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I is an Leica M Type 240 Digital Rangefinder Camera - Page 31
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Leica M Digital Rangefinder Camera - Leica M Type 240 (Leica M10)

Leica M Type 240 Digital Rangefinder Camera - Page 31

Index of Thorsten von Overgaard's user review pages covering Leica M9, Leica M9-P, M-E, Leica M10,
Leica M 240, Leica M-D 262, Leica M Monochrom, M 246  as well as Leica Q and Leica SL:

Leica M9 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20   M9-P
Leica M10
V 1 2 3 4 5                             M10-P
Leica M 240
P 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44         What if?
Leica M-D 262 1 2                        
Leica Monochrom 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29
Leica Q 1 Leica Q2: 1   Leica TL2: 1 2              
Leica SL 1 2 3 4 5 6 Leica CL: 1 2             Books


By: Thorsten Overgaard. June 8, 2013. Latest edited November 7, 2016.

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Learning the new Leica M Type 240


The question is if a camera can make your thinking change. Can it make life simpler and your images better? This is what I ask myself after three months of using the Leica M 240. Not that I have the answers yet, but I did notice that I take more color photos, without actually wanting to admit that the colors are better. But then why do I use the colors..?


Old Style in Paris. Leica M Type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95
Old Style in Paris. Leica M Type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95. © 2013-2016 Thorsten Overgaard.


Light metering in the Leica M Type 240

The Leica M Type 240 has three light metering methods. The Classic Center-weighted, intelligent metering called Multi-field and a Spot metering.


Classic   Live View   Live View   Live View


It is a bit confusing that the menu on the Leica M 240 has two settings for metering; Classic and Advanced. The manual doesn't offer much help. In fact, the manual seems written by someone who doesn't understand light metering and has never seen the camera (in other words, it's bad).

In MENU there is a choice in CAMERA settings between Classic and Advanced.

In SET there is a choice between Classic Center-weighted, Multi-field or Spot metering.


The Classic lightmeter measures an area of 1/3 of the sensor from three small eyes in the bottom of the bayonet.

What I recommend is to choose Classic and Center-weighted (see menu settings below to the right). This is the same metering method as the Leica M9, Leica M9-P, Leica M-E and Leica M Monochrom. This is the method where three small eyes inside the camera measure the reflection from the two grey and one white line on the shutter curtain. The size it measures is always 1/3 of the sensor.

For more details on how to use the Classic Center-weighted light meter in the Leica M Type 240, Leica M9, Leica M9-P, Leica M-E and Leica M Monochrom, have a look at the page 17 of this article, "How to trick a stupid light meter into making intelligent photos".




My recommended setting:

Choose Center-weighted

SET screen 1 of 1
White Balance Automatic
File Format DNG + JPG fine
JPEG Resolution Off
Video Resolution 1080p@25fps
Exposure Compensation Off
Exposure Metering Center-weighted
User Profile ---

Choose Classic

Menu screen 1/5 "Camera"
Self Timer 2 s
Light Metering Mode Classic
Exposure Bracketing Off
Flash Sync. Mode Start of Exp.
Auto Slow Sync. 1 / focal length

The other Advanced metering methods only work with Live View as they read from the actual live view image on the sensor:

The Spot metering measures only a small spot in the center of the frame and only works with Live View.

The Multi-field metering measures the brightness of the Live View image in 24 Fields in the image. The brightness distribution is used to predict what kind of scene it is (landscape, portrait, back light, etc.). More information is not available as to what the camera sees or how many intelligent metering settings it has stored.

The number of scenarios stored in the camera is intellectual property, as it is the case for all 'intelligent' light metering systems from different manufacturers. For us as users it means that we can use the Multi-field metering and see how it works. If it works well, it's good. If it doesn't always work and we can't figure out what makes it work and what doesn't (which is usually the case with 'intelligent' light metering systems), we can't control the metering.

As the whole idea with metering is to control the exposure, I as a photographer need to understand how the camera measures the light. Hence, for me, the Classic Center-weighted metering is the best method.


Sample photo Leica M 240 with <a href=Leica 21mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4. " width="640" height="938">
My daughter Robin Isabella, June 2013. Leica M 240 with Leica 21mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4.


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Further on light metering: Using ND filters

ND-filters are Neutral Density filters for lenses. One could say they are sunglasses for lenses. When there is too much light, you add ND filters.

The Leica M Type 240 has a base ISO of 200 ISO which is what it should be set at when shooting in daylight. In theory 200 ISO should result in the best image quality from the sensor as it is the natural, unaltered ISO.

