|The M8 is a rangefinder camera, this means that instead of looking through the lens as you would in an SLR you look through a dedicated optical viewfinder which indicates the frame size using framelines, focusing is carried out using the rangefinder metering field, a super-imposed image which appears in the center of the frame.|
The M8's viewfinder view is huge, bigger than you're used to seeing even if you use a full-frame SLR, it literally fills your vision (switching back to an SLR is like looking into a tunnel). It's also very bright with 'bright line' frames which appear as light overlays on the frame and the rangefinder 'metering field' (a rectangular area in the center of the frame) provides accurate manual focusing.
Bright-line frame view
The M8's viewfinder has bright-line frames which appear in the viewfinder depending on the lens used. They are displayed in pairs of 24+35 mm, 28+90 mm and 50+75 mm. This means that if you are using a 50 mm lens you see two frames, one for 50 mm and one for 75 mm, this may seem odd but is fairly easy to learn. You can also manually move the frame selector lever to see if the scene would be better suited to a different lens. The frames (and metering field) also move depending on the lens focal length to compensate for parallax error (because the viewfinder axis is offset from the lens axis).
|24 + 35 mm frames||50 + 75 mm frames|
|28 + 90 mm frames|
Viewfinder LED display
Along the bottom of the viewfinder view is the status line which includes four LED digits, with two dots, a light balance indicator (two triangles with a dot at the center) and the flash ready indicator. The digits are used to indicate shutter speed, a countdown for long exposures (those longer than 2 seconds), under- or over-exposure warning and buffer full message. The smaller dots between the first and second digit indicate exposure lock (top) and exposure compensation warning (bottom).
The two arrows pointing inwards towards the circle are the light balance indicators which are used during manual exposure (manual shutter speed selection) to indicate under- or over-exposure (or correct exposure). The LED display adjusts its brightness depending on ambient light.
Distance metering / focusing
The M8 uses a rangefinder metering field which provides a bright superimposed image in the center of the frame. Very simply you adjust the focus manually until the double image becomes one, this then means that the part of the frame covered by the rangefinder metering field will be in focus.
|Distance meter area shows a double-image, this part of the frame is not in focus||After adjusting focus we have a single image which indicates a good focus here|
How it works
There are three windows on the front of the camera:
- Distance meter viewing window - provides the image for the bright rangefinder metering field (above).
- Bright line illumination window - gathers ambient light to produce the bright lines frames in the viewfinder view.
- Viewfinder window - provides the main image for the viewfinder, this image is combined with the bright line frames, rangefinder metering field and LED indicators.
The first M series camera with TTL metering was the M5 in 1971, although it achieved this with a mechanical swing arm carrying the photo diode, in 1984 Leica introduced the M6 which achieved its metering by measuring the light reflected off a white dot on the shutter, the photo diode mounted in the base of the lens mount / shutter chamber.
The M8 uses a similar setup but instead of a single white dot one of the metal shutter blades has been painted white. Because the photo cell is 'aimed' at the center of the frame metering is still center biased but there is obviously some influence from the left and right of the frame (as shown in the diagram below).
Base / bottom cover
The base of the M8 is very clean, with a tripod thread, and on the left side the locking toggle for the bottom cover. I'm sure some Leica owners will be pleased to see the more logical central position for the tripod mount however it does appear to be central to the body and not he lens axis. The bottom cover itself is made from a piece of milled brass (just like the top) and is removed by turning the locking toggle counter-clockwise, it hinges on a small protruding lip on the right side. Once removed you can see the battery and SD compartments.
Battery / SD compartment
As mentioned above to access the battery and SD compartments you must remove the bottom cover, while this may seem a little eccentric (and it is) it does mean that (a) the compartments are protected while the cover is in place and (b) the clean lines of the camera are not spoiled by such annoyances as compartment doors. The M8 takes SD cards (the manual specifies up to 4 GB which implies SD-HC but nowhere is this stated explicitly). The M8's Lithium-Ion battery has a capacity of 1900 mAh at 3.7 V (7.03 Wh).
|The M8 is provided with a battery charger for its Lithium-Ion battery, this charger comes with international plugs for the UK, Europe and USA as well as a cable for connecting to a car cigarette lighter.|
|Llyod's Building Elevators by Jonathan Shapiro|
from Your City - Elevators
|Fire Lake by bbadgett|
|Tail Fins...1961 Cadillac Sedan DeVille by J Warren|
from Car Shows 2018
Nikon will cease offering Brazil-based customer service and technical support, though the company stresses that it will still offer technical assistance and warranty repairs for valid warranties.
