A Leica M10 Review
Irakly Shanidze wrote:
You lost me on your sensor assessment. I use this camera professionally and rarely go below ISO3200 precisely because I want the noise in the picture. Otherwise it looks plastic. When assessing the image quality, the noise level is not the only thing that should be taken into consideration. M10 DNG files beat Sony a7RIII in dynamic range and color fidelity and any ISO. Not to mention, Leica lenses do not work well on Sony bodies, especially anything wider than 50. To be fair, Zeiss Loxia lenses are excellent, yet they are not fast enough.
Most your remarks about this camera are correct, however, there was no point of stating the obvious after almost two years of this camera being out. What you did not mention is that the shutter starts acting up at above 32C, especially when the humidity is high. This is a real bummer, because it renders the camera less than useful for travel assignments in countries with hot climate.
Do other Leica M have the shutter problem above 32C or this is uniquely M10 problem?
I use my M10 and M10-D in central north Russia when I travel there in December and in January, and I live in Thailand that during mid-summer it often goes above 40C and I shoot often in outdoor in sequential (100+ images in a short time) which can potentially heat up the camera added to ambient heat and humid. I never encounter problems with the shutter of M10 or M10-D in cold weather or hot and humid condition or in snow or rain.
My only problem with my M10 was it sometimes hangs up and refuse to firing that the only solution is to remove the battery and the camera resumed to normal - even though it went thru multiple of firmware update. My M10-D is free of problem and is my most used Leica.
M10 hang up is not exactly good for the decisive moment. I would suggest Leica include a build in AC unit and extra power pack for M11. LOL
The sensor is perfectly fine for general photography - where it lacks is only in comparison to other cameras (including some recent "budget" FF cameras). However, shooting wide-angle lenses with optimal ETTR exposure without live-view is non-trivial. A a modern sensor would go some way to addressing that.
FWIW, my M10 is very much a secondary camera as most of my photography (Leica or otherwise) is shot on film. I frequently shoot B&W film pushed to EI1600 or 3200, but I have never really liked digital noise - especially some of the banding and blotchy colour that pretty much all cameras start to show as you push up the ISO range. If I want grain, I shoot film.
Interesting comment about shutter problems with temperature. During the summer here it is routinely 30c+ with moderate humidity and I have never seen a problem. That said I have not had a chance to use the camera in places like Singapore.
At the end of the day, I choose my camera primarily for the lens system that I want to use. The best digital platform for M-series lenses is, for better or worse, the M10.
Thanks for your review. Was wondering, is the vignetting on the exposures from the lens or did you add it for effect?
They are a mix. Aside from the 21mm SEM, most of my lenses have a lot of vignetting which is obvious either when shot with lens ID detection disabled or when used wide open with an ND filter fitted (which defeats the in-camera RAW fiddling). I tend to match the vignetting across photographs.
In general, I like the results from Leica when shooting at or near wide open. For clinically perfect images there are far better camera systems available.
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