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Leica M Monochrom

Leica MM vs Nikon D800E (21mm, Pine Creek Tungsten Mine)

See discussion of various considerations and comparison details on the 35mm comparison page, not repeated here.

Lenses

For this test, both cameras were focused very accurately (confirmed at max aperture):

As of late 2012, these were the best 21mm lenses available for these two cameras. I would personally rate the about $5000 Leica 21/3.4 Super-Elmar-M ASPH as a somewhat superior lens overall to the about $1843 Zeiss 21/2.8 Distagon, but it is not entirely fair, as the Distagon is 1/2 of a stop faster, and has to deal with a DSLR telecentric design.

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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, Leica SL and Leica S.

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 28 megapixels filling up to 5K display, 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.

Want a preview? Click on any page below to see an excerpt as well as extensive blog coverage, for example on Leica.

Variants LeicaMM, D800Egray, D800Ergb available in full article

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