The maximum shutter speed is 1/4000 second. This means that if you photograph in sunshine, the aperture must be f/2.8 - f/4.0 to make a correct exposure at 1/4000 second at ISO 200.

As you often shoot with Leica lenses with an aperture of f/0.95, f/1.4 or f/2.0 you will want to use them wide open. That is what they were designed for. To do that, you add a ND filter that reduces the light with 3 stops.

A f/0.95 lens is reduced to f/2.8 this way, but the aperture stays wide open at f/0.95 and you maintain the DOF (depth of field), bokeh (the look of the out-of-focus areas) and artistic look of the lens.

A f/2.0 lens is reduced to f/5.6 but maintains the DOF, bokeh and artistic look of the lens at f/2.0. For example a Leica 90mm APO-Summicron-M ASPH f/2.0 lens for portrait where you keep the possibility to have the background completely creamy and out of focus - even in sunshine.


Neutral Density filters © Thorsten Overgaard
ND-filters for Leica lenses.


You can also get variable ND-filters, for example a Heliopan that will go from 1/3 stop to 6 stops. B+W (Biermann and Weber, est. 1947, merged 1985 to be B+W filters from Schneider Optical Works in Germany) also made one, but took it back from the market as they couldn't produce it in the quality they aimed for. A 62mm variable Heliopan filter will fit the Leica f/0.95 Noctilux with a 60mm - 62mm step-up ring (and still fit inside the lens shade). As of August 2013 B+W Filters released their B+W 62mm XS-Pro Digital ND Vario MRC nano Filter as well. Same story, get the 62mm and a step-up ring though they also do a 58mm that will fit a f/1.0 Noctilux with 58mm filters straight on.

ND-filters can be hard to chase down as most camera stores don't stock them. When they do, they stock 6-stop because most ND-filters in traditional photography are used for motion-stop (meaning that you want a lens to work as a f/32 or something so as to take a lot of images over a very long time).

For Leica lenses it is a matter of how to use the lens wide open at f/0.95, f/1.4, f/2.0 or what the widest aperture is. The most extreme intake of light is the goal.

You want the ND-filter to be dark enough to make it possible to shoot wide open in sunshine. On the other hand, you do not want the ND-filter to be so dark it can't be used when a cloud goes in front of the sun or you shortly walk inside a building to get a cup of coffee (where there naturally always is a great photo waiting). So 3-stop is the one you should usually get (also referred to as 8X filter).

3-stop will enable you to shoot wide open in sunshine at f/0.95 at 200 ISO. And when you shortly go inside, you can increase the ISO to 800 (2 stops) or 1600 ISO (3 stops) so as to keep shooting as if there were no ND-filter on.


Sample photo Leica M Type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95
Istanbul coffee hangout, May 2013. Leica M Type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95 with 3-stop ND-filter. 800 ISO, 1/60 second.


Variable ND-filters are interesting when you use Leica M9 with a base ISO of 160, the Leica M240 with a base ISO of 200 and Leica M Monochrom with a base ISO of 320. Different needs because the Leica M Monochrom is twice as lightstrong as the Leica M9. In other words, when you shoot a f/0.95 at 320 ISO you are in trouble in sunshine and will often need either 1/8000 second (which you don't have), or a 4-stop ND-filter.

Neutral Density filters are - as the name says - neutral, meaning that they don't do anything but reduce the light. No effects or colors are added. You want good quality ND-filters because you don't want to lose colors, tonality or sharpness. Leica should make quality ND-filters, but they don't. They made a 3-stop 67mm ND-filter for the Leica Digilux 2, but that was a one time event (I got one and plan to sell it when I get old so I can buy a Rolls Royce).


Neutral Density filters © Thorsten Overgaard
Some of my ND-filters for different lenses. Marumi/Kenko, Hoya, Heliopan, B+W, Calumet (by B+W), etc. Leica does not make ND filters, so you will have to find other brands that does.

Stops: The many names for the same ND-filters: Light reduced to:
1-stop ND 0.3 ND 2X ND2 1-BL 50%
2-stop ND 0.6  ND 4X ND4 2-BL 25%
3-stop ND 0.9 ND 8X ND8


4-stop ND 1.2 ND 12X ND12 4-BL 6.25%
6-stop ND 1.8 ND 64X ND64 6-BL 1.56%
  ND 2.0 ND 100X ND100   1%
10-stop ND 3.0  ND 1000X ND1000 10-BL 0.1%
1-6 stop variable ND 0.3 - 1.8 ND 2X - 64X ND0.3 - 1.8 1 - 6 BL 50% - 1.56%



Sample photo Leica M Type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95
Sunshine outside Paris Bar in Berlin, May 2013. Leica M Type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95




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The wheel on Leica M240 - Exposure compensation

  Leica M Type 240 Thumbs Wheel

It has always been possible to do exposure compensation with the Leica M9, and with the thumbs wheel on the Leica M240 it has become easier. It is not a way to use a Leica M in my opinion.

