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Leica M9P

Focusing with a rangefinder — Digital Precision

The M9 includes a high precision rangefinder mechanism. Even so, Leica M film users have always found that they need the mechanism adjusted over time; it is a mechanical linkage between lenses and camera, and being mechanical, it is subject to change with temperature and time and use.

My field shooting over 2+ years suggests that for 35mm and wider lenses, focus accuracy is excellent if the camera body is carefully adjusted, and provided also that vision is 20/20 and the subject matter provides a suitable target for focusing. At 50mm and beyond, errors can begin to creep in; eliminate user error by using the viewfinder magnifiers.

DSLRs also have viewfinder accuracy issues (as documented in Making Sharp Images), but virtually all DSLRs now have a Live View feature for critical work, as well as autofocus.

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Diglloyd Guide to LEICA contains in-depth coverage of Leica M system cameras and lenses, with additional coverage of Leica M Monochrom, Leica Q.

Special emphasis is placed on Leica M lenses and certain Zeiss ZM lenses.

  • Make better images by learning how to get the best results right away.
  • Save money by choosing the right lens for your needs the first time, particularly the Summilux/Summicron/Elmarit choice and/or Zeiss ZM.
  • Make better images, a sort of “cheat sheet” saving yourself months or years of ad-hoc learning. Processing parameters are discussed and shown.
  • Jaw-dropping image quality found nowhere else utilizing Retina-grade images up to full camera resolution, plus large crops [past 2 years or so].
  • Real world examples with insights found nowhere else. Make sharper images just by understanding lens behavior you won’t read about elsewhere.
  • Aperture series from wide open through stopped down, showing the full range of lens performance and bokeh.
  • Optical quality analysis of field curvature, focus shift, sharpness, flare, distortion, and performance in the field.

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