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View Full Version : MP 240 or Monochrom 246? Buyer's remorse I guess...


SixSeven
12-17-2015, 16:33
About a month ago I bought a Monochrom 246. Sold basically every piece of photography equipment I own to get it and a 50 summicron. The majority of everything I've shot over the years (a little of everything, but mostly landscape) has been black and white, so it seemed like a good fit with the 246. The goal was to get an "as close as it gets" digital replacement for a Mamiya 7 loaded with b&w film, which I adored but hated the scanning process to make prints (I'm not a wet printer).

Now that I have the 246, the only thing I can think of is shooting in color. It's like a curse. I totally wasn't expecting that. It's compounded by the fact that this is my main and only body. I thought about getting an a7rII or something for color use, but it just doesn't make sense. I could (just) afford the Leica, but I'm not made of money so shelling another 3k+ out is not an option.

So, I'm left with a choice: grin and bear it with the MM246 and not shoot color for quite a while until adding another body some time in the distant future, or return the 246 and get the MP240. I get it, it's kind of a juvenile dilemma to be in, but I'm really on the fence as to what I should do. Opinions of random strangers on the internet are welcome!

Nick

fenixv8
12-17-2015, 16:42
Shoot it a bit more. Maybe buy something cheaper to go along with it and take out with you. Fuji x100? and if you still miss the colour exchange it.

taemo
12-17-2015, 17:09
out of curiosity but what changed that all of a sudden you're wanting to shoot color more than B&W?
different subject, style?
if you foresee shooting more color in the long run and you can exchange your M246 for a M240, go for it.

alternatively, if you want an inexpensive companion for your M246 when you itch color then maybe consider an M9, even cheaper would be a Sony A7 but it will not give you the same experiexe as a RF camera

Johann Espiritu
12-17-2015, 17:20
Get a cheap(er) film body that takes Leica lenses and load some color film in it. Would that be enough to see how much color you might want to shoot and satisfy your craving?

gb hill
12-17-2015, 17:36
Want to shoot color? Buy a DSLR. To me Leica M's were made to shoot B&W. Think of what it was that made you choose the Monochrome to begin with. Go look at some photo books of Garry Winogrand, Eugene Smith, Bresson, & others. Get re inspired to shoot B&W & keep the camera.

redsky
12-17-2015, 17:38
At the risk of sounding like a moron:

The exact same thing happened to me when I purchased my Monochrom (the original). I ended up selling it and I profoundly regret it. I should have stuck with it. I had it for only 3 months, and when I look back at my photos from that time... what can I say, it was pure folly to sell it.

If you really need some color in your life, get a used Ricoh GR.
Give the Monochrom a chance.

About a month ago I bought a Monochrom 246. Sold basically every piece of photography equipment I own to get it and a 50 summicron. The majority of everything I've shot over the years (a little of everything, but mostly landscape) has been black and white, so it seemed like a good fit with the 246. The goal was to get an "as close as it gets" digital replacement for a Mamiya 7 loaded with b&w film, which I adored but hated the scanning process to make prints (I'm not a wet printer).

Now that I have the 246, the only thing I can think of is shooting in color. It's like a curse. I totally wasn't expecting that. It's compounded by the fact that this is my main and only body. I thought about getting an a7rII or something for color use, but it just doesn't make sense. I could (just) afford the Leica, but I'm not made of money so shelling another 3k+ out is not an option.

So, I'm left with a choice: grin and bear it with the MM246 and not shoot color for quite a while until adding another body some time in the distant future, or return the 246 and get the MP240. I get it, it's kind of a juvenile dilemma to be in, but I'm really on the fence as to what I should do. Opinions of random strangers on the internet are welcome!

Nick

hlockwood
12-17-2015, 17:42
I think I understand your dilemma. I went from B&W film to an M9-P in full color. I was stymied; I couldn't deal with the color. I stopped shooting.

See my ad about a trade of my M9-P for an MM. Maybe there's a way out for both of us.

HFL, a random stranger.

SixSeven
12-17-2015, 17:48
I think I understand your dilemma. I went from B&W film to an M9-P in full color. I was stymied; I couldn't deal with the color. I stopped shooting.

See my ad about a trade of my M9-P for an MM. Maybe there's a way out for both of us.

HFL


I appreciate the offer (and your similar situation). Unfortunately, I would be missing live view for my long exposure landscapes, graduated filters, etc. That's why I wasn't interested in the last Monochrom (or M9). Now, it has enough features that I can use it as a landscape camera.

