Recently, Leica Store was reopen in Moscow, despite the fact that for ten years Leica already had several stores.
Most of the previous stores were close, and on base of the largest “old” store was open the new only one official Leica Store in Russia (with repair and service). One day I received an email with a proposal to test the Leica products. For me, such an offer came as a surprise, but I did not deny myself the pleasure. I chose M10 & Summilux-m 50mm f1.4 ASPH.
The first thing that surprised me – it is the weight of the kit. It`s a real brick – not every DSLR weighs that much. In general, I was ready for this, since I read about this lens, although the M10 body itself weighs probably as much as my M9.
Shortly, I had a vacation before the camera test. I carried the M9 with me for all day and taking into account the small lens and size M9 was still the best choice in front of the DSLR. During the test, I think that M10 it’s a heavy camera, with the lens protruded more than the usual Zeiss Planar 50 mm, and besides, I could hook it accidentally with my hand, stain the lens or even hit it something.
They gave me a day for the test, but unfortunately, on a weekday. The whole evening after my work, I was walking with the camera (until my legs rebelled). Summilux itself is an excellent lens and I even managed to put it on a film Leica CL. Little CL looks like hypertrophied with Lux lens. CL`s small rangefinder base did not allow shooting wider aperture then f2. Nevertheless, even on film the photos was sharp if I got into focus. Subjectively, this is a purely portrait lens for short photo walks or for studio shooting in general. Summilux is heavy, expensive and Lux completely replaceable with its old version or even with the Zeiss analogue. IMHO.
The M10 is an excellent camera, of course, as a rangefinder digital camera for fans of such cameras. Leica M10 it is excellent memory buffer, bright viewfinder frames, separate ISOsensitivityswitcher, as well as high ISO values. The minimum number of buttons is what the Japanese should must consider it. Ergonomic (buttons and switches) of Sony cameras or other Japanese cameras is poor for me. M10`s menu is the most practical and understandable – all functions are in sight. It is worth noting that for a masterpiece you have to pay more than $ 6000. However, I found M10 about $ 3,000 on EBay.
F1.4 & ISO 100
The M10 is a step forward after the M9, especially about ISO sensitivity. The intermediate model M240 had a large memory buffer, a quiet shutter and a large maximum ISO value, but… Still it all does not give the same advantages as the M10 over the M9.
M10, M240 and M9 characteristics in comparison:
|Camera||Maximum Resolution, Megapixels / Sensor Type||ISOmeasures sensitivity||Shutter speed range, Sec.||Screen Size, Inches / Screen Resolution, Megapixels||CPU||Weight, Grams||Battery|
|М10||24 / CMOS 35,8х23,9mm||100 – 50000||8 – 1/4000||3″ – 1,036||Leica Maestro II||660||7.4V, 1100mAh|
|М240||24/ CMOS 35,8х23,9mm||(100 pull) 200 – 6400||60 – 1/4000||3″ – 0,92||Leica Maestro I||680||7.4V, 1,800mAh|
|М9||18,5/ CCD 35,8х23,9mm||(80 pull) 160 – 2500||32 – 1/4000||2,5″ – 0.23||Leica Maestro I||585||3.7V, 1860mAh|
Surprise – M9 is the lightest. There are also specific differences, such as M240 can HD video recording, but it does not have a manual viewfinder frame switcher (the switcher returned on M-P), M9 has a USB (USB is removed on M-E), and M10 without video recording, again, but with ISO switcher on top. In addition, M10 and M240 has electronic frames, unlike Fresnel lens for frames on M9, which means that you can’t aim with the camera turned off.
Bright frames on the M10
After all, I was satisfied if even it was a fleeting acquaintance. It seemed to me that my M9 is not much worse for the final photography and would be better if my resources was directed for a good lens, but to not on such a Summilux ASPH. All photos are taken at the maximum open aperture – f1.4:
On ISO 3200:
Crop ISO 12500, however for real cases ISO 3200 is enough for me, and on my M9 I generally have enough ISO 800, despite the maximum ISO 2500 …