Fuji vs Leica. For colors and IQ.
Old 12-27-2015   #1
Ko.Fe.
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Fuji vs Leica. For colors and IQ.

I keep on checking on nice digital cameras. Only few which I like how they build. Fuji X100 series and Leicas RFs are nice ones to me.
I have done it couple of times this year. Looking and M8, M9 and M240 pictures and after it looking at pictures from X100 and X100S.
For colors, details and overall IQ the winner for me is... Fuji.
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Old 12-27-2015   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ko.Fe. View Post
For colors, details and overall IQ the winner for me is... Fuji.
No wonder at all. But then digital Leica is not about color, as I see it.
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Old 12-27-2015   #3
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When the light is perfect, the M9 captures such a perfection. It maintains the original beauty, even if subtle. This is a very special characteristic in the M9. I could be wrong here, but this is how I see it. Things get close to film.
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Old 12-27-2015   #4
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I have owned both the Fuji X100T and Leica M 240. I wondered the same thing: comparison of the colour and IQ between Leica and Fuji.

I took some test photos of the same scene at the same time with both cameras. I shot in JPEG to make things simple. Then I compared the images at 100% on my computer.

The Fuji was very pleasing, excellent colour and sharpness. But at 100% I noticed more 'fuzzy' areas in the image, more aliasing in the JPEG.

The Leica image (in general) was more accurate and had significantly better rendition and resolution. I was impressed.

Of course, this is a completely non-scientific test. Both cameras use very different sensors. And really, unless you're printing things at poster-size, nobody will ever notice much difference between the Leica and Fuji. They're both excellent.
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Old 12-27-2015   #5
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Five years with the M9 and a couple with the M240 and all I can say is they each need a bit of work to optimize color. The M9 reminded me a lot of the original Canon 1D with CCD sensor. That camera needed to be shot in RAW and images optimized in 3rd party software (rather than Canon's own at that time) to fully realize its potential. The M240 seems a bit better here and I've seen really nice straight from camera Jpegs from others when shot in one of the built-in color 'looks', though I don't use these and find the SOOC rendering rather typical of many non-optimized higher end digital camera files.

It shouldn't really be a surprise that Fuji cameras generate great color without much effort, considering Fuji's color film background and that their cameras intentionally emulate their film stocks. That said, I've definitely seen 'over the top' results from these profiles, as though the color is slathered on...

For my wants and needs, color rendering isn't an absolute deciding factor...
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Old 12-27-2015   #6
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is the color rendition of sensors really something to pay attention to these days? they all look very, very similar to me.
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Old 12-27-2015   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aizan View Post
is the color rendition of sensors really something to pay attention to these days? they all look very, very similar to me.
Probably because most manufacturers are chasing similar results, namely better/cleaner high ISO performance. This can dictate the color filter array (CFA) used over the sensor. Weaker color filters result in more light transmission to the individual pixels, improving high ISO performance. But the tradeoff is somewhat worse color separation.

Fuji uses a non-standard CFA filter arrangement for most of their current cameras that they argue improves image quality. 3rd party analysis is less favorable.

IMO, color is very much a result of how each manufacturer profiles their sensors and the look they want to get out of a given camera. This was also the case back in the film days when Fuji was known for certain color qualities, while Kodak seemed to have other priorities. This was also likely due to differing color preferences in Asian vs. American/European cultures. Some films were intentionally bold and saturated, while others were more neutral or natural. This now is more the domain of software tweaks than actual sensor design, from my understanding.

There was a lot of talk about how the M9's CCD renders differently from the M240's CMOS. There are some technical differences, but IMO, I can get each to mimic the other rather easily. That said, each requires somewhat different processing to do so.

Another reason things may appear very similar is that many photographers process their images with popular image editing software from either Adobe or Phase One. For example, using the Adobe profiles to process images from different cameras may minimize the differences between these cameras, assuming the default Adobe profiles aim towards a common look.
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Old 12-27-2015   #8
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To me even low cost old PS might give fine picture quality SOOC and JPEG1 under very good light.
But.
I have seen some pictures here and on Flickr taken on bright day with low ISO on digital M. The noise in blue sky was awful. At one picture it was with magenta pixels in it.
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Old 12-27-2015   #9
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Maybe it was the PS work that messed up the digital files?
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Old 12-27-2015   #10
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At this level, more depends on which camera you are happy using (and can afford) than on the marque. Well, that and your own ability, of course.