Exposure compensation is something invented for dSLR cameras that 'forgot' to place the basic ways to compensate the exposure outside on the camera as they used to be in the 70's and earlier.

In fact, up until the 70's, all cameras had exposure controls (aperture and shutter speed) on the outside of the camera (and nothing but film inside). Then somebody got the idea to hide those complicated things and let the camera figure it all out for you. But to make the camera look fancy, they put some other buttons on the outside.

A few years later people got unsatisfied with that their pictures looked too dark or too bright. Then somebody got the great idea to install a way to compensate for exposure in just one button ... the wheel.

Leica M Type 240 is one of the few cameras that actually puts the user in total control of all the ways to control exposure (aperture and shutter speed), so one should use them. This is how to gain 100% control and apply 100% logics to ones photography; technically and aesthetically.


The main problem for dSLR users that get a Leica M 240
Direct control is what makes photography simple again. It so happens to also be the main problem for new users going from dSLR to Leica M, one has to get used to the simplicity of having to decide for yourself. And that you can actually do it.


sample photo Leica M type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95
Hamburg, April 2013. Leica M type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95.


If you never had to make a decision for yourself in your (photographic) life, you might think you were spared from difficulty. You were never asked to - or able to - understand how your camera worked. You might be under the impression that it is very advanced and needs a computer to figure out. When new users coming from dSLR to Leica M 240 figure out how simple it is, that's when they start talking about life quality.

They really do.


What the wheel is there for
One thing is that the thumbs wheel and built-in thumbs rest on the Leica M240 gives a more stable grip on the camera. The wheel also very quickly becomes a fast way to set ISO and operate the menu. It is so natural that I have to think how and when I actually use it. I do remember it being a little confusing that the vertical wheel on the back of the Leica M9 now was a horizontal thumbs wheel on the Leica M 240. But that is one of the things that just works by it self after a few days.

It is also an extra backup that both the thumbs wheel and the arrow button below the wheel can be used to scroll the menus. On the Leica M9, if the thumbs wheel got damaged, you couldn't use the camera. If you damage one of the two ways to use the menus on the Leica M 240, you still got the other.




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White balance with the Leica M Type 240

The Leica M9 was terrible in Auto White Balance when it was released in September 2009, but improved every time Leica Camera AG released a firmware update. In the beginning I always did Manual WB (White Balance) on the Leica M9 using a white balance card.

As it has improved over time with the firmware updates I mostly use the Leica M9 on Auto White Balance in daytime and set it to 3200 Kelvin when the daylight goes away and we turn to artificial light (which is mostly Tungsten light, the same as 3200 Kelvin).

(For more on White Balance and how light has color temperatures named Kelvin, read my article "White balancing for more beauty").

When I photograph something where I want the colors to be correct, I always set Manual White Balance. It is so much better to get the white balance and exposure correct in the camera. You don't want to adjust exposure or white balance in Lightroom.


Manuel set white balance   Wrong white balance
Manual White Balancing with a grey card or white paper is the way to get the colors right. As can be seen in the above where the image to the left is Manual White Balance and all colors correct from the beginning. On the right the white balance is slightly off ... and everything is subject to correction. Too much work, too much uncertainty.


Leica M 240 Auto White Balance for most, but Manuel White Balance when it counts
After the first three months use I do the same with the Leica M 240. Some have criticised the Leica M 240 for bad Auto White Balance. I don't find this to be the case. I find that it is surprisingly good in artificial light but can be improved, and I also took note that some of the examples critics posted were set wrong (not on Auto White Balance) and in mixed light sources where it is simply impossible to get a 'correct' white balance.

The way the camera figures out the white balance is by finding neutral grey or neutral white areas in a scenery and then measuring how this neutral area is off from clean daylight white. Based on that measurement, the camera corrects all colors in the image. But obviously, the camera can't know what is the main subject in an image, so in mixed light conditions it may pick a neutral area in the background whereas the face in the front is the one you wanted correct. That is why you have to do manual WB by placing a neutral grey card or white piece of paper in front of that face to get the colors correct.