Thank you all for the quick replies, it's nice hearing what other people think so I don't go crazy debating it with myself over and over again. Nobody I know in real life is really into photography, so when I asked a friend of mine, it was basically "well duh, get the color one".

Nick

hlockwood
12-17-2015, 17:53
I appreciate the offer (and your similar situation). Unfortunately, I would be missing live view for my long exposure landscapes, graduated filters, etc. That's why I wasn't interested in the last Monochrom (or M9). Now, it has enough features that I can use it as a landscape camera.

Thank you all for the quick replies, it's nice hearing what other people think so I don't go crazy debating it with myself over and over again. Nobody I know in real life is really into photography, so when I asked a friend of mine, it was basically "well duh, get the color one".

Nick

Okay, I get it.

HFl

MCTuomey
12-17-2015, 17:53
nick, if you have the cash, consider renting the M240, shoot some familiar haunts with it and the M246, convert the M240 files, compare them to the M246 output, and see what you think.

icebear
12-17-2015, 18:20
I had the M9 first and got the MM later, the only piece of Leica gear I ever bought new. Ooops ... Q. And I'm in love with that camera, the MM that is. I saw the prices of used M9 and MM around 2.5 or 3k so you get both used for the price of a new M246. Then you have the options to shoot both. My experience from just playing around in LR with color photos and convert these to b&w it's not comparable to the files from the MM. Maybe sophisticated workflows yield acceptable results but from what I heard from folks who have medium format experience, if you nail the exposure with the MM the tones and detail of the MM are as good as it gets. About 85% of what I shoot is b&w.
I have no experience with the M240 (or M246 for that matter) but I just have the sensors replaced (for free incl. new leather) in both of my cameras. In case you buy used either you get some that have the sensors replaced already or you go through this with Leica. Doesn't matter how old the cameras are as long as the sensors are not scratched or otherwise damaged by the user and only the known corrosion need to be taken care of. I'm not sure if a generational step back to 18MP is an option for you. It for sure is good enough for me, so I did not go for the upgrade ($3.5k per body).

Huss
12-17-2015, 18:23
nick, if you have the cash, consider renting the M240, shoot some familiar haunts with it and the M246, convert the M240 files, compare them to the M246 output, and see what you think.

Good idea.

Huss
12-17-2015, 18:28
Get a cheap(er) film body that takes Leica lenses and load some color film in it. Would that be enough to see how much color you might want to shoot and satisfy your craving?

Another good idea. Getting a used M film body (does not have to be a Leica)
to shoot colour film - and if you're not feeling it you can sell it for what you paid for it.
I noticed you disliked the scanning process. This would give you the chance to try an excellent pro lab like thefindlab.com or northcoastphoto.com. I've used both and it really is something when you get killer scans from people who are expert at it.
That M film body also can take B&W film - imagine that multiple sensor options all in the same body! - ;) who knows, maybe using a film camera and a pro lab will make you forget about digital..

Pioneer
12-17-2015, 18:45
My sincere advice is for you to grit your teeth and go to work with the new Monochrom. Use it hard for at least 6 months and create the best black and white prints that you can with it. That camera is capable of producing some awesome photos if you work with it. But, if at the end of 6 months, you still need color in your life then sell it and buy a 240 or 262. Leica may even have something even newer by that time.

Just don't make any decisions while everything is so new. You have put a lot of thought, not to mention money, into this. Give it time. I really do believe it will work out for you.

Jan Pedersen
12-17-2015, 18:51
After getting my M246 a little over 4 months ago I find it hard to believe that someone could sell it again.
I have had many cameras in my life, anything from 35mm to 8x10 but the M246 is just the best of them all.
That said, it is difficult not to have something that can produce color images so the suggestions about a film body is a very good one and scanning color film does at least for me produce better results than scanning B&W.
Hang on to the M246, it is a keeper.

uhoh7
12-17-2015, 18:56
Your 246 is worth at least 500 more than a 240. Used the 240 is running about 3800. Take the money and run. Or get a 28 to go with the 50. :)

Somebody said Leica Ms are made to shoot BW? Rot. Leica M lenses are best for color in the world. Leica digital colors, by most accounts, including my own, are the best available.

