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Thread: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

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    M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    First I am a confirmed M9 user and typically work with 2 bodies doing street and travel shooting. Besides costs ..the M9 has only three weaknesses that bother me and at least on paper ......the Sony Nex 5/7 seem to address these.

    1. As good as the M9 sensor is for most of my work ..it is really lacking at ISO above 1000 and even with fast lenses ..not enough . The tests of the Sony show excellent results at 1600 and good results at 3200 .

    2. Focus peaking as Jono s post shows opens the Nex up for longer lenses . I would love to use my 135/3.4APO as a 180 FOV . Focusing a 135APO on an M requires painstakingly patient technique . Doing it at dusk approaches futility.

    3. Fill flash ... we all get pushed into service for on demand family pictures or have situations where just a little fill flash would make life easier . You can do this with an M ..but its not smooth and easy .

    Why not carry a Nex body as a back up that extends the capabilities of your M kit ? I am interested in any insights from the Nex users .

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    I would go to DPreview and compare the Nex 7 to the M9. The Nex 7 image really starts falling apart at ISO 1600--the M9 is much better and even the lowly E-P1 does better. (I was looking a the RAW comparison.) You can also check the Nex 5 (which I have not).

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    I gave up on the thoughts of using digital RF. Leica RF is for film, for me.
    Comparison of a hybrid system (digital RF or a DSLR) vs a real liveview all digital cam makes no sense to me at all.

    No NEX users, unless the have the NEX-7, can comment on the NEX vs M9.

    The NEX-7 appears better than any other in the NEX series. I am unsure how the handling will be compared to the Ricoh GRX though.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    I would go to DPreview and compare the Nex 7 to the M9. The Nex 7 image really starts falling apart at ISO 1600--the M9 is much better and even the lowly E-P1 does better. (I was looking a the RAW comparison.) You can also check the Nex 5 (which I have not).
    HI Shashin
    I'm not sure when you looked at these, but there are two points I would say:
    1. the NEX7 images were focused in quite a different place
    2. their habit of comparing 100% crops always makes small mp sensors look better.

    I don't have a NEX7 yet, but I do accept MR's noise comparison with the NEX 5n - and comparing that with the E-P1 (nice camera which I have owned) is simply laughable - best part of 3 stops advantage at the same resolution. I would guess that at the same resolution the NEX7 has 2 stops advantage in high ISO over the E-P1 . . whatever the studio shots at dpreview might suggest to you!

    Worth looking at MR's comparison at Luminous Landscape, which (IMHO) of course is much more relevant in the real world.

    all the best

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Hi Roger
    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    Why not carry a Nex body as a back up that extends the capabilities of your M kit ? I am interested in any insights from the Nex users .
    That's what I'm doing - currently using my M9s (two bodies like you) with the NEX 5n and a viewfinder for those 'other' requirements (if you use the helicoid hawks adapter you can even use your M lenses for close up photography).

    all the best
    Jono

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Hi Roger


    That's what I'm doing - currently using my M9s (two bodies like you) with the NEX 5n and a viewfinder for those 'other' requirements (if you use the helicoid hawks adapter you can even use your M lenses for close up photography).

    all the best
    Jono
    Jono

    One of my concerns is how well the images work together (when some are on the M9 and others on the NEX). I tend to shoot with a goal of creating a small collection of photographs . So on my recent trip to Venice I wanted 15 images out of about 1600 that worked together as an example.

    If doing side by side comparisons ..the NEX images look significantly different ..that ruins their use in a collection for me.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    Jono

    One of my concerns is how well the images work together (when some are on the M9 and others on the NEX). I tend to shoot with a goal of creating a small collection of photographs . So on my recent trip to Venice I wanted 15 images out of about 1600 that worked together as an example.

    If doing side by side comparisons ..the NEX images look significantly different ..that ruins their use in a collection for me.
    I'm not sure that I can help that much here. Personally, I don't think that they're incompatible - at least, not in the way that I would find Nikon or Canon images incompatible. . . . . Black and white shouldn't be an issue . . . I spend very little thinking about colour with either camera - and almost none 'correcting' it - it just seems right (which is more than I can say for many cameras I've used).

    You could do worse than looking at MR's Luminous landscape running review of the NEX7.

    all the best

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    HI Shashin
    I'm not sure when you looked at these, but there are two points I would say:
    1. the NEX7 images were focused in quite a different place
    2. their habit of comparing 100% crops always makes small mp sensors look better.

    I don't have a NEX7 yet, but I do accept MR's noise comparison with the NEX 5n - and comparing that with the E-P1 (nice camera which I have owned) is simply laughable - best part of 3 stops advantage at the same resolution. I would guess that at the same resolution the NEX7 has 2 stops advantage in high ISO over the E-P1 . . whatever the studio shots at dpreview might suggest to you!

    Worth looking at MR's comparison at Luminous Landscape, which (IMHO) of course is much more relevant in the real world.

    all the best
    You can check DPreview. I used the Paul Smith watch in the bottom right corner of the image. With the Nex 7. the logo turns to mush at 1600ISO when it is quite good at lower ISOs. (The E-P1 image is easier to read the logo at 1600ISO. Image scale has little to do with it nor the focus.) Noise is a known issue with small pixels pitches and that should not be surprising.

    I did look at the review at LuLa and I did not find Michael's methodology especially relevant to real world conditions--I usually frame a based on a subject and so to compare two different frames and crop one and resize the other to match is rather convoluted. All Michael has shown is both the M9 and Nex 7 take nice pictures at the base ISO, but I probably could have predicted that. That really does not compare them at high ISO which the OP is interested in.

