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Author Topic: M8 and R1  (Read 2897 times)
Tim Gray
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« on: October 31, 2006, 07:58:52 AM »
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I've followed Michael's review as well as Sean Reid's review.  I also recall Michael's earlier review of the Sony R1.  (Which I own, in addition to a 1d2).

I confess that the only viewfinder experience I've had was as a teen when my first camera was a Rollie 35 (which I loved, but a corroded battery trashed it).  

It's hard for me to see an advantage of the M8 over the R1 - particularly if the key metric is being unobtrusive.  The ability to use the R1 as a waist/chest level viewfinder is, I think is a signficant advantage.  It can be perfectly silent, has reasonable noise performance and a pretty decent lens with a reasonable zoom range (at least considering the M8 options).  

I can also understand the feel of first class engineering vs plastic (1d2 vs r1) but in the case of the M8 is that the primary source of the incremental value?
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John Camp
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« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2006, 08:38:10 AM »
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It's hard for me to see an advantage of the M8 over the R1 - particularly if the key metric is being unobtrusive.  The ability to use the R1 as a waist/chest level viewfinder is, I think is a signficant advantage.  It can be perfectly silent, has reasonable noise performance and a pretty decent lens with a reasonable zoom range (at least considering the M8 options).[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=83032\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

There really isn't what you could call a "key metric." I shot Nikons for 30 years before coming to an R-D1 and then an M7, and soon, I hope, an M8. There's just a different method of operation and a feeling about them. One that often isn't mentioned is that with an rf viewfinder, you can "look around" the image -- see stuff outside the framing lines, which allows you to make minute framing changes. Not even the best DSLR finders are as good.

The Leica lenses are sharper and usually faster -- the R1 lens is great for zoom, but, it's a zoom, with all the advantages and disadvantages. Most of my lenses are f1.4, and I also have the f1 50mm which I think would be three stops faster than your R1; it's an amazing experience, if you've trained with film, to take a bright picture in dim light. The other night, with the RD1 set at ISO 800 and the Nocti, I made a shot of  an orchid in the light of a single lamp, in the evening, and when I brought it up on my computer, it looked like daylight. It would be an incredible combo for a wedding photographer who works in dimly lit churches.

The cameras are also small. The Leica is somewhat smaller than the R1 and somewhat lighter, I think, although perhaps not with bigger lenses.

I really think the excitement about the M8 isn't so much its capabilities in delivering image quality, which can be matched or exceeded by a 5D, as in its handling characteristics. It's very unobtrusive and quiet, and just about half the frontal size of a 1Ds2, and very unaggressive looking. At the same time, it delivers photos that can be compared to the best IQ out there.

If I were a pro and could only have one camera, it would be a Nikon DSLR. If I could have two, the second would be an M8.

JC
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2006, 08:40:59 AM »
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Tim, it's difficult to explain unless you have used an M, but there are two sides to Michael's comment...  

First, since you frame through a window with framelines, it is more like viewing the world through a window instead of a camera lens and hence the camera becomes "invisible" to you the user; you view your world through this window, framing slices of life as you go, then simply click when something suits you.

Second and more so -- and again difficult to explain until you've used it -- the M goes virtually un-noticed by people that are the subjects, like in MR's image of the lady on the bench.  I can only give you another example to explain this: I was in Provence and came across a street artist doing wonderful chalks on the cobbles in a small square.  Tourists with SLRs and even small P&S cameras would lean to make a shot and the artist would shoo them away and hide his work with his body.  I stepped over to him with a 28 mounted on my M (a *black* M), got low and close, framed a shot showing his face *and* his work, fired and stepped back. He never changed his expression or looked up from his work.  Anybody that has shot with an M will have similar stories...

Cheers,
« Last Edit: October 31, 2006, 08:44:09 AM by Jack Flesher » Logged

adias
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« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2006, 10:53:07 AM »
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... I stepped over to him with a 28 mounted on my M (a *black* M), got low and close, framed a shot showing his face *and* his work, fired and stepped back. He never changed his expression or looked up from his work.  Anybody that has shot with an M will have similar stories...

It's the magic of the "M".... as if it could not be done with any other small black camera.
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Jack Flesher
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« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2006, 07:47:18 PM »
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It's the magic of the "M".... as if it could not be done with any other small black camera.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=83069\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Sure it could...  As long as that other small black camera has fast focus, accurate metering, nearly instant shutter response and is extremely quiet while doing all those things.

,
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Anon E. Mouse
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« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2006, 09:30:45 PM »
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I think photographers gravitate to certain types of camera because they offer fewer compromises to the way they work. I started my photography career with thinking an SLR was the greatest thing since sliced bread. I had a love affair with TLRs and view cameras as well. For the last 16 years, rangefinder and viewfinder cameras have been my main instrument. Why? The only answer would be subjective - I just enjoy using them over other types of cameras.
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