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Old 02-15-2011   #81
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Brilliant advice. Not invariably true, but true enough, often enough, to be a bloody good rule of thumb.

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Go for it.
You might be disappointed, but it's better to regret things you did do rather than things you didn't.



Yeah, this is a good quote. Like it lots. Your a professional so this question is prob best answered by other pros in my opinion. But, from a hobbiest, I'd say go for it. Get that magnificent camera and keep an Ikon ZM as a back up if your inclined.

Think of the pictures you'll make!
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Old 02-15-2011   #82
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I've quietly gone 100% digital in the past few months...sad to say. But digital photography increasingly offers options that actually suit my aesthetic needs, which was not the case just a few years ago. I say go for it.
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Old 02-15-2011   #83
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I made the M9 leap last summer - best photo decision I've made. It's a wonderful camera. I'm now finishing selling off a few collectables but I'm keeping my M6's and some screwmount Leicas.
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Old 02-15-2011   #84
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I ask myself a question: If price was the same (no money involved), would I trade my M6 for a M9?. The answer is WITHOUT A DOUBT and RIGHT NOW.

So for me it's clear. I don't do it because the price is not the same or even close, and there isn't any alternative (wish Zeiss or CV listened). I've returned to digital with a humble Canon G11, that gives my previous Canon 350D DSRL a kick in its butt in the IQ department. Digital has improved so much even in the las 4-5 years... I can't imagine how great the M9 is. I've seen pics made by it and they're stunning IQ wise.

Since I bought my G11, the M6 has seen way less use than before. I miss it, but developing/scanning/post processing has become a PITA for me too. The pity is that I LOVE B&W film looks, but the trouble is too much for me at the moment.

So, ask yourself that question and then go for the M9 :-).
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Old 02-15-2011   #85
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Is the M9 worth 7 grand? Yeah, it is. It's a shockingly good camera.

Should you sell your film gear in order to fund it? That's a harder question to parse. Especially the M2 that's been with you for 20 years - I'd have a tough time with that. But if it clearly comes down to an either/or... yeah. The M9 is worth almost any kind of gyrations that are necessary in order to get it.

It bottles up all the old Leica ethos in a blow-you-away-good digital body.
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Old 02-15-2011   #86
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Originally Posted by Vince Lupo View Post
I have given Penn Camera a try -- the closest location is Reisterstown Road, which is about 30 minutes away from me. One hour round trip to drop off film, one hour round trip to pick up the film. A roll of 120 is $22 for process and print. Not worth it, at least for me. That was one of the things that pushed me this week.
I have to make that long of a trip, longer if traffic is bad. I tend to time it for when traffic isn't bad, unless I *really* want the film back.

Thankfully I only pay about $12 for a roll of 120 with 5x5" prints. I think a roll of 120 or 35mm slides is about the same. I've moved to doing all my B&W developing and scanning, that helps a lot. Eventually I plan to get a dark room set up.

There is a place on the way to work that would send 35mm or 120 out to be developed, but I'm not happy with the results I've gotten when I had them do some for me.

A part of me wonders if there is a full frame digital Leica in my future, but even if there is, it's the distant future. For me I think one of the big issues will be the availability of colour film, as I shoot both B&W and Colour with my Leica (I'm primarily colour with the Hasselblad and B&W with Large Format). Costs like you're facing would definitely get me to give up the Hasselblad, or move to mostly B&W for it.

I recently read that it doesn't take long for Leica MP to be more expensive than an M9, and sadly I have to agree.
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Old 02-15-2011   #87
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Originally Posted by semordnilap View Post
And as for platinum-palladium, I think I read an article a while back, maybe on Luminous Landscape, about printing 8x10 transparencies from digital files and doing P-P from those.
Both "Black + White" and "Photo Technique", IIRC, have had articles on this recently. I believe there are also a couple books that touch briefly on the subject. Digital negatives have been around for a few years. I opted to go Large Format and start developing my own sheet film rather than do digital negatives.
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Old 02-15-2011   #88
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Can you rent for a month?
The only place I know of off the top of my head wants something like $500-600 per week to rent a M9.
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Old 02-15-2011   #89
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Best alternate is to do the Leica Akademie and have a hands-on day if there's not a retailer close. That's what sold me on an M9. I did go out and buy an M8 and will probably pick up an M9 at some point.
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Old 02-15-2011   #90
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Honestly, now is probably the best time to sell your film bodies. The longer you wait, the less you'll get for it. Values on most have been dropping. One area I've noticed this might not be true is with at least some Leica M bodies (I could swear prices have gone up the last year).

