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With its unusual form factor can the Tourbox aid the editing process? Will its price and variety of tactile controls appeal to photo and video editors who would like to streamline their workflow?
Leica has long been a manufacturer happy to exploit niche markets - its M9 may be a fascinating camera to shoot with, but the company's adherence to the near-obsolete, manual focus rangefinder design, coupled with its distinctly exclusive pricing ensures its cameras will only ever be enjoyed by a few. However, we can't think of any of its products that combine 'fascinating' and 'niche' as well as its latest creation - the Leica M-Monochrom. As the name suggests, the Monochrom is a truly black-and-white camera, with no filter array to allow the capture of color information.
Just as any discussion between former film photographers will eventually come 'round to the idea of a dedicate manual focus digital camera with the large, bright split-prism viewfinder they remember from their film-shooting days, it was almost as inevitably touch on the idea of a black-and-white digital camera. But it's not just nostalgia that makes the idea of a monochrome camera sound appealing - especially on a system famed for its (expensively achieved) high quality lenses.
Removing the color filter array from the front of a sensor has several advantages. There are certainly benefits in terms of noise, mainly because all the light hitting the sensor is available to be captured, rather than just one color being allowed through to each sensor location. But also, because noise isn't spread by a demosaicing process, the noise pattern doesn't appear to muddy detail. These two factors see the camera's maximum ISO increase to 10,000, rather than the M9's 2,500.
However, the biggest advantage is resolution - each captured pixel gives one output pixel, with none of the detail-blurring combining of neighboring data that demosaicing inevitably brings. As a result, the M-Monochrom immediately trumps even the low-pass-filter-less M9 for sharpness. Given the reputation of Leica lenses, this has immediate appeal.
There are drawbacks, of course - the 'headroom' found in Raw files comes mainly from the fact that bright regions have usually only over-exposed one of the three color channels, with usable data still available for the other two channels. With a true mono sensor, any overexposure is absolute - once the channel has clipped to white, there's no chance of recovery. Equally, anyone who has got used to producing mono images by converting color images, with all the selective color mixing that brings, will have to get used to pulling the correct color filter out of their camera bag at the point of capture.
And that is a challenge - the best black and white images are the result of a tonal response that is perfectly matched to the subject, usually as the result of extensive darkroom or post-processing work. With only five contrast settings to select in the camera, even with perfect exposure, it'll probably take a bit of Raw processing to get the best out of each image. The M-Monochrome shoots 34.7MB DNG files (there's no compression option), for users willing to make the effort.
The challenge of getting correct exposure are somewhat reduced because the histogram is not influenced by color or white balance. Leica says the histogram is based on Raw data (rather than the preview JPEG, which many cameras use), to give a clear understanding of what has and hasn't been captured. Still being based on a revised version of the M9's 18MP Kodak CCD means the Monochrom still can't offer live view, so this histogram is only available after you've taken your shot.
Beyond this, changes to the existing M9 interface are minimal - the saturation and colorspace options have been removed from the menu, and white balance has been excised from the 'Set' quick menu but otherwise it's almost unchanged. The camera has slightly more sophisticated highlight and shadow clipping warnings than the M9, it also gains three 'toning' options, each with two intensity levels, but those are the only additional options. The toning options are Sepia, Cold and Selenium.
Given the cost of buying into the Leica system, it's not surprising that Leica expects most buyers to come from the pool of existing M owners. However, in addition to M8 and 9 users, Leica clearly also hopes some film shooters who haven't embraced digital will appreciate the apparent simplicity and quality that native mono shooting brings. When explaining the camera to us, Leica repeatedly returned to the word 'authentic' and it's this desire for an 'authentic' shooting experience that we think will sell this camera.
*Pull 160 is essentially the ISO 320 setting given 1EV extra exposure, with a different tone curve to give the correct final image brightness. The result is a reduction in highlight dynamic range, compared to the full ISO settings.