Setting the White Balance manually on the Leica M Type 240


In many advertisements and camera manuals, the idea is promoted that you have the person hold the WB card and then shoot auto. And then adjust the WB in the computer afterwards. "Fix it in post," as they say.

There are many reasons why this is not optimum. First off, I can't get the Queen to hold the WhiBal, nor does it work to have people hold a WB card in the street doing street photography.


Sample photo Leica M240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95 © 2013 Thorsten Overgaard
Leica M 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95. Joy Villa at Four Seasons Hotel Bosphorus, Istanbul. Headpiece by Sacia O Hats, dress by Stacey Blanchet, sandals by Guess, bracelet by Hermès. © 2013 Thorsten Overgaard.


The main reason why shooting everything on Auto WB and then adjusting the WB based on the first image in the series where the WhiBal card is held by the model is a bad idea, is that you use computer power (and time) to do so. Every DNG image in Lightroom is a raw image with a "sidecar" of information. When you scroll through images in Lightroom, the program takes the DNG image and reads the "sidecar" to apply the changes you made. The image you look on is created on the fly each time; DNG and "side car", and that is a computer process that requires computer power. Now, multiply that by 200 "fixed in post" images and you see the  waste of time and energy.

"Now multiply that by infinity, take that to the depths of forever, and you still barely have a glimpse of what I'm talking about," to quote Brad Pitt in the movie "Meet Joe Black".

The right way to photograph is to do it right in the first place. Get it right in the camera, and then use Lightroom for the actual necessary small adjustments.


Jimi Hendrix
From a display darkroom at the exhibition BEAT in Denmark, March 2013: Jimi Hendrix' concert on September 3, 1970, photographed by Jørgen Angels. Jørgen Angels was in the darkroom making these prints when he heard on the radio that Jimi Hendrix had died in London. Leica M Type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95.


It is likely that the Leica M 240 with the firmware updates we undoubtedly will see over the next years will raise to be even better than the Leica M9 in Auto White Balance.

Of course the center of attention in the image is also the light you adjust for, no matter how many different light sources that may be around. If it is a face in the center, you adjust for that face and the background will turn out as it may. Just as with metering where the light metering must be done on the main subject.

Ignorance is Bliss
Black and white photography is also depending on color temperatures. However, it is not very obvious when looking at a black and white photograph how it would have looked if the colors had been corrected. It is what it is, and if it looks good, it doesn't really matter.

I usually adjust white balance in the Leica M9 and Leica M 240 as I want to be able to use both the color DNG and the black and white JPG. But I also know many photographers who never adjust for white balance when shooting black and white, and that works too.

When you photograph DNG (that is always color) and change that to black and white in Lightroom, you can both adjust WB in the image before you change it to black and white, and/or you can use the B&W rulers to adjust how each color is turned into a tone in the black and white image.

When you shoot JPG Fine in the camera and set the Film Mode to Black-and-white (in Leica M 240), the camera converts the image to black and white based on what the white balance is set to beforehand. The JPG Fine does not offer any possible correction of color temperature or color tones afterwards.

The Leica M Monochrom shoots black and white based on a fixed daylight temperature and does not offer any adjustment of white balance (see the Page 21 for more on how the Leica M Monochrom sees colors).


The need for simplicity

Perhaps inspired partly by the possible perfection of the Leica M 240 and the complications of the new menu and the possible add-ons, I felt an urge to simplify things again: When I was using mainly Leica R9 with the DMR digital back I would travel with a kit of many lenses so as to cover many things. A trolley.

One of the improvements of life quality the Leica M9 brought about for me was that I discovered that I could do everything with just one small Leica M9 camera body and a 50mm Summicron f/2.0 lens. I could walk through airports without any trouble, but also people would not consider me a professional photographer because I didn't have a large camera over the shoulder.


Leica M 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95
"The charmer". This shot was on the way out a minibus to visit the most conservative Muslim neighbourhood in Istanbul. Leica M 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95


With the Leica M 240 I found myself traveling with a camera bag with two Leica M9 cameras, a Leica M Monochrom and a Leica M 240. And on top of that, two 50mm lenses, two 35mm lenses, two 90mm lenses and a 21mm lens. Not to mention the R-to-M adaptor and one or two R lenses to go with it, the OUFRO macro adapter, microphone and EVF. Plus ND-filters to fit all the lenses.

My thinking was, "How do I get back to what is me photographically, and how do I ensure it is fun and I use the most advanced tools to get optimum results?"

