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Leica M8 / M8.2 / Ricoh GXR Smaller than full frame digital Leica M mount cameras. The Ricoh is included as a less expensive and viable digital Leica M lens platform.

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Where to get an M8 that works?
Old 11-21-2015   #1
squirrel$$$bandit
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Where to get an M8 that works?

I bought an M8 from KEH last week as tested and working, and the power switch and code reader were both broken. I sent it back and bought a second one from them, also as tested and working, and just discovered that the sensor has massive banding issues at all ISOs. Going to send that back too; now I'm out $2600 and have nothing, while I wait for KEH to "process" the returned cameras that they clearly don't even bother to switch on, let alone test.

I found an M8 on the Leica Store Miami site, and called them to make sure it was tested and working. They said they have a one-week return policy, so no worries. I said, yeah, I know, but I want to make sure you have turned the camera on, taken photos, and examined the files, so I don't get another defective camera. The salesman's response was that I should buy an M9. Then he tried to sell me a like-new M-E.

Who, if anyone, is out there who is actually testing M8s to make sure they work? I'm extremely frustrated at the moment. I bought a camera from Tamarkin once, but it was the same thing: sensor problems.
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Old 11-21-2015   #2
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Can you go to a vendor personally and "try before buy"?
You live in upstate NY. There must be some shops within distance.

Yes, I know, it's not easy to find a shop that sells an M8. For me that would be almost impossible, even though I can go to Frankfurt.

Perhaps you can get in contact with some Leica fans >> http://www.lhsa.org/

https://www.facebook.com/leica.society/
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Old 11-21-2015   #3
f16sunshine
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Look in classified.
David Ma (flyinpalm) has one with a late 333xxx serial number.
These were the last run before m8.2 .
He and I have had good dealings In the past including an amicable return and a face to face exchange in Seattle.
The later the better on these cameras.
Good luck.... Wish I was getting one too
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Old 11-21-2015   #4
Ko.Fe.
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While I was interested in M8 (few weeks ago), local classifieds have plenty to try by myself.
I even find locally one forum member with M8 and same mother language

I don't know what exactly NY upstate is. In terms of population density. Is it far from NY city?
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Old 11-21-2015   #5
lewis44
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Tamarkin:

Leica M8,2 Black Paint, Nr. 355xxxx, complete in box with one-year warranty and handgrip, near Mint $2,250

Leica M8,2 Black Paint, Nr. 356xxxx, with box and one-year warranty, Ex+ $2,095
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Old 11-21-2015   #6
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Part of my day job is providing support for some very pricy medium format digital systems. (i.e. Phase One, Mamiya/Leaf, Hasselblad, etc.) Every single digital back I get, including new ones just purchased by customers, is checked for defects with sample RAW files. I will examine those RAWs for dead pixels, hot lines, banding issues, noise, etc, and mark all the results down on a complete checklist.

I can tell you from experience that this level of service is pretty much unheard of in the camera sales business, aside from these very high-end commercial products. Most used products are only "tested" on a purely superficial level - does it power on, take a photo, etc. Lots of places don't even check the sensor at all!

My best recommendation would be to try and inspect the camera in person if you can. Most stores will allow you to bring in your own SD card or a laptop to shoot a few test files, even if they roll their eyes a bit. If that's not possible, then I second looking on the classifieds - the overwhelming majority of sellers here are extremely reasonable and trustworthy.
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Old 11-21-2015   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewis44 View Post
Tamarkin:

Leica M8,2 Black Paint, Nr. 355xxxx, complete in box with one-year warranty and handgrip, near Mint $2,250

Leica M8,2 Black Paint, Nr. 356xxxx, with box and one-year warranty, Ex+ $2,095
The M8.2 is often tempting but for the 1/4000 shutter.
Having 1/8000's shutter as the original M8 model has seems a small thing but if you had it once, ...
Fast lenses on the M8... yum!
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Old 11-21-2015   #8
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When I was a nipper (about 70 years ago) my Pappy always told me not to buy a pig in a poke (in a bag that prevents you from seeing what's actually in the bag). I think buying an expensive camera on the Internet or over the phone is a Leica in a Poke. Don't take no wooden nickels, either. You need to do Due Diligence and personally wrap yer paws around any camera you want to buy. All my buys at KEH were fabulous and I might note, under $100.
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Old 11-21-2015   #9
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my concern would be 'will it keep working?'
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Old 11-21-2015   #10
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Thank you, everyone. I just took a two-hour walk and decided that, because every single M8 that has ever been in my possession was defective, I'm never going to trust one again, regardless of how well it's working when I receive it. So I'm gonna sell everything I have that is not my core M gear, buy an M-E or M9 from Tamarkin, and try to stop thinking about gear. UGH.

