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Author Topic: Leica M Monochrom review  (Read 19392 times)
LKaven
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« Reply #40 on: May 11, 2012, 01:51:07 PM »
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This camera would be very interesting with a color wheel.
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theguywitha645d
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« Reply #41 on: May 11, 2012, 02:11:15 PM »
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It is an interesting camera, but it is kind of like warmed up leftovers.
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Petrus
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« Reply #42 on: May 11, 2012, 02:30:07 PM »
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The camera is what it is. If you can afford it and like the way it works, go buy one.

If not, again, does it matter?

I keep bringing up certain things, like the lost possibility to apply color filters in PS or Lightroom, when the camera produces B&W files, not color. I have a sneaking feeling that not all people realize or understand this major difference, not even all those who contemplate or dream about getting this camera. Understanding this should help them make a more rational decision. A consumer right of sorts...
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #43 on: May 11, 2012, 02:37:50 PM »
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"lost possibility to apply color filters in PS or Lightroom"

That's a key point. Maybe one is expected to carry a colour M9 as well?
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michael
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« Reply #44 on: May 11, 2012, 03:19:09 PM »
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I am here in Berlin with some of the leading journalists from the photographic industry and top engineering people from several of the major European digital imaging firms (not just Leica. Many of them read this site.

Several have come up to me within the past 12 hours and asked – why do you put up with that crap – referring to this thread.

All I can say is – it's the Internet, what do you expect? Sigh.

Michael
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PierreVandevenne
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« Reply #45 on: May 11, 2012, 03:19:17 PM »
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I do not understand why one person would choose to challenge the statements of an easily identifiable person while choosing to hide anonymously behind a fake name.  What do you have to hide?  Or, are you afraid of something?  You would gain a lot of credibility by being brave and come out of hiding.  Be brave young duck!   Cool

Let me guess. :-) Technically he is 90+ % correct. Rethorically, he is 90+% rude. Observation number 2 is strongly correlated with anonymity on the Internet.

Anyway, the real culprit here is marketing. Was the same with "16bits" sensors, "patent pending" technologies bearing a striking similarity to good old binning, etc...
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Slobodan Blagojevic
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« Reply #46 on: May 11, 2012, 04:27:20 PM »
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... that does not mean that you are an expert in this field (digital imaging, including sensor operation). You are not.

Dear Donald Duck,

I think we all know who Michael Reichmann is. What we do not know (and frankly, do not care) is who you are. Is MR an expert? Not in your view, but quite so in our. Do we care whether our definition of his expertise matches yours? Not at all. Again, we know who he is, with all his strengths and weaknesses, and we like him and respect just the way he is. In other words, he already has an enviable reputation. The only reputation you've managed to build so far is your ability to choose your anonymous handle on the Internet to match your apparent personality:

"Donald is most famous for his semi-intelligent speech and his mischievous and irritable personality" (Wikipedia)

« Last Edit: May 11, 2012, 05:32:29 PM by Slobodan Blagojevic » Logged

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LKaven
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« Reply #47 on: May 11, 2012, 05:00:04 PM »
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I am here in Berlin with some of the leading journalists from the photographic industry and top engineering people from several of the major European digital imaging firms (not just Leica. Many of them read this site.

Several have come up to me within the past 12 hours and asked – why do you put up with that crap – referring to this thread.
Because you're a reasonable guy, not an authoritarian.
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BJL
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« Reply #48 on: May 11, 2012, 05:27:43 PM »
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Why should we trust a theory if it confirms your false assumption of Foveon resolving power? No sensor resolves beyond Nyquist, and Bayer CFA equipped sensors resolve over 90% of Nyquist.
Aku, relax a bit; we are not in violent disagreement. My 2:1 pixel count ratio was a rough rule of thumb, not a precise measurement: it would be absurd to propose a single precise number for all CFA cameras with their varying demosaicing algorithms and OLP filters. In terms of linear resolution, my 2:1 corresponds to the Bayer CFA approach having about 70% of the linear resolution or a non CFA sensor. I am happy to refine that 70% up to about the 80% figure suggested by Graeme Nattress (whose job at RED includes things like designing demosaicing algorithms, or so I have been told). And as I noted elsewhere, that 80% figure reduces my 2:1 rule of thumb to about 1.6:1. Even express in the more reasonable unit of linear resolution, the gain is 25%, which seems worthwhile.

But note: when I talk about resolution, I am not referring to the extinction level at which things are barely distinguished (and beloved of film zealots trying to prove the inferiority of digital to film) or measures with high contrast black-and-white test targets. I am instead talking about useful levels of retained contrast, like a MTF of 50% or better, and by that standard, 90% of Nyquist seems over-optimistic.