If you have any cameras with sentimental value, I say keep those. I also recommend keeping at least one, if not two Leica M film bodies as a backup to the M9. Definitely keep your Leica glass, you're going to need it!

For the other lenses, think carefully.
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Old 02-15-2011   #91
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richard photo lab in LA is fantastic.
give them a shout.
might change your mind.

i use 2 m9's and i shoot lots of film as well.

i prefer film.
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Old 02-16-2011   #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Sweeney View Post
>My M2, M5, Robot Royal 36, Contax II, Hasselblad, screw mount
>Leicas, etc (I will probably hang onto my Contaflex TLR and maybe a
> screw mount Leica that I've had since 1988). I'm going to keep all
>my Leica lenses, but I've pretty well decided to do this.

Of the film cameras listed here, which do you use most? Which will being the most income, and be missed the least? The Contax mount lenses require an adapter for use on the Leica, which runs as much as a Contax body. The M5 will bring more than the M2. The Hasselblad is the most expensive in terms of cost to operate, 120 film and processing is more than 35mm.

If you sell them all, prices of film cameras allows buy-back. But if you have a favorite, keep it.

With me- after collecting for 40 years, lots of film cameras.

Definitely appreciate all of the replies -- I know there are positives and negatives (excuse the pun!) to going this route or not going this route.

I think the one camera I'll miss is my M2 -- I've had it the longest (over 20 years), and I've done my best shots with it. Plus, I had it motorized to take the M6 motor (which comes with the body), and it's a Canadian one, so I think it will actually bring in more money than the M5 (assuming of course they sell at all). But, I haven't really used any of these cameras in a while. If I wanted to sell the camera that would bring in the most money, then of course it would be my Contaflex TLR with its 4 lenses (including a converted 2.8cm f/8!). As far as 'income' goes (don't know if you also mean that to be as a commercial money-making tool), I don't use any of them for that purpose (at least not any more). I used the M2 and (to a lesser extent) the M5 as money-making devices when I worked for the AP and other news outlets in Washington back in the late '90s-early 2000's, but the D700 is currently taking those duties. Just the way things are going, fortunately or unfortunately (not sure which!). I think really it's probably a good thing, but of course now that the technology allows you to get the image quicker, clients are now expecting things quicker (and of course not paying you any more!), but that's a whole other discussion for another thread....

So I had a bit of any update on an M9: I'd really like a grey hammertone M9, but I have an opportunity to buy either a new black one for $6650, or a black demo for $6250 (no, not from one of those eBay scam sellers!). Worth saving $750 to go for the demo, and a black one at that?

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Old 02-17-2011   #93
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For 'only' $750 I'd rather go for the brand new, just to save any potential issues that ex-demo models might come with.
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Old 02-17-2011   #94
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I would never buy a demo electronic device (and that's what an M9 is) based on the experience of my stepfather who alway buys demo models. Too much risk of people thrashing the thing.
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Old 02-17-2011   #95
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vince Lupo View Post
Selling My Film Cameras for an M9 -- Wise?

After having had a very frustrating week trying to get some film processed in my neck of the woods (...)

Thanks in advance for your thoughts....

Bad idea. Learn to develop it yourself; buy a scanner. I'm not saying not to "go digital". I'm saying "don't jump [the film] ship".

Trust me, once [currently Red-flag country's regime] starts getting a bit cocky, maybe in about a decade and diplomatic tensions flare, all electronics will go up in price. Well, pretty much everything, until the rest of the world re-learns to manufacture things for themselves. Yeah, I was laughed at and yelled at in 2000 when I said the bubble will burst, and a few years later that I looked in horror at the housing market ballooning...so I know I will be laughed at and yelled at when I say this about [currently Red-flag country's regime] going cuckoo.

Stock on film. Keep your well-built film cameras (go all manual!).