You feel like shooting color? Never take inspiration for granted. Life is very short. Shoot it. :)

M240 is also excellent for BW. Not as sharp, true, but your post options are far greater. Ideal would be to have both, of course. But that's pretty rich :)

YYV_146
12-17-2015, 19:03
Your 246 is worth at least 500 more than a 240. Used the 240 is running about 3800. Take the money and run. Or get a 28 to go with the 50. :)

Somebody said Leica Ms are made to shoot BW? Rot. Leica M lenses are best for color in the world. Leica digital colors, by most accounts, including my own, are the best available.

You feel like shooting color? Never take inspiration for granted. Life is very short. Shoot it. :)

This I agree completely.

Alternatively, I wonder how much you paid for the 246? The original M240 is the same as the MP240, just with less RAM and a red dot. Those are ~60% of the price of a brand new 246?

For the price you might be able to squeeze a pre-owned 240 and a second M Monochrom...that would give the best of both worlds, with the spartan Monochrom also providing a better "analog" experience.

I like to work with two cameras...if you just want one, perhaps trying the 240 for a few days will help you make up your mind?

lonemantis
12-17-2015, 19:09
Cheapest solution: get a tripod, 3 colour filters, and shoot some trichromes! ;) http://ph.brhfl.com/2011/12/27/trichrome/

Ko.Fe.
12-17-2015, 19:14
You made mistake in first place. With film camera it doesn't matter what you like. You could always load it with color film. Digital cameras works in the opposite. It is one sensor for color and bw.
Except some marketing ploy. You get to it and realized it doesn't works for you. You ain't alone. Look at Airfroggy case. He was all over it at the time Monochrome was released, he was saying he only see it in bw on the street and what he gets now... Leica with normal sensor. :)

Return and exchange.

ferider
12-17-2015, 19:22
There is a big technical difference between the M9 and the Ur-Monochrome in dynamic range.

Not so when comparing the 246 with 240-bw rendered color images, if you read the spec.

Return the 246, get a 240 and some cash, and when you want to shoot B+W configure the 240 LCD (with color filters if you like) to show you B+W only. The out-of-camera 240 B+W jpegs are outstanding, and you can keep raw for color.

Roland.

uhoh7
12-17-2015, 19:27
You ain't alone. Look at Airfroggy case. He was all over it at the time Monochrome was released, he was saying he only see it in bw on the street and what he gets now... Leica with normal sensor. :)


LOL love this, man :)

To be fair, I think he'll often use two bodies....oh I can barely type laughing at this, and I'm big fan of his :)

fad gadget
12-17-2015, 19:48
Well... It's the exact opposite for me, I haven't shot my M240 since I got my M246, and that's been around eight months now.

If I want to shoot colour, I prefer my M6 and Portra.

Keith
12-17-2015, 19:52
There is a big technical difference between the M9 and the Ur-Monochrome in dynamic range.

Not so when comparing the 246 with 240-bw rendered color images, if you read the spec.

Return the 246, get a 240 and some cash, and when you want to shoot B+W configure the 240 LCD (with color filters if you like) to show you B+W only. The out-of-camera 240 B+W jpegs are outstanding, and you can keep raw for color.

Roland.


I remember you mentioning this before .... I'll have to give it a try! :)

Dante_Stella
12-17-2015, 20:21
Unless your cravings for color are inextricably linked with Leicas, it's a gross waste of money to own both an M240 and 246 - you are far better served by adding color along with some capability you don't have - AF, great video, panoramas, etc. This is more of an X100T or A6000 thing.

I don't agree with the comment about using the M240 as a b/w substitute. The structure of the M246 files is different. it performs better with older lenses (because it doesn't see CA), and b/w filtration using actual filters works much better than the +/-20 on Lightroom sliders that you get before the halos set in.

A film camera for color is a nonstarter unless you are willing to deal with C-41 processing at home or have a really good lab nearby.

D

YYV_146
12-17-2015, 21:03
Unless your cravings for color are inextricably linked with Leicas, it's a gross waste of money to own both an M240 and 246 - you are far better served by adding color along with some capability you don't have - AF, great video, panoramas, etc. This is more of an X100T or A6000 thing.

I don't agree with the comment about using the M240 as a b/w substitute. The structure of the M246 files is different. it performs better with older lenses (because it doesn't see CA), and b/w filtration using actual filters works much better than the +/-20 on Lightroom sliders that you get before the halos set in.

A film camera for color is a nonstarter unless you are willing to deal with C-41 processing at home or have a really good lab nearby.

D

Removing CA is a one-click affair if you have LR, CC or Capture One. As for pixel level detail - that's what the unsharpen mask is designed for. Good processing involves much more finesse than cranking a few sliders. And yes, knowing a digital camera entails knowing how far you can push files until they break, and how much sharpening is needed for a given print size.

