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Digital Leica M8 / M8.2 / M9 / M-E /Mono / M10 aka "M" Discussions about the Leica M8 /M 8.2 / M9 / M9-P/ M-E / M Monochrom / M10 aka "M": Leica digital M mount rangefinder cameras. Naming the new digital M the "Leica M" is VERY unfortunate as it will only confuse newbies with other Leica M cameras of the the past. Happily there is room for confusion with only the past 59 years of Leica M production ... since Leica introduced the Leica M system in 1953. All Hail for the Leica Marketing Department learning Leica M history!

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The new digital M8 or this for Christmas ...
Old 06-23-2006   #1
Flyfisher Tom
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The new digital M8 or this for Christmas ...

a Parisian apartment ...

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/23/re...e/23paris.html

I really do envy our Parisian RFF members ... what an inspiring photographic city

Well, I'm off to photograph our national landmarks ... Walmart and McDonalds
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Old 06-23-2006   #2
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One of the best and most underrated photographic cities in my opinion is Berlin. Simply incredible city.
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Old 06-23-2006   #3
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Paris, London, Rome and Dublin are overpriced and you would be a fool to invest in real estate there now.
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Old 06-23-2006   #4
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Lisbon is up there, too, real-estate wise.

Excellent place to take pictures, though.
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Old 06-23-2006   #5
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Too bad about Lisabon cause I would love to have a place there, even though I prefer the countryside.
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Old 06-23-2006   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin
Paris, London, Rome and Dublin are overpriced and you would be a fool to invest in real estate there now.
Actually if you read the article, the 17th sounds like a pretty good deal to me. Maybe some short-term risk, but long term? I like it.
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Old 06-23-2006   #7
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I can't think of anywhere in Europe that I don't like and consider supremely photogenic, though if factoring food into the equation I'll give the edge to Italy

I've always wanted to take 6 months and tour the continent in a restored VW microbus-camper (well, to be honest, when the idea first hit me I could've still bought a new one).
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Old 06-23-2006   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Z
I can't think of anywhere in Europe that I don't like and consider supremely photogenic, though if factoring food into the equation I'll give the edge to Italy

I've always wanted to take 6 months and tour the continent in a restored VW microbus-camper (well, to be honest, when the idea first hit me I could've still bought a new one).
Any reason why we can't commission a RFF European Tour Bus

Prague is another city I would love to photograph. Let's include Florence and Venice too. You're right Ben, the list is endless
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Old 06-23-2006   #9
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Can we end the tour in Speyside? I always love a few wee drams to finish off dinner.
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Old 06-23-2006   #10
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I've never been to Europe, but from what I gather, it's full of places of photogenic quality - and so far no one has mentioned Budapest, which has a high recommendation, too.

As for Americans migrating to Paris, maybe if enough do so, it will dilute the old saw that "the Frenchmen are a funny race". But given Americans' aversion to learning languages, it may take a while.
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Old 06-23-2006   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flyfisher Tom
Any reason why we can't commission a RFF European Tour Bus
That would cut into everyone's gear acquisition budget . Couldn't we just hotwire one?

Quote:
Prague is another city I would love to photograph.
Have a look at some of this guy's work. When I met him on the street in Prague some years ago he was shooting with Leica M, I don't know if he still is or not.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dll927
so far no one has mentioned Budapest
Budapest as of several years ago was just beginning to develop a tourism infrastructure. I found it refreshing not to see any McDonalds

Quote:
But given Americans' aversion to learning languages
In many countries in Europe I've run across many people who speak only the national language. In the US the only people I'm familiar with that have a true aversion to learning a second language are the ones who speak only Spanish
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Old 06-23-2006   #12
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Thanks for the heads-up on Ben Eden's work :-)
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Old 06-23-2006   #13
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"Budapest as of several years ago was just beginning to develop a tourism infrastructure. I found it refreshing not to see any McDonalds"

I was there last summer, and it's got the infrastructure and the McDonalds now, and Burger King, too, and they're bigger than any we've got in the Twin Cities (but they don't have any McDonald's Play Lands yet; in McDonalds Play Lands, and automotive cup holders, American know-how leads the world...

I get the feeling that big European cities feel like they haven't arrived until they have a McDonalds to despise...A few months ago I stayed at a hotel near the Gare du Nord in Paris, and in the early morning, you couldn't get into the McDonalds across the street, because of the crowds jamming it. Not Americans, either, but Parisians. The reason? Lots of calories for the money and cheap coffee. Paris is an unbelievably expensive place to eat in restaurants, but McDonalds is still MCDonalds.

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Old 06-23-2006   #14
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That's one thing which was refreshing about Cuba when I visited, an almost total absence of American "culture" and in spite of what the propaganda machine might have you believe, the people there seemed happy, healthy and more contented with their lot than many a community here in Europe and, dare I say it, the US as well.

If you're comparing Paris as a place to eat with the US, you need to compare like with like. San Francisco and NYC are hardly inexpensive places and the relentess tipping culture in NYC - hands out all the time - really gets to me. In Paris, service is included.

