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Thread: A Few Leica M8/Epson RD1 questions (camera purchase advice required!)

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    Lewis
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    Arrow A Few Leica M8/Epson RD1 questions (camera purchase advice required!)

    As above please. I have been looking at the M8's and i'm SERIOUSLY tempted with one, or the cheaper alternative, the Epson RD1. I will be a newbie into the rangefinder world so to speak, and I was previously considering an M6 but the expense/aggravation of film has deterred me somewhat, so I am now steering towards the M8. I currently own a Canon 5D which in my opinion is an excellent camera, and it delivers beautiful results, but since my purchase of the Ricoh GRD 2 i'm begining to really enjoy street photography and more 'art based' photography (if you see what I mean).
    I use the 5D for motorsport events and other such uses due to the availability of telephoto lens etc, and my only concern with the Leica is that it's not quite designed for that sort of use-am i incorrect? Are there zoom lens equivilant to that of the Canon one's on the market available for the M8? I love the 5D but the shere bulk of it tends to draw a lot of attention when i'm out and about, and the more compact size of the Leica is also another reason why i'm considering it (and the great image quality too).
    So taking into account the above, what advice could you guys offer?
    Also is it worth looking at the RD1 as a more economical alternative or is it less reliable than the Leica.
    Any advice and help will be greatly appreciated, and feel free to post image samples from the above mentioned too.

    Many Thanks,
    Lewis

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    Re: A Few Leica M8/Epson RD1 questions (camera purchase advice required!)

    A rangefinder can't do zoom lenses, and is really only suited to short telephoto lenses.

    Maybe what you really want is a smaller SLR?

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    Deceased, but remembered fondly here... johnastovall's Avatar
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    Re: A Few Leica M8/Epson RD1 questions (camera purchase advice required!)

    I use all three (M8,RD-1 and 5D) for street work and have no problems with any of them drawing attention. It's how you conduct yourself more than the camera.

    Here's a folio of life in Texas cafes done with all 3.


    If you want something small in an dSLR with zooms take a look at the Oly E-3.

    As for a rangefinder if you've never used one before you might want to get an R-D1 and see how you like what a rangefinder demands of you before jumping into the M8.
    Last edited by johnastovall; 6th February 2008 at 10:34.

    "The market wants a Leica to be a Leica: the inheritor of tradition, the subject of lore, and indisputably a mark of status to own."
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    Senior Member Daniel's Avatar
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    Re: A Few Leica M8/Epson RD1 questions (camera purchase advice required!)

    Quote Originally Posted by johnastovall View Post
    I use all three (M8,RD-1 and 5D) for street work and have no problems with any of them drawing attention. It's how you conduct yourself more than the camera.

    Here's a folio of life in Texas cafes done with all 3.


    If you want something small in an dSLR with zooms take a look at the Oly E-3.
    i'd like to add that i think it doesn't quite matter if you carry with you a tiny camera or a large camera. people in general have a sixth sense, and they will sense your presence and intent, and respond accordingly. for example, while walking about in the city, we were following a pair of guys walking at least 100 feet ahead of us. i wanted to take a few pictures of one of them with a black t-shirt with a white outline of the felix the cat. my friend and i were very discrete and kept our distance. after two blocks, they stopped and turned around as though they sensed something else was happening behind them. we weren't the only other people behind them. we conducted ourselves by not trying to hide ourselves, or my camera. it was clear to them that i was taking pictures and they'll be in it. sensing no threat they continued walking as i continued in tow taking snap shots of them for another block.

    anyway, regarding zoom lenses. i usually find zoom lenses quite distracting, because i tend to fiddle with it instead of concentrating on my subject. i also find i'm either at one end or the other end of the zoom range, and seldom in between. because of this, i'm more comfortable with prime lenses. i find the method of walking up closer or further way engaging. of course there will be exceptions, so i think this shall depend on how you choose to work with your subjects.