That puts the 240 at a much closer position to the 246. Is it as good for B&W? No, but I doubt anyone would notice the difference unless printing at something like 16*24...and shooting with a reasonably sharp lens.

ian_watts
12-18-2015, 00:46
Maybe return/sell the M246 and get the Mamiya 7 you once adored? Once you get over the Monochrom-bug (it took me over two years) you realise that digital B&W is still digital and it's not a proper substitute for film.:D

Richard G
12-18-2015, 02:47
Agree with those who say stick with it and add an X100. I went to France with the Ur-Monochrom (liking that term) and an X100 and was completely happy with the combination.

giulio stucchi
12-18-2015, 03:06
i am a film, b&w only shooter but let's say my m2 is your M246 and i would like to shoot color without the trouble of scanning...I would go for a ricoh GR or similar

Freakscene
12-18-2015, 03:56
Removing CA is a one-click affair if you have LR, CC or Capture One.

At edges, with lateral CA, yes. Longitudinal and spherochromatic CA, no. And you can never fix the effects of CA on fine texture and tonality.

As for pixel level detail - that's what the unsharpen mask is designed for. Good processing involves much more finesse than cranking a few sliders. And yes, knowing a digital camera entails knowing how far you can push files until they break, and how much sharpening is needed for a given print size.

The unsharp mask increases local contrast, it cannot create detail where none exists.

That puts the 240 at a much closer position to the 246. Is it as good for B&W? No, but I doubt anyone would notice the difference unless printing at something like 16*24...and shooting with a reasonably sharp lens.

The only situation where a 240 is preferable for B&W is if you use a process that needs the colour information - and if you have the skill to convert the hue contrast and saturation into monochrome tonality. And if you do that, you need the best modern Leica glass to capitalise on that information, or the inherent problems with colour transmission become quite apparent. At 12x18 the difference is clear, if you know what you're looking for, and if you care.

To the OP, just get out and take photos.

Marty

jsrockit
12-18-2015, 04:30
Return the M246, buy a M240 used and a Mamiya 7...

Landberg
12-18-2015, 04:53
That sucks, it's a lot of money an for most a real sacrifice. It has to feel right. The only m I could afford was a M-E. I wanted a M monochrom, the first one but could not afford it!;)

squirrel$$$bandit
12-18-2015, 05:18
Agree with those who say stick with it and add an X100. I went to France with the Ur-Monochrom (liking that term) and an X100 and was completely happy with the combination.

I'm on that team too!

Vince Lupo
12-18-2015, 05:38
I have a 246 and am very glad I made the switch from the first Monochrom to this version. I agree with others about the X100T -- it's the perfect complement to the 246.

jsrockit
12-18-2015, 06:18
I think most answers here have been biased by preference... B&W photographers saying keep it and color photographers saying get rid of it... the truth is that we can't make that decision for you. AND you can still make usable B&W images from color digital cameras.

Calzone
12-18-2015, 06:27
I think most answers here have been biased by preference... B&W photographers saying keep it and color photographers saying get rid of it... the truth is that we can't make that decision for you. AND you can still make usable B&W images from color digital cameras.

John,

That is pretty honest. As a B&W shooter I have my bias and preference.

Cal

MCTuomey
12-18-2015, 06:39
Natural tendency on gear forums is for every one to tout what each believes and does as a solution for your (the OP's) individual conundrum. As John says, "bias by preference." Good way to generate ideas, bad if you start to discriminate among them lacking a healthy dose of your own experience and needs.

Seems quite reasonable, having concentrated all your resources into a one-camera/one-lens outfit, to experience some doubt. But, fact is you developed a plan. Carry it out long enough so your nagging doubt is eliminated or confirmed. Then you can make a clearer decision. Another digi M, a different digi M, non-M digi body, a film M, a non-M film body - all these ideas have merit. But they have to become yours with the benefit of some experience or you will just end up playing gear roulette.

Good luck and have fun with that lovely camera.

willie_901
12-18-2015, 06:46
Despite the clear and real advantages of eliminating the color-filter array layer, Nik's Silver Efex Pro does an excellent job converting RGB raw to monochrome.