It may seem odd to think about the M-Monochrom's sensitivity to different colors, since it can't distinguish between them. However, as with mono film, the best results from the Monochrom come from adding colored filters in front of the lens. For this to work, the camera needs to be fairly similarly sensitive to light from all across the visible spectrum (it needs to be panchromatic). We asked Leica whether it had needed to add any color filter to the sensor, to balance-out its sensitivity to different wavelengths of visible light, and were told it hadn't.
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Owners of Leica M cameras that suffer from peeling CCDs will be able to claim a free repair in the future so long as the camera was purchased within five years of the fault becoming apparent, the company has announced.
New York Times writer Nick Bilton recently wrote an article about his experience with Leica cameras and lenses, and was surprised when this was met by an aggressive influx of 'vehement messages from all kinds of photographers and camera fans'. Not only did Canon and Nikon fans attack him for not writing a similar piece about their favorite brands, but according to Bilton many Leica fans were also critical of his article, as well as his selection of 'experts'. Click through for more on this surprising development.
Photokina 2012 is proving a busy show for Leica, with two new M models, the 'M', which succeeds the M9, and offers live view and movie mode, among other refinements, and the ME - a cut-down model, which offers the same functionality as the M9 at a more affordable price. Barnaby Britton caught up with M product manager Jesko von Oeynhausen at the Leica stand.
Leica has announced the M-Monochrom, a black-and-white version of its M9 full-frame rangefinder. In most other respects, the M-Monochrom shares its hardware with the M9. It can add three toning colors to its monchrome output or its uncompressed DNG files can be edited using the included copy of Photoshop Lightroom. A full version of the mono processing software Silver Efex 2 is also included. It will cost around $7,950.00.
What’s the best camera for under $2000? These capable cameras costing less than $2000 should be solid and well-built, have both speed and focus for capturing fast action and offer professional-level image quality. In this buying guide we’ve rounded up all the current interchangeable lens cameras costing under $2000 and recommended the best.
What’s the best camera costing over $2000? The best high-end camera costing more than $2000 should have plenty of resolution, exceptional build quality, good 4K video capture and top-notch autofocus for advanced and professional users. In this buying guide we’ve rounded up all the current interchangeable lens cameras costing over $2000 and recommended the best.
We've updated our 'best cameras over $2000' buying guide, and the Sony a7R IV is now our favorite mirrorless camera in the $2000-4000 price range. It sits alongside the Nikon D850, which is our choice for those who prefer DSLRs.
If you're looking for a high-quality camera, you don't need to spend a ton of cash, nor do you need to buy the latest and greatest new product on the market. In our latest buying guide we've selected some cameras that might be a bit older but still offer a lot of bang for the buck.
What's the best camera for shooting sports and action? Fast continuous shooting, reliable autofocus and great battery life are just three of the most important factors. In this buying guide we've rounded-up several great cameras for shooting sports and action, and recommended the best.
|Rainbow 🌈 of Friendship 🤝 by robbiesydney|
from rainbow challenge
|Sleek, Mysterious......And Fast!! by G Gordon MacDonald|
from Aviation Legends: Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird
|It's a dog`s life by SteveWCM|
from The Floor
|Summer night view of the fjord by Kaappo|
from My Best Picture of the Week
The Tamron 28-200mm F2.8-5.6 Di III RXD provides a wide zoom range in compact, weather-sealed design. Find out why it's Chris and Jordan's new favorite travel lens.
Kodak Portra 800 is a wonderful and versatile color film. And any rumors of it being discontinued, we're pleased to report, are simply untrue. That's a good thing, because it's capable of producing lovely results in all sorts of conditions.
Boering has left the World Press Photo without much of an explanation from either him or the organization, but he tells DPReview the COVID-19 pandemic is forcing the WPP to change the way it makes money.
The standard-size deck of playing cards features unique photography-oriented artwork and act as cheat sheets for photographers.
The Sony ZV-1 and Panasonic Lumix DC-G100 are the first cameras we've seen that are overtly designed with vlogging in mind – and the changes they represent could have implications for the future of all cameras.
