Leica Out of M8 / 8.2 Sensors ??
Old 03-23-2014   #1
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Leica Out of M8 / 8.2 Sensors ??

I've been told unofficially that Leica is out of the M8 / 8.2 sensors and will not be getting more.

Apparently what is being done instead is the Leica importer in that country offering the customer a credit upgrade towards a current production Monochrome or ME or M240 - or sometimes a refurbished M9 if they are available.

The amount of the credit and towards what camera seems to be dependent upon what you can negotiate with your national importer.

If anyone has additional details, please share.

Stephen
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Old 03-24-2014   #2
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That's a shame if it's factual seeing as the M8 is such a solidly built camera. To be consigned to the junk pile due to non sensor availability after seven (?) years is a travesty for those who really like the camera and would continue to use it in preference to the full frame option.
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Old 03-24-2014   #3
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Leica long since assigned the M8 and M8.2 to the rubbish bin, when they stopped including it on their site and ceased with the firmware updates (the last one was some candy assed support for a lens and "minor tweaks" (read: absolutely nothing else)).

I have no faith in Leica's dedication to their customer base, only in their dedication to making a profit. The two can and should go hand in hand.

I've had both an M8 and M8.2. Both wonderful cameras in their own rights, so I feel sorry for those who have been pretty much left abandoned by Leica. They are no longer a camera for a lifetime.

Well done, Leica
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Old 03-24-2014   #4
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I have no faith in Leica's dedication to their customer base, only in their dedication to making a profit. The two can and should go hand in hand.
I agree.
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They are no longer a camera for a lifetime.
This applies to all digital cameras doesn't it?
But what about the MP? A (black)chrome MP should look good and work well for a long time.
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Old 03-24-2014   #5
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This applies to all digital cameras doesn't it?
Of course, but it is one of the tag lines that Leica likes to use. I have no doubt that this is specifically in reference to their film bodies, but for all that money you would expect a little better, wouldn't you?

Expect the same abandonment with the M9 parts and support sometime soon.
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Old 03-24-2014   #6
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after dreamnig of an MM for one and a half years, I more or less decided that as an amateur I cannot afford it for the time I can expect it to work.
I have an acceptable workflow now with b&w film home development & film scanning. I rather invest into printing than into the resolution of an 18 MPix sensor.

But I am happy about the results; I will need to learn about scanning and photoshop, so the is still room for improvements ;-)
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Old 03-24-2014   #7
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I guess Leica are no different from any digital camera manufacturer ... they keep trying to convince us they are though so this little gem of news won't go down well with many of their loyal customers.
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Old 03-24-2014   #8
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The digital world is a wonder, but it is also a little cruel.
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Old 03-24-2014   #9
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Of course, but it is one of the tag lines that Leica likes to use. I have no doubt that this is specifically in reference to their film bodies, but for all that money you would expect a little better, wouldn't you?

Expect the same abandonment with the M9 parts and support sometime soon.
Why? And why do some people delight in inventing malevolent fantasies?

Cheers,

R.
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Old 03-24-2014   #10
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This is the digital dilema. All digital cameras only have a very short life. Do not expect to see working M240s in 20 or 30 years time.

True ... but it's still a damned shame that there is a fine digital rangefinder out there that a lot of people are perfectly happy with that you can now no longer get a sensor for ... or an LCD for that matter!
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Old 03-24-2014   #11
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I fill a bit depressed, my first M8 has literally arrived as I'm reading this post.
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Old 03-24-2014   #12
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I fill a bit depressed, my first M8 has literally arrived as I'm reading this post.

Just enjoy it ... and cross your fingers of course!
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Old 03-24-2014   #13
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I don't think Leica's intention is 'malevolent', just the nature of the digital beast. That of course is cold confort to those M8/8.2 owners who are left high and dry.

The real test here is what Leica is offering in exchange for a unrepairable body. If it is just a token credit, say 20 precent of the price of a new replacement ME then I'd say they really just don't care whether they lose that customer or not. The real irony is that the savings of a couple of thousand dollars would be offset by a greater loss of sales due to bad press.

Company reputations can have real monetary value. But once lost can have a real drag on the bottom line.

