How does the M240 compare to the M9 for you? Do you have a preference? Thanks, Joris.
Joris, I think the best way to answer you is if I give you my feelings about the M9 first. I use it primarily as a walk-around camera and as such it is a joy. As I said in an earlier post, solidity combined with absolute simplicity. Truth is I fell in love with the rangefinder and I can honestly say Iíve never enjoyed using a camera more. Sure, critical framing can be a problem but for this use itís simply not an issue.
As others have said here on LuLa, the M9 out-of-camera files are very pretty, but you have to remember for many users they werenít always so, with complaints about colour issues when the camera was first released. Leica listened and updated the profiles to good effect. So why are the files so pretty? Some would say itís the CCD sensor, but if that were so then theyíd have been pretty from the outset. I think what people are seeing is a comparatively limited dynamic range which makes for punchy files combined with well made profiles which allegedly were based on Kodachrome. Whatever the reason the files have a lovely almost filmic quality.
Both the M9 and M(240) are of course rangefinders, but hereís the thing, the M is an even better rangefinder camera. It seems Leica have made improvements to the rangefinder ensuring greater accuracy and ensuring that the greater accuracy is sustainable.
Iím tending to use the two cameras for two different purposes. As I have said the M9 is my walk-around camera with 35mm lens almost permanently attached. The M is my tripod based camera for architectural based work with l-bracket permanently attached.
The biggest difference between the two cameras is of course the addition of liveview using the LCD or EVF on the M which was my main reason for buying and has transformed the M series, making for a much more versatile camera capable of a wider range of uses. I use either the EVF or rangefinder for focussing dependent on the lens being used. The EVF is particularly useful for un-coupled legacy lenses. Iím currently using my ancient 55mm f/2.8 Micro-Nikkor AIS, considered by many to be amongst the sharpest Nikon lenses ever made. I used this lens for many years and shot much of my film stock with it but I have to admit I didnít hold out much hope when used on a modern FF high MP sensor. How wrong I was, it is superb on the M and so easy to critically focus using the EVF. Critical framing is of course no longer an issue.
The other major difference is the CMOS sensor. As one would expect the M(240) files, have a wider dynamic range that gives the out-of-camera files a slightly different look, slightly less punchy but with better shadow detail. The files are more robust and far more flexible. Using the latest profiles I see little difference in colour between the two cameras when used for my subjects. At base ISO there is little difference between the cameras but higher ISO is much improved on the M. Resolution is increased a little with the M.
The bottom line is I donít tend to use out-of-camera files without post capture work and so can mix and match the files from both cameras without issue. The M has now all but replaced my digital medium format outfit and at a fraction of the heft and girth. Happy bunny.
Hope this helps.