Leica SL or Fuji GFX?
Old 01-09-2017   #1
ymc226
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Smile Leica SL or Fuji GFX?

I don't need another camera but why not give in to GAS if you can? I was very close to getting the Leica SL. Now realizing the GFX is coming out, I am re-thinking my options.

Size wise, both are acceptable. I have the Leica Q so the sensor would be almost identical on the SL which I don't prefer over my M240 or M9-P sensor outputs. My favorite lens is the 21mm Super Elmar on the M and rarely use a lens longer than 28mm.

Most of my photos are of the family, not requiring fast auto-focus or tracking and I stopped shooting kids sports as I find those uninteresting. I also like landscape and candid shots of the family. My photos not kept on the hard drive but I print using an Epson 3880 and Imageprint as my RIP.

When I shot film, it was B&W which I processed myself and used 35mm, 6x6, and 6x9 formats, printing on an enlarger, not scanned.

Since I have my small format cameras covered (Leica Q, M9-P, MM, M240), I would want a larger system if it improved image quality akin from going from 35mm to 6x9. I did appreciate the MF film perspective.

I would think the autofocus speed on the Fuji would be good enough. The AF on the Leica would be quicker and I've read that the EVF on the SL is better then the Q which I find very adequate. Hopefully the EVF on the Fuji would be as adequate as the Q.

Cost wise, I would get the SL body and the 16-35 zoom which won't be out until late this year which would likely be a few thousand more than the GFX and the upcoming 32-64 zoom (24-51 equivalent). I would likely also get the 23 (18mm equivalent) so the total costs for either system would be very similar.

Is anyone thinking along similar lines?
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Old 01-09-2017   #2
brennanphotoguy
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I would hands down choose the GFX over the SL. You've got your bases covered with 35mm sensor cameras so I don't see much of a point in adding an SL to your line up. That's just an outsider looking in based on what you already own. In general the GFX has a fair amount more "pros" than the SL that don't just pertain to just your situation.
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Old 01-09-2017   #3
aizan
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i wouldn't buy either since there's no real point to it. i would rather get some nice furniture.
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Old 01-09-2017   #4
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i wouldn't buy either since there's no real point to it. i would rather get some nice furniture.
I have no control over furniture; that is the realm of the WIFE
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Old 01-09-2017   #5
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I would go with the Fuji (or the Hasselblad).
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Old 01-09-2017   #6
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The X1D is quite small. You might get rid of all your Leicas. Well, keep one!
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Old 01-09-2017   #7
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If I had such options, I would just go to the 007. Polished, with the glass selection already complete. The fuji or hassie would be a fun toy, though.
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Old 01-09-2017   #8
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If I want a medium format, 50 Mpixel camera, I'll buy a CFV-50c back for my Hasselblad V system. For what I usually do, photographically, the SL is a much better choice than any medium format digital camera.

If I want a camera of a similar size to the SL with a medium format sensor, the Hasselblad X1D is much more appealing to me. I'd only want one or two lenses for such a camera and it's a cleaner, simpler design than the Fuji, if perhaps somewhat less versatile.

(Why do you prefer the M240 sensor over the SL sensor? The SL sensor produces results almost indistinguishable from the M240/262 cameras, using the same lenses, with the added benefit of a 1-2 stop improvement in noise performance and dynamic range. What's not to like about that? And how do you know you don't like it if you don't already own/use the SL? The sensor is, btw, not the same as the Q sensor, although I believe it is a similar sensor family. )

G
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Old 01-09-2017   #9
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GFX

Fujifilm has clearly been listening to their customers and constantly making improvements on all their models to support them. Also, I much prefer the look of Fujifilm lenses over other manufacturers. My two cents.
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Old 01-09-2017   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stompyq View Post
I would go with the Fuji (or the Hasselblad).
+1 ...

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Old 01-09-2017   #11
uhoh7
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Fuji is def pulling out the stops to establish the mystique:
http://www.diyphotography.net/fuji-t...-show-off-can/
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Old 01-10-2017   #12
jsrockit
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You have enough Leicas... time to move on to something that can add something to your work / gear.
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Old 01-10-2017   #13
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I would say GFX although I have tried out the SL and it is amazing.

Reviews have been pretty meh with the Hassi. 9 seconds to turn on?
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Old 01-10-2017   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
If I want a medium format, 50 Mpixel camera, I'll buy a CFV-50c back for my Hasselblad V system. For what I usually do, photographically, the SL is a much better choice than any medium format digital camera.