As to off-set micro-lenses; I had not heard of them being used other than in Kodak CCDs, but am happy to learn of progress on that front: do you have some references of them used in CMOS sensors for DSLRs or mirrorless systems?  It would be nice if Leica could use a CMOS sensor with such technology to move beyond CCDs someday soon. Note though that the modern mirrorless systems do not need to work so hard in dealing with off-perpendicualr incident light, because their new lens designs can have a high exit pupil and have a chic ray that stats reasonably close to perpendicular even at the corners of the frame (Having rear elements near the focal plane does not always mean a low exit pupil, though that is true with more classical near-symmetric lens designs.)
« Last Edit: May 11, 2012, 07:09:58 PM by BJL » Logged
BJL
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« Reply #49 on: May 11, 2012, 05:48:55 PM »
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This camera would be very interesting with a color wheel.
I have a dream: astronomers and some other scientists also have uses for monochrome sensors, often used with various filters, and indeed most models of sensor in the Kodak product list are monochrome. So might Canon or Nikon or Sony or Panasonic or (microscope maker) Olympus produce a "scientific/astronomical camera" with a monochrome CMOS sensor and Live View? This could also be of interest for monochrome artistic photography. (Though I personally would sacrifice a bit of resolution for the option of changing the filtering after the fact.)

Right now, the obvious fantasy item would be an Nikon 800M, or maybe soon a "Sony A99M" with similar sensor.

For bonus points,
- no IR cut filter, so that normal imaging would require one in front of the lens, but it could be removed for IR imaging with vastly better sensitivity and resolution than IR film ever offered.
- an EVF option for composing with Live View, maybe as a hot-shoe accessory for a DSLR or maybe making the jump to a "post-SLR" design.
« Last Edit: May 11, 2012, 05:56:43 PM by BJL » Logged
Graeme Nattress
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« Reply #50 on: May 11, 2012, 06:00:35 PM »
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But note: when I talk about resolution, I am not referring to the extinction level at which things are barely distinguished (and beloved of film zealots trying to prove the inferiority of digital to film) or measures with high contrast black-and-white test targets. I am instead talking about useful levels of retained contrast, like a MTF of 50% or better, and by that standard, 90% of Nyquist seems over-optimistic.

I'd be happy to talk MTF50% especially in low alising/moire cases! I routinely plot MTF for testing demosaic algorithms and filtration. If you relax on the aliasing, MTF50 is easy enough to achieve, but getting it good while having low aliasing is where, for me, image quality lies.

Graeme
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dreed
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« Reply #51 on: May 12, 2012, 12:25:00 AM »
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Quote from: dreed
Please put your stories through a spell checker and include a custom dictionary if need be. The last two stories have been good examplws of why this is a good idea.

I couldn't agree more.

Michael

Oh, I was trying to draw attention to one of the words in this story that got through and stuck out like a sore thumb to me, maybe I failed...
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John R Smith
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« Reply #52 on: May 12, 2012, 03:10:38 AM »
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There seems to me to be a crucial question here which has not so far been addressed.

Are B/W images from the M Monocrom significantly "better" or just different in a pleasing way -

Than the same scene and subjects taken with an M9 and the same lens under the same light, with the image then converted to B/W from the colour file using the 'V' key in Lightroom? (no after-the-fact colour filtration allowed).

Because if there is no worthwhile gain in a 16x12" print, then there is no point in buying one.

Tests, gentlemen, please. Inquiring minds want to know  Wink

John
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #53 on: May 12, 2012, 03:55:40 AM »
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Quote
Are B/W images from the M Monocrom significantly "better" or just different in a pleasing way - Than the same scene and subjects taken with an M9 and the same lens under the same light, with the image then converted to B/W from the colour file using the 'V' key in Lightroom? (no after-the-fact colour filtration allowed).

Little more than moot if you deny the possibility to fine tune the B&W mix.
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Jim Pascoe
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« Reply #54 on: May 12, 2012, 08:43:39 AM »
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Also with all due respect, you may well talk to all kinds of experts, but that does not mean that you are an expert in this field (digital imaging, including sensor operation). You are not. I just wish you could understand it and write your articles accordingly. Now they are filled with mistakes and no offense meant, you're quite arrogant in defending your writing by ignoring the criticism and praising your connections. This behavior is not too dissimilar to so called "fanboy" behavior which pollutes discussions.