One more thought. Re., what credit is given toward a replacement M. This should be a stated policy of Leica and backed by them, not dependant on any inporter 'negotiated' settlement. Leica needs to get ahead of the curve here and state openly what they intend to do for their customers.
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Old 03-24-2014   #14
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Good news IMO for future buyers (prices maybe going down?). Realistically, how many of us got sensor in M8 out of warranty replaced for reasonable price by Leica?
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Old 03-24-2014   #15
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Originally Posted by tom.w.bn View Post
Why should it? Most people who use old stuff don't do it because it's so damn sexy. They just don't have the money to buy something new.
Being poor and underprivileged I recently bought a Canon 5D Mk1 second-hand which subsequently suffered a detached mirror. It was sent to Canon who upgraded the whole mirror assembly free of charge because it was a known issue. Pretty impressive given the age of the camera and the fact I certainly wasn't the original owner.

Incidentally I used to own an M8 (when they were £££££s) but sold it and all my lenses because I found I liked everything about medium format film better. It's just so damn sexy.






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Old 03-24-2014   #16
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I guess Leica are no different from any digital camera manufacturer ... they keep trying to convince us they are though so this little gem of news won't go down well with many of their loyal customers.


this.


profits, profits, profits...






if they were dedicated to sticking to the old "yes, leicas are damned expensive, but you are buying a camera that someday your child's kid could use" philosophy, they could do it. a modular system that simply swapped out the sensor would likely not be too hard to engineer. in the modern age, Apple has learned that all you have to do to impress consumers is build something a little bit heavier and more robust than to fall apart before it becomes obsolete (read: 2 product generations; possibly less if you force "upgrades" via software bloat). leica could do something similar, and it would make sense -- there is really no point engineering and enforcing strict quality control for bodies that can undergo "decades of use" when the useful lifetime is really only 8 years or so, it's just wasting money.

this is why "Leica (digital)" and "Leica" should be treated as separate entities, as there is very little "Leica" about the company and its modern, badge-engineered contraptions. they've built themselves into a comfortable niche, but unfortunately it will shrink and profits will rise and it will shrink and profits will rise and it will shrink and profits will rise and it will shrink and *POOF* you no longer have a market because you were stupid and greedy and shortsighted and now you're SOOL.

corporations have long since learned that it's not a profitable business model to create products that will continue to compete with your sales for a lifetime's worth of customers. such is the case with any company whose chief product has ceased to be quality and has become "lifestyle." better is to bilk customers and entice them with offers of trade-in discounts -- these should not be a significant percentage of a company's profits, and yet the fact that Leica has the gall to ask customers to drop another 2-4k to "trade-up" is simply appalling.
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Old 03-24-2014   #17
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Thought an interesting development, it is not at all surprising given the nature of the gear in question.

Epson still offers full service for some of its later models, but not the original R-D1 apparently.

There was a recent thread mentioning over 2kUS for an M9 sensor replacement.

It's a model that has ousted many working photographers who simply cannot justify this cost structure. It's also a model that has been working for Leica as they reach out to those with deeper pockets and an interest in photography.

I can't think of a niche, high end manufacturer, who has not shifted to similar marketing and product development strategies.

Meanwhile Fuji and others have dug in to the middle ground and offered comparatively better value with their hybrid and compact camera systems.

Though I can certainly understand the concern of those who currently own and M8 and those interested in a second hand body, the potential costs of service/upgrade to a more recent system are hardly a mistery.

The fact that Leica offers an upgrade program is a middle ground approach, and a fair one in my view. I would not expect them to stock obsolete and expensive electronic parts manufactured by a third party for 10 years.
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Old 03-24-2014   #18
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Why? And why do some people delight in inventing malevolent fantasies?

Cheers,

R.

Roger,

I don't "delight" in any such thing. "Malevolent fantasises"? Erm, no. Please see my original post. I am only providing documented evidence of Leica's bad character regarding their apathy when it comes to their previous digital generation and their customer base.