And keep your aluminum foil hat handy. Just kidding.
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Old 02-17-2011   #96
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And keep your aluminum foil hat handy. Just kidding.
... what is the aluminium foil good for ?
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Old 02-17-2011   #97
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... what is the aluminium foil good for ?
http://zapatopi.net/afdb/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tin_foil_hat

http://www.imdb.com/media/rm833329408/tt0286106
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Old 02-17-2011   #98
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... makes sense to me.
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Old 02-17-2011   #99
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Trust me, once [currently Red-flag country's regime] starts getting a bit cocky, maybe in about a decade and diplomatic tensions flare, all electronics will go up in price. Well, pretty much everything, until the rest of the world re-learns to manufacture things for themselves. Yeah, I was laughed at and yelled at in 2000 when I said the bubble will burst, and a few years later that I looked in horror at the housing market ballooning...so I know I will be laughed at and yelled at when I say this about [currently Red-flag country's regime] going cuckoo.
Not quite sure why you're using the circumlocutions, but I'd be surprised if the current fad for revolutions didn't spread outside the Near East, and rather sooner than in a decade. I'm not laughing or yelling at you; I'm saying you're being optimistic.

Then again, I'm not sure how much that will matter when it comes to M9s. Cheapo consumer electronics, yes, but not the higher-end stuff. And it would be interesting to see how fast e.g. a free Tibet got into high-tech industries. With a 100,000+ Tibetan diaspora, many keen to go home, things could get very interesting, very quickly.

Cheers,

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Old 02-17-2011   #100
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Hi Roger -- using a digital camera (high end or not) implies the use of a computer. Once hardware prices begin to climb, people will begin to rethink about how "the digital age" has been taken for granted.

Some people swear only by the fork, others only the spoon, and others only the knife. I like to keep all for my table.


BTW, ten years is usually the time it takes for most people to figure out what just happened.
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Old 02-17-2011   #101
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Originally Posted by Vince Lupo View Post
So I had a bit of any update on an M9: I'd really like a grey hammertone M9, but I have an opportunity to buy either a new black one for $6650, or a black demo for $6250 (no, not from one of those eBay scam sellers!). Worth saving $750 to go for the demo, and a black one at that?
Yes, it is worth it... that means you can keep one of the items you were thinking of selling right? As long as the warranty is the same and they will let you return it if it is broken in any way, I see no problem. As far as people saying not to buy demo electonics, it isn;t like you are buying from Best Buy or some other place were demo units are not supervised. I'm sure the demo units of M9s are babied in camera stores.

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Old 02-17-2011   #102
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Bad idea. Learn to develop it yourself; buy a scanner. I'm not saying not to "go digital". I'm saying "don't jump [the film] ship".

Trust me, once [currently Red-flag country's regime] starts getting a bit cocky, maybe in about a decade and diplomatic tensions flare, all electronics will go up in price. Well, pretty much everything, until the rest of the world re-learns to manufacture things for themselves. Yeah, I was laughed at and yelled at in 2000 when I said the bubble will burst, and a few years later that I looked in horror at the housing market ballooning...so I know I will be laughed at and yelled at when I say this about [currently Red-flag country's regime] going cuckoo.

Stock on film. Keep your well-built film cameras (go all manual!).

And keep your aluminum foil hat handy. Just kidding.
Buy a scanner...Hmmm Not my idea of fun - worst job in photography I know, scanning - almost as bad a mowing the lawn....
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Old 02-17-2011   #103
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Buy a scanner...Hmmm Not my idea of fun - worst job in photography I know, scanning - almost as bad a mowing the lawn....
Nah, it's worse. I can mow the lawn before the Coolscann gets through a high quality scan of a 6 by 7 neg.

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Old 02-17-2011   #104
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Yeah, those are not fun memories.

But that's the price of film, right? Slow doooownnn...
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Old 02-17-2011   #105
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Bad idea. Learn to develop it yourself; buy a scanner. I'm not saying not to "go digital". I'm saying "don't jump [the film] ship".
Stock on film. Keep your well-built film cameras (go all manual!).

And keep your aluminum foil hat handy. Just kidding.
Well I don't have an aluminum foil hat, but I do have several jaunty fedoras, and a couple of Sam Sneads with little feathers in them, so hopefully they will suffice.