Rayt
12-18-2015, 06:50
I bought a used Monochrom 240 at KEH during their Black Friday sale. Upto now I have been a 100% film shooter nearly all b/w so the Monochrom is a good supplement. My justification is that I can shoot for another hour with the Monochrom when the light gets too low for film pushed to 800. Well last week I went to Kyoto and the leaves were just awesome in yellow and red. I only had the Monochrom with me and of course the awesome yellow and red leaves were shades of grey. I would have shot Portra if I had the M7 with me. I then got a used M8 as my color solution since I can use an extra battery and backup charger anyway.

ferider
12-18-2015, 06:59
Natural tendency on gear forums is for every one to tout what each believes and does as a solution for your (the OP's) individual conundrum. As John says, "bias by preference." Good way to generate ideas, bad if you start to discriminate among them lacking a healthy dose of your own experience and needs.

Seems quite reasonable, having concentrated all your resources into a one-camera/one-lens outfit, to experience some doubt. But, fact is you developed a plan. Carry it out long enough so your nagging doubt is eliminated or confirmed. Then you can make a clearer decision. Another digi M, a different digi M, non-M digi body, a film M, a non-M film body - all these ideas have merit. But they have to become yours with the benefit of some experience or you will just end up playing gear roulette.

Good luck and have fun with that lovely camera.

That's all good and true, Mike, and you know I respect your opinion.

But if the OP wants to shoot color and cann't, IMHO, he doesn't need a long time of self-chastizing to figure out that his original plan had a gap. Life is too short.

My "bias by preference": I like to shoot B+W landscapes, too. But sometimes, color is a must. And in particular for B+W landscapes: starting from a color original and adding a red/yellow/orange/green filter in post is a huge plus of the digital medium, I feel.

Roland.

xenohip
12-18-2015, 07:33
I would love to own an M246! [Side note about reluctance to walk around with gear worth as much as a car: I might still not own an M246 even if it were *easily* affordable].

How about heading over to maxmax.com and getting a Sony A6000 converted to monochrome? Buy an unconverted A6000 with 24mm Sonnar and 55mm Sonnar (or 50mm Loxia or whatever).

One lens on each body, moderate wide, moderate tele, switch as needed. $2000 + $400ish +$900 +$1000ish.

NB: This is a purely hypothetical suggestion-- I have not used any of the mentioned equipment.

OR... buy a Leica X2?

jloden
12-18-2015, 07:37
My $0.02 as another random stranger on the Internet :)

Two options I'd consider if I were in your shoes, in my order of preference:

1) IF you're happy with the M246 otherwise and genuinely love B&W, and you feel the Monochrom is providing a tangible benefit in output: stick with it, and maybe buy yourself a secondary option for color. Doesn't have to be another M. Something fixed lens like an X100 model or a Ricoh GR as mentioned above would be my suggestion also, assuming it works for your style of shooting. If the only problem is you don't like not having the *option* of color, that may scratch the itch for you.

2) On the other hand... if at the end of the day you're not actually *enjoying* being limited to B&W, or getting great output from the Monochrom you feel is worth it... trade it in and get an M240. Put the extra left over away for a rainy day, buy yourself a new lens or whatever. IMO, I don't think the output is going to be dramatically better on the M246 over the 240 for most use cases (high ISO shooting for example).

Good luck with your decision either way!

uhoh7
12-18-2015, 07:58
Agree with those who say stick with it and add an X100. I went to France with the Ur-Monochrom (liking that term) and an X100 and was completely happy with the combination.

Certainly an option. It would just depend on whether the OP would enjoy the Fuji shooting experience, and carrying two cameras.

The Fuji is nice but the M240 is closer to the 246 in BW than the Fuji is to the 240 in color. The 240 is arguably the best color digital camera you can buy, if you don't need AF etc, outside MF.

Oh wait I forgot...the best except M9 ;)

DKimg
12-18-2015, 07:59
I would find a cheaper color option and not sell the LM246. You had me looking into the LM246 last night...because I didn't know they came out with a new model. I've always wanted the monochrom but wow oh wow, the new models looks amazing! Aside from it's quirks, the image tonality and low light control looks great!

I think going with a x100 model of any kind, would be good enough. It's only just to get scratch that itch of wanting to shoot color...

For me at times I have an itch to shoot digitally... only thing I have is an EOS M with some adapter mounts for my lenses I currently own, and it does the job. Problem solved!

Out to Lunch
12-18-2015, 08:00
Considering the investment you've made in the Leica 246 + the Summicron, stick with it for at least a year. Others have mentioned the Fuji X-100T and the Ricoh GR as color cameras but I suggest you have a look at the Epson R-D1s or x, instead. It's a digital rangefinder camera with which you can use your Summicron and a camera with a distinct signature output. Some RRF members based in Japan may lead you to a mint reasonably priced body.