The utility allows the E-M1X, E-M1, E-M1 Mark II, E-M1 Mark III and E-M5 Mark II cameras to be used with video conferencing apps over USB.
Olympus is showing final images of its under-development 150-400mm F4.5, which it says will arrive this winter. An unspecified macro and 8-25mm F4 Pro have also been added to the lens roadmap, and the E-M1X's AF gains bird detection.
The scam, which involves sending fake copyright violation notices, has been circulating on the social media platform since at least June 9.
Fujifilm is one of just two producers of tape media (the other being Sony) and it is hard at work on a breakthrough that will allow single tape storage drives to offer 400TB capacities in the coming years.
The National Parks Service says it's investigating the incident, which took place just two days after the park opened following a shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Professional full frame lenses are usually large and have fast apertures. In this episode of DPReview TV, Chris and Jordan argue that there's a need for slow professional lenses – inspired by some of their favorite Micro Four Thirds lenses.
The camera maker joins Olympus, Fujifilm and others is a legal tussle over US digital camera technology patents held by DigiMedia Tech.
NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) photographs the sun every 0.75 seconds. In its first decade in space, the SDO has captured more than 425 million images of the sun. NASA has compiled these images into an amazing time lapse, come check it out.
The lens is available for Leica M, Sony FE, Nikon Z and L-mount camera systems, and now holds the title as the world's widest rectilinear lens for full-frame camera systems.
Tamron's new 28-200mm F2.8-5.6 is a versatile zoom lens for Sony E-mount. Well-suited for travel photography, it's compact, lightweight, and fast/quiet to focus.
Fujifilm has announced that its GF 30mm F3.5 R WR wide-angle lens for its medium format cameras will ship in late July or early August.
Fujifilm's latest lens is a sharp, reasonably compact and well-built wide-angle for the company's GFX medium-format cameras. We took it out and about in the warm Seattle summer with the company's 50 and 100 Megapixel camera bodies to see what it can do.
Fujifilm has issued firmware updates to the GFX 100 and GFX 50 models, with the 100MP camera gaining the most significant improvements.
Although the channel is still growing, it currently has nine videos that offer concise overviews of just a few of the cameras Japan Camera Hunter founder Bellamy Hunt has sitting around his Japanese storefront.
ON1 has launched ON1 360, the latest version of ON1 Photo RAW 2020 with ON1's new Photo Mobile application for iOS, iPadOS and Android mobile devices. The new solution syncs raw processing between your mobile device and computer.
Switching screw-on filters between lenses of different thread sizes is much quicker with the Revoring adjustable step-up ring. It uses a sprung iris that expands to fit a range of filter thread sizes, so a single filter can be used on multiple lenses
That's right folks, you heard it here first. Read on for the full interview, with Kenji Tanaka of Sony.
Kodak's discontinued Aerochrome film gets a digital remake in the form of a new Lightroom preset pack from film emulation specialists Really Nice Images.
We've updated our Best cameras under $2000 buying guide, and the Fujifilm X-T4 is our top pick for those seeking a camera that excels and both stills and video shooting.
Chris and Jordan didn't forget about stills when they previewed the video-centric Panasonic G100 earlier this week.
The Canon EF-M 11-22mm F4-5.6 is by no means a new lens, but it's one we've been shooting with over the years, and appreciate for its compact form, solid build and useful wide-angle range.
Mauritius is a remote island off the southeastern coast of the African continent that's never had Google Street View. So, an island resident, Reuben Pillay, decided to use his own DJI Phantom 4 Pro drone to create more than 220 high-resolution 360-degree images of the island.
Pye Jirsa explains how blowing out the highlights in an image — usually a no-no in the world of photography — can result in a 'perfectly imperfect' photo that feels more authentic and natural.
Here's a fresh take on a classic debate, or why both film and digital are awesome.
A recent copyright infringement lawsuit against Newsweek, as well as Facebook's subsequent statement about its sublicensing terms, prompted the judge to reopen the case against Mashable.