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Author Topic: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?  (Read 1229 times)

Lust4Life

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My buddy Clyde Butcher is shipping to me his M10 Mono, color filters and a couple of lenses to play with.

I've been interested in the camera and will be shooting landscapes with it compared to my GFX 100s using
PS and C1 sliders to convert to B&W, maybe a little Silver Efex Pro 2 as well.  Curious what my results will be.

Anyone here have/had one willing to share your lessons learned?

Have a lot of test to run in my head but also interested in any that folks here would suggest that I run to
answer questions you have.

I'm going to have fun with this project!

Jack

PeterAit

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2022, 11:01:26 am »

Don't get your hopes up. I had one for a couple of weeks and it ended up going back to B&H.

It is certainly an excellent camera, and creates beautiful images. And there is the pleasure of using a rangefinder with Leica's excellent design and quality. But comparing its images with B&W conversions from my Nikon's color images and the Leica lost. The Nikon photos were just as sharp and, most important, starting with a color image gives you a lot of control over how specific colors are converted to gray tones. Using filters is not remotely comparable.

Then there's the fact that the Leica with one lens runs about $14,000!!!

Have fun!
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Lust4Life

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2022, 12:17:23 pm »

Peter,
Thank for sharing your experience with the Leica M10M!
Your first two sentences are exactly what I expect to discover so thanks for that confirmation from your experience.

Would you give me a little more detail about the conversion to B&W results to compare to the Leica?

I am planning many tests but the first one/ initial test with a HDR logic.
(With the GFX100s I will shoot each HDR step at Manual, Electronic shutter, 2 second delay and of course on my Gitzo tripod to get 16 bit files.  Will follow the same with Leica)

1.  I'll shoot 3 frames with both cameras using the same settings, first standard (0), the .5 stops +/-,
then a second set at 1 stop, than third at 2 full stops.

2.  I'll then use both Capture One and PS converter to produce separate folder files of each of the sets of 3 frames.
(Default/0, Plus/- .5, 1.0 and 2.0)

I'll then take each batch and in both C1 and PS produce the softwares default RAW to TIFF and another that I have tweaked with each softwares RAW convert tools.

I'll then take each batch of images and
A.  Compare the default value (0) of each camera:  Leica Tiff is of course B&W and GFX 100s PS software converted to B&W tweaked with both C1 and PS sliders.
B.  Then play with Leica (0) file in C1 & PS to see if I can tweak it to improve on the default.
C.  Judge and decide.

Then I will take each of the batches and generate HDR images using Aurora HDR.

My guess is that is where the Leica may win, but just a hunch and I love to be proven wrong on my hunches = I learn.

Constructive "Suggestions" on this first test are welcome!
I'd rather hear the suggestions before I run the test than after with someone complaining!  LOL





Don't get your hopes up. I had one for a couple of weeks and it ended up going back to B&H.

It is certainly an excellent camera, and creates beautiful images. And there is the pleasure of using a rangefinder with Leica's excellent design and quality. But comparing its images with B&W conversions from my Nikon's color images and the Leica lost. The Nikon photos were just as sharp and, most important, starting with a color image gives you a lot of control over how specific colors are converted to gray tones. Using filters is not remotely comparable.

Then there's the fact that the Leica with one lens runs about $14,000!!!

Have fun!

mcbroomf

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2022, 12:46:18 pm »

You haven't mentioned when or how you might use the colour filters on the Leica to selectively change colour.  Perhaps pre-visualizing a finished image would help, eg when taking a shot of a scene with a blue sky and imagining it as darker/more dramatic, then take captures on the Leica with yellow/orange/red filters and compare them with a colour conversion of the GFX100 after adjusting the blue slider to match.  You can also compare these type of edits with linear grads in the software and sky selection.

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Lust4Life

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2022, 04:15:14 pm »

You are correct, I have not mentioned "filters". 
Clyde is including 3 or 4 B+W glass filters.
In my op I mentioned I have "several" tests planned.

I know a little about arrays, going back to working with a group called Eikonix for the
Silicon Graphics IRIS platform that I used to develop software and hardware for,
or as some folks now call them sensors.

My logic is to "dance" with the Leica mono array a while before deciding just what, if anything, it can be optimized for in "my world".

IF what I suspect I will find from the aforesaid test, then I have several more ways to
"play with" the Leica array in the critter.  Filters is just one more way.  But initially all
will play in the realm of "HDR Logic", not necessarily as it is normally used.

Again, going to be fun!