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Old 12-27-2015   #11
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1. To evaluate what any camera's sensor can capture and not what the jpg software spits out, you'll have to shoot raw DNG
2. Get you WB spot on and nail the exposure.
3. Have you monitor screen calibrated and use soft ware that has the specific camara profile or generate your own with color checker.

Velvia is not really known for accurate colors as far as I remember, bold and saturated, yes but accurate?
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Old 12-27-2015   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ko.Fe. View Post
To me even low cost old PS might give fine picture quality SOOC and JPEG1 under very good light.
But.
I have seen some pictures here and on Flickr taken on bright day with low ISO on digital M. The noise in blue sky was awful. At one picture it was with magenta pixels in it.
My experience with digital M is that it's not noiseless at base ISO. There is always some fine texture, even in the sky, similar to fine grained film. This doesn't bother me, but might bother others.

Leica does 'bake in' certain corrections, such as lens color shift correction if lens coding is enabled. This also corrects some vignetting. Otherwise, my feeling is Leica is more hands-off in respect to noise reduction and other optical related corrections than many other brands. There isn't any CA or distortion correction, for example.

Without doubt, Fuji's overall look is very appealing. But I do think they make a ton of behind the scenes tweaks to their files. Things like local contrast/clarity enhancements and variable sharpening. This is fine if you're after a finished look with less effort. Maybe not so great if you prefer to control the application of corrections and adjustments yourself in post.
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Old 12-27-2015   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aizan View Post
is the color rendition of sensors really something to pay attention to these days? they all look very, very similar to me.
Light is so variable. It's how the sensors handle the variation where the biggest differences come to play.
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Old 12-27-2015   #14
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Fujifilm x-trans sensors are very different to everything else in terms of color. Amongst other reasons, this is one of the main reasons I love using them. I find it difficult to explain quantitatively except that I don't feel that the output with minimal tweaking looks like it's from a digital camera. They have a tendency to blend the highlights very gently and the whole upper register of tones is very pastel. That's not to say it looks definitively 'filmish' but it doesn't carry the same sort of garish 'heaviness' to the colors that I find most digital files do - which I spent a LOT of time and effort softening out in post with my canons/olympus/nikons.

Everything I have recently shot on my blog Dirty Eyes has been with an x-trans sensor fuji, so theres the proof in my pudding. I do VERY minimal PP.
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Old 12-27-2015   #15
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Well I spent some time in the Fuji image threads here.

Lots of creative photography going on. As to colors: quite a gamut, some really nice ones but no shortage of cooked shots. Many images seem to be sharpened. You know, they look like it.

I'm an M9 fan, and there are plenty, with people switching back to that camera today. There is a long thread with many stories:
http://www.l-camera-forum.com/topic/...er-m240/page-5
That link drops you at the latest. These issues are very personal, but the M9 is a real seducer when it comes to colors and IQ:

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No wonder at all. But then digital Leica is not about color, as I see it.
The best line of color lenses ever made for 35 format. SEM 21, 28 cron etc, nothing beats the color from these. They are famous for it. Of course they shoot fabulous BW, that's easy in comparison. But it's in the color shots you really see the work which has gone into them.
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Old 12-27-2015   #16
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When do comparison, did u use same lens for both cameras?
I think lens has contribution for color and rendition.

Post sample of pics will be nice, thx.

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Old 12-28-2015   #17
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I'll never understand this type of thread... both are great for actual photography.
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Old 12-28-2015   #18
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I'll never understand this type of thread... both are great for actual photography.
Amen brother.
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Old 12-28-2015   #19
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I agree with the OP and I don't: whenever I download a series of fuji and leica shots, the leica shots have something special. The same signature look can be seen with the by now antique Epson R-D1. It's subtle but noticeable. All this said, the fuji x-100 and it's successor models are more versatile cameras but have little in common with the rangefinder experience.
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Old 12-28-2015   #20
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I'll never understand this type of thread... both are great for actual photography.
Quite: cf post 10.

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Old 12-28-2015   #21
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I'll never understand this type of thread... both are great for actual photography.
My actual photography is done with iPhone. I take pictures of OS, SW license to see it better.
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Old 12-28-2015   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gavinlg View Post
Fujifilm x-trans sensors are very different to everything else in terms of color. Amongst other reasons, this is one of the main reasons I love using them. I find it difficult to explain quantitatively except that I don't feel that the output with minimal tweaking looks like it's from a digital camera. They have a tendency to blend the highlights very gently and the whole upper register of tones is very pastel. That's not to say it looks definitively 'filmish' but it doesn't carry the same sort of garish 'heaviness' to the colors that I find most digital files do - which I spent a LOT of time and effort softening out in post with my canons/olympus/nikons.