My resulting action was to focus on the fun and sexy lenses that I would actually use. I used to have the 50mm as my main lens and a 21mm and a 90mm as backup. But if I had to, I would leave home for two weeks with just a 50mm.

The 21mm Super-Elmar-M ASPH is very good and in family with the 35mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4 with FLoating Elements (FLE) in terms of seeing shadow details, sharpness and all. But in my view a boring perfect lens, the type of lens that thankfully does not fill up a lot of space and only sees the light of day when you actually need a 90 degree angle.

But I also have great affinity for the 21mm angle, so I decided to change that one to the 21mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4. This is a sexy lens that is designed optimum for shooting against the light and with possibilities of composing not only two-dimensional, but three-dimensional using the DOF (Depth Of Field). In the 21mm Summilux I see a lens that I would actually have fun shooting, even when I don't need the wide angle. It also was part of my consideration that the designer, Peter Karbe, had told me I should try to shoot portraits with a 21mm Summilux because it had no distortion. When I finally made up my mind, Camera Electronics in Perth had one they shipped so it arrived few hours later, express directly to the counter of the coffee bar in Sydney where I went every morning to get my fix.

Standing On My Own Two Feet by Thorsten Overgaard.
Standing On My Own Two Feet. One of my first photos with the Leica M 240 and Leica 21mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4 at the beach in Sydney, March 2013.


The Leica 90mm APO-Summicron-M ASPH f/2.0 has amazingly more precise than real life colors and a unique 3D feel to every macro detail and overall image. Even though I don't find it a very sexy lens, it is extraordinarily perfect. You don't get any better 90mm. So that was the one I kept.

The 90mm Summarit-M f/2.5 I sent off. It has served me well and is easy and light to travel with. But in comparison with the 90mm APO-Summicron-M ASPH f/2.0 the latter is worth the extra weight, price and all.

Also my 35mm Summicron-M ASPH f/2.0 and 35mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4 FLE I got rid of. I never used them. Even though I recognize the 35mm FLE as a real workhorse I could probably use as my only lens. And the 35mm Summicron ASPH f/2.0 I only bought to show how great it is. I wanted to shoot a lot with it, but in reality I never got around to do it.


The Lightroom Survival Kit


I don't have issues with weight of the lenses. Almost all the lenses I use are the most heavy in their focal length. But for me they are still within reasonable weight that I can carry them all day without any discomfort.

I prefer to travel simple, and preferable with as little weight as possible. I can still hand-carry my computer and camera bag in airports. But when out and about I don't want to feel the weight of extra equipment. One way of making sure that does not happen is to cut away everything you don't need. If you decide on a 50mm for the day, you put that 50mm on the camera and there is no reason to bring other lenses.

I use either no bag or a small bag for walking about. If I have a small bag it is for filters, batteries, cigarettes, phone, a scarf and a Marc Jacobs cashmere jumper. Some times I will drop a reflector, lightmeter and one extra lens in my own or somebody elses bag if I will be needing that. But I actually will consider hard if I really will be needing it.


Thorsten Overgaard's Goyard photo bag
My Goyard "Sac Grand Bleu" bag that is light and is a small bag, which means that you basically don't feel it (different size bags will feel differently even though the weight of the content is the same). When it has to, it fits reflector, lightmeter, filters, batteries, cigarettes, telephone, notebook, scarf, jumper/jacket and even an extra lens or two. The Goyard is very similar to Louis Vuitton in origin of the brand, materials and handmade quality, only Goyard bags and suitcases are sold in stores only in Paris, London, Tokyo, Hong Kong, New York and San Francisco.


Buy more to solve problems

It is an interesting observation that what makes the Leica M talked about as "life quality" is that it is so right. It feels right, it is simple, it is beautiful and logical. Industrial design at its best.

Shooting digital photography is not necessarily simple. It requires computers, software and an understanding for how those things work. And if one wants to share ones photo, one might have to have a printer with the right settings and the right paper. Or make a website, with what that implies of complications.

It is very normal that when something becomes a complicated problem, the way to solve it is to buy more. Especially if you have the buying power to do so. To get the editing done right you buy more screens. To ensure the files are properly handled you make a complicated setup of hard drives and clouds so every time you download images from your SD-card, they are backed up on several devices and in the cloud so you never lose anything. And just to be sure you do it correct, you have bought so many SD-cards that you don't have to delete any of them till 14 days later.

Every time you get something it involves researching which to get, learning how to use it and taking care of it.