As far as the whole darkroom thing goes, I had my very first darkroom whe I was 15 (30 years ago), and I have all the darkroom ephemera that one could ever need. My D3/D5 enlarger is in the attic, and I'm sure it's probably going to stay there. Honestly, I think I've just lost interest in shooting film, and here again, last week's film development debacle seemed to be the proverbial 'nail in the coffin' for me. Now, having said that, I just bought some film development chemicals to process a few rolls of Tri-X that I've had sitting around, but after those are processed, I think that might be it for a while.

Here again, I do plan on keeping some film cameras - namely my Contaflex TLR kit, two of my Hasselblads, a Leica III that I've had since 1988, a couple of Exaktas, my KW Reflex Box, a Leica IIIf RD/ST w/grey vulcanite and a Leicavit, and that's probably about it. Gosh that still sounds like a lot!

As far as the 'demo' camera goes, I know the dealer very well, so I'm sure that the demo wasn't used to hammer nails, but I will get the full lowdown on it next week. I'm assuming that it would still have the full Leica USA warranty (I will double-check!). If I don't feel comfortable with it, then of course I'll hold out for a new one. But yeah, $750 can sure come in handy for other things!
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Old 02-17-2011   #106
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Hi Roger -- using a digital camera (high end or not) implies the use of a computer. Once hardware prices begin to climb, people will begin to rethink about how "the digital age" has been taken for granted.

Some people swear only by the fork, others only the spoon, and others only the knife. I like to keep all for my table.


BTW, ten years is usually the time it takes for most people to figure out what just happened.
Dear Gabriel,

Fair enough, but my suspicion is that my computers will live long enough to span the transition to computers made in free economies. Yes, a new computer will then cost more, but it'll probably be designed to last longer too. If the price doubles, I can live with that. My first computer, in the 1980s, cost 1600 (probably $2000-$2500 at the time, perhaps $5,000-$10,000 in today's money) and still paid for itself in a year or two.

I love your last sentence.

Cheers,

R.
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Old 02-17-2011   #107
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For the $750 difference I'd get the new one... but when I was in your situation a couple of weeks ago I didn't have Lightroom 3.

The M9 price tag was hard to swallow, but it was well worth it to me - a new (used) vehicle will just have to wait
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Old 02-17-2011   #108
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Sad to hear that the lab situation is so bad in B-more. It's hard enough in DC w/just 1 pro lab (Dodge-Chrome) left.

As you describe it, I think your plan is a sound one. The M9 is very expensive, but is more than capable & reliable enough for your intended purpose. It's not like you have any real alternatives for full-frame digital RF, anyway.

But by all means, let us film diehards know when you put your stuff up for sale!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vince Lupo View Post
After having had a very frustrating week trying to get some film processed in my neck of the woods (Baltimore area), I'm crying 'uncle' and have decided to sell many of my film cameras to finance the purchase of an M9. My M2, M5, Robot Royal 36, Contax II, Hasselblad, screw mount Leicas, etc (I will probably hang onto my Contaflex TLR and maybe a screw mount Leica that I've had since 1988). I'm going to keep all my Leica lenses, but I've pretty well decided to do this. I just hope I'm making the right decision, but it seems that the 'photo' labs in this area are forcing me to do this, not to mention the proverbial 'writing on the wall' as far as the way the technology has been going.

So I'd like to know from those of you with an M9: Is it worth the $6995 admission price? My plan would be to incorporate it with the rest of my professional equipment, but also to use for all of my 'personal' work. It would be a secondary main camera to my D700 for the pro work, but my main camera for my personal work. I've thought of an M8, but I know the crop factor would drive me crazy, so I've settled on the M9. It's just the whole concept of spending that much money on one piece that scares me. But, it would definitely get more use than my present crop of film cameras.

Thanks in advance for your thoughts....
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Old 02-17-2011   #109
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I just bought a new Laptop for Nikki for $430. 17.3" monitor, 3GByte memory, 300GByte disk, faster than all of the Cray-1's put together.

