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Leica M10 Monochrom, Reader Comments

See my Leica wishlist at B&H Photo and thanks for buying with those links.

CLICK TO VIEW: Leica M10-R system and top-grade lenses

Ed G writes:

Wow~ Leica M10M Death Valley images are beautiful.

When you write it up fully can you please explain the need for filters(as per film days) and also if you get the chance it would be good to test with ND’s long exposure and GNDs.

DIGLLOYD: I’ve found that the M10M is much more attractive to me in this area and this time of year because it is all about tone and shape, there not being a whole lot of color. And the Leica M10M is unique—kudos to Leica for producing it, though Ido wish for a 60MP version.

I have shot a thorough filter study with 8 or so different filters (green, yellow, light orange, orange, red, dark red, infrared, CPOL), which I will be publishing along with advice for when and why to use the various colors, be it landscape or people. The need for color filters with the Leica M10 is... essential for best results for landscape because as a monochrome camera (unlike a color camera), the tonal relationships are *baked in* by which filter is used (or if not used).

View colors and sizes of black and white filters...

Eeraj Q writes:

I feel compelled to drop you a note about your recent images with M10M + Zeiss ZM 35 F1.4 and Leica 24/3.8 Elmar-M:

Some of the most STUNNING B&W photography I have seen from any format. Aesthetics, composition, tones - all jaw dropping and world class. And I am not a "B&W person" and prefer to shoot in colors....but your images are extremely compelling. In particular, Spotlight on Dark Side of Eureka Dunes Summit and Black Pumice on Sand Moonscape are standouts.

This is the kind of artwork where I would personally ignore any technical imperfections, but of course it is good to know what issues are there. Nothing against other reviewers and sites that have covered the M10M, but your images make them look like amateurs.

DIGLLOYD: to sell fine-art prints of the Eureka Dunes images, I would at the leasat have to correct the sensor bifurcation problem. This should be doable with some Photoshop work. The thousands of white dot pimples are much more problematic to my eye (disturbing digital artifacts that I cannot unsee), but maybe most people would not notice. Bottom line is that I while I think the images are terrific overall, the Leica M10 Monochom totally screwed the pooch IMO by damaging otherwise superb images with its unwanted unique digital signature.

Emil V writes:

Would it be useful to use red filters on a color camera (Fuji GFX50S) if my purpose is to convert color images to black and white in PP? Am I going to get increased microcontrast?

DIGLLOYD: using a color filter on a color camera 'starves' the RGB bayer matrix of luminance on the blue and green pixels (3/4 of the pixels in total), which would ramp up noise considerably, making those pixels very dark and extremely underexposed. Also, if shooting a color camera, there are huge advantages in 'post' for making B&W conversions, so you want an optimal RGB image to start with.

Peter F writes:

Delighted to see you shooting with the Leica M10M.

Great timing for us. A friend of mine and I (both subscribers to your blog- I have been for several years and now have the full subscription) are both in the midst of considering Leica M10M vs converting a D850 and in my case also those vs. converting a Fuji GFX50s or maybe a GFX100 (or GFX100s - I want to see what Fuji announces at end of January). Dan at Maxmax says if I do a GFX100 it will be the first one. My friend and I are both primarily landscape photographers - and then sometimes street photography. I develop and print my images myself up to 44" x 6ft to 14 ft and hence you can see why my primary camera is a GFX100X. 50s is currently a backup camera.

Leica M10M Review requests:

* We would like to see you shoot and get your take on some long exposures with the M10M multiple minutes in the 30 sec to 8 minute range

- My friend says that Leica sensors historically don't hold up well on long exposures. Though he emotionally wants one anyway for street photography and shorter landscape exposures. But if it's not good for multi-minute, he'll probably go with the Nikon D850.

* Hope you will comment on the Leica M10M vs Nikon D850M vs Fujifilm GFX100 (for B&W as is, not modified).

- My own quick shots outside a Leica store suggest that out of the camera RAW M10M is close the GFX100 in resolution. At very high ISOs 10,000 to 25,000 the M10M handles noise better - looks like TriX. But I suppose this could be more due to software in the camera than it is to being a monochrome camera. Still if it can't be replicated in post on the GFX, TriX is a pretty good look compared to noise.

Thank you and looking forward to your coming M10M experience.

DIGLLOYD: I’ve shot another ISO series as well as long exposures with long exposure noise reduction, with both the Leica M10 Monochrom and the Leica 10-R. I’ll be publishing the results soon.

f8 @ 1/60 sec mechanical shutter, ISO 160; 2020-12-23 13:23:07
LEICA M10 MONOCHROM + Leica Elmar-M 3.8/24 ASPH @ 24mm + filter B+W 091 Dark Red
ENV: Lone Pine Lake, altitude 9920 ft / 3024 m, 18°F / -7°C
RAW: vignetting corrected, USM {10,50,0}
bitterly cold

[low-res image for bot]

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