Friday, 26 October 2007

Testing The Leica M8

I have used the Leica M system for many years both for professional work and also my personal photography. When the Digital M8 was released last year I was very keen to convert my range finder system to digital. However following its release a number of issues were raised concerning the cameras response to the infra red spectrum which resulted in strange colour cast.

Also a number of people raised concerns regarding the cameras general operation and layout of major controls. As a result I put off the purchase of the M8. As the year has gone on I have become more clear as to the direction I want my own photography to go. This requires I use a range finder and digital capure is a must. So yesterday I popped into my local Leica dealer and borrowed a M8 for a short time to just capture some test images and see how they integrate into my digital work flow.

Well after 10 shots I was hooked I just love the camera. These are the first images I ran through and the only issue I found was the camera produces very poor jpgs and the raw files for some reason look much better when processed in Capture 1. lightroom does not seem to work well with these files at all. In terms of colour the images are great even black clothing which was reported to be the problem seem fine to me.

Now all that remains is to sell off a bit of Leica film equipment and I hope to be using the M8 in the early part of next year. The move to the M8 will also need a slight rethink on my M series lens system and I am just looking at the best options for my style of photography, which I think will require the purchase a 21mm wide angle. The M8 has a 1.33x crop factor and 28mm has for many years been my first choice lens on the M bodies.

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