Buying more stuff does not make life simpler, hence it seldom solves problems. The problem you are trying to handle is that you already have some stuff that doesn't work.


Sample Photo Leica M 240 with <a href=
Inside an automobile, Napier, April 2013. Leica M 240 with Leica 21mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4.


When I had two batteries for one Leica M9 I always knew which battery was full, and I always had enough power for a whole days shooting. When I got three batteries I couldn't find out which was what and wrongly thought I had so much battery power I didn't had to charge. I now have eight batteries for three M9/MM bodies, and I never had that many batteries to travel with and yet so little battery power (despite the fact that I have four chargers). I some times have to resist the urge to buy more batteries.

A year ago I lost all my pictures from San Francisco: I had so many copies of them on four different backups so when I cleaned up, I accidentally deleted them all. Now, my rule is that I have only one original and only one backup. Better take the chance that those two copies break down than all the time it takes to maintain and then delete four copies!

Buying more stuff and hiring more people to get things done is so normal that it takes an extra and almost un-human effort to cut things away. Simplicity might be a natural state of things, but in today's society the universal solvent has become to buy stuff. Only in crisis do we have to cut away and that is not pleasant. Real luxury is to be able to cut things down and make life simple when you can actually afford much more.


French actor Ylane Duparc in Paris, May 2013. Leica M 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95
French actor Ylane Duparc in Paris, May 2013. Leica M 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95


Be a pirate

Be reckless and travel with just one camera and one lens. Don't protect the camera inside a soft camera bag but wear it in the open and use it to take photos. Then, if you are so wreck less that you drop the camera or your recklessness caused the camera to get soaked in the rain while chasing interesting reflections of light ... then solve it by buying another one or get the camera repaired. Don't start buying backup cameras that you have to protect together with the other well-protected camera. Why take on the responsibility of two expensive cameras if the first one is not ever in danger? Not to mention that in three years you will have to invest in two new ones.

We laugh, but we know it is true. That's how it works, but you have to fight it. Be smart and make things simpler and more fun. That's what you felt when you first held the Leica and knew you had to have it. Simplicity.

Having said this, it is actually good to have two of each thing in the same way it is good to have a fire exit. But be realistic. What would happen if one camera died. Could you get a backup or shoot with another camera for a while? "What would be easier?" is what we should ask our self, "To have two of the same and only use one, or to have just one and solve the problem if it arises?"

In other cases, your life is simpler if you know there is a backup, just in case ... even though you also know you will likely never use it.

The point is, be wreck less, be a pirate. Use your equipment.


The review display on the Leica M Type 240

The display on the Leica M 240 is larger than the one on the Leica M9, Leica M9-P, Leica M-E and Leica M Monochrom.

I never had any complaints about the display quality or size of the Leica M9 as I use it in black & white to see the exposure, and to set the menus. The display on the Leica M9 worked fine for that purpose.

The new display on the Leica M Type 240 however may live up to some peoples request for a larger display with finer definition and better colors.


Leica M Type 240 display with 10X
The Leica M Type 240 display is larger, has more definition and better colors than the Leica M9. Here it is shown with the 10X focusing.


The display of the Leica M 240 tends to show the images too sharp and in too high contrast compared to what the result will be when the image has been imported in Lightroom.

It is not really a problem in that a camera display should always just be used as a guideline as to how the contrast and focus may look, compared to how it usually looks like on that same display. But it is not a final picture. You adjust exposure based on the information the camera display seems to give you. But the sharpness, actual tonality, colors, cropping and such you will see and evaluate on the large screen of a computer.

The problem with the image in the display is that you seldom view the display under the working conditions you should look at a display screen. There is too much or too little light and the angle is not necessarily correct. Further, the preview you see on the display is a JPG generated by the camera for you to see. When you import the image to Lightroom, it is a careful calibrated camera profile that 'translates' the image data to the large screen. Thus colors, contrast and sharpness will be different.


Leica M 240 with <a href=Leica 21mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4. " width="640" height="358">
Napier nightlife, New Zealand, April 2013. Leica M 240 with Leica 21mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4.


It is also when you view the image on a large screen that you see the true potential of an image. Details that you never saw on the camera display now make the photo great ... or ruin the composition. It is a bit like seeing thumbnails on the internet. When you click to see the larger picture it looks different. All this means is that you should photograph, and then consult the display to check the main exposure and for adjusting the menu. The actual viewing of the photos ... do that when you get home to the big screen.

The larger display could be seen as a departure from the nice industrial design of the Leica M9. But then again, the display on the leica M9 could be seen as a departure from the nice industrial design of the Leica M film cameras. We just got used to having a display on the back of the camera.