Everything I have recently shot on my blog Dirty Eyes has been with an x-trans sensor fuji, so theres the proof in my pudding. I do VERY minimal PP.
This.
I read it and it makes sense to me.

While "shooting RAW and PP" it is done and gone for me. If camera, lens can't give SOOC JPEG1 you like, it is wrong camera or you are wrong with camera.
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Old 12-28-2015   #23
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Originally Posted by Ko.Fe. View Post
My actual photography is done with iPhone. I take pictures of OS, SW license to see it better.
Ok, but you seem to go back and forth between loving the fact that some of your favorite photographers use the cheapest digital cameras (and make great images) and also comparing (for instance Leica and Fuji) for magical minutia. Is it boredom (it's ok if it is, we can understand that) or are you not convinced, at some point, that the camera doesn't matter as much anymore?
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Old 12-28-2015   #24
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Dirty Eyes has been with an x-trans sensor fuji, so theres the proof in my pudding. I do VERY minimal PP.
I'm not concerned about the camera used (because I think you could have used other equipment), but there's some really interesting work on this blog... I find it appeals to me more so than your street work and I like that it varies wildly in mood and style vs. your street work. You're versatile.
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Old 12-28-2015   #25
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Ok, but you seem to go back and forth between loving the fact that some of your favorite photographers use the cheapest digital cameras (and make great images) and also comparing (for instance Leica and Fuji) for magical minutia. Is it boredom (it's ok if it is, we can understand that) or are you not convinced, at some point, that the camera doesn't matter as much anymore?
It is OK to be boredom if you don't understand. I'm exactly the same.

My favorite photographers where using film cameras. My thread was about them getting old and using some cheap digital cameras. And somehow I don't give a crap for their digital photography. I'm only interested in their film photography.

Where is no comparing of magic from digital Leica and Fuji in this thread.
I looked at thousands Fuji taken pictures and at thousands Leica taken pictures. I found Fuji images better technically for my taste.

Sorry, I'm technical person. I was involved in technical aspects of computers graphics and digital image processing, presentation since nineties. My eyes are trained to see what average Joe's can't see. This is why to me camera's sensor is matter. Take it as my fault. I'm not as artist as you and other "it is not the camera" are.

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Old 12-28-2015   #26
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Sorry, I'm technical person. I was involved in technical aspects of computers graphics and digital image processing, presentation since nineties. My eyes are trained to see what average Joe's can't see. This is why to me camera's sensor is matter.
At Base ISO no Fuji can compete with the Full Frame Leica sensors technically, especially when they are armed with weapons like the 50 APO, a lens far beyond any Fuji.

If your technical eyes do not see this, you may need some correction

That's not to say Fuji is not a great platform. I fully understand why so many love them, and I see very good images from them.

But come on. I don't pretend my M9 will outshoot a Leica S. And that's about the relationship between Fuji APS-C and Digital M.
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Old 12-28-2015   #27
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uhoh7. About my eyes...

Yours shots recently shown here of trailer and ski slope were the most obvious prof what M9 is awful (sometimes, I guess) on low ISO.

Cheers, Ko.
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Old 12-28-2015   #28
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I'm not concerned about the camera used (because I think you could have used other equipment), but there's some really interesting work on this blog... I find it appeals to me more so than your street work and I like that it varies wildly in mood and style vs. your street work. You're versatile.
That's a wonderful compliment, thankyou.
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Old 12-28-2015   #29
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is the color rendition of sensors really something to pay attention to these days? they all look very, very similar to me.
Not sure but I would think the monitor, computer software, printing software, etc would over ride any color rendition between cameras. I have an M9 and an X-E2 can't can't tell the difference.

Only time I could really tell the color rendition of camera lenses was when I was shooting Kodachrome. I can still look at slides (if not too faded) and tell which ones were shoot on a Nikon or Leica. Never could tell on a print.
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Old 12-28-2015   #30
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When the light is perfect, the M9 captures such a perfection. It maintains the original beauty, even if subtle. This is a very special characteristic in the M9. I could be wrong here, but this is how I see it. Things get close to film.
I just recently process images taken with Leica M9 some years ago in Lr. Compering it to my present M 240 it looks different, I know it is subjective, but I would almost call it better, different sensor, different look I guess. (That is DNG no JPEG).
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Old 12-30-2015   #31
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At Base ISO no Fuji can compete with the Full Frame Leica sensors technically
....
Please be more specific. I am not sure what you mean by "technically". Does this opinion include the M9/M8 sensors?