About the same cost of a single 5.25" floppy drive for my Xerox 820-II CP/m computer in 1981. Held 320KBytes on that drive. It still works.
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Old 02-17-2011   #110
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... I have an opportunity to buy either a new black one for $6650, or a black demo for $6250 (no, not from one of those eBay scam sellers!). Worth saving $750 to go for the demo, and a black one at that?
$6650 minus $6250 equals $400.
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Old 02-17-2011   #111
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Dear Gabriel,

Fair enough, but my suspicion is that my computers will live long enough to span the transition to computers made in free economies. Yes, a new computer will then cost more, but it'll probably be designed to last longer too. If the price doubles, I can live with that. My first computer, in the 1980s, cost 1600 (probably $2000-$2500 at the time, perhaps $5,000-$10,000 in today's money) and still paid for itself in a year or two.

I love your last sentence.

Cheers,

R.
I agree with this oppinion - many computers are scrapped for "being obsolete" while being fully functional. As it is possible to edit recent photographs on computers several years old without any problems, it will be possible to edit recent photographs on recently new computers several years in the future. Higher cost of computers will slow the pace of increasing performance hence the software will not become so performance-hungry as well (or nobody will buy it).

The other problem is increasing price of electronics means more expensive cameras as well. As cameras include moving parts (shutter etc.) and hence are more prone to failures it is somewhat more serious problem.
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Old 02-17-2011   #112
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Save another $3000 and get a mint M8.2.

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Old 02-17-2011   #113
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Do you like the digital capture or the film look?
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Old 02-17-2011   #114
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Originally Posted by peter_n View Post
$6650 minus $6250 equals $400.
Yes yes yes -- it's just that he doesn't have a grey hammertone in stock, and I don't know whether the $6650 price applies only to that one black one he has in stock. I'll find out more next week!
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Old 02-17-2011   #115
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Do you like the digital capture or the film look?
Honestly doesn't really matter to me -- I've been shooting digital so much that I've really lost track of the difference. However -- having said that -- I was working on some corporate portraits yesterday on my computer that I shot with my D700, and I was suitably blown away by the quality (of what the camera can do, not me as a photographer). That camera at the 'Low 1' ISO setting is pretty darned impressive. Then again, I love the look of shots that my screw mount Leicas give, so I suppose I'm pretty flexible in terms of what I like.
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Old 02-17-2011   #116
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Rich at Photo Village just got in a bunch of grey ones- I talked to him the other day.


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Then again, I love the look of shots that my screw mount Leicas give, so I suppose I'm pretty flexible in terms of what I like.
And those screw mount lenses will most likely look great on the M9 as well. I'm surprised at what the V2 28/2.8 does on mine.
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Old 02-17-2011   #117
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Perhaps a lot wiser than selling my cameras for a 0.95 Noctilux

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Old 02-18-2011   #118
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I have a digital camera that's 10 years old and, while it isn't broken, I have no way to retrieve photos any longer from it unless I can find a computer with the correct software that's approximately the same vintage. I have a Nikon S2 made in 1956 that still is useful.
I doubt that you need that. Photoshop accepts just about all file formats that ever existed. Try running them through Adobe's DNG converter.
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Old 02-18-2011   #119
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And those screw mount lenses will most likely look great on the M9 as well. I'm surprised at what the V2 28/2.8 does on mine.
Yes, and fortunately I have a few pretty cool screw mount lenses to use -- 105/6.3 Mountain Elmar, 73/1.9 Hektor, 90/4 Fat Elmar (fantastic lens), 50/1.5 Xenon. The only one I could maybe see parting with is my 73mm Hektor, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it!
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Old 02-18-2011   #120
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I would caution you not to expect that all of your vintage lenses that work on your film bodies will focus correctly on the M9. It's a classic YMMV situation. In my experience, only about 1/4 of my vintage lenses (mostly 50mm's) focus correctly wide-open @ closest focus distance, the rest exhibit significant back or front focus. In contrast, all of my "modern" (i.e., 1980s & newer) glass works fine.

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Originally Posted by Vince Lupo View Post
Yes, and fortunately I have a few pretty cool screw mount lenses to use -- 105/6.3 Mountain Elmar, 73/1.9 Hektor, 90/4 Fat Elmar (fantastic lens), 50/1.5 Xenon. The only one I could maybe see parting with is my 73mm Hektor, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it!
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