… photographing with a digital M.
Oh no…what does this mean?
Nothing. And everything.
If the D850 sensor was in a Leica M, I would buy it. If the Leica M9 sensor was in a new M, I’d buy that first!
Oh Peter, you speak right out of my soul/heart!
As you know since I discovered my Leica M9 has corroded sensor and I missed the free replacement, I was not willing to pay the “bill”!
So I decided to invest in a Nikon D 750 with a 50 1.4 and a 85 1.8 lens. After the first “honey-moon” period it is still ok and I am happy I can use higher ISO and good low-light action, but you know I miss the unique look and haptic of M9(CCD) , the deceleration, this special feeling….
Peter, you see: you are not alone and it is good to be honest, isn´t it my friend!! One week ago I had a call to the Leica store in Munich if there is a successor of the M9 and you know the answer!..waitin´ is the hardest part! 🙂
I’m glad you are finding your way back to your true passion Andreas. Let me know when you get your M.
That took longer than I thought it would…
Both systems at the same time are a valid answer, if it’s not to costly.
“That took longer than I thought it would…”
Lol, am I that predictable?
I wondered how long it would take. Love all your photographs but there is something about you and an M that creates a special magic.
funny enough when i woke up today that was exactly what i was thinking myself as well. i am shooting events mainly now with my Canon/GFx. somehow i miss an M. ideally id love to have one again with a 21 / 35 and 75. Since i love the big Fuji maybe the Xpro 2 would do the trick but i am not sure.
See, by all accounts, your current gear (which is awesome) should give you everything, just like mine should for me, and yet there’s that lingering allure of a digital M…
The trouble with me is, I have no roadmap to get back to one.
Please, if you have one, give me a copy! ;-)..the roadmap
By the way, Marc, how do you like the GFX?
Peter it is the best camera i ever had, for the stuff i am doing. The 110 is a dream.
I went to the Leica store today and tested the m10 with the 35asph. it was nice to try it but i am glad i went the route that i did. and after seeing the files, there is just no comparison to medium format.
Thanks Marc… very helpful.
That’s why I kept my M despite all frustrations. I would miss a lot the joy which is photographing with a M.
I’ve got 3 lens to cover most situations and I try to not think about gear, something that I fail miserably to do since I’m all the time looking câmera stuff 🙂
Hahaha, yes most of us are guilty of that.
I still have an M, by the way: an M3. It’s just that the only thing that comes close to it in the digital world is – obviously – a digital M.
M Monochrom and M9-P – I couldn’t wish for a better combination.
It’s amazing that a post with five words and no photographs gets so many comments. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
Photography gear > photography for most.
I’m just a nobody. Been following you for a long time. Always enjoyed your frequent posts. I hate words describing photos so I’ll just refrain from descriptions and assertions. I’ll just say, I liked them. I found myself tuning in daily to see the art. Couldn’t help it. The anticipation just drew me in. That is until you abandoned the M9… Then without any real conscious thought, I just drifted away. I found myself drawn back in as the M3 posts picked up. But as those have been less frequent as of late… again my interest drifted away… not conscious. The technical beauty of the Nikon D850 and it’s associated lenses is spectacular. So what’s missing? No idea…. just that I don’t find myself with a few free minutes and a a desire to “check Peters posts”. So what do you do with this comment from a nobody? Whatever you wish I suppose. Then an interesting thing happened, again without conscious thought… At about the same time as you abandoned your M9, I found myself online securing a used M9. I guess I missed Peters posts. So I’ve found myself trying to replicate them. So without the M fix that you provided, I guess I had to resort to self-“M”-edicating. Anyways… thanks for sticking with it as long as you did with the M. I enjoyed it. And I suppose if you make the return, I’m guessing that I’ll drift back, like a bug drawn to the light. Miss you Peter.
First of all, Adam, thank you. I am fortunate to have people like you around me that are willing to give me their honest opinions.
I can’t completely answer your question re: why the D850, despite its technical prowess, doesn’t serve me as well as my Leica M3 (or, previously, my M9). The only thing I can tell you is that I can use a rangefinder faster than an SLR. I can capture the moments I’m trying to capture faster.
The CCD vs. CMOS thing is a real thing to me. That’s why I petitioned Leica for so long to make another CCD based M. At this point, I can’t go back to another M9, and they won’t build me a new one. There’s something about the CCD rendering though that I know is different. I see it in my work. I see it in others’ work.
