The Leica M8 is the the first Professional Leica Digital Rangefinder Camera. It features high picture quality even with high ISO settings, with logical, Leica-typical intuitive functions, all in a metal housing made of highly stabile magnesium alloy, available in black or silver chrome.
The minimal noise CCD was optimized for the special needs of the M-lens system & offers a high resolution of 10.3 mio.pixels. The special adaptation of the sensor with micro lens offset helps to avoid disturbing vignetting in the corners of the pictures. A very thin glass covering obstructs unwanted light by diagonal light.
Full Light Efficiency:
It is now possible to take much more detailed pictures with high sensitivity up to 2500 ISO, as never before with analogue film.
Concentrated & Intuitive:
The M8 features only the most relevant photographical digital possibilities. The functions such as time automatic & the manual focus in combination with the preserved rangefinder principal were maintained. A simple & intuitive menu allows for setting on the 2.5" screen in only a few steps.
The Leica M8 has a bright light frame for the 24 & 35 mm, 28 & 90 mm & 50 & 75 mm lenses. Through the focal length extension factor of 1.33x, the effective focal length is from 32 to 120 mm. This makes the use of the APO-TELYT-M 135mm/f3.5 not recommendable. The viewfinder magnification corresponds to 0.68.
The M8 deliberately is without the resolution reducing Moire-Filter in front of the sensor in order to achieve the full performance of the lens. The high resolution of the M-system lenses produced since 1954 can be used with the M8.
The electronically steered & very silent metal blades of the focal-plane shutter can realize exposure times of up to 1/8000 sec. In well-lit surroundings, a photographer's creativity is not hindered with the use of selective sharpness with an open aperture. It is possible to take pictures during daylight hours with selective sharpness with the short flash synchronization time of 1/250 second.
Silent & Discreet:
In order to achieve a silent advance of the shutter, a rubberized silencing friction wheel was placed in the first gear step. The power is transmitted over a cam the entire length of the tension arm. This makes for a very silent noise from the motorized tension of the shutter.
Digital & Longevity:
The M8 has been designed to deliver professional results over many years. The closed all metal housing is made of highly stabile magnesium alloy. The top plate & bottom plate of the camera is milled from massive blocks of brass & then silver or black chromium-plated. For the future, raw data formats will implement the DNG technology due to the fact that it guarantees long archive security.
Raw data converter DVD Capture One, is included, as well as the Leica Digital Capture remote control CD software.
|Camera Type||Compact digital viewfinder/rangefinder system
Professional usage with Leica M lenses.
Micro-processor controlled metal-blade slotted shutter.
|CCD sensor||Low-noise CCD sensor specially tailored to the requirements of the M lens system.|
|Sensor Dimensions||18 mm x 27 mm.|
|Extension factor||1.33 x, Aspect ratio 3:2.|
|Anti-Alias Filter||No Anti-Alias filter (known in in Europe as a Moiré Filter), full utilization of lens performance.
Anti-Alias detection and elimination in digital signal processing.
|Sensor sensitivity range||From ISO 160/23° to ISO 2500/35°|
|Viewfinder principle||Large light bright line frame viewfinder/rangefinder with automatic parallax compensation.
Viewfinder lens optimal visibility of all bright line frames whatever the lighting situation.
|Eyepiece||Coordinated to -0.5 dpt.
Correction lenses available from 3 to +3 dpt.
|Image field limiter||By activating two bright lines each: for 24 and 35 mm/28 and 90 mm/50 and 75 mm.
Automatic activation when lensis screwed in.
|Image field selector||Each pair of the bright lines can be activated manually, thus simulating each focal length.|
|Parallax compensation||The horizontal and vertical difference between the viewfinder and the lens is automatically compensated according to the focusing distance used
i.e. the viewfinder bright-line frame automatically aligns with the subject detail recorded by the lens.
|Magnification||0.68 x (with all lenses).|
|Large basis range finder||Combination of split and superimposed image range finder shown as a bright field in the centre of theviewfinder image.
Effective measurement basis 47.1 mm (mechanical measurement basis 69.25 mm x viewfinder enlargement 0.68 x).
|Lens connection||Leica M bayonet with additional optical scanning device for the identification of all 6 bit-coded lenses|
|Lens system||Current 6 bit-coded Leica M lenses with a focal length of 16-90 mm.
Almost all Leica M lenses with a focal length of 21-90 mm manufactured from 1954 can also be used without 6 bit-coding.
6 bit-retrofitting possible for virtually all lenses.
|6 bit-functions||Lens-dependent reduction of system-specific vignetting.
Identification of picture file with lens information to simplify digital archiving.
Coordination of flash reflector with motor zoom flash units.
Auto slow sync function with automatic mode.
|Automatic mode (Auto)||Automatic determination of correct shutter speed with manual aperture preselection with relevant viewfinder display.|
|Manual exposure||Independent selection of shutter speed and aperture
Camera exposure check visible via LED light balance shown in the viewfinder.
|Picture-taking modes||S: Single frame picture-taking, for one shutter release whenever shutter is pressed
C: Continuous shooting with 2 pictures per second and 10 picture in series.