Two years ago, CatLABS of JP announced a plan to save Packfilm from the dead. Now, it's announced it's giving up its efforts to better focus its resources elsewhere.
The GoPro Fusion is designed to make it easy to capture 360-degree video and stills. We took it out recently on a typically hot Seattle summer day to see what it can do.
We've got our hands on a full-production Nikon Z7 camera and have updated our gallery with additional samples.
A new Kickstarter campaign seeks funding for Chroma Chrono, a programmable RGB camera flash that emits multiple colors during long exposures.
Think Tank Photo has launched a new lineup of six dual-access, water-resistant protective lens cases it calls Lens Case Duo.
Canon and Nikon finally entered the full-frame mirrorless market this summer with the brand-new RF and Z mounts. Now that we've had some time with the cameras, we wanted to revisit our earlier predictions and take stock.
The devices' camera specs look pretty much identical to last year's iPhone X but under the hood a number of important improvements have been made.
Blackmagic Design has announced the public beta of its new Blackmagic RAW video codec. The company says the new format combines the benefits of shooting Raw video with the ease of use and smaller file sizes usually associated with non-Raw video files.
Serif, the company behind the Affinity suite, has announced the latest update for its mobile Photoshop competitor Affinity Photo for iPad.
The Atomos Ninja V external video recorder and monitor will be ready to ship at the end of this month. The 5.2in Ninja V is designed to provide a smaller option, while still offering many of the features of the larger 7-inch models.
Having shot with the camera, spoken to Canon and read the tea leaves, here's what DPR Technical Editor Richard Butler thinks the EOS R tells us about Canon and the RF's mount's future.
After last week's teaser, lighting manufacturer Profoto has announced its 'small big' new product. The B10 is designed to be used as studio flash head but in a very small body, and has a powerful continuous light source for videographers as well.
Konseen has launched Photo Studio, a new light box tent large enough to photograph people, as well as objects.
Seagate has introduced new high-capacity hard drives for Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices: the 14TB IronWolf and 14TB IronWolf Pro HDDs.
The case was first announced earlier this year as a Kickstarter campaign and comes with a range of features aimed at iPhone photographers.
Manfrotto has introduced a new two-in-one tripod to its Befree lineup. Called the Befree 2N1, this new addition is both a tripod and monopod in one and is available with both of Manfrotto's locking mechanisms.
This new high dynamic range editing software comes with an AI-powered Quantum HDR Engine for improved photo merging.
Apple has unveiled the next generation of its iPhone X in the form of three variants: the 5.8" iPhone XS and 6.5" iPhone XS Max with OLED screens, and the 6.1" iPhone XR with an LCD and single rear camera.
Ahead of the launch of the CamRanger II the company has announced a mini version of its wireless remote control system that it says has a longer range than the original in a body half the size.
Lens manufacturer Sigma has announced a trio of fast cinema lenses for full-frame camera systems, that it says will also be available in the future in the LPL mount for Arri’s large format camera system.
LumaPod is a a new tripod being funded on Kickstarter that takes just four seconds to set up and uses patented tension technology to keep your shots steady in a compact design.
X-Rite ColorChecker Video XL is an oversized color target for wide-angle, long distance, and aerial shooting.
ExperimentalOptics has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund its second lens design, a 35mm F2.7 lens it claims is the world's 'smallest fastest pancake lens.'
The new XF 8-16mm F2.8 R LM WR and XF 200mm F2 R LM OIS WR are aimed at enthusiasts and professionals, and add considerable versatility to Fujifilm's growing XF lens lineup. We've been taking a look.
The Getty family is working to regain control of stock photo agency Getty Images, according to multiple reports published late last week.
The Phoneslinger line, a modular bag system for mobile photographers, has been launched on the Indiegogo crowdfunding platform.
CamRanger has announced the impending arrival of its CamRanger 2 wireless tethering and trigger system, complete with redesigned apps, updated wireless features, and support for select Sony and Fujifilm systems.
As well as high-resolution stills, the new Nikon Z7 also shoots 4K video and 120p HD video. We recently spent two days with director Chris Hershman, shooting a music video on the Z7 for pop artist Emily Blue.