The only one

Mean looking man with a helmet holding a motorcycle
Got a question? | Genoa | 2022

Yesterday afternoon I was roaming the streets of Genoa with camera in hand, while accompanying The Significant Other on some downtown shopping. I snapped quite a few images over a couple hours time. Only a few came out decent. And then there is the only one that I consider a real keeper. Not a good success rate. But I’m totally happy if I get one good photograph out of a photo walk. The only one.

Image taken with the Leica SL2-S and the Vario-Elmarit-SL 1:2.8/24-70 ASPH. RAW conversion into monochrome and some post processing (mainly cropping) done in Lightroom Classic.

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Have a great Saturday!

Marcus

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Night Vision Lens

Band playing in a pebble stone alley
1/125 sec | f/2 | ISO 6400 | 50mm

I still owe you the images from the second night of “Viggiona by Night”. Different bands, different street food. I wanted to shoot with a different lens, and put my night vision lens, the TTArtisan 50mm .95 prime “Nifty Fifty” to a real test. I attached the M-Mount lens via adapter to the L-Mount Leica SL2-S. I was really curious how the manual focus 0.95 China built lens would perform vs the Leica Vario Elmarit zoom I used the previous night in the same conditions. See the results below…

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Pasta King

Cook in front of a steaming pot of pasta
Pasta King | Viggiona | 2022

Just a snapshot from last night when I shot with my Leica SL2-S and the TTArtisan 50mm 0.95 prime lens. A photograph that works. The guy was cooking pasta at a street kitchen, and it was nearly midnight. He was a master (we tasted his delicious Bolognese when it was ready), a true Pasta King.

The Exif Data for this image read 1/1250 sec @ f/2 and ISO 3200. The file was so clean of noise that I introduced some noise in post production, when converting the RAW to monochrome. It was really pretty dark in the alley, but the TTArtisan 0.95 made it all come to live. Manual focusing with the marvellous electronic viewfinder of the Leica was a breeze.

Wish you all a great Sunday!

Marcus

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Viggiona by Night

Motion blurred people dancing in front of a band at night
0.3 sec | f/2.8 | ISO 200 | 24 mm

This weekend, The Significant Other and I headed to Italy’s Lago Maggiore to visit friends who are spending their summer vacation in Viggiona, a little village in the hills above the lake. This weekend, the normal pretty sleepy Viggiona is hosting its annual “Viggiona by Night” festival, where bands are playing, all different kinds of street food and drinks are offered and the little alleys are full of people having a great time. For me a great opportunity to once more enjoy the low light capabilities of the Leica SL2-S.

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The Leica is back

Man refreshing in the heat at a fountain
1/1000 sec | f/4 | ISO 100 | 50mm

Finally an image in the familiar 3×2 full frame aspect ratio. The Leica is back. Fixed and cleaned. And I got a free new battery with it (100$ retail value). I’m not sure whether to laugh or cry. Probably both. Glad to have the camera back. Because the SL2-S can do things for me that my other cameras can’t do. Like shooting with manual M-Mount lenses with a 0.95 aperture. On the other hand I’m still disappointed by their service and handling of the matter, after my brand new Leica failed me 3 days into our Israel trip with a mechanical shutter defect. I picked it up yesterday and took it for a spin around the Old Town, shooting with the beautiful TTArtisan 50mm .95 lens.

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My Leica failed me

Leica SL2-S broken
Broken | Jerusalem | 2022

Sometimes the worst case happens. You are on vacation, bringing your best gear to capture all the magic of the places you visit. And then disaster strikes. My Leica failed me. My brand new SL2-S decided to stop working while we visited Jesus’ baptism site on the River Jordan this morning. “System Error” was the bright orange message on the display. Switching on and off, removing and re-inserting battery, changing SD cards and lenses. All the tips I googled in the Leica forum, nothing helped.

I send a message to the Leica store where I purchased the camera, pointing out that I was three days into a once in a lifetime vacation and I needed help to reset the camera (the SL2-S seemingly has no hard reset) or with whatever trick they have up there sleeves to somehow overcome the failure.

Well…I even got a return message two hours later. They wrote that they talked to Leica Service and they indicated it most likely is a shutter failure and they need to resend the camera to the factory for repairs.

Leica, in case you read this: My Nikons never ever failed me like this. My Olympus workhorses never ever failed me like this, whatever I did to them. This Leica SL2-S is a brand new camera that costs triple what I payed for these other cameras. And it simply stopped working, without warning, being handled and operated with care. Shutter Failure. Are you kidding me? And I’m simply being told I will have to send in the camera for repairs. No apologies, no nothing. A suggestion that I might want to look for a retailer in Jerusalem or Tel Aviv that maybe can take a look. Not even sending me addresses or phone numbers. Not even a simple sorry for having a new high end 5000 Euro camera fail on vacation.

Leica, your customer experience sucks! I would have at least expected some kind of “sorry”. Or a proactive suggestion how I could get it looked at here in Israel. And even when I get this thing repaired within warranty…how can I ever confidently take this camera on vacation again or use it on a wedding gig? So disappointed…so disappointed….

Now the old M240 and my iPhone 12 will have to cover the rest of the vacation. At least I brought a 10 year old backup and some vintage primes. And the iPhone camera is also quite capable. I’m looking forward to the challenge to get the best of the failed SL2-S luxury camera. To still capture all the memories of our trip to beautiful Israel.

Thanks for nothing, Leica!

Marcus

A Fair evening

Nächtliches Karussell am Nürnberger Frühlingsfest
1/12 sec | f/8 | ISO 100 | 44mm

The other night, The Significant Other and I headed to the Nuremberg Fairgrounds to visit the “Frühlingsfest”, the Spring Fun Fair. After a two year, Covid induced hiatus, Franconias largest Fun Fair was finally on again. And a good opportunity for me to try once more the low light capabilities of my new Leica SL2-S. And I must say, I had a fair evening …

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Impromptu Indoor Portrait Session

Homeshooting Portrait of a young lady
1/125 sec | f/2.8 | ISO 1600 | 59mm

Having had the opportunity to test a Leica SL2-S full frame mirrorless system over the weekend, I have asked Big Girl to pose for an impromptu indoor portrait session. I wanted to do another test of the high ISO capability of the camera and find out how usable the files are in terms of noise when shooting at higher ISO. And, I have to say, the Leica performed admirably. But see for yourself…

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Nocturnal Street Photography

Walking the dog next to a museum
1/160 sec | f/2.8 | ISO 12500 | 70mm

Over the weekend I had the opportunity to test an amazing camera, the Leica SL2-S, bundled with the Leica Vario-Elmarit 1:2.8/24-70mm Asph. I was particularly interested in the low light capability of the 24mp full frame mirrorless camera. So I headed into town to do some nocturnal street photography…

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