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Thread: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

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    Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    I wonder whether M9 reliability has improved now that they have been in production for ove two years. I remember reading so much about cracked sensors and various other flaws that caused a seemingly large number to be returned right out the box.

    Is there evidence that the points of failure have been eradicated?

    Have you bought a M9 recently and had problems straight away?

    Did you buy a M9 within the last six months and have problems develop since then?

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    I have one of the first M9s in the USA, and one from much later than that (about a year ago) ... neither have had any problems ... to date.

    -Marc

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    I've never had any reliability problem (bought mine in Europe in Jan 2011). But I'd love to find out if they now ship new cameras with a clean sensor and/or if they've managed to eliminate whatever it is that leaves the oil-like droplets on the sensor. That is my biggest complaint about the M9 - I can even live even with the "red edge" but I really feel I shouldn't have to wet clean the sensor twice a week.

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    I had one of the first in Australia - never had a problem and now its grey is starting to brass nicely in corners as a camera does when you have it wih you and in your bag every day...however I am not your usual leica person I guess- I havent upgraded the firmware and never cleaned the sensor and I dont use filters in front of my lenses either. I expect to get five good years out of the thing and I am half way through teh cycle- by tehn new technology will make it another useless piece of gear added to my growing museum collection of uselss gear. -

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    My M9 was acquired in September 2010 and has about 6,000 shots on the clock. Absolutely no problems to date.

    Bill

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    As somebody who's M9 did succumb to the cracked sensor syndrome even I would take issue with the idea that M9's were ever unreliable. Whatever you were reading was leading you up the garden path. A shame because you could have had an M9 by now.

    There was a hot spot of about fifty cameras that all came down with it over a similar period. So filter fifty bitchy posts on internet forums out and compare with the tens of thousands of cameras made and you have a truer picture.

    There is an ongoing writing problem with some SanDisk cards, to be fixed in the next Firmware update, although my Extreme III 16gb card has worked perfectly.

    The previous comment about oil or grease on the sensor when new is a problem that affects many cameras, not just Leica. Usually higher end cameras where the shutter is built for longevity. As Leica have said they don't oil the sensor it is down to how Copal lubricate it before shipping them to Leica. It does die down after a while, but until then a wet clean is needed each time you want to remove dust. After it has stopped an Arctic Butterfly brush is usually sufficient for all cleaning (don't use it on your sensor if you think you may have oil on it!!). Since cleaning a sensor is an established part of the workflow with digital cameras I can't really see it as a fundamental problem, thousands of photographers do it.


    Steve

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    I could not have had a M9 all this while because I could not afford one. I can now and I am pondering whether it is the best addition to my kit bag. I was curious to hear how reliability has changed and it sounds like early niggles have indeed been ironed out.

    Thanks all

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    No excuse now then, get one!

    Steve

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    Quote Originally Posted by 250swb View Post
    Since cleaning a sensor is an established part of the workflow with digital cameras I can't really see it as a fundamental problem, thousands of photographers do it.
    I don't mind cleaning the sensor for dust from time to time but the oily droplets are frustrating because they re-appear very soon after cleaning. I've used a D3 and a 1DMkIV for some time (and M8.2 before) and never had this problem. Perhaps those were not sufficiently "high-end" cameras, compared with the M9. Quite a few people have commented that they never clean the M9 sensor or never experienced this problem - I wonder if this is because they mostly use the lenses close to wide open (where the spots would not be visible). I use my lenses across the full range of apertures, often at f8-f11 for more extensive DOF at closer distances, and there the spots are often visible and irritating. That's why I am hopeful that this is something that has been or will be fixed, as I am considering adding a second M9 body.

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    Quote Originally Posted by baudolino View Post
    I don't mind cleaning the sensor for dust from time to time but the oily droplets are frustrating because they re-appear very soon after cleaning. I've used a D3 and a 1DMkIV for some time (and M8.2 before) and never had this problem. Perhaps those were not sufficiently "high-end" cameras, compared with the M9. Quite a few people have commented that they never clean the M9 sensor or never experienced this problem - I wonder if this is because they mostly use the lenses close to wide open (where the spots would not be visible). I use my lenses across the full range of apertures, often at f8-f11 for more extensive DOF at closer distances, and there the spots are often visible and irritating. That's why I am hopeful that this is something that has been or will be fixed, as I am considering adding a second M9 body.
    My suggestion? Buy a used one from a clean freak

    Seriously, there are a lot of lubricated moving parts inside the M9 that have to be greased when manufactured. Trust me, you don't want a new body that hasn't been correctly lubed. The side effect, unfortunately, is these parts do spill off excess lubricating fluid once in awhile. Hence, the need for an occasional cleaning.

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    Re: Has M9 Reliability Improved with production?

    I use all the apertures as well (I paid for them and Leica obviously think they will be useful ) and dust showing up is an ever constant battle. Leica can't stop dust, it gets in from the outside. I cannot imagine what the images from a never cleaned M9 are like, but it is just as easy to clean dust off as dust and a bit of oily gloop. But if I now wet clean my sensor once every six months I do dry clean it with an Arctic Butterfly once every two weeks, or when needed, and that only takes two minutes.

    Steve

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