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Thread: M 240 for Landscape?

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    M 240 for Landscape?

    Dear Leica M 240 users would you recommend this camera for landscape work (28, 35, 50 and 75 mm Leica M lenses) in view to make large prints? Would the quality be ‘as good’ (or better) as the Sony A7R using Sony Zeiss lenses? Thanking all of you for advice.

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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    It works very well for landscape. I do a lot of landscapes, if you go to my site Stig Hammarsten almost all of the recent images are shot with the M240, there is one called "Evening light" that is Nikon D800E, I have just sold the Nikon and use only Leica now.
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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    gorgeous work Stig

    From my perspective the M9/240 is the best landscape system today.

    To improve IQ one would need MF or LF, and those systems do not travel so easy or produce so painlessly.
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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    Sure, why not?

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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    A super camera for landscape, with the ability to now use R lenses (via R to M adapter), the range of high performance lenses has increased.

    The 24MP sensor produces exceptional files that are right there with the best 36MP files from Nikon and Sony.
    Last edited by Seascape; 11th March 2014 at 14:47.
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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    No reason why it shouldn't be a great landscape camera, but if any more large prints are made there won't be any room left for the people to look at them (what did happen to the idea of small perfectly formed jewel like intimate prints?)!

    The only downside's of the M240, are the relatively limited exposure time of 60 sec max (if you are thinking of using a 'ten stopper ND' it won't work), and that at the maximum exposure time there can be be some light leakage around the mount (this is also true for the M9). The later has been covered in threads on LUF and the solution is to use a hair scrunchy or similar around the base of the lens. Any camera used at the extremes starts to throw up little niggles so don't take that as a fault others don't exhibit as well.

    Other than that the Live View and ability to use many different lenses makes a lot of sense in favour of the M240, and the colour is much nicer than the M9 although it does have the generic 'digital' look as it comes out of the camera, but the files are very malleable so that isn't a problem.

    Steve

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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    I've used all the digital M's for landscape work over the past seven years. Provided the weather wasn't too extreme and you had enough batteries, the earlier digital M's made excellent choices for this owing to the relatively light weight of a Leica kit (assuming you need to hike any distance to the place you want to shoot) and their lens' superb optics. For me, one of the most attractive aspects of using the Leica system for landscape work is the DOF scales on the lenses. For landscapes I am generally looking to maximize depth of field while limiting diffraction and the Leica lenses have the great advantage of well-spaced and detailed DoF scales on the lens barrels. You can focus first on the nearest plane that needs to be in focus and then the farthest, note the settings, and it is then easy to estimate required F stop and hyper focal distance. (In contrast, Zeiss manual focus lenses, even the largest, have DOF scales that are too compressed to be of much use and few autofocus lenses from any manufacturer have any useful scales at all.)

    The new M addresses the weather sealing and battery issues of its predecessors and overall is a more refined product. The optional electronic viewfinder is not great by current standards, but still helps a lot in many circumstances.

    The Sony a7A, which I am now testing, has some important advantages over the M body for landscape work, including absolute resolution, superior low light capability, a far better EVF and, most importantly, the ability to move the focus point to almost any part of the live view screen and to magnify it to check focus. If the a7R sensor had been designed to work well with rangefinder glass, I would not see a need for an M body. Unfortunately, most Leica glass I have tested on the a7R is compromised to some degree or other in the corners. The WATE and some of the >50mm lenses, stopped down to at least F8, are better but even with those lenses I think images from the M are more convincing.

    The Sony could be a competitive option with native glass once Sony fills out its lens line. The 55mm and 35mm primes are excellent; the 24-70 is also quite good between 30mm and 60mm. These lenses are all light weight by full frame DSLR -- and with the primes, even by Leica --standards and are weather resistant.

    Meanwhile, the Sony can be a serious alternative if you are also prepared to use the best Nikon, Canon and DSLR Zeiss lenses along with those Sony FE lenses available at this point. For example, you could carry a kit including the Canon T/S E 24mm, one of the very best 24mm lenses, the Sony FE 55mm and the Zeiss 100mm Makro Planar in Nikon mount (as I did on a recent hike) and get image quality at least comparable to that of the Leica kit I would normally carry (24mm Elmar, 50mm Summilux and 90mm Elmarit) with the T/S option to boot. The downside is that this kit, while lighter than a full frame DSLR rig, is still a good deal heavier than its Leica alternative; the Leica kit still wins if much hiking is required.

    Those are just my own preferences, of course. We are lucky these days to have so many options.
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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    Quote Originally Posted by cjl View Post

    Those are just my own preferences, of course. We are lucky these days to have so many options.
    What you posted was very nicely balanced. It's all about tradeoffs, as no one kit can cover every attribute that a diverse group of users expect or want.

    Even when comparing the M9 to the M240, I (and some others) find there are tradeoffs. Thanks for posting your thoughts.

    Dave (D&A)

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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    I also use the Lee 7 filter system. With the EVF placement/effect of filters is easily seen which was not possible with prior M's. Works very well IMO...

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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    If M240 works with ZM2145 well
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/astral-ark/

    Alpa 12 SWA + IQ 260 , 135 Old Lens Fans

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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    I'm testing an M right now. I must say with the 24 Elmar-M ASPH it is just super. The only problem I've encountered is that in low light the shadows are noisy. They can mostly be recovered but I don't have that problem with my D800.

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    Re: M 240 for Landscape?

    I tired to make the A7s work for landscapes. The result? I bought an M9 LOL. The sonys are alot of fun, and good with their natives.

    But shoot the M9 with zm18, sem21 , cron 28 etc, and you are spoiled. I expect the same is true with the 240.
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