    I have no skin in this game. I think both the M9 and Nex 7 are fine cameras. But if the OP is wanting to pick up a Nex 7 for its performance at ISO 1600, I think he may want to have more information. The Nex 7 images are not great at 1600 ISO, at least the DPreview is showing that compared with an M9, which is not surprising given their size.

    Before you stop laughing, the Nex 7 only has about 40% more resolution than an E-P1 under perfect conditions. The E-P1 pixels are larger and will gather more light. It is not a stretch to think the E-P1 may be good under low light compared with the Nex 7. It is also not a stretch to say the larger pixel pitch of the M9 is going to do better than the Nex 7 (and you are only getting about a 15% increase in resolution with the Nex 7 which noise can really eliminate that small benefit).

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    Jono

    One of my concerns is how well the images work together (when some are on the M9 and others on the NEX). I tend to shoot with a goal of creating a small collection of photographs . So on my recent trip to Venice I wanted 15 images out of about 1600 that worked together as an example.

    If doing side by side comparisons ..the NEX images look significantly different ..that ruins their use in a collection for me.
    That is a tough question and I understand why you would want to do that. Sony, like Minolta before them, tend to make really warm images. If I have images from the same scene/subject, it can be difficult to make them look like they did not come from two different manufacturers cameras--it is subtle, but it is there. When the scene is different, then I have a better chance of blending them into the group of photographs. But if you are using the Nex 7 for just low light and not the M9s, then you should not have a big issue.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Y
    I did look at the review at LuLa and I did not find Michael's methodology especially relevant to real world conditions--I usually frame a based on a subject and so to compare two different frames and crop one and resize the other to match is rather convoluted. All Michael has shown is both the M9 and Nex 7 take nice pictures at the base ISO, but I probably could have predicted that. That really does not compare them at high ISO which the OP is interested in.
    Actually, I wasn't talking about the M9/NEX7 comparison (which I agree was largely irrelevant), but the noise comparisons between the NEX5n and the NEX 7 - I think that everybody would agree that the NEX5n sensor is really the ballpark for APSc sensor high ISO right now (an improved version of the sensor in the K5 and the D700).

    MR noise comparison between NEX7 and NEX5n
    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    I have no skin in this game. I think both the M9 and Nex 7 are fine cameras. But if the OP is wanting to pick up a Nex 7 for its performance at ISO 1600, I think he may want to have more information. The Nex 7 images are not great at 1600 ISO, at least the DPreview is showing that compared with an M9, which is not surprising given their size.

    Before you stop laughing, the Nex 7 only has about 40% more resolution than an E-P1 under perfect conditions. The E-P1 pixels are larger and will gather more light. It is not a stretch to think the E-P1 may be good under low light compared with the Nex 7. It is also not a stretch to say the larger pixel pitch of the M9 is going to do better than the Nex 7 (and you are only getting about a 15% increase in resolution with the Nex 7 which noise can really eliminate that small benefit).
    I'm sorry - I think you're simply wrong. focusing on the dpreview samples is really quite important.

    have you seen these comparisons:





    . . . also from dpreview.
    Now tell me that the NEX7 is a poor performer at high ISO. You really need to pick your spot carefully for these comparisons, and for each camera the best focus point is different

    I used to share your views about larger pixels and noise - based largely on looking at images at 100% (which, of course, is a much larger portion of the frame for a larger MP camera).
    I was really shocked when I did two large sized wedding books close together - one from a Nikon D700 (most would agree, the peak of high ISO performance) taken in really not too bad light - and another wedding shot with a Sony A900 (most would agree, rather poor at high ISO) taken in much worse light - mostly at higher ISO.

    The Sony book was much better - less noise in the images. Of course, it's not rocket science, it's because 100% pixel peeping has nothing to do with printed output.

    More MP means a bigger sample - generally speaking bigger samples are better than small samples.

    Look at the DxO scores for high ISO for the NEX7 sensor . . . .

    Really, I think you're rolling out the old conventional wisdom about 'big pixels being better'. The world is changing - the D700 successor is going to have 36mp.

    Like you - I have no skin in the issue - my main system is an M9.

    But you have stated rather categorically that the NEX7 is bad at high ISO, and I think that this is simply not correct.

    all the best

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Jono, let me show you what I am seeing. I am really not try to get into a gear fight and I don't care about winners, but I am not sure the Nex 7 is doing better than the M9. I use the watch often because it is not high key where noise does not show much. And it has detail that is easy to resolve. And I amjust looking at the structure of the noise as the ISO changes--Nex 7 in the top left, M9 in the bottom right. (i don't care about the other camera which were default.)

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    My requirements are pretty well defined and take other equally decent alternatives out of consideration. Focus peaking allows me to use the 135apo and have a world class lens with a 180FOV . Or using a 90/2 I would have a 135/2 APO . Since almost all the tests and early users report ..this stuff is great . For my use the wide angles on the M9 can t be touched ..so I am not concerned at all with the wide angle issues . Thus the comparisons to new cameras that can use M glass is of limited value . I would not be using anything wider than a 50 summilux and more likely I would opt for the 75 /90/135 where RF viewing is “not so great” . This I obviously have to test to see if I can get the potential improvement.

    Appreciate the feedback on noise tests ..I will do more research . The general reported performance has been about 1 - 1 1/2 EV better than the M9 . (and thats my std reference ). I will also look again at DxO labs . I have found there reports on sensors to be dead on accurate ..particularly if you dig in and read the sub categories and look at the graphs . They even have images that reflect how a specific value looks in an photograph. The devil is in the details and the summary information hurts their acceptance .. I want to see the impact on DR and color at 1600 not just the noise .

