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View Poll Results: Was it worth upgrading from RD1 to M8 ?
Yes, but I kept my RD1 as a backup 5 11.90%
Yes, M8 is much better, I sold my RD1 9 21.43%
No, I kept the RD1. 20 47.62%
No, I dumped both, went to evil DSLR 4 9.52%
I am blind now, canīt shoot anymore 4 9.52%
Voters: 42. You may not vote on this poll

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Poll : Upgrade to M8 or stay with Epson R-D1
Old 04-25-2008   #1
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Poll : Upgrade to M8 or stay with Epson R-D1

Wonder what is the opinion of those that went from the RD1 to the M8, especially now that the M8 has been on the market for quite a while.
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Old 04-25-2008   #2
M. Valdemar
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I don't feel the M8 is an "upgrade".

The only thing I like about the M8 is the slightly bigger sensor. I also feel the lack of the IR filter is a positive thing, the same as the Kodak Pro 14n.

In many ways the Epson is the far better designed, better electronically integrated camera.

Too bad Epson treats it as the unwanted stepchild in terms of support and further development.
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Old 04-25-2008   #3
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Big price jump but the M8 has to be the choice surely for it's ability to be reapairable five or maybe ten years from now (optomistic I know)

If Leica survive into the future, and that's a scenario that only time can tell, the M8 should be servicable for many years to come.
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Old 04-25-2008   #4
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I had the RD-1s and now have the M8. I would keep the RD-1 until the M9 is available and then after all the bugs have been resolved. The M8 is better built and has higher pixel count. The RD-1 is superior in other respects. What puzzles me is that I had used the same lenses on the RD-1 but on the M8 I had to get them calibrated. I don't even understand that.
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Old 04-25-2008   #5
J. Borger
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I got the M8 as soon it was launched and kept the R-D1 as a backup.
Never used the R-D1 since, but will not part with it... it always was a great camera.
The only aspect where i prefer the R-D1 to the M8 is for it's 1:1 viewfinder and single framelines: especially when using a 50mm lens (which i use a lot).
I would say R-D1 files look more like 35mm and M8 files more like MF.
I got great prints from both though.
I had NO issues with both cameras and had NO need to calibrate any of my lenses with R-D1 or M8. Focussing of fast lenses like 75 summilux and Noctilux is far more reliable on M8 due to longer rangefinder-base!
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Last edited by J. Borger : 04-25-2008 at 21:13.
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Old 04-26-2008   #6
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Originally Posted by Rayt View Post
I would keep the RD-1 until the M9 is available and then after all the bugs have been resolved.
This is my plan, so I did not (could not) vote.

But you never know. The RD-1 may have other plans in store for me (unexpected breakdown?).
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Old 04-26-2008   #7
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I upgraded and sold the RD1, reasons and justifications:
1. got one at 2007 price, in January 2008, just under the increase in price. Rich Pinto "made me a deal that I couldn't refuse"
2. the camera was a recent production, hopefully beyond all the reliability issues. Nevertheless, it was new with 3 year warranty
3. once I got it, it made my RD-1 seem so much inferior:
- annoyed by slow write time; M8 is very fast
- annoyed by manual frameline changes - M8 is superb and handles like an M
- annoyed by film advance. This one is odd; I have no issues with film advance on a film camera but is something psychologically switches when I shoot digital, and I don't expect to manually reset the camera

But I do have concerns:
- $4500 sure is a lot of money to tie up into a single camera body, and pretty sure that it will devaluate significantly. My film M's are devaluating a bit more (due to demise of all film cameras), but I'm less concerned about their further devaluation
- serious doubts that the camera will be working in 5 years. No concerns about my film cameras in this regard; I know they will be working
- pretty sure that I'll need the warranty on the M8 sometime in the next 5 years, but hope not to
- wished the M8 had an LCD that could flip over. I liked that feature of the RD1 a lot. My recourse is to turn off the M8 LCD.

....you mileage may vary... :-)

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Old 04-29-2008   #8
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thank you all for your valuable input, it confirmed a lot of beliefs I had on this topic. Though I would like a bigger sensor and am attracted by the medium format low ISO performance on the M8, I cannot justify to my management (that is my girlfriend) spending 4000 euros on a camera that looks like the one I currently own (let's be honest, that is myself that I cannot convince). And as otherwise I am very satisfied with the RD1, I'll stick with it until it breaks, or the M8 goes under 2500 euros or a full frame M9 comes out.
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Old 04-29-2008   #9
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So far I have resisted the temptation and still have my R-D1.

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Old 10-09-2016   #10
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never used an rd-1 -- i got a really cool m8 --- i like it despite all the faults.... the prices on the m9 are dropping - i got my m8 for $1500 usd - i feel i've had that much enjoyment out of it
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Old 10-10-2016   #11
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Since this post has been resurrected after 8 years (!), I'll give my opinion as someone who has owned both from new. I bought the RD-1 in 2004, the M8 in 2007. Both long gone now...

The RD-1 is the better camera if 6 MP is sufficient (you don't print large) or don't use ISOs over 800. Its design is far more pleasing and analogue than the M8. However, it is more fragile in build quality - the rangefinder mechanism is especially prone to going out of whack. On the plus side, you can easily dismantle and repair/service the camera - if you're mechanically minded. The M8 - as we know now - is unreliable too, in different ways (sensor and shutter, especially). Both are well past their sell by dates with unavailable components, so don't expect too much help from the makers!

In hindsight, I wish I'd kept my RD-1, and toy with the idea of getting another one. But the 6 MP is deal breaker - I need pin-sharp A3 (20 inch) prints, which are impossible from 6 MP.

Of all the digital cameras I've owned or used (20 or so), the RD-1 is the only one I truly took pleasure in using. The others were mere tools.

I will never buy another Leica digital camera having experience of the M8 and M9. Totally overpriced, unreliable and underwhelming performance. And ridiculously lengthy repair times - I waited months!

I currently use a Nikon D800E for its resolution and reliability (since 2012). Great images but I have no affection for the camera at all - I find it unergonomic with way too many bells and whistles, and think of it simply as tool like a screwdriver or hammer.


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Old 02-22-2017   #12
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I have an rd1 and similar to Rch have taken my best photos and had such a pleasurable time with this camera. Awesome colors and handling and most importantly fast to use. Lately I have had the urge to sell got an m8 after falling in love with the build and quality of a Leica monochrom
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Old 02-22-2017   #13
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Just to let you know, the M8 lacks a bit compared to the MM. For handling and UX I prefer the RD-1 over the M8.

However 1/8000 shutter isnt bad. Even though it sounds a little hollow and toy like.
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