I don’t photograph with the M3 as much in the summer months because I want to capture the colour of life around me when the light is beautiful. Of course, I can photograph with colour film, but that means handing the film off to someone else for processing (because I don’t process colour film myself) and I’m not entirely comfortable with doing that.
Yet, I’ve only printed a handful of photos to hang on the wall this year and they were all taken with my M3, despite the fact that I have photographed with it 5% of the time. The other 95% was spent with my Nikon gear.
I’m curious if you found my work interesting at all when I photographed with the M240. I couldn’t stand the sensor in it, but at least it was an M.
On a related note, I’m not convinced the M10 is right for me either. Something about its colours, as well, is not quite right…
You asked if I like the work with the 240? Reflexively, I would answer yes, but, and I say this respectfully, it felt like you were squirming as you displayed its results. The compositions were there in classic M form, but the results were unsettled and I believe it was due to the colors mainly. Take away the colors, shoot black and white, and you seemed more settled again with that camera.
The M3 suits you perfectly, but I acknowledge the workflow is more tedious, especially in the digital age. I suspect that if your work were simply for your personal life and space, you’d shoot the M3, and never look back.
I know you’re not convinced the M10 is right either. But if I could offer just a perspective – I’d love to see you acquire the M10, put your favorite lens on it and shoot a thousand pics. See what happens. Work through it and see what becomes of it. Stop fretting about it’s CMOS-ness and just shoot again.
Keep the 850 for your kids and ball games and the dance hall. I have kids too, and I get it. Keep the 105 1.4 and the 28 1.4 Nikon to document.
But Peter, it’s like your documenting but not creating. Your recording, but without the passion. The auto-focus is too quick. The moment isn’t ready. The pause isn’t there while you frame, you focus, you consider, and then you capture. Yes I agree the CCD aspect is real. But your work goes beyond that. As is evident by the M3 photos. The M is a brush that gives your canvas something special. Something that doesn’t show up with a DSLR. Im sorry that’s vaguely defined, but I suspect you understand me.
Thanks for considering this nobody’s thoughts.
I’ve always been quite jealous of what you managed to get out of the (colour) CCD Leicas, I could never get the beautiful colours that you seemed to. I believe that was due to your experience with that camera. I completely agree that there is something special and unique about CCDs, I really miss my Monochrom (which always gave me spectacular results) after I ‘upgraded’ to the M10.
I wonder have you ever considered an S2 or a Pentax 645D? They had a bigger sibling of the M9’s Kodak sensor. The 645D can be bought for very little these days, but offer 40MP – much closer to your D850. Plus the lenses are very accessible and it has great colour. S2 is another beast – I would love to see what you could eeek out of that camera.
I was about to abandon my M10 but I’ve always been extremely jealous of your 75mm Summilux and have just picked up one of my very own. Now I’m incredibly torn.
Here here Adam, I really miss the M9 Peter, it was in another league
Peter, you should loan an M10 and see if you get along with it. I have now shot the M10 for 1.5 years and the D850 for half a year. This weekend, I shot the two side by side for a wedding that I was hired to photograph. The M10 was far more satisfying to use, due to its size and discetion. D850 was great as well, but the M experience is fantastic, and the M10 is really good…
Hi Ashwin, thank you so much for offering your perspective, which is always appreciated. Congratulations on the wedding shoot. I’m sure it was quite exhausting, though no doubt very satisfying!
With respect to the M10, I am certain that I would enjoy photographing with it. At this point, however, I’d have to sell all of my Nikon gear to make it possible to purchase it along with a modest M lens. I really can’t justify doing that.
So, I’ve decided to stay with Nikon for digital photography, and to use my Leica M3 for film (which is my true passion anyway).
One thing I did do yesterday evening however, is sell my D500 (to a really nice guy who was looking for one for his bird photography) and picked up a 35 Summilux “preasph” (a lens I know you’ve used – I believe you had the titanium version) for my M3.
So, that’s what I’m looking forward to.
Hope you and your family are well.
I have seen prices on used bodies dropping to $5500 or so, but still the cost is huge to re-starting, unless you go with non-Leica or older lenses…. all of these present sacrifice, possibly unacceptable depending on circumstance.
Hi Ashwin, I just had a look at your flickr gallery, and specifically the wedding shots. The bride and groom must be very pleased with your work – wonderful photographs!
Thanks much, Peter! It had been a while since I shot one. I am glad you liked them as an objective observer
One thing I’ve always liked about your method: you can swap and change as often as you want, as long as you are not burdened with too much equipment. One can only shoot with one camera at a time, after all.
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