    Color matching is the most obvious but as Jono indicated you can see differences even in black and white . Take a look at salgado s africa book ...bet you can pick out the images taken with the Pentax 67 from the Leica 35mm. In his next book he went from his std tri x and worked with Canon to match his film work with their DSLR ..half the book was done in tri x . There is a look and feel to the Leica M images that you can see in print (not always but often ) . its frustrating years later to being pulling together you work from say paris and find that none of those Nikon DSLR look so hot merged with the new M12 images . I know that skilled post processing can get them closer and maybe the requirement is so personal that its not a concern to others .

    Just found my iPad version of this months Popular Photography and in it is a image taken on Times Square ...I ve spent a lot of nights on Times Square shooting my M s ...its the last place open with good light .LOL Take a look at the photograph presented ..its very impressive .

    The Nex products just seem to offer some great potential as an “addition” to the M9 s and this dialogue is helpful . Thanks

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Jono, let me show you what I am seeing. I am really not try to get into a gear fight and I don't care about winners, but I am not sure the Nex 7 is doing better than the M9. I use the watch often because it is not high key where noise does not show much. And it has detail that is easy to resolve. And I amjust looking at the structure of the noise as the ISO changes--Nex 7 in the top left, M9 in the bottom right. (i don't care about the other camera which were default.)
    Hi There (I'm no trying to have a gear fight either - just that I don't like to see something trashed unfairly) - what I'm saying is that the point of focus changes in these images between different cameras, and the NEX 7 clearly isn't in focus in the 100 ISO image . . . added to which your doing a 100% crop comparison - not a comparison of the same proportion of the image.

    The samples I posted showed quite the opposite (and from the same images). What I AM trying to say is that:
    1. the Dpreview comparator is a dodgy way of comparing high ISO characteristics of different cameras - for quite a number of reasons.
    2. that comparing a 24mp camera at 100% to a 12mp camera at 100% is only of relevance to pixel peepers!
    3. that looking at the Paul Smith sample the NEX 7 is quite clearly out of focus at 100 ISO - no question.

    If you try to tell me that the NEX7 images are worse at high ISO than the M9 and the pen EP1 I simply know from experience that this is not correct.

    I have hundreds and hundreds of images in my library from all three sensors (tens of thousands for the M9 and thousands for the A77) (admittedly the NEX7 sensor is represented by the A77). If the dpreview samples of fixed scene show that the ep1 or the M9 are better, then they are misleading. However - taken overall (i.e. look at those other samples) I don't think they do suggest this - if you pick one spot in the image (the paul smith watch) -

    Without the SLT, the NEX7 images should be at least 1/3 stop better than the A77, and the A77 is . . . in practical use . . . so much better than either camera that to suggest otherwise is just . . . erm . . not right!

    let me also say - I don't have an axe to grind here - I just don't think it's right that misleading information should be thrown around - to be fair to dpreview I don't think they ever suggested that their results suggested that the NEX7 was poor at high ISO (except with jpgs) either.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    The Nex products just seem to offer some great potential as an “addition” to the M9 s and this dialogue is helpful . Thanks
    H Roger
    That's what I think - a useful addition - especially for longer focal lengths (and for times when the focus peaking provides useful information for the whole frame - a party/gallery opening etc. etc).

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    First I am a confirmed M9 user and typically work with 2 bodies doing street and travel shooting. Besides costs ..the M9 has only three weaknesses that bother me and at least on paper ......the Sony Nex 5/7 seem to address these. ...

    Why not carry a Nex body as a back up that extends the capabilities of your M kit ? I am interested in any insights from the Nex users .
    I use the Ricoh GXR with A12 Camera Mount in a similar system notion. It works brilliantly: with it, I have a compact camera which can transform from an ultra zoom point and shoot to a super-high quality APS-C wide or normal macro camera to an APS-C TTL camera for Leica M-bayonet lenses. The sensor optimization for RF lenses is terrific and it proves an excellent all around performer. It also works beautifully with my Nikkor and Pentax SLR telephoto lenses. I've got no problem with GXR-M captures at up to ISO 2500, depending on the subject matter, and it has excellent controls and customization capabilities.

    Along the way, I picked up another Leica film body (M4-2) and share the lenses across both cameras. I find again that I like working with the RF camera so much that I've added an Epson R-D1 and next year will add a Leica M9 body to my kit.

    It all works. They're all different cameras, and each has its unique strength and weakness. Whether you choose a NEX (and the 5n seems to be the one to have for RF lens compatibility, at least from what I've seen in photos so far) or a Ricoh GXR, or a Micro-FourThirds mirrorless system to use as the compact complement ... or wait until Leica's own mirrorless system is announced to see if that poses any additional advantage ... having both a TTL and an RF camera really does extend the reach and use of your lens kit.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Hi There (I'm no trying to have a gear fight either - just that I don't like to see something trashed unfairly) - what I'm saying is that the point of focus changes in these images between different cameras, and the NEX 7 clearly isn't in focus in the 100 ISO image . . . added to which your doing a 100% crop comparison - not a comparison of the same proportion of the image.
    Sorry, in what why am I trashing the Nex 7? I said it was a fine camera. I am putting in this in context of the OPs interest in using this in low light to replace the M9.

    Now, the point of focus is close enough to clearly see the effects of noise on the image for both the Nex 7 and M9. Neither is scaling the image necessary as you can see how it is affecting the elements of the object. Personally, I have enough experience to judge that on the final image.

    Now if you think the Nex 7 is getting better results at ISO 1600 vs. the M9, OK. We don't agree. From what I have seen, I do not think the Nex 7 is going to be a low light replacement of the M9--you picked a high-key area of the image with naturally will have more signal, so noise will not have great as an impact. I assume the OP is using this in crumby light and so that area is not really great from which to judge. I think the M9 is going to give him a better result.

