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Leica Announces M-Monochrom

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Thread started 10 May 2012 (Thursday) 17:35   
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sjones
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J_TULLAR wrote in post #14419806external link
Hey dont get me wrong, I like the M-monochrome... think its a great idea! My complaint is price and leica's choice not to upgrade certain things when they should. Maybe im more pissed cus now I cant afford alot of their stuff lol. But seriously 230K lcd from six years ago, leica x2 with 4mp and a panasonic evf rebadged... not much innovation for the price to be honest. Plus you shoot film dude. Im talking digital.

Fair enough, but just to clarify, my post wasn't really directed at you, and I think most people are in agreement about the high price.

Yes, I shoot film now, but when I was shooting digital, I read about the concept and possible advantages of a dedicated B&W sensor, which at that time intrigued me. Meaning that had such a camera (an affordable one!) been introduced at the time I was shooting digital, I would have seriously considered it.

For the general audience:

I fully encourage folks to read the Mike Johnston article I linked above, because he really goes into, among other things, the psychological factors involved with why he has been pushing for such a sensor (not necessarily a US$8,000 camera) for the past decade. It is an absolutely subjective argument, many will disagree, but it broadens the discussion beyond the technical.

Yes, the Leica (or even a much cheaper variant) would be a very niche camera; but in the greater scheme of things, so will be the Canon 1DX (is it available yet). Niche is not a bad thing, but catering only to mainstream or conventional demands can be. Besides, I'm assuming that most of the folks who purchase the Monochrome will already have an M9/M8 or DSLR.

Of course, there is the issue of price; the issue of merely mentioning the word "Leica" in POTN; the issue of market feasibility. But what I'm sensing, and I might be wrong, is that there are some folks simply opposed to the introduction of a B&W sensor because it doesn't fit well within their photographic paradigm. That is, even if the sensor was introduced in extremely affordable camera, there would still be ridicule.

My main point is that even if Leica has produced something that appears foolishly nonmarketable (and it might be, particularly at the price point), at least something different has been produced, something that broadens the choice of tools for photographers. And I don't see how the introduction of a B&W sensor can be such a bad thing. I do share, however, Johnston's concern that should the camera fail, it might do so due to cost, not concept.

KenjiS, I've seen a number of samples too, actually some pretty damn good ones, but frankly, I'm still sticking with film (not that I have the financial wherewithal to shift to a Monochrome anyway), but there are reasons beyond the purely technical where a B&W-only sensor might appeal to some folks; and again, there is greater choice now, there is a new idea now, and I believe that ultimately, this is a good thing.

Post #46, May 12, 2012 09:02:44


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Shadowblade
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A monochrome M9 is a much more specialised and less versatile tool than a film Leica ever was.

With a film camera, all you have to do is put in a black-and-white film and you have a monochrome camera; change it for colour film and you're back to shooting colour. Quick and simple to do, and you don't need a whole new $7600 camera to do it. With the digital version, however, you need a whole new camera to shoot black and white, and that camera can't do anything else - there's no swapping the sensor around if you want to take a colour shot.

Post #47, May 12, 2012 09:14:37




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airfrogusmc
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J_TULLAR wrote in post #14420352external link
You can shoot your FD lenses on new canons with a adaptor. Winogrand and Bresson used film leica's which is fast to rewind to the next frame, not wait 2 seconds for a damn buffer to load. You really want to experience what they did buy a Leica MP or M7 Film camera. Besides this is getting way off topic now, my point is and will always be Leica's is out pricing their loyal costumer base.

Yeah with an incredible loss of IQ and those adapters that really work are very rare now, No thanks and unlike Leica those old Canon lenses for the most part were not up for digital use. Now Leica M glass on the other hand:D

I've shot with MPs and Leica M7 and M4s. I am not a fan of the direction that many DSLRs are moving. I shot film until I started loosing jobs so work forced me digital. In fact I was still shooting with Blads and my old F-1s until 6 years ago. Not very happy with the main direction most of the DSLRs are going but have love the M9 for its simplicity. It works very well with my vision and the way I shoot.

