New M Monochrome

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by sanford, Apr 30, 2015.

  1. For those of you interested, has a first look and photos of this new Leica.
  2. 100% sharper imaging due to direct processing of raw data with no image interpolation
    Not sure- What exactly does this mean? First of a kind or was the previous version the same?
  3. Sean Reid also has a review up on the camera now.
  4. Image interpolation - is that not another word for jpeg? 18MP? Has Leica made an incremental change or is this an entirely new machine, or not? LL not.
  5. What exactly does this mean?​
    This, I think, refers to the fact that there is no debayering (because there is no Bayer filter over the sensor).
    Leica should also make monochrome versions of the T and S, IMO.
  6. You in the market for one of these, Sanford?
  7. Not a chance, just a long time rangefinder fan.
  8. Files are gorgeous and based off the M240, has video mode as well. Still, a boat load of money for a
    technology that is constantly changing. I'd go for it if I could stomach the hit to my bank balance.

    Btw I'm really happy with the M9 files for color, but compared to the M8, it seems not nearly as easy to get
    impressive black and white out of that camera... I've tried Silver efex, and wasn't too fond of the program.
  9. I'm impressed. - I hoped for this camera to come but wow, it happened over a year earlier than I expected. - (un?)fortunately I am left to waiting for accessible reviews and watching market development until demos or preowned ones become available. - OK there isn't much left to review. I'm just curious about a ISO performance comparison and people's thoughts about handling files from CMOS & CCD in post processing, which might be too hard with color cameras. I hope a M9 based Monochrom makes a good 2nd body at the new one's side.
    Karim is right about the S & T series although I'd guess they 'd be a smaller niche than M Monochroms. - I never enjoyed composing through filters, used them mainly on RFs and TLRs. No issue in case of the Leica T but surely one with the S series and I guess who buys into it brings light and / or tripod and isn't unlikely to suffer from clients demanding color work so the advantages of a debayered sensor might be less appealing to S users?
  10. Here's a review I haven't read yet:

    Photos there are less impressive than on the (paid) site I mentioned previously. As usual it's the
    photographer, light, and subject matter that count for 95% of the picture.
  11. I agree I don't know what 100% sharper means - does it resolve twice as much detail? Twice as sharp - huh?
  12. Brad posted a link to rent cameras awhile back. I might look it to renting one for a few days. Just for fun. Not interested in buying one myself either. My 30, 40, and 50 year old cameras work just fine.
  13. Ray, have you used Photoshop with the M9 output and variation of converted image via the color sliders? I am not completely happy with any digital b&w but seem to get fairly good tonality from Photoshop editing.
  14. A couple of examples (low resolution files) of the M9 with 35mm ASPH Summicron, with image editing in PS Elements. I do agree that the M8 does an excellent job as well.
    Best to click on the images.
    Whatever the weaknesses of the M9 (low ISO is an important one) the differences at a certain level for low ISO photography are likely quite small. I am willing to be corrected on that, of course.
  15. Another from the same series - an M9 color image transposed to B&W.
  16. Thanks Arthur, those look good. Yes, I use PS black & white conversion and adjust the sliders- noticed
    today the yellow slider in particular is useful, along with green and red. I can get serviceable b&w, but
    usually nothing that hits me hard as was easy with one flip of the switch with the M8. Don't know if it's the
    subject matter, but I don't think so...
  17. I don't know what 100% sharper means - does it resolve twice as much detail? Twice as sharp - huh?​
    Almost, yes. Debayering takes its toll. But it's more efficient than having a three layer sensor, even when you take into account that you need more photosites.
    Think of a Bayer array as a compression algorithm. Instead of compressing the image after it's taken, it's compressed before it's taken. Sort of. So what ends up happening is that the system sacrifices resolution in order to build a colour image. Engineers can explain this better than I can.
  18. BTW I have just looked through this review:
    My conclusion is that if you want a digital b&w M, the M246 is a winner. The M240 loses badly to the older MM at higher ISOs. So even today, the MM makes sense, whether it's compared to the 240 or a DSLR. It would be great to update the MM with the newer shutter mechanism. But Leica doesn't tend to do such things.
  19. Sean's field pics with it were very impressive, and comparison studio pics with the M9 based MM fairly convincing. Then again the photos from the field were of a completely different subject, different day, different light, than he had shot with the earlier version MM, so who knows.
  20. The new M246 uses 12-bit pixels compared with the 14-bits of the M Monochrom's CCD.

    Performance issues were cited as the reason for using 12-bits. Probably a lot more in-camera processing of data from the
    CMOS sensor with the M246, so out of camera images should be good. But- for anyone used to working with "tones",
    Curves", exposure and contrast adjustment- may be an issue. The DCS760m of 2001 used 12-bit pixels with a 6MPixel CCD. It was not a success.
  21. My, some beautiful images on that link.
  22. Anyone noticing a green tone in some of the images? Usually in the darker tones of the image, what is that?
  23. Karim's link to the Simpson review is worth seeing.
    If the M246 is that good with low light and shadow detail (re final example) compared to the MM and M240 it may be the time to think about replacing medium format or large B&W film photography with the 246. Now if there was just a quality way to convert the digital file to film for enlarging that would help those of us who are still hanging on to darkroom photography.
  24. Sorry, It was my screen calibration. Fixed.
  25. "One of film’s most useful attributes is, for me, the way it gently rolls off the highlights in an overexposed area" Egor
    Film lovers are certainly appreciative of his comment at the end of such exhaustive testing of these three great digital cameras (of course with a stellar lens).
    As evidenced by the incredible performance of the new M246, in certain difficult image making situations, digital vs. film performance narrows to a point never seen...
  26. The histograms that I get from the M Monochrom jpeg converted images do not show the comb structure of the one
    shown from the M246. I can speculate that the 12-bit image was stretched a good bit to produce an 8-bit histogram as

    I see banding in High-ISO images at ISO 12,500 and 10,000 with the M246. The original M Monochrom has Gaussian
    noise, but does not show banding if you take some care in selecting slower SD cards. I use Sandisk 8GByte 4x cards.

    Gaussian noise is easily and effectively corrected using LR noise reduction with the 14-bit image. The correlated
    banding in the M246, not as easy to correct in the 12-bit image. I suspect that the camera's firmware is truncating the
    14-bits to 12-bits and then clipping the black levels to ultimately give the range 0-3750 in what was originally a 14-bit
    number coming off the A/D. The whote level in the DNG is set to 3750, the black level is set to 0. The images are
    processed, the original M Monochrom stores close to Raw data.

    What is going to happen as more cameras get released- some cameras will be worse than others, and some shooting
    conditions will be worse than others. Sensors double noise level "about" every 5~6 degrees centigrade. If the noise level
    shows up as fixed-pattern noise. it will be noticeable.

    I would use a slow memory card and avoid use of Liveview when shooting at High ISO with the M246. Also turn off your
    cell-phone and I-Watch. Just an added bonus, peace, quiet, and no distractions as you shoot.
  27. it


    "Now if there was just a quality way to convert the digital file to film for enlarging that would help those of us who are still hanging on to darkroom photography."
    Salgado converts digital to a physical neg, so there is definitely a "quality way".

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