    The point of my post was to indicate that maybe the OP is a little too optimistic of this new camera that has yet to be released and may want to look into this a little more. Unlike you, I did not find the test at DPreview very compelling. There is definitely a trend where folks get very enthusiastic about new cameras to only sell them a few months later because they did not live up to expectations. My experience with new technology is they offer modest increases in performance. If the OP just wanted an APS camera to shoot with, I would say the Nex 7 would be great--it is a fine machine. To get better high ISO performance than the M9, I would not be so sure...

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    The DxO labs tests show that the Nex 7 and the M9 are essentially the same when considering high iso performance. The Nex 7 has slightly better DR but noise is essentially the same. Look at the graphs . Seems reasonable and tempers my expectations ..the NEX looks like it has less than a 1 EV advantage no matter how you test it. I realize this is over simplification but to be “material” it needs to be better by more than an EV. Too bad .

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    Jono

    One of my concerns is how well the images work together (when some are on the M9 and others on the NEX). I tend to shoot with a goal of creating a small collection of photographs . So on my recent trip to Venice I wanted 15 images out of about 1600 that worked together as an example.

    If doing side by side comparisons ..the NEX images look significantly different ..that ruins their use in a collection for me.
    Roger,

    i know you don't want to hear this, but i honestly think the best thing for you to do is compare for yourself (and don't limit yourself to the NEX system).

    you will be using and shooting the camera differently than Jono or whoever, so your experience will likely be different than his... the same goes for post processing, which can dramatically affect whether images can play nice with each other.

    i know some people swear by the NEX cameras, others by the GXR. both work, imo, because the weakest link will always be the lenses and if you're using your M (or R) lenses or something up to that quality, then pfffffft!

    i probably wouldn't have said this a few weeks ago, but i had a chance to shoot the Fuji X100 and the M8 (M9 was in the shop) with a 35 Lux side by side in a bar during a gig... different focal lengths and different lenses, but i was pleasantly surprised with how nice the images worked with each other.

    i think the quality that is coming out nowadays with high ISO is astounding! also, if you shoot for different coverage with the M9 and whatever other camera system you choose, i think you can make it work for you in very short order.

    give it a whirl!

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    I'd say the NEX is a fun addition ... then it gets old because it simply isn't up to the M9. Every NEX5 shot I took, I wished I had done with the M9 ... so I sold it.

    Granted, I haven't used the NEX 7, but from the images I've seen so far it looks to be more of the same. The M9 has a look, and even if using M lenses on a NEX, it isn't the same ... something about the blacks or the punch or something I just can't put my finger on it, but see it clearly in every shot.

    However, for the price in order to effectively use a 135/3.4APO (if you already own it) ... why not? Darned thing is so small, just slip into a side pocket and take it along for those long shots : -) Plus, with the crop factor of the NEX you get even longer effective FOV.

    As far as higher ISO, I think by analyzing the M9 stuff, you can alter your shooting techniques as well as further refining software procedure, and perhaps more effectively deal with any issues you have ... and that might produce better results than buying another camera that marginally improves on the issue at the expense of other image characteristics.

    -Marc

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    CAM

    Agree completely on the x100 a superb product all around. But its usefulness when added to an existing M9 kit is limited to slightly better high ISO performance . About 1-1 1/2 Ev. I have one and I rarely use it because it duplicates the strengths of the M9 . And you are right the images are rendered similar to the Leica m (Not a coincidence would be my guess). Handling is a totally different matter and I could not work with a x100 and a M9 at the same time ...the whole process of viewing focusing etc is too different. But there are situations where the X100 is a great tool and cafe/bar shooting comes to mind.

    MARC

    I suspect that you hit the nail on the head ..you can get the shot and it might even be great but it will look enough different that you aren t happy with putting the image into a batch of M9 images. I know you can get a lot closer than what comes out of the camera and I even used a M9 on the D3 profile a few years back that worked pretty well (as an example of whats possible.) I find that tuning my presets for cameras other than the Leica M results in dramatically different settings . And its possible to get closer

    All this is tons of work with often mixed results ..so I normally try to determine where the benefits should be before I take on a new camera system . Almost as good as an M9 doesn t buy me much because I will be using 2 M9 s .

    I am not naturally drawn to the Sony NEX bodies as they strike me more as a consumer gadget than a fine camera . But ... I have received reports form no less than 4 photographers that are devoted RF users all raving about the overall quality of the files and the focus peaking .

    My requirements start with the m9s as my core kit and look for additional capabilities ..like focus peaking for longer glass, possibly slightly better high ISO performance ,easy fill flash for example. This is different than a typical NEX buyer . Worth a look and some discussion. .

    How great would it be if Leica s EVIL body provided those capabilities ?

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    CAM

    Agree completely on the x100 a superb product all around. But its usefulness when added to an existing M9 kit is limited to slightly better high ISO performance . About 1-1 1/2 Ev. I have one and I rarely use it because it duplicates the strengths of the M9 . And you are right the images are rendered similar to the Leica m (Not a coincidence would be my guess). Handling is a totally different matter and I could not work with a x100 and a M9 at the same time ...the whole process of viewing focusing etc is too different. But there are situations where the X100 is a great tool and cafe/bar shooting comes to mind.

    <snip>

    How great would it be if Leica s EVIL body provided those capabilities ?
    Roger, lol! i wasn't trying to talk to you (or anyone) into an X100... and, obviously, i didn't know you had one either i got mine for it's strengths, not as a replacement or an adjunct to my M's -- but was just learning the camera so i decided to use both (and, yes, it was a little disconcerting switching back and forth between viewfinders). i was really pleasantly surprised, something i never expected, that's all.

    if the Sony doesn't ring your bells, don't get it just because people you respect are raving about it. i still think it's worth a try, but not a buy... and then there are rumours about a new GXR body that are starting to percolate for you to consider... but, yes, it *would* be lovely if Leica solved that problem for us

    good luck!

