X-Pro1 goes to the Leica store

Started Apr 12, 2012 | Discussions thread
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X-Pro1 goes to the Leica store
Apr 12, 2012

I went to the Leica store in Washington DC today and can't say enough good things about the entire experience. The staff is knowledgeable and patient; the space is just the right size and layout; and the equipment is out of this world. Many thanks to Eric, Mike, and Meena for making the trip a fun one.

This is my first time handling Leica gear. All pictures are straight out of the camera. Given that I'm new to the X-Pro1 and new to Leica lenses, any issues you spot in the pictures are likely due to operator error.

The first lens I tried was the Leica 50mm f/2.5 Summarit-M. This was just to ensure that the Kipon adapter and the X-Pro1 coupled properly with the lens. I tried using the Fuji command dial to zoom in and manual focus, but the focusing experience was just awful. In the following shot I had trouble telling whether I was looking at the sweater or the subject's skin when zoomed in. Even then, I still couldn't achieve decent focus.

Next I tried the Leica Summilux-M 50mm and before I even took a shot I suspected this was the lens for me. The Summilux just feels perfectly balanced on the X-Pro1. In fact, it feels even better on the camera than Fuji's own 35mm f/1.4 lens, and looks smashing.

This time I gave up on the optical viewfinder and switched to the electronic viewfinder--and suddenly focus became an order of magnitude easier. The focus tab fits under the finger perfectly and the electronic viewfinder is clear enough to see what's in focus and what's not.

This one is close, but not quite right. I missed the critical focus on her closer eye.

This one is closer.

Here's a shot with the 90mm Summicron. The focus ring is stiff compared to the 50mm and I don't think I have the skill to take enough keepers when you consider the Fuji's 1.5 crop factor. But the bokeh is creamy and in the right hands the Fuji and 90mm could make beautiful music together. Come back next year.

We took the 50mm Summilux out on the street and I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was to focus on people walking directly toward me and still get the shot. Except for Dick Nixon. He didn't move much.

Anyway, I went home with the 50mm Summilux. The combination of lens and sensor is humbling and highlights shortcomings in my technique. But hey--that's what practice is for. I couldn't be happier with this combination.

Marc A. Garrett

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