Let me quote you again:
This is absolutely false. If you knew what you are talking about, instead of just repeating what someone at Leica has told you, you'd know that. Of course, I would be delighted if you would tell of one single thing that would need to be reengineered (at the "chip" level - I assume you mean the sensor, but maybe something else).

And something else from your article:Your lack of knowledge is clear here as well - Foveon does not have any color filter layers. Instead it has a triple photodiode construction where modest color separation is achieved due photons of different energies penetrating silicon to different depths with different probabilities.

And when it comes to resolution, BartvanderWolf has demonstrated in this forum that your estimates are quite false. I have also done my share of measurements and the results have been significantly different than your guestimates. I prefer measurements and science anytime over eyeballing.

Anyhow, to me this new Leica is kind of like Pentax K-01 - a minimum risk new product with minum amount of reengineering required to make it. Pentax took a K-5, crippled it and put a new body around it and that's K-01, Leica took M9, used a CFA-less sensor and that's the new camera.


Perhaps it is just my sensibility, but when people use BOLD TEXT in their posts it comes across to me as shouting.

Michael Reichman is an expert by the standards of most of the readers of this forum, I certainly find his writing is aimed at a good level for me as a photographer.  Note the word 'photographer' here.  There are a large number of 'tech heads' joining in to give their own expert opinion on various subjects.  When you have been reading the forums for quite a while one starts to get a feel for those who are just photographers, those who are also quite well versed in the technology, and then those for whom the technology is far more important than the making of photographs.  In fact some of these experts probably just take pictures to test the gear itself.  None of that matters if thats what they enjoy, but long-term LL readers can easily make their way around the various opinions and make up their own mind.  If someone new joins in and believes as gospel anything that is written here - more fool them.

Michael does get things wrong sometimes, and usually someone gently points this out and all is well.  But it is uncalled for an anonymous reader to chip in and try to make the site owner look a fool.  Even experts sometimes disagree.  Perhaps Aku is a sensor designer for a large camera manufacturer, or has a PHD in sensor design.  Perhaps we will never know, but in the meantime Michael Reichmann tells me what I need to know as a photographer.

Jim
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John Camp
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« Reply #55 on: May 12, 2012, 09:04:20 AM »
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+1
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Hans Kruse
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« Reply #56 on: May 12, 2012, 09:58:22 AM »
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Aku, relax a bit; we are not in violent disagreement. My 2:1 pixel count ratio was a rough rule of thumb, not a precise measurement: it would be absurd to propose a single precise number for all CFA cameras with their varying demosaicing algorithms and OLP filters. In terms of linear resolution, my 2:1 corresponds to the Bayer CFA approach having about 70% of the linear resolution or a non CFA sensor. I am happy to refine that 70% up to about the 80% figure suggested by Graeme Nattress (whose job at RED includes things like designing demosaicing algorithms, or so I have been told). And as I noted elsewhere, that 80% figure reduces my 2:1 rule of thumb to about 1.6:1. Even express in the more reasonable unit of linear resolution, the gain is 25%, which seems worthwhile.

To me the 80% of Nyquist would mean that 80% of the linear resolution of the sensor is the true resolution. This means that in terms of megapixels 80%*80%=64% of the sensors megapixels correspond to the true resolution of the sensor. This is pretty close to what Michael wrote on the article (2/3). This again means that the true resolution of the sensor in the monochrom(e) Leica is 18*3/2=27MP.
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theguywitha645d
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« Reply #57 on: May 12, 2012, 09:59:32 AM »
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I have a dream: astronomers and some other scientists also have uses for monochrome sensors, often used with various filters, and indeed most models of sensor in the Kodak product list are monochrome.

The scientists in my microscope lab use monochrome cameras with color filters all the time. Dream come true. The last 4MP monochrome camera we purchased was $14,000.
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BJL
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« Reply #58 on: May 12, 2012, 11:36:48 AM »
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This again means that the true resolution of the sensor in the monochrom(e) Leica is 18*3/2=27MP.
Agreed on the numbers as an adequate indication of sensor resolution, but I would avoid the often abused adjective "true". What we have here is yet another rough equivalency that I am sure will be much debated: the "Bayer CFA sensor equivalent pixel count". Add this to the "36x24mm format equivalent focal length" (as a FOV measure) and the even more controversial "36x24mm format equivalent aperture" (as a measure of DOF, and maybe of light gathering speed).
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cmi
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« Reply #59 on: May 12, 2012, 12:38:46 PM »
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Mr. Reichmann has the eloquence to communicate technical details in an intuitive manner, and especially this makes these articles stand out. This is what good teaching is about. Absolute details are not neccessary in this context: informative, insightful articles about photography.
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