Also, further to this, please see Bob's example of the polar opposite end of customer service with Canon:

Quote:
Being poor and underprivileged I recently bought a Canon 5D Mk1 second-hand which subsequently suffered a detached mirror. It was sent to Canon who upgraded the whole mirror assembly free of charge because it was a known issue. Pretty impressive given the age of the camera and the fact I certainly wasn't the original owner.
When Leica offer service that matches this, especially given that Canon are still doing this for the best price in the world (gratis), then come back to me and we'll discuss who is "delighting" in "malevolent fantasies" then.

Cheers,

C.
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Old 03-24-2014   #19
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Originally Posted by Roger Hicks View Post
Why? And why do some people delight in inventing malevolent fantasies?

Cheers,

R.
recon dark clouds have been gathering on horizon, for M9 as well regarding its Kodak-designed sensor.

the "delight" on the other hand is just Leica-hate that surfaces here every now and then.
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Old 03-24-2014   #20
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Until sensor units become near-disposable, drop-in units, made by a variety of companies to fit a standardised "slot" in digital bodies, digital cameras will always suffer this fate.

At the moment, the sensors are one of, if not THE, most expensive components to make, they're one of the main differentiating features of one camera to another, require a lot of electronics to support them, and only recently became "affordable" full frame. We're still seeing a lot of development in them. As a result, we're not likely to see the interchangeable, standardised sensor packages anytime soon, but I can see why it would be desirable to develop, should the industry go that direction.

Every current digital camera will share the same fate as the M8, it's part of the deal.
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Old 03-24-2014   #21
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If there is nothing to fix they why should a firmware update be necessary?

The old Canon 5D had the last firmware update years ago and still works fine
Crappy ISO? White balance issues? Improving the UI? Adding features? Noooo, that would be far too ... Fuji.

They would rather just implement these features in a new product and take more of your money - I mean, why spend £5k on one camera and expect a reasonable amount of timely and sensible and proportionately costed (God help me, even free in some cases) support when you can spend £10k on two cameras and expect none? What was I thinking?
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Old 03-24-2014   #22
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recon dark clouds have been gathering on horizon, for M9 as well regarding its Kodak-designed sensor.

the "delight" on the other hand is just Leica-hate that surfaces here every now and then.
I don't hate Leica. I am just as apathetic regarding their (digital) products as they are with their customers.
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Old 03-24-2014   #23
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Originally Posted by CameraQuest View Post
I've been told unofficially that Leica is out of the M8 / 8.2 sensors and will not be getting more.

Apparently what is being done instead is the Leica importer in that country offering the customer a credit upgrade towards a current production Monochrome or ME or M240 - or sometimes a refurbished M9 if they are available.

The amount of the credit and towards what camera seems to be dependent upon what you can negotiate with your national importer.

If anyone has additional details, please share.

Stephen

What a shame for those who have saved up and bought the cameras and the dealers who still have second hand stock sitting on their shelves..
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Old 03-24-2014   #24
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That's a shame if it's factual seeing as the M8 is such a solidly built camera. To be consigned to the junk pile due to non sensor availability after seven (?) years is a travesty for those who really like the camera and would continue to use it in preference to the full frame option.
Having owned an M8.. the one thing I'd say that wasn't solidly built was the Kodak sensor.

Just my opinion but I would say "good riddance" to that sensor.

Cheers,
Dave
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Old 03-24-2014   #25
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Being poor and underprivileged I recently bought a Canon 5D Mk1 second-hand which subsequently suffered a detached mirror. It was sent to Canon who upgraded the whole mirror assembly free of charge because it was a known issue. Pretty impressive given the age of the camera and the fact I certainly wasn't the original owner.
The same happened to my 5D. But:
1. I would have been far more impressed if Canon had it designed properly. My mirror detached at the beginning of a 3 weeks vacation in Nepal leaving me more than 2 weeks with my backup camera only.
2. Re-glueing a mirror and reinforcing it with L-brackets is hardly comparable to a sensor replacement. Neither in cost nor in part stocking and labour.
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Old 03-24-2014   #26
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Ah well .... just think of all the lovely Leica paper weights to be had as time goes by!
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Old 03-24-2014   #27
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2. Re-glueing a mirror and reinforcing it with L-brackets is hardly comparable to a sensor replacement. Neither in cost nor in part stocking and labour.
Apologies, I wasn't clear. Canon replaced the whole mirror mechanism with a brand new upgraded one.
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Old 03-24-2014   #28
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I think at least part of the problem is that they continue to trade based on unrealistic customer expectations of the product in full knowledge that they may not be met.