(Tamarkin fans: I remembered that, though I did get a bad-sensor M8 from them, their warranty actually covered sensor replacement from Leica NJ, and that process was pretty smooth, at the time.)

Thank you. Expect a bunch of Sony, Leica R, and other stuff in the classifieds before long.
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Old 11-21-2015   #11
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Leica M-E prices should be coming down ...hopefully..
I'm even thinking about getting one..
And I swore up and down..I would never spend that kind of cash..for a diggie cam..
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Old 11-21-2015   #12
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Haha, me too, but I was wrong. The M9 was always my favorite camera; I shouldn't have sold my old one in the first place, but I had joined a band and needed some musical equipment. Bah!

Tamarkin has a nice silver M9-P for a decent price with a one-year warranty. I'm just gonna do that.
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Old 11-21-2015   #13
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Unless you have lots of money or all kinds of RF lenses, skip Leica.

They are the least reliable digi cams you can buy and service is abysmal. Slow at best. Slow and multiple trips and expensive.

When they work, they work well.

Tamarkin has two week return and 6 month warrantee.

There are those who feel buy new, when warrantee expires, trade it in and get a new one.
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Old 11-21-2015   #14
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I also had a problem with an M8.2 from KEH that I bought about three weeks ago. Everything was beautiful, very low shutter count, etc. BUT... as soon as I took a picture I noticed there was a vertical line running through the picture, originating in a hot pixel. I sent it back, they told me that under their warranty they would repair it. This took 2 weeks.

A couple of days ago they contacted me saying that they can't repair the hot pixel so they could either refund me or send it to Leica. Ultimately, Leica will have it repaired (which is a good thing because the camera will have a Leica warranty for a year)... but I'm really puzzled. In the past I never had a problem buying from KEH but this is the second body that seems not to have been checked by them (the previous one was a Nikon FA that had a defective meter).
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Old 11-21-2015   #15
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I bought my Leica M8 from the Miami store in 2013; I've never had a problem with it (knock on wood) and they were excellent to deal with.
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Old 11-21-2015   #16
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Make sure that the M9 you are interested in has the sensor replaced.
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Old 11-21-2015   #17
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Too bad. Bergen County Camera has a used one. I could have checked it out for you.
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Old 11-21-2015   #18
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Good plan. If you want a digital Leica just get a Q.
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Old 11-21-2015   #19
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Hello,

I'd suggest Ebay. Buy from someone who has enough sales and a 100% rating. Ebay sellers do care about their rating. I never had a bad camera bought from Ebay.

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Old 11-21-2015   #20
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I almost bought an M8 from ebay 2 days ago but had reservations about what might go wrong (such as you have experienced). I decided to continue to use my M3 for my Leica experience and today bought a used Nikon D300 for my current digital needs.
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Old 11-21-2015   #21
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I am really sorry to hear about the problems buying used M8's. I have to say that I bought a used M8 from B&H no more than 2 months ago,, a unit rated 8+ for $1600.00. The camera arrived as an M8.2 in absolutely mint condition. I have been shooting with it every day since, and I must say, I could not be happier. I have previously bought an M4 and a iiig and both arrived in better condition than advertised and have worked flawlessly. I am dumbfounded by what I have read here. Am I 3 times lucky?


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Old 11-21-2015   #22
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M8's are old computers now. That they have become quirky and unreliable isn't surprising.
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Old 11-22-2015   #23
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I suspect on this date very few M9s have the sensor assembly with the recently announced IR cover glass design.
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Old 11-22-2015   #24
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I have found another frustrating aspect of returning stuff is the delay to get the money back. The waiting periods can be many days or a week or longer. Paypal refunds go through a lot of processing steps, and no one can speed this up according to the paypal reps. Many banks with linked credit/debit cards have a similar process. The longer time to actual deposit back to our accounts seems strange in the digital age.
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Old 11-22-2015   #25
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I'm less worried about the sensor corrosion issue than some people, but I am certainly going to make sure Tamarkin tested for it before buying the camera from them. I suspect they're aware of the problem, and the one-year warranty puts my mind somewhat at ease.
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Old 11-22-2015   #26
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Have had excellent luck with Tamarin going back years. You may also want to check out Classic Connection. Sam is an excellent gentleman to deal with. He has two M8's listed for $1200-1400.
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Old 12-07-2015   #27
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I paid 1500 for mine, never had issues. Forum member
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