Use of M8 with fw 1.102 without UV/IR filter

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by harry__florida_, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. I am just starting today with an M8 and must be doing something wrong but can't
    figure out what exactly. My impression had been that you could use lenses
    without the UV/IR filter and only have problems in rare conditions like
    synthetic black clothing under incandescent lighting. Here is what happens for me:

    1) As a baseline, using a 35mm f2 Aspheric and proper E39 UV/IR filter, results
    are quite nice.

    2) However, using for instance a 50mm 1.4 Aspheric lens without filter (don't
    have the proper size yet), it is as if the system does not see green at all. All
    the green leaves outside my window come out drab brown. (The same for the 35 f2
    without filter for that matter.)

    3) White balance and lens detection have no effect on the lack of green.

    4) I just downloaded and installed the firmware again but no change.

    Where did I miss the boat?
  2. Perhaps your impression was incorrect. Tthe M8's extended sensitivity to IR is constant, & not restricted only to photos of "synthetic black clothing under incandescent lighting." That's just the context in which it was 1st noticed. While someone like me who rarely shoots landscapes might not see it, sounds like you're just seeing the M8's unfiltered view of foliage, etc.
  3. Moreover, my understanding is that the upgrade in the M8 firmware will generally only affect the way Capture One processes the raw files, so if you're processing those files in another application, like Photoshop or whatever, it may not make a difference (unless you used a customized profile).
  4. Is there a menu to tell it whether you are using the UV/IR filter or not? The IR filter requires shifting the color balance of the sensor.
  5. There are thre settings. Lens recognition OFF, ON and ON with UV IR.
  6. The M8 bug is buzzing round my head and this sort of story is putting me off, in addition to the whopping cost of the beast.
    I would like to know what software you are using to both view and process the photos. From what I understand, and I only know what I read on the web, the software can make a big difference. Thanks for any info. John
  7. AFAIK, the UV cut filter has to be on all lenses, at all times, for truly accurate color photography, IR exists in a lot of places, not just under incandescent light. And it shows up in foliage as well, which you have apparently discovered :)
  8. Hi Harry,
    I have the M8 since November and can only advise not to use it for colour without the IR cut filter. Green especially converts quite often, especially in the shade into a muddy greenish brown. I just got an old Canon 28 and I go through what you go through because I do not have the correct filter size.
  9. Think of a B/W IR photo. Vegetation comes out snowy white. That shows it is highly reflective of IR. Warm sunlight is very rich in IR. So your IR-sensitive M8 is bound to be swayed by the scene you describe.
  10. Hi, I'm with John, above. This stuff is extremely offputting for potential buyers. It's also
    extremely confusing, as there is so much conflicting advice. For example, Erwin Putts says
    he can find very little difference by using the IR filter, even with W/A lenses. He finds filters
    add unwanted reflections. I'd like to hear more.
  11. And then if you have IR filters, do you absolutely need to have the lenses coded (months-
    long wait and extra cost)?
  12. At first I was very disappointed in the colour produced by the M8, especially in JPG files. I find the auto white balance idiosyncratic and if a I must use JPG I set the colour temperature. Now I always use DNG files and the Capture One that comes with the camera. I am getting used to adjusting colours. I have IR filters only on my Tri-Elmar. I mainly use CV 35mm Ultron without filter. Green does sometimes seem a little dull but most times this can be adjusted. I took some pictures recently of a bottle brush plant in my college and a scene of the lane by my house. Both look pretty much like the original scene to my eyes. But that's a matter of qualia, according to my colleagues!
  13. Lane by my house
  14. Sorry too large
  15. My findings from a day of test shooting with an M8, along with conversations with a fellow pro who tested it with me and then bought one but later returned it:

    1. The IR sensitivity is always there. Leica's references to it as affecting only synthetic blacks under specific lighting is either spin control malarkey or evidence of an alarming lack of knowledge about how their product works. The fact some people claim they get away without filters may be because they haven't encountered the shifts but more likely because they haven't noticed them.

    2. Any filters can cause reflections and in those situations we always tried to do without, which sometimes made for some added work in the darkroom. With the M8 its not that simple a problem because a couple thousand shots with random IR contamination is a postprocessing nightmare.

    3. The firmware reduces the green corner vignetting caused by the IR filters on lenses 35mm and wider, and it does the correction in the camera, to the .jpg or DNG, has nothing to do with C1. Lenses longer than 35mm don't need the firmware or to be zebra coded but they still need IR filters.

    4. I agree with others, this is an off-putting issue, but one that those of us who have been in digital since the beginning have encountered before, including with expensive digital backs for MF and LF. IMHO it's the least of the reasons I wouldn't buy an M8. At least the filters solve the problem, unlike other probs that aren't solved, such as the very approximate viewfinder, the electronic crashes, and the way-off AWB. In fact, the other pro who bought an M8 the same day as we both tested them, returned his a week later dead as a doornail. When he was told it would have to go back to the factory and he wouldn't be given a loaner, he took back his money and left. That's the reason I bailed on the R system 10 yrs ago. For a pro, being flipped off by a manufacturer isn't acceptable even if we have backups.
  16. As others have pointed out the IR contamination in color images is not limited to black synthetic fabrics.

    If you study examples of IR photography, you will see that IR frequencies are present in all types of subjects. Foliage, and blood flow near skin surfaces are just two relevant sources of significant IR contamination for the M8.

    The black synthetic fabrics may have the most obvious distortions, but when IR is present, then many of sensor wells' photon counts are too high due to IR energy. The trouble is one can't know which wells have unwanted IR photon counts and how many of the a given well's counts are due to IR photons. This is why post-processing fixes are hit and miss, and why Leica provides two free IR filters/camera.
  17. IR contamination is there in all lighting conditions some worse than others for example
    tungsten gives off the worst IR light . It also affects all colors although to a different
    degree the effects of it are there pure and simple. Anyone telling you otherwise has no
    clue what they are talking about. The Ir filters are there because the IR filteration is not
    strong enough on the sensor cover plate and the reason for this it was a design decision
    by leica because a stronger filter would have caused abberations. To counter that issue
    they had to use a filter on the outside to get the IR cutting off the IR light to the sensor.
    there is a level that needs to meet and the sensor glass was not enough to do that and the
    result was a byproduct of magenta cast on synthetic blacks but it also effects other visable
    light as well. Bottom line use the filters if you want accurate color, C1 has no effect here
    on this . Also one should code your lenses from 35mm down because the IR filters the way
    they are designed there is a angle cutoff , so as you get wider the cyan cast or drift gets
    larger. 1.102 firmware has tackled that issue . So with the IR filters on and the On/IR filter
    menu option employed and firmware 1.102 there is no longer a cyan cast and basically
    your back to normal. now some will shoot without the filters and if so than turn the On/IR
    filter off so it does not compensate for the filters.

    Seriously as a beta tester for Leica firmware my advice code your lenses from at least
    35mm down use the filters and get over with it. Also use leica only filters from 24mm
    down. The leica filters are weaker than the B+W filters and you may still see a cyan cast in
    your images from 24mm down. Remember the firmware is specifacally tuned to leica
    filters and in the extreme wide area it will be noticed the most if not using the Leica filter.
    you can use the B+W above 24mm but you may see a small color shift because again the B
    +W filters are a little stronger but you can fine tune that. As far as raw converters c1 is
    very good and probably the better one for noise at the higher ISO's but also Lightroom is
    very nice and i been using that on lately. Only advice on LR is watch the magenta overall it
    does tend to have a little extra in LR, C1 maybe a little warm for some taste but you can
    adjust the kelvin a little and it is very nice.

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