Leica M 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95
Overgaard Workshop in Berlin, May 2013. Leica M 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95



Continues on page 32 -->

"Seeing with the Leica M 240"












– Thorsten Overgaard

    Index of Thorsten von Overgaard's user review pages covering Leica M9, Leica M9-P, M-E, Leica M10,
Leica M 240, Leica M-D 262, Leica M Monochrom, M 246  as well as Leica Q and Leica SL:

Leica M9 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20   M9-P
Leica M10
V 1 2 3 4 5                             M10-P
Leica M 240
P 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44         What if?
Leica M-D 262 1 2                        
Leica Monochrom 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29
Leica Q 1 Leica Q2: 1   Leica TL2: 1 2              
Leica SL 1 2 3 4 5 6 Leica CL: 1 2             Books
Thorsten Overgaard's Leica Article Index
Leica M cameras:   Small Leica cameras:
Leica M10   Leica Q full-frame mirrorless
Leica M10-P   Leica CL
Leica M Type 240 and M-P Typ240   Leica TL2
Leica M-D Typ 262 and Leica M60   Leica Digilux 2 vintage digital rangefinder
Leica M Monochrom Typ246 digital rangefinder   Leica Digilux 1
Leica M Monochrom MM digital rangefinder   Leica Sofort instant camera
Leica M9 and Leica M-E digital rangefinder   Leica Minilux 35mm film camera
Leica M9-Professional digital rangefinder   Leica CM 35mm film camera
Leica M4 35mm film rangefinder    
Leica M lenses:   Leica SLR cameras:
Leica 21mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4   Leica SL 2015 Type 601 mirrorless fullframe
Leica 21mm Leica Super-Elmar-M ASPH f/3.4   Leica R8/R9/DMR film & digital 35mm dSLR cameras
Leica 21mm Super-Angulon-M f/3.4   Leica R10 [cancelled]
Leica 28mm Summilux-M ASPH f/1.4   Leica R4 35mm film SLR
Leica 35mm Summilux-M ASPH FLE f/1.4 and f/1.4 AA   Leica R3 electronic 35mm film SLR
Leica 35mm Summicron-M ASPH f/2.0   Leicaflex SL/SL mot 35mm film SLR
Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95    
Leica 50mm Noctilux-M f/1.0 and f/1.2   Leica SL and TL lenses:
Leica 50mm Summilux-M ASPH f//1.4    
Leica 50mm APO-Summicron-M ASPH f/2.0    
Leitz 50mm Summicron-M f/2.0 "rigid" Series II   Leica R lenses:
Leica 75mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/1.25   Leica 19mm Elmarit-R f/2.8
Leica 75mm Summilux-M f/1.4   Leica 35mm Elmarit-R f/2.8
Leica 75mm APO-Summicron-M ASPH f/2.0   Leica 50mm Summicron-R f/2.0
Leica 90mm APO-Summicron-M ASPH f/2.0   Leica 60mm Macro-Elmarit f/2.8
Leica 90mm Summarit-M f/2.5   Leica 80mm Summilux-F f/1.4
Leica 90mm Elmarit f/2.8   Leica 90mm Summicron-R f/2.0
Leitz 90mm Thambar f/2.2   Leica 180mm R lenses
    Leica 400mm Telyt-R f/6.8
Leica Cine Lenses:   Leica 35-70mm Vario-Elmarit-R f/2.8
Leica Cine lenses from CW Sonderoptic   Leica 35-70mm Vario-Elmarit-R f/4.0
History and overview:   Leica S:
Leica History   Leica S1 digital scan camera
Leica Definitions   Leica S2 digital medium format
Leica Lens Compendium   Leica S digital medium format
Leica Camera Compendium    
The Solms factory and Leica Wetzlar Campus   "Magic of Light" Television Channel
    Thorsten von Overgaard YouTube Channel
Photography Knowledge   Thorsten Overgaard books and education:
Calibrating computer screen for photographers   Thorsten Overgaard Masterclasses & Workshops
Which Computer for Photographers?   Lightroom Survival Kit (Classic)
What is Copyright? Advice for Photogarphers   Lightroom Presets
Synchronizing Large Photo Archive with iPhone   Capture One Survival Kit
Quality of Light   "Finding the Magic of Light" eBook (English)
Lightmeters   "Die Magie des Lichts Finden" eBook (German)
Color meters for accurate colors (White Balance)   "The Moment of Impact in Photography" eBook
White Balance & WhiBal   "Freedom of Photographic Expression" eBook
Film in Digital Age   "Composition in Photography" eBook
