into a nightmare as my intentions are just to share the capabilities of the camera and how it works for me and the type of work I do.

 

ISO 1600, Noctilux ASPH

L1001062.jpg

 

ISO 1000, Noctilux ASPH

L1000954.jpg

 

ISO 1000, Noctilux ASPH

L1000967.jpg

 

ISO 1000, Noctilux ASPH

L1000973.jpg

 

Cheers,

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"IMHO, the files are 2 stops better than the M8/M8.2 and even if they are less than that there is no reason why anyone can't make images that are equal or better than those made by the darling digicams that every techno-geek is comparing the M9 to."

 

I'm not sure refering to everyone using a digital SLR and commenting on the M9 being a stop or a stop and a half behind the d700/d3 and the 5d MKII in the way you do, is a very good way of starting or inviting dialogue.. :) Some tests show that the M9 have more noise, maybe a stop more, than the d700, but it also has great amounts of detail. People choose what they like and can afford. Stooping to comments like the above won't help anyone I think.

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"IMHO, the files are 2 stops better than the M8/M8.2 and even if they are less than that there is no reason why anyone can't make images that are equal or better than those made by the darling digicams that every techno-geek is comparing the M9 to."

 

I'm not sure refering to everyone using a digital SLR and commenting on the M9 being a stop or a stop and a half behind the d700/d3 and the 5d MKII in the way you do, is a very good way of starting or inviting dialogue.. :) Some tests show that the M9 have more noise, maybe a stop more, than the d700, but it also has great amounts of detail. People choose what they like and can afford. Stooping to comments like the above won't help anyone I think.

 

Sorry if I was not clear... I am only comparing to the M8/M8.2 and since I don't own any DSLRs (which are also fantastic) I would not dare to make such comparison (I also don't care about equipment testing)... All I am saying is that based on what I am seeing both on screen and print, the M9 is ahead of its predecessor(s) and there is no reason to say it's an awful high ISO performer.

 

Cheers,

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Ricci - thanks. What you're seeing in images is born out by what I'm finding. I'm also very happy to see lenses being used in their native FOV. From where I stand I see little point in comparing e.g. a 35 on the M8 against a 50 on the M9. None of us who are switching to M9 are rubbishing the M8 - it was and remains a great, ground breaking camera. The reason for M9 above all else, however, is that it lets lenses like the Nocti or the 50 lux (or the neglected 90 lux asph - one of the best lenses Leica makes IMHO) do the jobs they were designed to do. If we get an extra stop (or more) this is even better. The critical fact remains (as your work shows) that the reason for getting an M9 is that it's full frame and this really makes a difference.

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Jesse - The soft release looks useful but I have did not used it too much... Thanks for your comments.

 

Riccis, excellent shots - I'd expect nothing less <grin>.

 

A question about the shutter/soft release. I used a soft release all the time on my film Ms, but abandoned using one with the M8 as I felt the shutter button was too 'notchy' and the soft release seemed to emphasis that. Is the M9 shutter release smoother than that of the M8, or are they similar?

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Steve, just to check - you know the M9 has a new 'soft release' setting? (As opposed to a physical soft release add-on button like Tom Abrahamson's)

 

Basically gets rid of one of the 'notches' by moving the release point to what is normally the exposure-lock detent. (of course you lose the exposure-lock capability).

 

I'm guessing that's what j_lir and riccis are discussing.

 

I turned on the built-in soft-release first thing, and never turned it off (was just like an M6), so can't speak to the 'normal' shutter release feel.

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