It seems ridiculous to encourage this view by continually referencing a period when your products were built to last and then being surprised that your customers are then disappointed those expectations are not met.

Not that there is any evidence that the company is at all surprised or even concerned .
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Old 03-24-2014   #29
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Leica's current M9 and M9P have the following strap line "Compact, Built for a Lifetime, and Enduring in Value" followed by
"It is not rare for a Leica to become its owner's lifelong companion. This also applies to the digital Leica M9 and equally to the M9-P:"

They will need to be sure of their ongoing support for the above to be true. we will have to wait and see
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Old 03-24-2014   #30
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Leica's current M9 and M9P have the following strap line "Compact, Built for a Lifetime, and Enduring in Value" followed by
"It is not rare for a Leica to become its owner's lifelong companion. This also applies to the digital Leica M9 and equally to the M9-P:"

They will need to be sure of their ongoing support for the above to be true. we will have to wait and see

Yes , exactly the thing I was thinking about.
My advice would be stop pointing the gun at your foot.
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Old 03-24-2014   #31
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Ah well .... just think of all the lovely Leica paper weights to be had as time goes by!
Maybe rip out the guts and make them into film bodies.

(Note to all wet blankets: I am being humorous, please don't point out all the technical impossibilities here.)
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Old 03-24-2014   #32
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"KODAK KAF-10500 image sensor was developed specifically for use with the M8, and marks Kodak’s second collaboration with Leica."

You'd be living in the dark ages if you think something wasn't going to happen after Kodak went under and sold off their sensor division to Platinum Equity. (http://www.kodak.com/ek/US/en/Kodak_...num_Equity.htm) It's a damn shame. I still have my M8 as backup to my M9. I haven't heard of many sensor fails in M8s as I have heard of and experienced for myself in M9s. Many problems in M8s seem to stem from shutter faults and LCD fails over time. Though I can imagine a plethora of other problems as well.
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Old 03-24-2014   #33
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IMO, it should be pretty obvious to anyone in digital photography for the past decade or so, that eventually manufacturers cease support for older products, despite whatever advertising fluff the marketing department dreamed up to sell the product.

As already mentioned, Leica is not unique in regards to ending support. What I have not seen offered by others, or at least Canon, which I've used for decades, is a discount towards a replacement. Though I would be surprised to see Leica officially announce such a discount.

Digital cameras are disposable, no matter how well they're physically made. All of my Canon 1D cameras were built like tanks (and priced similarly to Leica's cameras), which theoretically should endure decades of service. But the digital guts were always obsolete in 2-3 years anyway. So why build them this way? Why continue the Leica camera build quality in the digital era? Because it serves a purpose while the camera is in use. It's durable and also feels great in hand. Isn't that one reason why we all bought Leicas? They simply feel great, in addition to meeting other photographic expectations we each specifically have. It's an immediately satisfying experience.

After several 18-24 month Canon 1D upgrade cycles, I accepted that any digital camera in such a price range, including Leica, will result in a sizable annual depreciation and eventually will be worth close to nothing. That the M8 still sells in the $2000 range is frankly amazing to me. But perhaps this rumour, if true, will finally knock the value down to a realistic amount.

Where that advertising fluff from Leica may still retain some truth is in regards to their lenses. These are currently still all mechanical designs that should be usable and serviceable for decades. I can't say the same is true with other brands, most of which are electronically augmented with AF and aperture control. Eventually support for those ceases (seems 5-7 years after discontinuation is the average now). Aren't lenses *the* draw of the Leica system anyway? It's where the majority of my 'investment' (knowing that the purchase of camera equipment is rarely something that increases in value) in Leica is. The cameras I expect to depreciate rapidly. The lenses not so much.
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Old 03-24-2014   #34
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. . . if they were dedicated to sticking to the old "yes, leicas are damned expensive, but you are buying a camera that someday your child's kid could use" philosophy, they could do it. a modular system that simply swapped out the sensor would likely not be too hard to engineer. .
Alas, it would. I discussed it at some length at the factory. They may have exaggerated, but I don't think they were lying. They didn't say it was impossible: just not cost-effective. The cost of stripping and reinstalling would be very high indeed, and of course the M typ 240 and previous digi-Ms are very different beasts.