    EDIT: Also, if you don't feel comfortable with the camera you have, then people will also sense this. I'm never comfortable carrying my Nikon D2x, and I always feel I'm an eyesore and a threat with this thing. So, when I go out in public with it, people usually sense my discomfort and respond accordingly. Recently, I was on the Benjamin Franklin bridge taking pictures and hiding my M8 under my coat after each shot. The Port Authority, unbeknownst to me, have been monitoring me for almost 15 minutes. They became a bit nervous of my behavior and dispatched a police officer to investigate. Fortunately for me, the officer was professional, polite, and informative.

    If you'd like to see some sample shots taken with my Ricoh GX100, Nikon D70, and Leica M8, you can find them here at http://www.flickr.com/photos/thegrumpymonk/ and http://www.thegrumpymonk.com
    Last edited by Daniel; 6th February 2008 at 11:14.

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    Re: A Few Leica M8/Epson RD1 questions (camera purchase advice required!)

    If you are not in a great hurry to purchase you may want to consider attending a workshop from Guy and Jack or the Leica Akademie. I haven't attended Guy and Jack's workshop yet, but I know they are supported by Leica so you could likely get some quality time in shooting a M8 and variety of lenses. You should check with them to see if this is possible. I attended a Leica Akademie trip last summer in Germany and it was incredible. Leica loaned participants anything Leica they wanted to borrow for the duration of the trip (in this case 10 days). The opportunity to have an extended hands on test drive of cameras/lenses in real world shooting conditions should not be underestimated. The experience was very beneficial to my future purchasing decisions (and there have been plenty since then).

    I hope Guy and Jack don't mind me making this recommendation. I am sure they don't have the multiple million dollar inventory of equipment Leica has available for loan, but knowing Guy he will do his best to help out a fellow photographer.

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    Re: A Few Leica M8/Epson RD1 questions (camera purchase advice required!)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Gowin View Post
    If you are not in a great hurry to purchase you may want to consider attending a workshop from Guy and Jack or the Leica Akademie. I haven't attended Guy and Jack's workshop yet, but I know they are supported by Leica so you could likely get some quality time in shooting a M8 and variety of lenses. You should check with them to see if this is possible. I attended a Leica Akademie trip last summer in Germany and it was incredible. Leica loaned participants anything Leica they wanted to borrow for the duration of the trip (in this case 10 days). The opportunity to have an extended hands on test drive of cameras/lenses in real world shooting conditions should not be underestimated. The experience was very beneficial to my future purchasing decisions (and there have been plenty since then).

    I hope Guy and Jack don't mind me making this recommendation. I am sure they don't have the multiple million dollar inventory of equipment Leica has available for loan, but knowing Guy he will do his best to help out a fellow photographer.
    Well I know Mark well and see him as a real friend and certainly great photographer. We were together in Germany, Switzerland et al this past summer and enjoyed our shooting, Porsches and certainly the great alcohol of the western Europe. Such fun

    I also had the opportunity to have a workshop with Guy and Jack and could not recommend them more strongly. I wish I could have been with them in Moab as this is only six hours from my home in Colorado and I just love it. The snow cover they got for this workshop is spectacular. I respect Jack's statement that they picked this time of year for this snow, I am sure he would admit this is not something you can predict from year to year. God bless you guys...........you got something special this year. There is no place as special as Arches or Canyonlands and you have the absolute perfect time of year to get it perfectly. Mesa Arch with the La Sal Mountains in the background is just too good to be true. I am in Florida so i didn't attend but I will be there for San Juan or something like this. Just great

    Envious of all of you I met at Yosemite and very anxious to meet those of you I have not met yet........e.g. Terry

    Hope to see you all very soon

    Best

    Woody Spedden

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    Re: A Few Leica M8/Epson RD1 questions (camera purchase advice required!)

    We did have a great time on the Germany trip didn't we my friend. That brings up another great advantage of these workshops and that is you meet and get to know like-minded people and come away with friendships that will last forever.

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