Happy Holidays! Peter

Emile de Leon
12-18-2015, 08:26
Get rid of the Mono...
Get a 240...
Unless you shoot a ream of B&W...
Then just get a cheap color cam...A7 or similar to put your M lenses on..
My take is..I would rather have a color cam and convert..
And if I wanted to shoot B&W serious..shoot film instead..
Recently I just decided to shoot LF in B&W..specifically 8x10 with 100 year old lenses..
Cant beat the look and feel of that..no need for a 7K mono..

segedi
12-18-2015, 08:41
Maybe this will suit:
https://us.leica-camera.com/Photography/Leica-M/LEICA-M-Typ-262

David_Manning
12-18-2015, 09:13
SixSeven,

I'm primarily a B&W shooter. It's the way I see. However, the ability to shoot color makes a camera very flexible. Think birthday parties, social events, etc. I sincerely think the Monochrom is too specialized a tool for the average single-camera owner.

Without getting into arguments and the technical minutiae of an MM sensor over a standard color sensor, I think about it from an end-result point of view. I can make very good B&W prints from my M9, or my Ricoh GR, or my X-T1, or my 5DmkII...you get the picture. BUT...the MM makes absolutely LOUSY color photos!

When you get a print made on paper, you're going to lose lots of dynamic range...period. That is why I never bought into the Monochrom hype. As a Leica, yeah, it's more collectible and "special," because it's so specialized. But an M240 is going to shoot great color, and convert to great B&W. It's a skill like any...experiment.

As you probably know, just simply printing an image straight from the MM sucks. It needs post processing. And once you add some contrast, you're throwing away dynamic range. Some will insist that you need to start out with my dynamic range in any case, but to them I'd point out the decades of great B&W work that has been published starting with contrasty, grainy film. I won't even mention the ability to make a B&W image using a choice of different color filters after the fact, instead of baking in a filter look at shutter press with whatever filter you choose (and you're stuck with) on an MM.

So now, I've probably offended MM owners. I'm sorry about that. It's not my intention to convince anyone they've made the WRONG decision. It's my intention to convince the OP that you can make great B&W with a color sensor, and you've always got the ability to print color or B&W. Same argument that's been used for shooting RAW instead of jpg in every instance, by the way.

So...my advice to you, SixSeven, is to trade the MM for an M240, and never look back. Enjoy the B&W, enjoy the color, enjoy the Live View flexibility if you ever need it, and be thankful you don't have to shoot a dSLR to get that.

SaveKodak
12-18-2015, 10:59
The only real benefit of the MM's is to eliminate the choice of B&W or color. There is a hugely understated advantage to eliminating that choice in your post production. I like to have a 2nd shooter at my weddings shooting with a Mono because I don't have to later choose which images should be black and white, I suddenly have an abundance of beautiful monochrome images to choose from. I spend next to no time converting, and more time fine tuning the mono images (they do require a lot of work).

However, it's almost completely bunk that there is any magic in the MM files by themselves. Maybe a little more detail than a color image but my color images are already pretty freaking sharp. What's more you still have to uprez the same way for large prints and you still see the same artifacts that come from that. The tonal structure is different possibly but not better or worse.

Having a mono is a great luxury, but having only a mono will lead you to where you are now. Get a used 240, prosper.

jky
12-18-2015, 11:08
If you want to shoot color, then follow it... it just further opens up your creativity.

IMHO - get the 240. Don't wait. You can have both color and BW at your disposal... the time waiting can be best spent shooting color (or BW since you will also have that option with a 240).

Regards.

MCTuomey
12-18-2015, 11:15
That's all good and true, Mike, and you know I respect your opinion.

But if the OP wants to shoot color and cann't, IMHO, he doesn't need a long time of self-chastizing to figure out that his original plan had a gap. Life is too short.

My "bias by preference": I like to shoot B+W landscapes, too. But sometimes, color is a must. And in particular for B+W landscapes: starting from a color original and adding a red/yellow/orange/green filter in post is a huge plus of the digital medium, I feel.

Roland.

Quite right, Roland. Time should not be wasted. Fwiw, my approach is same as yours (M240 and convert/run in-camera jpgs), because as much as I like MM files I need color too. Didn't mean to slight all the good suggestions, only wanted to emphasize individual needs.

uhoh7
12-18-2015, 11:21
However, it's almost completely bunk that there is any magic in the MM files by themselves. Maybe a little more detail than a color image but my color images are already pretty freaking sharp. What's more you still have to uprez the same way for large prints and you still see the same artifacts that come from that. The tonal structure is different possibly but not better or worse.