Certainly in France, there's concern that the young especially are deserting the traditional cafe society and eating on the hoof at places like McDonalds. Same in Italy.
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A week-end in Prague
Old 06-26-2006   #15
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A week-end in Prague

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flyfisher Tom
Prague is another city I would love to photograph.
Here some recent photos of a week-end in Prague

Cheers
Peter
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Old 06-26-2006   #16
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majority of the people in the Eastern Block (eastern and central europe) feel they are closer to the west if they eat at McDonalds, Burger King, and buy stuff in large shopping malls. Funny, but the things at the shopping malls are actually more expensive than at small shops, probably, this is also what misleads large masses.
You can see it in Budapest, but it's even more so in large cities in Romania, e.g., Bucuresti, Temeswar. People drive for an hour just to go have a dinner at the burger king within the shopping mall, and they are proud of it, while in the close neighborhood there are plenty of good places to have a dinner...
But things are changing, more rapidly than on the true West, there's a group already realizing the fakeness of an economy (and society) built on shopping centers. Fast it came, fast it will go, i guess.
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Old 06-26-2006   #17
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Paris expensive?

I was in fact surprised at how cheap one can have a great meal and drinks at a 'bistro' in Paris downtown. OK, i don't mean the chiquest restaurant and the most sought after wine, i just mean a reasonable place with good food and great drinks. And the service is excellent, people are funny and friendly even if they don't talk english to you.
Compared to some cities in the Netherlands, Paris is cheap going-out-wise.
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Old 07-24-2006   #18
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anywhere you have a camera with film ...

is a great city/town to photograph!
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Old 07-24-2006   #19
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If I could make any city my home, I'd choose Paris. I've been to a great many cities, and it is just perfect. It has its rough edges - for sure - but I don't care. The USA has its benefits as well - but those benefits are mostly devoured by developers at this point. The whole frontier/American pastoral thing is gone. Back to the old country I will go.

My company has locations in Paris, Munich, Tokyo, Sydney, Madrid, London, and a bunch of others. My goal is to position myself for any position at all that will get me over to France. Even if only for a couple years. Even with the trouble of paperwork and the pressures of being a non-French person AND young in Paris. . . I'd give a great deal of my freedoms for a chance to have mass at Notre Dame, walk around the Lourvre every weekend, buy cheese from people who make it, sit in private parks (carefully and quietly), and just BE somewhere that has so much history in its bones. Live in a city where businesses are not so often chains and corporations.

My building was built this year. My soon to be apartment is being built right now. Everyone in my neighborhood owns an SUV, many have hummers and Escalades and are busy pimping their rides right now as gas prices reach for $4

I live in a giant consumerist paradise. A traffic choked, snotty, totally corporate, hellish, anti-cultural, hungrily self imposed prison society.

There was a commercial for the Hummer last night. The man was buying tofu. He noticed the REAL man behind him buying a huge rack of ribs and some steaks. So, feeling less than manly, he went out and bought himself a MAN'S vehicle of destruction : the Hummer. As the commercial says. . . "Hummer : Restore your manhood."

PUKE. And I work in advertising. . . .
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Old 07-24-2006   #20
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I live in a giant consumerist paradise. A traffic choked, snotty, totally corporate, hellish, anti-cultural, hungrily self imposed prison society.

Don't get me wrong. I love Paris. I've spent a lot of time doing research there and could happily live there for a while. But... I feel like what you say above just doesn't jibe.

(1) If you don't like developed areas, then stay away from major European cities. They're old and beautiful, but are and have been way more developed than anywhere in America for, oh, thousands of years. (Nature? What nature? Frontier? Huh?)

(2) I enjoy Notre Dame and the Louvre as much as the next person, but hanging out there every single weekend would be like spending all of my time at Epcot. Not to belittle the beauty, value, and history of these locations but they are tourist attractions and there are only so many busloads full of poorly-dressed gawkers I can deal with per day.

(3) Paris is quite full of chains and corporations. I actually think there might be fewer chain stores here in San Francisco than in Paris, since San Franciscans tend to be virulently anti-chain and from what I can tell Parisians certainly aren't. They aren't all chains that we have here, but they're still chains. (I [heart] my Monoprix!)

(4) Traffic choked? Snotty? Corporate? And you want to live in Paris? By the way, there were plenty (shockingly, actually) of SUVs driving around last time I was there... I have no idea where and how the drivers parked these things, much less afforded to keep them full of gas.

I also would never speak lightly of giving up my freedoms as an American. People fought and died for what we have here and people all over the world are fighting and dying for similar rights every day. I think it's a bit disrespectful to be flippant about what we have here. America has its problems but we also have something pretty special here.

America has a history that is tens of thousands of years old, by the way. Of course, a lot of it occurred "before the white man came." I don't know about you. I think that part counts.