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Posted by glenerrolrd
    The Nex products just seem to offer some great potential as an “addition” to the M9 s and this dialogue is helpful . Thanks
    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    H Roger
    That's what I think - a useful addition - especially for longer focal lengths (and for times when the focus peaking provides useful information for the whole frame - a party/gallery opening etc. etc).
    Interesting discussion. The above, also, sums up my conclusions. Additionally, there's the quite good Sony E and A mount zooms and primes when you tire of 'focus peaking'. I'd add a Nex 5N to the Nex 7/M9 kit for the ISO performance...and, an A77 for the 'H' of it.

    Cheers, Matt

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Roger, I'm using a Nex-5N with Leica M lenses, and haven't had much of a problem combining images for stories from the 5N, my M9, and even my A77 with the Zeiss glass, though admittedly the Zeiss drawing signature is different from Leica's. Quite complementary though, in my opinion.

    You mite want to just look at a 5N, as I believe the high ISO difference between it and the A77 is better than a stop, possibly two. The more I use my 5N, the more I like it. It's one sweet little pocket camera - with real punch.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post
    Roger, lol! i wasn't trying to talk to you (or anyone) into an X100... and, obviously, i didn't know you had one either i got mine for it's strengths, not as a replacement or an adjunct to my M's -- but was just learning the camera so i decided to use both (and, yes, it was a little disconcerting switching back and forth between viewfinders). i was really pleasantly surprised, something i never expected, that's all.

    if the Sony doesn't ring your bells, don't get it just because people you respect are raving about it. i still think it's worth a try, but not a buy... and then there are rumours about a new GXR body that are starting to percolate for you to consider... but, yes, it *would* be lovely if Leica solved that problem for us

    good luck!
    Actually I assumed that the purpose of the X100 was to justify hanging out in Paris Cafes until all hours (when of course you would benefit by the better high ISO performance and maybe the AF) . LOL But remember its not weather sealed .

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    I find the M9 at ISO 1250 at least as good as the Nex5n at ISO 1600.
    I think the M9 is rated much worse regarding high ISO than what I see in images.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    I find the M9 at ISO 1250 at least as good as the Nex5n at ISO 1600.
    I think the M9 is rated much worse regarding high ISO than what I see in images.
    Have no basis to dispute this . Most of the tests show the NEX bests the M9 but they are in the same class ....1600 is the end of the rope ...go farther and you will generally not produce images that will show with your best . Thats my standard.... Would agree that I have seen no basis to indicate the NEX files are better at high ISO than the M9 .

    The NEX does not appear to offer a material advantage over the M9 in high ISO performance .

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Sorry, in what why am I trashing the Nex 7? I said it was a fine camera. I am putting in this in context of the OPs interest in using this in low light to replace the M9.
    .[/QUOTE]

    Well - I wasn't really thinking about these tests with respect to the M9 - or your comments - I was only bridling at the concept that the NEX7 would be worse at high ISO than the E-P1 (which you did say).

    Let's leave it at that - I don't have a problem with the M9 high iso - and as I've said elsewhere, the idea of the NEX7 is attractive for those moments when the M9 doesn't cut it - i.e. longer focal lengths, closer focusing etc.

    What really DOES excite me about the NEX cameras is the focus peaking, Personally I think it's the most significant addition to digital still technology in 2011.

    I'm with cam really- I feel that all these cameras work pretty well . . . and that none of them is Magic.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    I find the M9 at ISO 1250 at least as good as the Nex5n at ISO 1600.
    I think the M9 is rated much worse regarding high ISO than what I see in images.
    I quite agree Tom - although sometimes I find the colour a little difficult at high ISO.

    all the best

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    I wonder about certain performance characteristics when applied in the real world in various conditions. Not just the subject cameras of this thread, but others as well.

    Like others, I thought focus peaking was an absolutely amazing application of video camera technology ... yet in low light with low contrast, shooting wide open, very little "peaked" and usually not where I needed it. IMO, this type condition is where one needs a focus aid and I didn't think it helped all that much here. I also found it wasn't as accurate as many seemed to think it was ... and forget about it if the subject in lower light was moving. IMO, I actually thought the mag feature was more useful and accurate if you mastered the technique of quickly pressing the right buttons, in the right sequence, at the right time ... sort of like texting, LOL!

    ISO performance is another odd one when looking at pushing the limits of any given camera. The places where we need to push those limits never seems to correspond to ISO test subjects ... at least not the low light situations I seem to find myself in. Some cameras clinically produce better high ISO results, only to reveal ugly noise characteristics ... just like pixel quality, there seems to be noise quality to contend with in real world. Many have commented on a certain camera as producing high ISO noise, but it was nice looking noise.

    Personally, I'm questioning my own habit of pi$$ing away money on some of these smaller cameras in the hopes they'll be a significant addition because of technology. $1,000 here, $2,000 there ... and it starts adding up. Here today, gone today.

    That said, I think the NEX5N can deliver a bit better ISO performance, and I keep thinking about a strategy of getting a M9P for long term use, sell my other M9 and get a NEX5N with EVF as a stop-gap back-up ... then wait until we see what Leica does with CMOS technology in the M10. I be seriously surprised if the M10 didn't do at least an excellent ISO 1600, a decent ISO 2500, and a relatively usable ISO 5000 or so.

    Not an easy thing to sort out.