Cheers,

R.
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Old 03-24-2014   #35
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Roger,

I don't "delight" in any such thing. "Malevolent fantasises"? Erm, no. Please see my original post. I am only providing documented evidence of Leica's bad character regarding their apathy when it comes to their previous digital generation and their customer base.

Also, further to this, please see Bob's example of the polar opposite end of customer service with Canon:



When Leica offer service that matches this, especially given that Canon are still doing this for the best price in the world (gratis), then come back to me and we'll discuss who is "delighting" in "malevolent fantasies" then.

Cheers,

C.
"Expect . . . soon" ISN'T a malevolent fantasy? Why should we expect it soon? It'll happen sooner or later, sure, but why "soon"?

Cheers,

R.
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Old 03-24-2014   #36
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IMO, it should be pretty obvious to anyone in digital photography for the past decade or so, that eventually manufacturers cease support for older products, despite whatever advertising fluff the marketing department dreamed up to sell the product.
Yep.. not just digital photography - digital ANYTHING. Look at any other equipment that is digital or "non-analog" - support eventually ends.

It's easy enough, with cameras if analog, to find someone to repair/tinker/fix etc. but try doing that with older digital equipment. Good luck. Find the nearest garbage pile and drop the thing into it.

Which brings up another issue with digital cameras (and digital stuff in general) - surely some of these can be recycled? (even, as Keith suggested, paperweights )

We can't keep "throwing away" this stuff ad infinituum...

Cheers,
Dave
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Old 03-24-2014   #37
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Alas, it would. I discussed it at some length at the factory. They may have exaggerated, but I don't think they were lying. They didn't say it was impossible: just not cost-effective. The cost of stripping and reinstalling would be very high indeed, and of course the M typ 240 and previous digi-Ms are very different beasts.

Cheers,

R.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks View Post
"Expect . . . soon" ISN'T a malevolent fantasy? Why should we expect it soon? It'll happen sooner or later, sure, but why "soon"?

Cheers,

R.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tom.w.bn View Post
Do you have an example of a camera where High Iso of raw files was improved with a firmware update?
... thankfully; I find the sound of hairs being split slightly preferable to someone dragging their fingernails across blue slate
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Regards Stewart

Stewart McBride

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You’re only young once, but one can always be immature.

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Old 03-24-2014   #38
35photo
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I've been a Leica user for a pretty long time, the R3 was my first camera my dad gave me to use..brought my M6 11 years ago or so..I remember when the M8 first came out read everything about it good and bad and so on with the M9..I felt these Leica digitals were nice but not built to last they had too many issues that many people were talking about. But I still wanted one M9, found one at a slightly used price went tried it out with my 35mm f2 ASPH started seeing the red edge or red shift with this lens, but not my 50..Decided not to by it based on the red shift thing..Then a 1 year or so later I'm still wanting one found one that was well used at a dealer that Leica just serviced and decided to give it a go..Its been great thus far! I'm not sure how long it will last, but I'm not worried about it..I thing I do know the lenses will out last must of us.. I wouldn't pay full price for one, just got out have fun and shot..
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Old 03-24-2014   #39
semi-ambivalent
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jschrader View Post
I will need to learn about scanning and photoshop, so the is still room for improvements ;-)
Look at the incredible work being done out there today (or for the last hundred years). If you have room for improvement it's not your using film that is holding you back.

s-a
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The love/hate thing with Leica never ceases to amuse....
Old 03-24-2014   #40
jamin-b
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The love/hate thing with Leica never ceases to amuse....

I bought an M8 a couple of years ago on eBay and after reading about the UV/IR filter issue, wrote to Leica in Germany explaining that I had just bought the camera second hand and would appreciate receiving the filters, even though the camera was no longer under warranty and hadn't been bought from them. They sent over two new filters for free, postage paid, as though it were the most natural thing in the world. Who else would do that?!
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