WOW. This thread has turned very interesting. :)

Calzone
12-18-2015, 11:26
WOW. This thread has turned very interesting. :)

Actually this thread has gotten funny.

Cal

jsrockit
12-18-2015, 11:56
When it comes to the Monochrom, I'd say that it certainly offers something unique. Whether you think that uniqueness is worth it, that differs from person to person. That said...I think it is just cool that it exists. If I was B&W only, I'd find it appealing.

Calzone
12-18-2015, 12:30
When it comes to the Monochrom, I'd say that it certainly offers something unique. Whether you think that uniqueness is worth it, that differs from person to person. That said...I think it is just cool that it exists. If I was B&W only, I'd find it appealing.

John,

The Monochrom offers a lot more than a little more resolution and detail, how about 30% more resolution because it has no Bayer Filter Array. To one poster 30% is just a little which I find amusing.

Also with no Bayer Filter Array there is no need for added sharpening like in a color camera. In my rather large prints I add no sharpening and just use the default in LR5.

You know I'm a lazy slacker, and I find it really interesting that someone is saying that I have to do lots of post processing when I don't, and that filters are not my friends. LOL.

While my Monochrom the "Clunker" can't do color the fact is that it does B&W exceptionally well. Big prints don't lie, and you can't print whats not there.

Not for everyone, will not do color, but for B&W only it is the way to go.

Cal

jsrockit
12-18-2015, 13:13
John,
The Monochrom offers a lot more than a little more resolution and detail, how about 30% more resolution because it has no Bayer Filter Array. To one poster 30% is just a little which I find amusing.

Right, but pure resolution isn't necessarily what people care about always. That's my point... it is unique, but to some not in the way that they care about. Regarding post processing... that is a personal choice. I actually enjoy it, so I always try to make the file different than straight out of the camera. Sometimes it's not about a perfect histogram but about putting a particular signature into the photo. You do this via filters and your printing technique. Others do it via post processing. I would imagine there is more than one way to do this stuff. I don't use a Monochrom though either, so I can't speak to that.

Hsg
12-18-2015, 14:08
About a month ago I bought a Monochrom 246. Sold basically every piece of photography equipment I own to get it and a 50 summicron. The majority of everything I've shot over the years (a little of everything, but mostly landscape) has been black and white, so it seemed like a good fit with the 246. The goal was to get an "as close as it gets" digital replacement for a Mamiya 7 loaded with b&w film, which I adored but hated the scanning process to make prints (I'm not a wet printer).

Now that I have the 246, the only thing I can think of is shooting in color. It's like a curse. I totally wasn't expecting that. It's compounded by the fact that this is my main and only body. I thought about getting an a7rII or something for color use, but it just doesn't make sense. I could (just) afford the Leica, but I'm not made of money so shelling another 3k+ out is not an option.

So, I'm left with a choice: grin and bear it with the MM246 and not shoot color for quite a while until adding another body some time in the distant future, or return the 246 and get the MP240. I get it, it's kind of a juvenile dilemma to be in, but I'm really on the fence as to what I should do. Opinions of random strangers on the internet are welcome!

Nick

Patience is a virtue that every photographer must exercise. You have just bought a camera that shoots B&W only, so learn more about b&w photography, read Ansel Adams' trilogy: The Camera, The Negative and The Print, learn the zone system, learn how to use a spot meter, learn how to make quality prints with a decent tonal range and get acquainted with other MM users and see their work and get inspired.

PatrickT
12-18-2015, 14:41
Keep the MM, buy a used Sony A7 and a Leica M adapter. Try it out for color. If you find yourself wanting to shoot more and more color, sell the MM and A7 and get the 240.

seakayaker1
12-18-2015, 14:48
I would stick with the 246 for at least one year.

JMHO.......


If you need to shot color, then

borrow a camera from a friend
rent
buy something used, digital (M8, M9, MP240....) or film (lots of Leica, Zeiss, or Voigtlander rangefinder camera options) for color
save up for new MP 240


Good luck with your decision.

Michalm
12-18-2015, 14:58
My sincere advice is for you to grit your teeth and go to work with the new Monochrom. Use it hard for at least 6 months and create the best black and white prints that you can with it. That camera is capable of producing some awesome photos if you work with it. But, if at the end of 6 months, you still need color in your life then sell it and buy a 240 or 262. Leica may even have something even newer by that time.