    -Marc

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    I quite agree Tom - although sometimes I find the colour a little difficult at high ISO.

    all the best
    I agree with the color. One thing which looks strange sometimes is the color of lips in faces-way too pinkish IMO.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Personally, I'm questioning my own habit of pi$$ing away money on some of these smaller cameras in the hopes they'll be a significant addition because of technology. $1,000 here, $2,000 there ... and it starts adding up. Here today, gone today.



    -Marc
    I like that formulation.

    WRT Nex and such, the prices come down within few months of their availability and really come crashing down once a "superior" model replaces the earlier one. The Nex-5 are a real bargain at the moment to get a measure of how these handle or do not.

    AFAIC,"focus peaking" in a NEX isn't all that useful.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Marc

    You are absolutely right about not jumping on the “band wagon” every time a new consumer wiz bang is released . I did try the Fuji X100 and find the quality at a professional level ....but it adds little (maybe a little better ISO performance) and its a nice camera to do night shooting . For this small improvement I get to semi master a really crappy user interface and learn new post processing settings. (But if I was street shooting in Paris ..it would be my favorite as ISO1600 is perfect at night with a 35/2 and the Fuji color is pretty great ). Plus it takes 000 s of captures to learn the camera well enough to get the best out of it . I know I am only at the beginning with the X100 and it will be outdated before I accomplish much.

    Agree 100% High ISO performance is about a lot more than noise ..having compressed DR and desaturated color puts some stress on your technique to get good captures . A face in the shadows can t be pulled back at ISO 1600 for example.

    If focus peaking doesn t beat a RF in low light ...whats the point ? I can focus a 135apo pretty well in decent light and even shoot tennis with one ..but I generally don t try to shoot wide open . I am impatiently waiting for the NEX 7 to get on with it . As Jono has done add a 180APO and you have a 270mm FOV enough for most anything short of sports or wildlife.

    This thread has been helpful in focusing my expectations .

    Especially in Florida where I am around water and can t get closer ...I would like some reach up to about 180 ..so I will get a NEX 7 (with tempered expectations ) and give it a shot .

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    AFAIC,"focus peaking" in a NEX isn't all that useful.
    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Like others, I thought focus peaking was an absolutely amazing application of video camera technology ... yet in low light with low contrast, shooting wide open, very little "peaked" and usually not where I needed it. IMO, this type condition is where one needs a focus aid and I didn't think it helped all that much here.
    I really disagree - of course, it could be improved - it certainly is better in some high end video cameras. . . . . but did you use it with the viewfinder? Because that's the whole point - the LCD is okay in decent light - but you need the higher resolution and closer contact of the EVF for it to work properly

    I've now done a lot of shooting in low light where there is (as you say) very little peaking. But after some practice I've found that there's invariably a sparkle in the subject's eye or eyelashes. The proof of the pudding is to have got a very (really stupidly) high proportion of in focus shots using the 28-90 R zoom on the 5n - I've even found the Noctilux okay to use in low light.

    The zoom in focus aid is the pits (IMHO of course) - I can work the buttons, but by the time you've zoomed out again and got the composition right the focus points changed anyway - or the subject's moved.Fine on a tripod with a static subject - in addition (for me) it's a total composition killer.

    I'm still better focusing with a leica rangefinder (well, I have practiced a bit ) but I'm not sure that it'll stay that way. certainly I'm doing better with focus peaking in low light than with AF.

    Maybe it wasn't as good on the 5? (I got rid of mine long before focus peaking arrived). . . . and of course, you must use the EVF.

    As for small cameras Marc - I'm with you - they've all gone:
    d-lux4
    xz1
    x100
    . . . and more

    But I don't consider the NEX in that light - (of course, I don't do MF). I don't have a NEX7, so I can't comment, but the NEX5n with the viewfinder is wonderful . . . and I'm getting increasingly encouraged by the file quality from the A77 . . where pressing the MF button taking you straight to focus peaking mf I use more and more for fine tuning AF.

    I would rather the images from the M9 - but the ones I'm getting from Sony have good colour and DR, make attractive prints, and the combined systems with so many lenses which can be used on both is a real bonus.

    For me the M9 and the sony NEX makes perfect sense.

    Just this guy you know

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    Especially in Florida where I am around water and can t get closer ...I would like some reach up to about 180 ..so I will get a NEX 7 (with tempered expectations ) and give it a shot .
    Hi Roger
    Nothing's perfect, and NEX certainly isn't a substitute for an M9 - but I think you'll really enjoy it - the handling and the eve and the IQ.

    . . . .but of course, there's never a perfect answer and this isn't it either.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    I really disagree - of course, it could be improved - it certainly is better in some high end video cameras. . . . . but did you use it with the viewfinder? Because that's the whole point - the LCD is okay in decent light - but you need the higher resolution and closer contact of the EVF for it to work properly
    Hi Jono,

    I discovered that the new firmware upgrade also does not allow the unobtainable (and over priced) EVF to be used with the 5.
    The NEX and such are really not a system cameras. But for the interchangeable lens mount they are just P/S cameras.
    I really do not get the idea of EVF or the peanut flash either.

    I am still working on hacking the 5 to bits to see if would be useful for me in some way to make images.

    Also, I am trying to figure out if the (one and only) 3rd party battery "mini grip" (see: http://www.ownuser.com.tw/e_mig_snx5.html) would make the Nex' hand holdable for me. As such they are not. I own these for > a year now and did try using them.

    The good thing about the grip stuff as far as Sony goes (unlike Pansonic with new batteries with every model) is that they are compatible for several of the NEX'.

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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Hi Roger
    Nothing's perfect, and NEX certainly isn't a substitute for an M9 - but I think you'll really enjoy it - the handling and the eve and the IQ.

    . . . .but of course, there's never a perfect answer and this isn't it either.
    This one has a slightly better fit for a dedicated (resistant to change ) M RF shooter .. Only because it has some potential to extend the range of really usable Leica M glass.

