Monday, April 1, 2013

Has the new "M" Lost the Leica Magic? Not Bloody Likely

The M9 Does Do Special Things With Light, by Reed A. George
I read an amusing post on Steve Huff's site this morning. Steve is sharing the range of opinions that he's getting from readers about the Leica "M," the newest Leica digital rangefinder and successor to the M9.
(Click Here) to read the full story on
While the feedback he's receiving is literally all over the place, there is a cyclic theme that Steve has observed each time a new Leica M body has been introduced. It goes something like this:
The new M sucks compared to the last M - it has lost the "magic," and is like any other camera - the old M (M-1) was so much better - well, now that people are using it, the new M is okay - actually, the new M is great - that old M (M-1) really sucked, and we can't see how we ever used it, let alone loved it - the new M is the last camera we'll ever need - introducing, the new M+1!
I can admit that I've been through this myself. As Steve describes the cycle going from the M8 to M9, I went from loving my M8 to not understanding how I ever put up with the manual coding, UV/IR filters, crop factor, etc. The M9 is really so much better.
But, guess what?
The M8 Also Did Special Things With Light, by Reed A. George
I am personally not driven toward the new M yet for very specific reasons. First reason, I'm still recovering from the cost of the M9. But, far more importantly, I haven't used the M9 enough yet. I'm going to work on that point, and use it as much as I can. While the M9 will never be my only camera, it is one of my very favorites. I'm going to spend a quality week with it in Japan, along with my new Lumix DMC-LX7. I'm looking forward to that with great expectations.
I actually feel that while the upgrade from the M8 to the M9 was the right decision, I didn't shoot the M8 enough, either. Here's to fully exploring the M9 before I even consider what the new M may offer!