If I want a camera of a similar size to the SL with a medium format sensor, the Hasselblad X1D is much more appealing to me. I'd only want one or two lenses for such a camera and it's a cleaner, simpler design than the Fuji, if perhaps somewhat less versatile.

(Why do you prefer the M240 sensor over the SL sensor? The SL sensor produces results almost indistinguishable from the M240/262 cameras, using the same lenses, with the added benefit of a 1-2 stop improvement in noise performance and dynamic range. What's not to like about that? And how do you know you don't like it if you don't already own/use the SL? The sensor is, btw, not the same as the Q sensor, although I believe it is a similar sensor family. )

G
I do have 2 203FE and 1 205FCC bodies and about 8 CFE V lenses but I've read the CFV 50 is slow to work with as well as not having auto focus. The V bodies (FE/FCC) also have to mildly modified in some way and I'd rather not do it as when I retire, I want to return to film/processing and enlarger printing when I have more time.

Godfrey, why would you prefer the Hasselblad? GIven the many issues with Leica service recently and now with Hasselblad not being able to deliver the X1d on time, their imminent sale to another owner, I'm not so sure their service, if required, will be any good. Speculation, I admit on my part. Fuji seems to have a better lens plan proposal and would adhere more stringently to their specified timeframe.

In terms of the SL sensor, I just assumed it was similar to the Q sensor which is not that much better than the M240 for my uses. I usually do 90+% of my shooting in full sunlight at the beach so don't need high ISO.
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Old 01-10-2017   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ymc226 View Post
I do have 2 203FE and 1 205FCC bodies and about 8 CFE V lenses but I've read the CFV 50 is slow to work with as well as not having auto focus. The V bodies (FE/FCC) also have to mildly modified in some way and I'd rather not do it as when I retire, I want to return to film/processing and enlarger printing when I have more time.

Godfrey, why would you prefer the Hasselblad? GIven the many issues with Leica service recently and now with Hasselblad not being able to deliver the X1d on time, their imminent sale to another owner, I'm not so sure their service, if required, will be any good. Speculation, I admit on my part. Fuji seems to have a better lens plan proposal and would adhere more stringently to their specified timeframe.

In terms of the SL sensor, I just assumed it was similar to the Q sensor which is not that much better than the M240 for my uses. I usually do 90+% of my shooting in full sunlight at the beach so don't need high ISO.

Those 8 CFE lenses would ironically be easier to use on the GFX than a Hasselblad with the CFV back. Manually focusing with an EVF is pretty great overall. The crop factor sucks, but the quality will still be great. I bet somebody smart could design an adapter that fires and cocks the leaf shutter, lotsa room in that flange distance.
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Old 01-10-2017   #16
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On the plus side for getting the SL as Godfrey stated: the better dynamic range and allowing me to use my M lenses with an adapter to get better focusing with the Noctilux and other lenses with focusing issues (I have a pre FLE 35 ASPH lux).

My question is when focusing a M lens using the EVF on the SL. Does the aperture stay at the chosen aperture set on the manual lens or does the SL itself open the aperture to wide open maximum prior to pressing shutter release? If the latter, it would defeat the purpose of trying to overcome the focus shift effect.
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Old 01-10-2017   #17
Calzone
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Originally Posted by ymc226 View Post

My question is when focusing a M lens using the EVF on the SL. Does the aperture stay at the chosen aperture set on the manual lens or does the SL itself open the aperture to wide open maximum prior to pressing shutter release? If the latter, it would defeat the purpose of trying to overcome the focus shift effect.
On a SL there is no auto diaphram so the selected aperture is used.

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Old 01-10-2017   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ymc226 View Post
I do have 2 203FE and 1 205FCC bodies and about 8 CFE V lenses but I've read the CFV 50 is slow to work with as well as not having auto focus. The V bodies (FE/FCC) also have to mildly modified in some way and I'd rather not do it as when I retire, I want to return to film/processing and enlarger printing when I have more time.

Godfrey, why would you prefer the Hasselblad? GIven the many issues with Leica service recently and now with Hasselblad not being able to deliver the X1d on time, their imminent sale to another owner, I'm not so sure their service, if required, will be any good. Speculation, I admit on my part. Fuji seems to have a better lens plan proposal and would adhere more stringently to their specified timeframe.

In terms of the SL sensor, I just assumed it was similar to the Q sensor which is not that much better than the M240 for my uses. I usually do 90+% of my shooting in full sunlight at the beach so don't need high ISO.
... why would you prefer the Hasselblad?