    I am not the reluctant buyer (as anyone that knows me can confirm) thats looking for a guarantee. Rather I was just curious about some apparent capabilities of the NEX 7 . Most of the tests keep assuming the camera is a choice between it and an M9 or other EVF alternatives..

    When traveling for the sole purpose of street shooting ....size and weight are huge considerations ..so having the ability to gain telephoto reach simply by adding a small light body is attractive . But I am now convinced that the High ISO capabilities will be essentially the same as the M9.

    But I know its going to take some time to calibrate the NEX 7 to create files that work with the M9. If I think I should have used the M9 every time I try to put a NEX file into a collection ...then as I said before ..whats the point.

    As a point of clarification ..I shoot sports like kite boarding,polo,baseball,tennis etc with Nikon and long lenses ...but I shoot the crowds with the M9 s ..the files don t play well together and I have been advised more than a few times to stick with one system for a type of work .

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Roger - a Nex is a no brainer for a Leica M glass user. I don't usually muck around with new 35mm cameras being a Leica nut - but the Nex5N with Leica glass on it is a very nice small form street shooting machine.




    not a 'crazy' idea.

    Pete

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post

    Why not carry a Nex body as a back up that extends the capabilities of your M kit ? I am interested in any insights from the Nex users .
    I like the idea of a backup camera extending the capabilities of your Leica.

    But alas I am one of those people who finds using two different cameras at the same time means I don't get the best from either of them. To many seconds spent thinking about which to use for a picture, or to many times getting lazy and using the easiest to use, and not necessarily the best. I admire the guys who can dangle two around their necks and operate like that and at 100% concentration. But I lose the will to live when I can't remember what menu such and such a feature is in because I don't use the backup camera often enough to be fully familiar with it.

    Gone are the days when having two Nikon's meant a wide angle on one, and a telephoto on the other. To get the most out of today's electronic camera's even in basic operation modes like Aperture Priority etc needs familiarity, for me at least. So I don't kid myself I can do it, despite the heroic efforts of photographers that can memorise multiple menu's and instantly recall what that button does never mind where that button is. My 'backup' cameras are now all 'other' cameras, and I either go out with my Leica M9, or I go out with my other camera, and never the twain shall meet.

    Steve

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    I've withheld some of my responses over the last couple days but I will say the NEX might work for you as long as you keep tempered expectations. The reality is I think Photokina might bring something that you're truly looking for in the Leica mirrorless camera or the new M10. I own the original NEX 5 (not the N) and it's a great "digital back" for adapted lenses. The high ISO works well. ISO 1600 is very usable for color prints to a reasonable size and I'm sure you could get away with ISO 3200 in SOME B&W photos. The NEX 7 seems to be an huge improvement as a back up since it has a built EVF, hotshoe, and flash. I would try it out at least but I think the "no serious compromise solution" you're truly after doesn't exist yet.
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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Here I say it. So far all the mirrorless I tried were fun in the beginning and then seeing less and less use over the time.
    The IQ being nearly as good as from a FF DSLR or M9 (now with the Nex7 maybe being better...as long as the next generation ff cameras is coming), the AF being "closer" to that of a phase detect, the focus peaking being nearly as good as a rangefinder.
    IMO these cameras are still a (very good) compromise if you either do not want to spend the money for a full frame DSLR or a M9 OR if you want a smaller camera OR if you do like movie.
    In my case each time when I come back to the M9 I ask myself why I mess around so much time with the smaller mirrorless cameras.
    I like it for bycicle tours or on the Christmas market or for video (and yes I admit the Nex5n is fun to shoot-specially because it feels very fast to use) - but for the real thing I just get better results with M9.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    100% Agree with what T_Streng just said. The mirrorless are all great with many having pluses and minuses. The Sony's are better for adapting as they have the best sensor and a more "normal" crop factor. Micro 4/3 is best if you want the most complete system with lenses that autofocus and still give very good IQ - and for that reason I actually started using the G1 as my "autofocus" camera again. I might pickup a "real" dSLR (like a A77) at some point but I don't see the point outside telephot ability and the Panasonic lenses are good enough honestly for what I do.
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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    The best solution will ultimately be any Leica EVF ..if it can take M lenses (with an adapter) . Leica tunes their color to specific color chart (worth another topic at some point as to whether this matters in digital) . Images I ve taken with the M8,M9 ,DMR and S2 are all slightly different but can easily be tweaked in LR to flow together . You can tell them apart but you have to be looking for the signature .

    This is not true in my experience with Nikon and Canon files . Lenses add another dimension ...Zeiss on a D3X is quite different from a Nikkor on a D3S . The so what comes years later when you try to pull together all your images around a subject . And you start picking only the Leica images ? Wish I would have used my M is not something I want to be saying.

    But at the same time I have found shooting Polo with an M to be challenging and street shooting with a DSLR to be near impossible for me . Thats where the inconsistency comes from ..sometimes the best tool requires that you resolve the differences in post processing .

    The so what is that adopting a new system (or camera/sensor) requires that think about how the images will be used over a period of time .

    Agree completely on the challenge of working with two systems at the same time . Beyond the menu this screws up your hand eye coordination ... RF shooting if you do enough creates a flow thats similar to some sports . When I throw the x100 into the mix ...its gone ..and everytime I shoot with the Nikon s I need to warm up . The NEX would have to either be the only camera or the primary body for longer lenses .

    But I ve been waiting now for 3-4 years to get my 180FOV back with Leica glass and thats worth trying for .