You haven't mentioned when or how you might use the colour filters on the Leica to selectively change colour.  Perhaps pre-visualizing a finished image would help, eg when taking a shot of a scene with a blue sky and imagining it as darker/more dramatic, then take captures on the Leica with yellow/orange/red filters and compare them with a colour conversion of the GFX100 after adjusting the blue slider to match.  You can also compare these type of edits with linear grads in the software and sky selection.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2022, 07:33:56 am by Lust4Life »
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PeterAit

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2022, 10:57:57 am »

Peter,
Thank for sharing your experience with the Leica M10M!
Your first two sentences are exactly what I expect to discover so thanks for that confirmation from your experience.

Would you give me a little more detail about the conversion to B&W results to compare to the Leica?



As for the conversion to B&W from color, I always use Lightroom. When you convert to B&W in the Develop module, LR analyzes the photo and creates a conversion. But in the "Black and White Mix" panel (see screen shot) you can adjust the gray level of individual colors. And thus fine-tune your B&W image.

Hope this helps.
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Lust4Life

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2022, 10:59:29 am »

Thank you.

samogitian

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2022, 08:12:40 am »

I donít agree that the image quality from the M10M is inferior to black and white conversions. On the contrary, I have never seen black and white conversions that can match the M10M. My biggest advice is to use a Visoflex for pre-visualization. Sean Reid has extensive images and reviews.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2022, 08:19:34 am by samogitian »
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TheNinth

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2022, 12:04:07 pm »

I donít agree that the image quality from the M10M is inferior to black and white conversions.

I think the concern is not about image quality but the loss of flexibility. With black and white conversion in post processing one can play with how colors are translated into different shades of grey, while with images from the Monochrome cameras that is already baked in the image, so you are basically stuck with how Leica likes it. I think that's great when you try to minimize time spend in post processing, but otherwise too limiting, at least for the way I work.
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samogitian

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #9 on: September 14, 2022, 08:52:43 pm »

Sure, there is a loss of flexibility but if I am going to shoot in color, Iím going to shoot in color. Thatís what the M11 (or GFX 100s or A7RIV) are for.
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Ferp

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #10 on: September 14, 2022, 09:00:21 pm »

... with images from the Monochrome cameras that is already baked in the image, so you are basically stuck with how Leica likes it.

Use color filters in front of the lens, like we did in the good ol' B&W film days.
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mcbroomf

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #11 on: September 15, 2022, 05:11:19 am »

The way I look at this is that when I'm shooting black and white I'm shooting with any filter(s) I want.  I can choose and change my mind in post processing, but I can also use more than one (effective) filter, eg if I want a really dark sky (like a red filter when I was shooting b&w film) I can pull the blues, but if at the same time I want really light leaves I can push the greens and yellows.   Not possible if shooting film with a red filter in place.  Of course I don't need to cough up the extra for a b&w body, though I may still have all my filters somewhere.

But there is no right and wrong answer here.  To my mind it's all just preference.
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TheNinth

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #12 on: September 15, 2022, 05:15:49 am »

Use color filters in front of the lens, like we did in the good ol' B&W film days.

Yes, and we could also use an M6 with B&W film instead of a Monochrome, and have at least the choice of film.  ;)

Don't get me wrong, I am sure the Monochrome delivers great results, but for those of us who have embraced the digital development process it just may not be the right choice. I did shot and develop B&W film in those good old days, but I am not bemoaning that time and nowadays will take Silver Efex Pro any day instead of the dark room.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2022, 05:26:01 am by TheNinth »
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Lust4Life

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2022, 05:28:34 pm »

I donít agree that the image quality from the M10M is inferior to black and white conversions. On the contrary, I have never seen black and white conversions that can match the M10M. My biggest advice is to use a Visoflex for pre-visualization. Sean Reid has extensive images and reviews.

Days of testing with every way possible does NOT support your premise.
Great for the street BUT for pure landscape work, just not to my standards.
But for "wandering in the city" I really liked it in all of my tests.

Jack

Lust4Life

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #14 on: September 15, 2022, 05:34:09 pm »

I donít agree that the image quality from the M10M is inferior to black and white conversions. On the contrary, I have never seen black and white conversions that can match the M10M. My biggest advice is to use a Visoflex for pre-visualization. Sean Reid has extensive images and reviews.

Again, not supported in my studies for landscape work with dynamic clouds and Everglades dense plants/etc.
I can pull it off BUT found that after all of the necessary manipulation of the image it LOST the "film look" magic if the default RAW file.

Hey, if you are happy then enjoy it, but I'll stick with my GFX 100s gear.

Lust4Life

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Re: Leica, M10 Monochrome - What lessons have you learned from using it?
« Reply #15 on: September 15, 2022, 05:36:29 pm »

Use color filters in front of the lens, like we did in the good ol' B&W film days.

That was done BUT the variations of O, R, G in glass is just not close to what I can do with a slider.
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