Automatic release mode: Selectable with either 2 s and 12 s
Visualization of delay time via one of the LEDs visible from front of camera in viewfinder window.
|Front of housing||Lens release; image field selector|
|Top of housing||Main switch and shutter release; shutter speed setting dial, status LCD display: indication of number of frames remaining and residual battery capacity.|
|Rear of housing||2.5" color monitor, setting ring for navigation in menu and magnifier function in 4 levels ;
4 x direction buttons for navigation in menu and in image details, Menu button, Play button, Delete button, Protect button, Info button
|Bottom of housing||Locking base plate protects the battery and SD memory card from dust and moisture.|
|LC display||2.5" bright LC display|
|Resolution||Approx. 230,000 pixels for image reproduction and menu selection.|
|Brightness||Brightness control in 5 levels.|
|Control options after picture-taking||General quality evaluation of exposure control via RGB tone value
Histogram with identification of light image details without detailing (can also be used with zoom-in) Control of sharpness of focus
Display of quality parameters selected and
Display of lens focal length used (with current 6 bit-coded lenses). Image view sizes : 9 thumbnails, 4 thumbnails, single frame display as well as magnification in four levels up to 1 pixel to 1 pixel view.
|Set button||Pressing the Set button allows the following parameters relevant to the picture to be changed and selected:
Manual exposure compensation
|Main menu||Pressing the Menu button allows settings such as color monitor contrast or selection of color space to be made in the Main menu.|
|Menu languages||German, English, French, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, Chinese.|
3916 x 2634 pixels (10.31 MP)
3936 x 2630 pixels (10.35 MP)
2952 x1972 pixels (5.8 MP)
1968 x 1315 Pixel (2.6 MP)
1312 x 876 Pixel (1.15 MP).
|Data formats||DNG: (Digital Negative Format not specific to any camera manufacturer), 2 different highly compressed JPEG levels.
DNG file information: 16 bit-color resolution, 10.2 Mbyte file size per picture
|Storage medium||SD cards up to 4 GB
The following Internet page includes a list of SD memory cards fully compatible with the LEICA M8 :
|White balance||Automatic, 6 presettings, manual white balance, color temperature input from 2,000 K to 13,100 K.|
|Color spaces||Adobe RGB, sRGB, ECI RGB.|
|Viewfinder display||LED symbol for flash status, four-digit seven-segment LED display with dots above and below (display brightness always adjusted to ambient brightness) for:
Display of automatically determined exposure time with automatic mode
Indication of use of metered value storage
Warning of exposure compensation
Warning that metering range is overshot or undershot with automatic mode
|More Viewfinder display||Display for counting down exposure times longer than 2 s
Warning about capacity when SD card is full
LED light balance with two triangular LEDs and one center circular LED as an aid when setting exposure manually.
|Display Information||LED light balance with two triangular LEDs and one center circular LED for adjusting exposure.
Underexposure by at least one aperture stop.
Underexposure by 1/2 aperture stop.
Overexposure by 1/2 aperture stop.
Overexposure by at least one aperture stop.
Triangular LEDs give the direction of rotation of the aperture setting ring and for the shutter speed setting dial to adjust the exposure.
|TTL metering||TTL metering heavily center-weighted with preset working aperture.|
|Measurement principle||Measured by light reflected by a white blade in the middle of the metal-blade slotted shutter.|
|Metering range||EV 0 to EV 20 at room temperature 20° C, aperture 1.0 and ISO 160/23°.|
|Measurement cell||Silicon photo diode with collection lens, positioned at center lower edge, on bottom of camera.|
|Principle of M-TTL Flash||An extremely short metering preflash activated immediately before the picture istaken is used to measure the output light required for the exposure.|
|Connection||M-TTL Guide Number Control with metering preflash via accessory shoe SCA 3502 (from version M4) or with flash LEICA SF24 D|
|Flash sync time||Fast 1/250 s provides for creative open aperture photography even with bright ambient light.
Manual flash sync times from B (bulb) to 1/250 s
|Automatic mode||Auto slow sync: automated extension of longest flash exposure time to rule of thumb 1/focal length in seconds. (only with 6 bit-coded lenses).
Selection of long flash sync times e.g. up to 1/8 s for balanced flash with available light shots with automatic mode.
|Synchronization||Can be switched to either first or second shutter curtain (with appropriate flash unit, e.g. LEICA SF24D or when using SCA-3502 adapter).|
|Flash exposure compensation||±3 1/3 EV in 1/3 EV stages adjustable at SCA-3501/3502 adapter.
With LEICA SF 24D ±3 EV in 1/3 EV stages, or 0 to -3 EV in 1 EV stages adjustable with computer control.
|Shutter||Micro-processor controlled metal-blade slotted shutter with vertical movement.|
|Shutter speeds||In automatic mode (A) steplessly from 32 s to 1/8000 s.
Using manual setting 4 sto 1/8000 s in half steps.
B for long exposures of any duration.
|Activation of shutter||Shutter action optimized for minimum noise.
Driven by an electric motor with friction gear in first speed-increasing gear stage and a cam for homogeneous torque during entire activation process.
|Release||Three-stage activation depending on pressure level:
1. Switch-on of camera electronics and activation of metering
2. Metered value storage (with automatic mode)
3. Shutter release (standard thread for cable release included).
|Power supply||Lithium-ion rechargeable battery with 3.7 V and 1900 mAh.|
|Computer interface||5-pin standardized mini USB port for fast USB 2.0 data transfer to computer on left side of housing.
With LEICA DIGITAL CAPTURE camera can be software-controlled via USB 2.0 connection.
|Material||Closed solid metal housing made of a highly stable magnesium alloy for long-lasting professional usage.
Black synthetic leather covering.
|Cover plate and base cover||Cover plate and base cover milled from solid brass and silver or black chrome-plated.|
|Tripod bushing||DIN4503 A1/4 (1/4") at center of base cover.|
|Weight without battery||Approx. 545 g / 19.22 oz.|
|Camera Dimensions||WxHxD: approx. 139 x 80 x 37 mm / 5.47" x 3.15" x 1.45"|