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Good luck Roger, but I can't help but think that the two camera system pro lobby haven't really done much two camera system shooting, its an aspiration, not a consistent working work regime. You get similar responses when questions like 'how low a shutter speed can you use with an M camera?' are asked. And of course everybody says something like 1/8th second, or longer, but they really wouldn't want to do it all the time, its a singular stroke of luck, not a fully repeatable result that leads to the bravado. And if you can't get the same result with one that you get with the other, then its not a backup camera. How long will it take before you have an AF lens on the NEX-7 and then forget to focus your M9? Its that simple, and then multiply it with all the other functions available.

    Steve

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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Steve

    Not sure I follow your logic . I have shot with two cameras of the same type for going on 35 years . I do it because I can use a wide angle and a normal to short telephoto without changing lenses . To do this well you need to have two cameras that operate in a similar way and you have to shoot a lot . This is part of my standard practice and I have around 50K images over the past three years ..just M8/9 and all street .

    I have another 35K thats all sports and much of it with Nikon DSLR . So I understand the differences ....darn focus button on the back stuff and those moving focus points ..thats really different . Plus shooting with a 600mm changes your whole way of viewing . I try not to shot both on the same day and sometimes it takes an hour or so to regain any consistency.

    I had the opportunity to work thru my archive to fashion a portfolio and so I could reflect on the limitations of my approach and equipment . I accept that a CRF has limitations and I am looking for three key areas of improvement :
    1. focusing longer lenses 2. better high ISO performance and 3. fill flash without all the effort .

    I think in places I got some decent feedback on the NEX bodies. 1. Focusing long lenses can be considerably easier with focus peaking ..but expect some learning curve and its still tough in low light 2. don t expect any real improvement in high ISO and in fact you might not like high ISO with the NEX bodies because the rendering will be different from high ISO M files 3. fill flash looks good and its a decently integrated solution that allows a vey small very light flash .

    Concerns are not missed ....1. forget creating a seamless flow between two bodies that focus and operate so differently 2. getting the files to look similar and work together needs to be proven (and in general probably not believed to be reasonable ).

    Might not be worth it but I am consistently faced with missing a 180 FOV and not having a fill flash alternative .. I have them I just don t like the size and weight requirements .

    I always assume that each of use has our own very personal set of requirements and criteria for evaluating gear .. I never ask what should I do ... I ask about the experience of others . Maybe my title was off a little but I hope I framed the questions appropriately . This was really helpful give and take Thanks to all that participated.

    The Sony store indicated that the NEX 7 body will be shipping 1/23/12 ..in a month who knows .

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Logic? Well, it's nothing to do with shooting with two cameras, its the pitfalls of shooting with two totally different cameras. The difficulty of managing those differences while concentrating on the image seems like a fairly simple problem to grasp.

    As a journalist I used a Leica and a Nikon together sometimes, but f/8 was the same on both cameras, as was 250th of a second, and Tri-X was Tri-X.

    Steve

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Steve: Brilliant photos on your fickr site. I go out with two cameras occasionally - one an M9 and the other a small autofocus, such as the Nikon V1. Doesn't confuse me any more then usual.

    Cheers, Matt

    http://mdriscoll.zenfolio.com

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    I find it ok to shoot one camera one day and the other at another day.
    A little more complicated to really shoot different cams side by side at the same occasion for my taste.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    shooting two very different cameras at once really isn't all that difficult at all, if you have familiarity with both and have them set the way you like... after that, the image/moment is all that need concern you.

    i really don't understand the issue, nor the derogatory tone that someone might forget to focus when they went back to the Leica... say what?

    using the X100 and M8 in tandem was great. i never once forgot to focus my Leica -- as a matter of fact, it always felt a little like going back home when it was in my hands. a rangefinder is my comfort zone.

    that said, i also think shooting a different camera has helped my RF photography. i am still shooting with both cameras at the same time, mostly because i am still familiarising myself with the Fuji. but it doesn't feel awkward or strange or disconcerting in the least... when i put a camera to my eye, i shoot. it doesn't matter what that camera may be, not what i shot a second ago.

    the only time this is an issue is if the camera has a shutter lag and then it *does* make a difference. on the X100, AF works about as fast as i can manual focus on the M8/M9 and i will half-press and be focused in preparation. in this way, i find the camera to be as fast as the Leicas almost all of the time. if i miss the moment, it's usually user error. the same can be said for the M's so the point is pretty moot.

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by cam View Post

    i really don't understand the issue, nor the derogatory tone that someone might forget to focus when they went back to the Leica... say what?
    Derogatory tone?

    Well if it was derogatory it is against myself, because I have forgotten to focus a rangefinder while using it alongside an AF camera. And if you say its not possible to simply press the shutter before realising your mistake, then you may have some lessons to learn. Every photographer, no matter how experienced, is open to making every mistake once, some less experienced photographers make the same mistake twice. To suggest simple things can't suddenly bite you and get complicated is just arrogance, its what brings down space shuttles never mind all the everyday errors in a darkroom or out on a shoot.

    Steve

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    Re: M9 AND the Sony Nex ..make any sense?

    Quote Originally Posted by 250swb View Post
    Logic? Well, it's nothing to do with shooting with two cameras, its the pitfalls of shooting with two totally different cameras. The difficulty of managing those differences while concentrating on the image seems like a fairly simple problem to grasp.

    As a journalist I used a Leica and a Nikon together sometimes, but f/8 was the same on both cameras, as was 250th of a second, and Tri-X was Tri-X.

    Steve
    Steve

    Exactly ....and using a DSLR like a D3 with AF/AE settings that are optimized for the shooting environment is different than using a SLR with manual settings and film.

    No problem if you disagree thats the purpose of the discussion ..to learn ..but your example appeared to reference your experience with a manual SLR and the M . So I couldn t follow your argument in the context of today s cameras .

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