Discussion Forum Leica M System M9 Leica M9P viewfinder frame lines
  • #2233
    hmarkweidman

    I have a question for Leica M users. Many years ago I shot Leica M film cameras but eventually sold them off, including four beautiful lenses. I recently came back into the Leica fold, with a new M9P and four lenses. The angle of coverage of three of the lenses does not line up accurately with the frame lines in the viewfinder. All three lenses (28, 50, 90) cover a significantly larger area than that indicated in the viewfinder. I sent the camera and all four lenses into Leica USA and they purportedly fixed this issue. The gear came back and the same exact problem exists. Go to the URL below to see photos that clearly illustrates this problem. Can any of you tell me if this is “normal”, or, should the viewfinder framing lines, line up precisely with what the lenses actually “see”.

    http://weidmanphoto.com/leica_m9p_viewfinder_test/

    Thanks for your input on this.

    Mark Weidman

  • #2236
    Jack MacD

    As I understand it, the M9 finder lines are accurate if shooting within 3 feet. the M8.2 had accuracy set to six feet. I wish the 9 had kept the frame lines to the 6ft. distance. All an issue with rangefinders.

    This is discussed in depth on this l-cmaera forum:

    http://www.l-camera-forum.com/leica-forum/leica-m9-forum/129686-m9-viewfinder-lens-not-accurate.html

  • #2238
    hmarkweidman

    Thanks for the link Jack, I just read through all the old posts about this topic. I assumed it was too obscure of a problem for previous discussion, which clearly was a mistake. At best I now at least feel a little better learning my M9P is not malfunctioning.

    Mark

  • #2239
    David Farkas

    hmarkweidman;2139 wrote: Thanks for the link Jack, I just read through all the old posts about this topic. I assumed it was too obscure of a problem for previous discussion, which clearly was a mistake. At best I now at least feel a little better learning my M9P is not malfunctioning.

    Mark

    Mark,

    Just to add to what Jack already wrote (and the long thread on L-Camera-Forum), The M9 and M9-P frame lines are calibrated at 1m. The M8.2 was 2m and the M8 was 0.7m. Most previous film M cameras were also calibrated to 1m.

    The reason for 1m frame lines is so that close subjects (most M lenses focus down to 1m and some are 0.7m) won't be cropped relative to the frame lines. Long distance framing was more accurate with the 2m frame lines of the M8.2. But, when shooting at closest focusing distance the frame lines showed more than what was captured. This wasn't desirable as you ended up cropping out picture details. So, the 2m frame lines were changed back to 1m.

    With an optical rangefinder system, it is impossible to have accurate framing at minimum distance and at infinity. Leica's rationale is that it is better to include a little more information than expected rather than a little less, so the 1m seems to be a good compromise.

    Hope this helps to summarize.

  • #2241
    Ornello

    hmarkweidman;2132 wrote: I have a question for Leica M users. Many years ago I shot Leica M film cameras but eventually sold them off, including four beautiful lenses. I recently came back into the Leica fold, with a new M9P and four lenses. The angle of coverage of three of the lenses does not line up accurately with the frame lines in the viewfinder. All three lenses (28, 50, 90) cover a significantly larger area than that indicated in the viewfinder. I sent the camera and all four lenses into Leica USA and they purportedly fixed this issue. The gear came back and the same exact problem exists. Go to the URL below to see photos that clearly illustrates this problem. Can any of you tell me if this is “normal”, or, should the viewfinder framing lines, line up precisely with what the lenses actually “see”.

    http://weidmanphoto.com/leica_m9p_viewfinder_test/

    Thanks for your input on this.

    Mark Weidman

    This is standard practice with rangefinders and should be cause for objection. So long as you get at least what you see, why worry? SLRs for years have displayed about 96% of what is recorded on the film, because slide mounts and printing cropped in a little around the edges. The Nikon ‘100%' viewfinder was ludicrous: what good is is to see something you can't print?!!!

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