As can be seen here the M240 dynamic range (as measure by un-rendered, raw-datastatistical analysis) is identical at ISO 100 and 200. Dynamic range is directly proportional to the signal to-noise ratio. DR and SNR always decrease as the camera's ISO setting increases (unless the final data values are produced by digital multiplication after they leave the ADC). In all fields of measurement, SNR is a primary technical component of data quality because the uncertainty of the data decreases as SNR increases.

The Leica Q data is unique (strange) until ISO 400 where it behaves as most other cameras behave.

Above ISO 1600 the Fujifilm data is also strange as Fujifilm switches from analog signal amplification to only digital raw integer multiplication to increase global brightness. All ISO 1600 data are computed from underexposed ISO 200 raw values.

Otherwise, compared to the Xtrans I/II APS-C sensors, the M240 has approximately 1/2 to 2/3 stop more DR (and SNR) at all ISOs. This difference is less than the maximum one would expect based only on the difference in sensor areas.

The signal part of the SNR depends on three things:

o all the light that reaches the sensor when the shutter is open
o the sensor area.
o the sensor's efficiency

The first two determine the exposure while the third depends on the sensor assembly technology.

Of course the raw data signal-to-noise ratio is just one component of IQ. But it is one that can be objectively measured. The properties of the color-filter array and micro-lens assemblies are also very important. For those who use in-camera JPEGs, automated WB and the JPEG rendering algorithms play a major role. Comparing these, and other, aspects of the camera design becomes highly subjective. The vast differences possible in raw data rendering during post-production muddy the waters completely.

And I'm not even discussing lenses.

There are so many subjective factors that determine the final IQ, without context, the term IQ itself is meaningless.
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Old 12-30-2015   #32
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Originally Posted by Ko.Fe. View Post
For colors, details and overall IQ the winner for me is... Fuji.
Yesterday, I compared a Leica to a Fuji for colors, details, overall IQ, and price. Even though I loved the rangefinder focusing, the winner for me was ... Fuji.

$3900 Used Leica M Type 240 body in excellent condition (full frame)
$ 650 Used 90mm f/2 Leica Summicron lens in good condition
$1800 Used 35mm f/1.4 Leica Summilux lens in good condition
--------
$6350 Total

$427 Used Fuji X-Pro1 body in excellent condition (APS-c)
$744 Used 56mm f/1.2 Fujinon lens in excellent condition
$695 Used 23mm f/1.4 Fujinon lens in excellent condition
--------
$1866 Total


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Old 12-30-2015   #33
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I'll never understand this type of thread... both are great for actual photography.
Obviously. But this is a bit of a gear-head forum and I think the original post is about comparing two camera systems....i think.

I have had both systems. The Fujis are great but they are not quite at the same level as the Leicas...but you pay a lot more for that slight edge.

Even aps-c vs aps-c the X-Vario out resolves the X-pro1. At very fine detail, the Fuji cannot produce the same results (both raw and jpeg or course).

For color the Fujis are fine but I did not like my results with Lightroom...much more satisfied with Capture One. For the Leicas I never really got along well with the M240 and much prefer the X-Vario especially for skin tones...which is very important to me. After shooting hundreds of thousands of frames with both, my general feeling is that the Leicas produce a cleaner image. Under some conditions the Fuji image would be more muddy. The Leicas deliver a transparency that is more true-to-life. All very un-technical terms but this is my opinion.

Ultimately I ended up selling off my Fuji system.

Last edited by 2WK : 12-30-2015 at 11:57. Reason: forgot something...
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Old 12-30-2015   #34
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Check out my respective blind test http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...d.php?t=153756.
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Old 01-11-2016   #35
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Check out my respective blind test http://www.rangefinderforum.com/foru...d.php?t=153756.
Thank you, I did.

This weekend I also spend time on Flickr looking at Leica Monochorome, M240, M9 and M8 images in Black and White. Thousands of pictures and photogs on Flickr.
To my eye it wasn't very special most of the time. Some pictures with nice resolution, but it isn't my priority. Fuji BW is alright as well. And even R-D1 with very old sensor has interesting bw as well.

After it I started to check M8, M9, M240 color pictures again. Some, not so many images which are "crisp and juicy" in very special way. While with Fuji images I have seen on Flickr I would describe it as the world of fruitful saturation.

My impression is what with Leica M series you have to work the camera for good colors and where are not so many good examples of it on Flickr. But Fuji X-series and lenses seems to give higher rate for nice colors. Fuji 35 lens is very impressive prime lens.

I like this picture, btw. Good skin colors for low, artificial light and impressive resolution. And it is Leica M240.

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