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I want a Leica M9

milosz

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Contemplating the purchase of a 35/1.4G for my D700 (or switching back to Canon and using my trusty 35L on a 5DII) - and I'm just struck by how goddamn big everything has to be to get full-frame quality and a fast semi-wide.

If only a M9/35 Summarit combo wouldn't run me $8k.
 

milosz

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The X100 looks like a solid camera, if pricey at $1200ish. Fuji traditionally made great glass for their medium format line, I assume this will be as well.

But contrast detection autofocus is not a rangefinder. I can focus my 45 year old Canonet quicker than I can focus a modern dslr manually and I can focus both faster than the E-PL1 I've used. The Finepix is essentially a fixed-lens micro-4/3/NEX-style camera. Which is fine, but not what I wish I had.
 

aizan

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me too. i just can't justify spending that much money on an m9 and a 35 'lux asph-fle when i don't shoot professionally and already have an mp and 35 'cron asph.

just tell yourself that it has too much noise at high iso, no weather sealing, and a third rate processor.

the x100 can suck it. there's good and bad retro, and then there's ugly retro. not keen on the contrast detect af, either, unless it's as functional as phase detect in low light.
 

milosz

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Yeah, I was inspired by pulling out my old M7+35 'lux ASPH (v1 I guess, not coded) and Bessa R2A/M-Hexanon 50. Two brilliant purchases right as I left school (no darkroom access) and digital started its rapid ascent.

I was going to sell the pair for a wicked profit (thank you, insane Leica price jumps!), but now I'm thinking maybe I'll get a hundred rolls of Freestyle's rebranded Tri-X (Arista Premium 400) at $2.19 a roll and just shoot it for a few months. Not like Leica prices are going to come crashing down.
 

LawrenceMD

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Originally Posted by milosz
Yeah, I was inspired by pulling out my old M7+35 'lux ASPH (v1 I guess, not coded) and Bessa R2A/M-Hexanon 50. Two brilliant purchases right as I left school (no darkroom access) and digital started its rapid ascent.

I was going to sell the pair for a wicked profit (thank you, insane Leica price jumps!), but now I'm thinking maybe I'll get a hundred rolls of Freestyle's rebranded Tri-X (Arista Premium 400) at $2.19 a roll and just shoot it for a few months. Not like Leica prices are going to come crashing down.


maybe buy used? i know the leica gallery in soho has used m9's available from time to time... plus the warranty is transferrable right? even b&h has them sometimes...

there must be a some who've shelled out and had buyers remorse... pounce on those type of sellers.
 

milosz

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Even used M9s are running $6200ish privately.

There's always the M8.2, but I'm not at all impressed by that camera for the prices they still command.
 

theguy

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maybe an epson r-d1? you could pick one up for about 1k
 

aizan

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the problem with the r-d1 was a lack of commitment, on both the part of epson and cosina. the r-d1, r-d1s, r-d1x, and r-d1xg are virtually the same camera, and cosina never made any lenses specifically for aps-c. now, epson could license technology from leica to design a 12mp sensor with offset microlenses, the appropriate IR filter, and so on, and cosina could make crop sensor lenses (18/2.8, 24/2, 30/1.4 for starters). that would be terrific, but i doubt that's going to happen.

my guess is that epson and fuji came to the same conclusion: engineering a sensor that can handle the short flange-back distance of the leica m-mount and acute angle of incidence of m-mount lenses (especially wides) would be very expensive. the r-d1 has a 1:1 viewfinder to discourage users from using wide angles, pushing them toward normals and short teles. the x100 does not really have a fixed lens to make the camera as small as possible. it's mainly to avoid the r&d necessary to make interchangeable lenses practical, something leica undertook only because it had to. the sole piece of new technology in the x100 is the hybrid viewfinder, which is a refinement of the lcd projected frameline technology in the fuji ga645zi. not a new idea; people on the internet have been talking about the exact same technology for years.

maybe things would have been different if epson marketed the r-d1 as well as fuji is marketing the x100. they could have waited another 6 years, too. the r-d1 was ahead of its time.
 

Luc-Emmanuel

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The new nikkor 35 1.4 is a beast, and it's very expensive. I know the 35/2 is not good at f2 but if I wanted a 35, I would buy this one instead.

I am perfectly happy with my 50 1.4, which I use for about half my shots. About 20% are done at 24mm with either the 24 2.8 AIS or the 14-24.

I wouldn't buy the M9 which is basically an expensive piece of electronic junk. Nikon and Canon have spent years tuning the electronic parts and outsourcing to the best manufacturers the non-strategic components. Leica cannot compete yet on digital.

Buy a used M3 or M6.
!luc
 

milosz

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My 50/1.4G is pretty bad at f/1.4 and f/2, I was spoiled by the 35L (which is sharp at f/1.4). Then it suddenly becomes a great lens at 2.8, which isn't so bad with the D700's higher ISOs, but it's far from my favorite focal length. Looking back through my Lightroom archive on the 24-70G, I'm shooting at 24-35 or racked all the way out to 70.

I figure I'm going to end up going 5D II/35L/85L or D700/35G/85G (cost will be roughly the same given what I can sell, I still have my 5D I and 35L, along with the 24-105L I need to sell). Compared to my D700 files from the last two years, I was doing less processing/adjustment on 5D I files, the D700 seems to underexpose by a 1/2 stop to a full stop on most interiors and requires more sharpening.

Wish I could rent a 5D II for a week for less than $300 - tempted to buy one used and then sell it on if I decide the D700 is still better.
 

Luc-Emmanuel

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I have been quite happy with my D700 for two years and I don't have any urge to change.
I use the d-lighting auto and I have never had any problems with the matrix metering. Sharpness of my 501.4 is pretty good at 1.4 too but AF can be tricky, I guess I have been lucky.

Canon probably does great things too.

The appeal of the M9 lies in its size, but it's not a light camera by any means. Good luck in your quest for the perfect camera!

!luc
 

origenesprit

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Originally Posted by Luc-Emmanuel
I wouldn't buy the M9 which is basically an expensive piece of electronic junk. Nikon and Canon have spent years tuning the electronic parts and outsourcing to the best manufacturers the non-strategic components. Leica cannot compete yet on digital.


I thought that for a long time. But there is something special about the images you take with a Leica. Probably because of the glass.

That having said, it makes much more sense to get a 5DII, but still, don't write off the M9 as incredibly inferior. The images are, somehow, astounding, despite the seeming drawbacks.
 

Luc-Emmanuel

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Originally Posted by origenesprit
I thought that for a long time. But there is something special about the images you take with a Leica. Probably because of the glass.

That having said, it makes much more sense to get a 5DII, but still, don't write off the M9 as incredibly inferior. The images are, somehow, astounding, despite the seeming drawbacks.

Yes, they look terrific. But it's because leica lenses are terrific (at twice the price of comparable offers from nikon or canon, they'd better be).
But, the electronic inside the camera is not on par with nikon or canon, or on par with the mechanical prowess of film leica. All this makes the M9 a very unreliable camera, while its film based ancestors were very reliable.
Switching from a 5DII or a D700 to a M9 and you're probably going to be very frustrated.
!luc
 

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