Like I've been saying most DSLR lovers will never understand the reason why anyone like me would pick Leica and there noting wrong with that but I like many are tried of the one size fits all cameras that we now see in the DSLR market and again the Leica M9 fits must better with my vision and shooting style if I have to be digital and I have to be to feed the family;)

Just loved the way this thread started out like most that have never shot with Leica bashing a great camera that is better for many photographers than the soup du jour offered by the big two. If the soup is fine for you rock on nothing wrong with that but this is another choice and if I were retired or wasn't intrenched with my current client base maybeM-Momochrome is a choice I might make.

Post #48, May 12, 2012 09:23:59




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Laudrup
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The scary thing is these Leica lenses like the 50mm APO f/2 will be on a 9-12 month waiting list like all other high end Leica lenses such is the demand. Add into the equation people with XPro1, NEX, RED video cameras, collectors and of course Leica shooters all competing for the optics means people like me with an M9 will probably see an M10 before new lenses. Demand from the far east especially means you've got a 12 month waiting list for an $11,000 dollar 50mm lens.

I won't get an M9M as to me I don't shoot b&w enough to warrant it. I will put my name down for a 50mm f/2 APO though in preparation for the M10.

Post #49, May 12, 2012 10:24:48




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sjones
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Shadowblade wrote in post #14420432external link
A monochrome M9 is a much more specialised and less versatile tool than a film Leica ever was.

With a film camera, all you have to do is put in a black-and-white film and you have a monochrome camera; change it for colour film and you're back to shooting colour. Quick and simple to do, and you don't need a whole new $7600 camera to do it. With the digital version, however, you need a whole new camera to shoot black and white, and that camera can't do anything else - there's no swapping the sensor around if you want to take a colour shot.

If one doesn't have any intent on shooting color, then it's really a moot issue as to which is more versatile, the film or digital version. The folks laying out US$8,000 for a Monochrome are hopefully already aware of their preferences and understand the limitations---for that matter, love and embrace those limitations. Minimalism is an important value to some people, and this point seems very difficult to convey on POTN. Rumors even circulated that the Monochrome would come without an LCD screen---I would have been cool with that.

And again, I see this camera as an addendum to one's collection, not the sole utensil, although if that's the case, that's fine too.

But yes, the Monochrome is a very specialized camera, and that's the point. The debate (aside from price) I reckon then centers on if specialized cameras are pointless. I hope not; for the sake of variety and for the sake of the arts.

Post #50, May 12, 2012 10:56:06


Asheville, July-November 2014external link / Savannah, October 2014external link
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folville
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sjones wrote in post #14420800external link
If one doesn't have any intent on shooting color, then it's really a moot issue as to which is more versatile, the film or digital version. The folks laying out US$8,000 for a Monochrome are hopefully already aware of their preferences and understand the limitations---for that matter, love and embrace those limitations. Minimalism is an important value to some people, and this point seems very difficult to convey on POTN. Rumors even circulated that the Monochrome would come without an LCD screen---I would have been cool with that.

And again, I see this camera as an addendum to one's collection, not the sole utensil, although if that's the case, that's fine too.

But yes, the Monochrome is a very specialized camera, and that's the point. The debate (aside from price) I reckon then centers on if specialized cameras are pointless. I hope not; for the sake of variety and for the sake of the arts.

It's a perfect specialist's tool. It's no secret that most of the shots (film and digital) that come out of Leica cameras ultimately end up as black-and-white images. At least from a user perspective, this camera equals the cost of a new MP plus a couple hundred rolls of film. If you're shooting b/w all the time already, the M9M becomes cheaper over the long term, and it's faster.

The cost to develop it was certainly small, given its mechanical basis in the M9, and it will probably continue to be sold alongside the M10. Like Canon's astro cameras, this fills a niche, and I'm glad some manufacturers are taking a chance on a product with such small markets.

Post #51, May 13, 2012 18:32:59


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