Like I said, I love Paris. I feel at home there, and to tell you the truth it's the only place I've ever lived (save San Francisco) where the strangers I met actually thought I was from there. (Being Asian in America often means that everyone assumes you are a foreigner in your own country: "Wow, your English is so good!") It's one of my favorite cities in the world, but it's still a city after all, and has all the benefits -- and drawbacks -- of a modern Western city. It's just that the buildings are older, and the people are better dressed, and, OK, the shopping is really really awesome. Oh, and the bread. And the cheese. And I really dig some of the facial soaps and stuff that I can't get here at home. Also the best zit cream I ever found, I found in Paris.

I would choose the flat in Paris over a digital M. I might have an inner struggle if the choice were between the flat and an MP, however.
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Old 07-24-2006   #21
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Melanie, wow. I've never been to Europe and appreciate the perspective of an American who has lived there. I have lived in several LatinAm. cities and always thought maybe that was somewhat like Europe might be like since they were so unlike the US. Since I was not born here in the US I can't feel or understand your sense of patriotism. But life here can be so easy we can end up taking to much of what we have for granite. I'm glad my family came here, glad I'm not working for next to nothing in the 'old country' Jim
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Old 07-24-2006   #22
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Hi Jim,

I spoke imprecisely. I haven't "lived" in Europe (in the sense of moving in, getting an address and staying for months or years) but have spent extended periods of time (weeks) in Paris and a few other cities (Bordeaux, Berlin, Zagreb) as well as in rural France (Dordogne, Charente) while on archaeological digs. So, I could be totally full of it. It would be like someone coming here, hitting New York, Los Angeles, and Montana, and thinking s/he knew everything about America.

But there's just something that rubs me the wrong way about condemning an entire country (the U.S.) for sins that are (a) based on stereotypes of big cities that may not be fair and (b) if true, highlight faults common to big cities no matter where they are in the world. (That, and the fact that there is WAY more nature in the U.S. than there is anywhere in France or pretty much all of the rest of Europe, both in terms of sheer square mileage and degree of "wildness" -- unless maybe if you count "rural" as "nature," which I don't. To me, "rural" is the same as "developed," only it's paved over with crops instead of asphalt. If you value nature and the "frontier" it seems like the Old World is the last place you'd want to go. But I digress.)

The thing about America is that it isn't really just one country. It's more like a whole lot of countries that all fly the same flag and (more or less) live by the same rules while preserving a variety of perspectives and values, for better and for worse.

Like I said, there's a lot wrong with this country (our diversity is both our greatest strength and our biggest weakness, and don't get me started on our current administration) but I really don't think Paris is the antidote to it, especially not if the complaints are as described.

Just another flag-waving yahoo I guess.

-- M
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Old 07-25-2006   #23
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When I lived in Vienna, they had a cool thing going that is now since drastically scaled back: you could buy an annual pass to all the state museums, to which a lot of private museums adhered.

Far from getting tired of it, I spent a lot of free time sitting in front of great paintings. I learned that the tourists only mob the guide-booked works, and I often found myself sitting alone in an out of the way exhibition of DaVinci sketches or Kokoshka paintings.

If I had a half hour free, I'd pop into a museum, or on Thursdays many of the museums have late hours, and it'd make for one hell of a unique date, with a culturally infused dinner afterward.
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Old 07-25-2006   #24
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Melanie: Your last paragraph clinches it for me ... don't care about the zit cream, but the bread, cheeses, well-dressed people (ok, ok.... WOMEN!), not to mention wine...

BTW, the Notre Dame/Epcot bit still has my head spinning, but I'll forgive you.
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Old 07-25-2006   #25
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Melanie: We have to take what you say about Europe with a grain of salt. After all, the people you got to know most closely have been dead for 50,000 to 150,000 years.

Seriously though, folks, listen to this woman, for she is wise. Remember that the Europe we see as tourists is far more romantic than the one of daily life. There is far more real wilderness in the U.S. than in Europe. European city life is a bit more civilized (at least at the middle class level and above), and there is certainly more art and culture available. Perhaps the percentage of people who appreciate it is a bit higher in Europe. But there are cultured people everywhere, certainly enough to cultivate a circle of like-minded friends if you live in or around many major U.S. cities.

European standard of living is less, and all but the affluent have been priced out of the center of Paris just as they have been priced out of Manhattan. Social and economic mobility is less than in this country.

Take your pick.

My own feelings about Europe are complicated. As a person deeply involved with the arts, I love visiting there. Some of my values and attitudes are more European than American. They probably come from my grandparents, all four of whom came from Europe.

But my grandparents left Europe between about 1905 and 1916, and good thing, too. If they had not, they would have met the same fate in the 1940s as did many of their relatives who stayed. And I would never have been born.

When I stand on European soil, my joy at the art, music and architecture around me is tempered by the knowledge that if I had been there just 65 years ago, I would have been taken away and killed. The mindset and attitudes that made this possible were built over 2,000 years and not limited to any one country.

The United States, on the other hand, gave my grandparents a fair deal. My mother's parents indeed preferred their beloved Paris to the crass, noisy, overly commercial, everything-for-sale atmosphere of New York in the 1920s (sound familar, George?). But they knew that they truly belonged to their adopted country, something they and their forebears had never known in Europe.

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