I presume you're referring to the X1D here. I handled this camera in the demo tour last June and absolutely love the shape, the controls, the finish, and the features. I haven't handled the GFX yet, of course, but it looks larger, with clumsier controls and ergonomics... and more features than I have any interest in. Also, my experience with Fuji medium format cameras in the past and with Fuji digital cameras more recently distances me from wanting Fuji equipment ... I was never all that delighted with their MF lenses, and actively dislike their control ergonomics on the digital cameras.

The fact that it took Hasselblad longer to deliver on the X1D than they expected doesn't bother me at all. Now they are shipping, and with the alleged injection of cash from a major stockholder, things should all turn upside there. They've been struggling for a long time, this might well be the turning point for them just as the M9 was a huge turning point for Leica.

Regards your other comments:

- I have 1978 SWC and 500CM Hasselblad bodies and five lovely lenses; no modification needed for the CFV-50c, which makes no difference to me as I'm now retired and will never 'go back to film' anyway. While I do still shoot a small quantity of film every year, I greatly prefer the workflow and performance of an all digital capture to print process.

The move to a CFV-50c would allow me to dispense with film processing while using my existing camera bodies and lens kit. It's speed of operation isn't of any concern to me; speed of operation has never been a consideration for medium format work in my use. Autofocus is also of little interest to me. With the V system, I use a tripod about 90% of the time. It's just how I like to work with MF; I really only use the SWC hand held, and that just once in a while. If I need speed, I pick up a Leica.

- I have had good experiences with Hasselblad service and not-so-good experiences with Fuji service. But I haven't really needed much service from either of them—it's not a big factor.

- Leica service: I've had no issues with Leica service and also only a little need for it. Yes, my M9 sensor became corroded—they took care of me very efficiently and I moved to newer bodies. My SL has been in use for over a year and almost 10,000 exposures with not a single problem. None of my film Leicas ever had any serious issues that I couldn't pin down to either my or previous owners' neglect, and all were serviced easily and quickly, at low cost.

- The SL's performance is simply terrific whether you use high ISO or not. I use it side by side with the M, its improved DR is evident at ISO 50 (which the M doesn't support). If you're in full sunlight in your photography a lot of the time, that alone is a significant edge over the M240 or Q. The SL's viewfinder nets a precision in focusing and framing impossible with the M240, and a lens versatility also impossible with any rangefinder camera.

The X1D is a medium format digital camera in the same form factor as the SL. I would buy one almost immediately if they offered a 22mm lens for it because then it would match the FoV of my SWC when set to square crop with a little more than double the pixel resolution of the SL. In fact, if they offer that lens, that's all I'd want with it: it becomes a fully native digital SWC in essence for my use.

In sum, I'm happy with the SL as my go-to camera, the M-D to complement it for 'light and casual shooting," and am in "wait and see" mode as I watch the X1D get into release and Hasselblad revs up their dedicated lens kit for it. There's not much else in new equipment that has any interest for me, other than the digital back for the V system.

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Old 01-10-2017   #19
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Originally Posted by ymc226 View Post
On the plus side for getting the SL as Godfrey stated: the better dynamic range and allowing me to use my M lenses with an adapter to get better focusing with the Noctilux and other lenses with focusing issues (I have a pre FLE 35 ASPH lux).

My question is when focusing a M lens using the EVF on the SL. Does the aperture stay at the chosen aperture set on the manual lens or does the SL itself open the aperture to wide open maximum prior to pressing shutter release? If the latter, it would defeat the purpose of trying to overcome the focus shift effect.
The aperture of an M lens cannot be controlled by any body, so you always use M lenses at working aperture. Same for R lenses when adapted to the SL.

G
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Old 01-10-2017   #20
Calzone
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The aperture of an M lens cannot be controlled by any body, so you always use M lenses at working aperture. Same for R lenses when adapted to the SL.

G
No handicap at all for me on my SL.

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Old 01-10-2017   #21
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No handicap at all for me on my SL.
It's not much of a handicap for me either, although the reduction in metering range implicit when using lenses at working aperture was a bit of a problem until firmware v2.2. It seems with v2.2 that they've expanded the manual lens metering range by a stop or so—it's now just about right.

G
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Old 01-10-2017   #22
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It's not much of a handicap for me either, although the reduction in metering range implicit when using lenses at working aperture was a bit of a problem until firmware v2.2. It seems with v2.2 that they've expanded the manual lens metering range by a stop or so—it's now just about right.

G
Godfrey,

Thanks for the update. Didn't realize the upgrade with the new firmware.

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