Dodge and Burn   "A Little Book on Photography" eBook
All You Need is Love   "After the Tsunami" Free eBook
How to shoot Rock'n'Roll   The Overgaard New Inspiration Extension Course I
X-Rite   The Overgaard Photography Extension Course
The Origin of Photography    
Hasselblad/Imacon Flextight 35mm and 6x6 scanner   Leica M9 Masterclass (video course)
Leica OSX folder icons   Leica M10 Masterclass (video course)
    Leica M240 Masterclass (video course)
    Leica Q Masterclass (video course)
Bespoke Camera Bags by Thorsten Overgaard:   Leica TL2 Quick Start (video course)
"The Von" travel camera bag   Street Photography Masterclass (video course)
"Messenger" walkabout bag    
"24hr Bag" travel bag   Thorsten von Overgaard oin Amazon:
"The Von Backup" camera backpack   "Finding the Magic of Light"
Leica Photographers:    
Jan Grarup   Riccis Valladares
Henri Cartier-Bresson   Christopher Tribble
Birgit Krippner   Martin Munkácsi
John Botte   Jose Galhoz
Douglas Herr   Milan Swolf
Vivian Maier  
Morten Albek    
Byron Prukston   Richard Avedon
The Story Behind That Picture:   Thorsten Overgaard on Instagram
More than 200 articles by Thorsten Overgaard   Join the Thorsten Overgaard Mailing List
Thorsten Overgaard Workshop Schedule   Thorsten Overgaard on Twitter
    Thorsten Overgaard on Facebook
Leica Forums and Blogs:    
Leica M10 / M240 / M246 User Forum on Facebook   Heinz Richter's Leica Barnack Berek Blog
Jono Slack   Leica Camera AG
Steve Huff Photos (reviews)   Leica Fotopark
Erwin Puts (reviews)   The Leica Pool on Flickr (blog)   Eric Kim (blog)
Luminous Landscape (reviews)   Adam Marelli (blog)
Sean Reid Review (reviews)   The Leica User Forum
Ken Rockwell (reviews)   Shoot Tokyo (blog)
John Thawley (blog)   I-Shot-It photo competition
The Von Overgaard Gallery Store:    
Hardware for Photography   Von Overgaard Ventilated lens shades:
Bespoke Camera Bags and Luxury Travel Bags   Ventilated Shade for Current 35mm Summilux FLE
Software for Photography   Ventilated Shade E46 for old Leica 35mm/1.4 lens
Signed Prints   Ventilated Shade for Leica 50mm Summilux-M ASPH
Mega Size Signed Prints   Ventilated Shade E43 for older 50mm Summilux
Mega Size Signed Limited Prints   Ventilated Shade for 35mm Summicron-M ASPH
Medium Size Signed Limited Prints   Ventilated Shade for older 35mm/f2 lenses
Small Size Signed Limited Prints   Ventilated Shade E39 for 50mm Summicron lenses
Commisioning Thorsten Overgaard Worldwide   Ventilated Shade for Leica 28mm Summilux
Thorsten Overgaard Archive Licencing   Ventilated Shade for current 28mm Elmarit-M
Video Masterclasses   Ventilated Shade for older 28mm Elmarti-M
Photography Books by Thorsten Overgaard   Ventilated Shade E49 for 75mm Summicron
Home School Photography Extension Courses   ventilated Shade E55 for 90mm Summicron
Overgaard Workshops & Masterclasses   Ventilated Shade for 28mm Summaron
Artists Nights   Ventilated Shade for 24mm Elmarit
Gallery Store Specials   Ventilated Shade E60 for 50mm Noctilux and 75/1.4



Above: At the Yeni Valide Mosque, Istanbul, Turkey, May 2013.
Leica M Type 240 with Leica 50mm Noctilux-M ASPH f/0.95.
© 2013-2016 Thorsten Overgaard.


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Thorsten von Overgaard.
Photo by Herbert Piel.


The photos on this page have been edited in Adobe Lightroom 3.6 and few or none have been adjusted further in Photoshop. To read more about my workflow, visit the page of my "Lightroom Survival Kit".



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Thorsten Overgaard
Thorsten von Overgaard is a Danish writer and photographer, specializing in portrait photography and documentary photography, known for writings about photography and as an educator. Some photos are available as signed editions via galleries or online. For specific photography needs, contact Thorsten Overgaard via e-mail.

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