Just don't make any decisions while everything is so new. You have put a lot of thought, not to mention money, into this. Give it time. I really do believe it will work out for you.
I second this, there is no better digital camera to shoot B&W , and only by making an effort to learn good file processing technique and to print images one can appreciate the camera .I would probably invest in some low contrast lens to match the body etc.

shimokita
12-18-2015, 15:47
Buyer's remorse I guess... [coming from a] Mamiya 7 loaded with b&w film

The majority of everything I've shot over the years (a little of everything, but mostly landscape) has been black and white... Now that I have the 246, the only thing I can think of is shooting in color.

You might consider for a moment that it is only a sensing of buyer's remorse... maybe it's not a question of B&W vs. Color, maybe it's moving from something comfortable (the Mamiya 7) to the unfamiliar (Leica), maybe it's the 50 summicron, maybe it's moving from 6x7 to a sensor size of 35.8mm x 23.9mm, maybe it's a change in subject matter due to a smaller camera, or maybe it's the change in post processing...

For what ever reason, the change has [possibly] become a tipping point of sorts...

While I would encourage you to follow your heart, the logic would be to uncover the reason you changed in the first place and the possible reasons you might be [at the moment] ill-at-ease...

In the mean time, you could dive into uncovering for yourself the potential of the monochrom ; )

markforce
12-19-2015, 04:41
The M9 has been my only camera and I just now added the M246. Will keep the 9 for the odd daytime/color itch. Have 21-35-50 between the 2 cameras now. That said: how about you buy a used M9?

Addy101
12-19-2015, 04:55
Since nobody asked: what do you want to photograph in colour?

If it is the same stuff as your MM, going for a 240 (or 262) makes sense.
If it is street stuff, adding a fixed lens camera like the Fuji X100T, Ricoh GR or Nikon A seems logical.
If it is more general photography, a mirrorless system could be the answer. I'm partial to the Sony E-system. The Sony A6000 already got mentioned, add a Sigma 19mm, Sony 35/1.8 and Sony 50/1.8 (don't bother with the 55/1.8 on APS-C) and you're ready for most situations. If you're a wide shooter, get the 10-18/4.

I think a lot of people said some very sensible things here, but it is important to know what it is what you desire!

Edit: come to think of it, what about one of those X-cameras?

esearing
12-19-2015, 06:35
Think of it a different way. Camera+lenses are like golf clubs. There is a proper club for the the shots one needs to make. The driver that gets you closest to the green or even perhaps achieves a hole-in-one will always be your favorite. The driver/clubs that you continually slice will be your least favorite. You only need a couple of clubs if not a professional. Practice is what gets you closer to par.

So take your camera out and shoot it. If you are continually missing shots you envisioned due to the limitations of the camera, trade it.

I am most gave up on 4x5 B&W this summer until I took a long painful hike to a sliver of a waterfall in a rock. I managed to capture it perfectly and it prints easily with sparkle. The camera is no longer heavy or impractical and the journey was what changed my POV. I also carry a M3 or Bessa R3 just for extra shots which may be replaced by an A7II some day.

bwcolor
12-19-2015, 06:36
I have an M7 and M7Ii, but when considering a digital replacement I would purchase an A7rII and Voigtlander adapter.

I only have one Loxia lens, but it is a joy to use with the A7 series cameras. I own a dozen or so rangefinder cameras, but love what the Loxia has to offer. They are now available in 21, 35 and 50mm.

uhoh7
12-19-2015, 06:38
John,

The Monochrom offers a lot more than a little more resolution and detail, how about 30% more resolution because it has no Bayer Filter Array. To one poster 30% is just a little which I find amusing.

While my Monochrom the "Clunker" can't do color the fact is that it does B&W exceptionally well. Big prints don't lie, and you can't print whats not there.

Not for everyone, will not do color, but for B&W only it is the way to go.

Cal

This reminds me of the current conversation about the A7r2. 42mp! You must have it. It's the only way. M9=18mp, what a joke!

I can listen to them, or look at my files. :)

Love to hear some imput on real world experience: Film vs M9 vs MM. Obviously if you peep the MM kills. But whole uncropped image, at what point is the difference obvious? Obviously flavors vary, but in terms of detail?

jsrockit
12-19-2015, 10:54
This reminds me of the current conversation about the A7r2. 42mp! You must have it. It's the only way. M9=18mp, what a joke!

I can listen to them, or look at my files. :)

Where are people saying this?