• #4621

    This a cross-post from GetDPI.

    Over there, this subject came up and I had been thinking about opening a new thread about it on this board, because there's a lot of S users and S-knowledge here:

    I've been thinking about the usage of CS lenses on the – probably – CMOS sensor in the upcoming S. For CMOS live view the mirror would have to be up and the FP shutter would already have to be open, so with un electronic first curtain shutter, the leaf (CS) shutter would only have to close to end exposure. After which the FP shutter would have to open again for live view, but then the image is already in the can, so to speak. So with CS lenses, this new CMOS S may be more quiet and have even less vibration.

    So what do you think, will CS lenses be even more versatile on a CMOS S using live view, or am I missing something here?

  • #4622

    Giving the CMOS S with CS a bit more thought, I guess in live-view mode the FP shutter would not come into play with shutter speeds up to 1/1000. This could make for a nice and quiet exposure without any vibration from the mirror and FP shutter.

  • #4623
    Jack MacD

    I haven't had any vibration issues with my S2 that need to be solved, but I suspect that the issue of using CS to close off the light before the image is captured is not how it will be done. I bet the focal plane shutter will still be used first during the required “refresh”. Someone else can correct me if a “refresh” is not needed, but I thought that when actually taking the picture, light has to be closed off, the sensor “refreshed” and then a shutter is used to take the picture. Then the shutter be it FP or CS reopened to bring back the live view. Perhaps the FP shutter need never be closed but the CS shutter would be closed first before a picture could be started. Given that not everyone will be using CS lenses all the time, I suspect that the camera would be designed to rely on FP shutter for the refresh in all instances, but we shall see.

    I see live view being useful for those using focus stacking for getting critical focus. I have an acquaintance who left medium format back to full frame CMOS just to get this ability. In that situation he was on a tripod anyway, and mirror vibration would not be a factor even if there was any.

  • #4624

    Hi Jack,

    I haven't had any vibration issues either, certainly did not mean to imply the system needs a leaf shutter for that.

    The current S/S2 starts the exposure electronically once the FP shutter has opened. The central shutter, if it's in the lens and selected, stops the exposure.

    All I'm saying/asking is that a hypothetical CMOS S could perhaps with shutter speeds up to 1/1000 do a complete exposure cycle without the focal plane shutter.

    Of course the CS would stay closed for the sensor read-out, after which it would open again, and the camera would return to live-view.

    There are other applications for live-view besides focus check for landscape on a tripod. I'm sure many would welcome a camera that is as quiet as possible for the shooting of live on stage events, performances, weddings, documentary work, etc.

  • #4625

    LOL! It's a bit difficult to get my head around the practicality of LV on an S2 … then add in CS Leaf Shutters into the equation. It's even harder for me to figure out because I don't own any DSLR with a reflex mirror and LV. My Sony A99 is a SLT fixed translucent mirror with an EFV.

    Holding a little RX1 out in front of your face is one thing … doing so with a S camera is another. So, it's more likely going to be on a Mono-Pod or Tripod anyway.

    The Hasselblad H is a leaf-shutter camera only … but still an SLR that needs the mirror locked up for optimal captures. When shot this way, the sound was almost inaudible … just a little “snick” sound.

    The S camera most certainly does create some vibrations. While the mirror is well dampened, it still is in motion … otherwise, Leica could have dispensed with the mirror lock-up feature. But they didn't.

    If and when Leica S goes CMOS (likely), it'll be interesting to see what sequence happens when using CS lenses with LV.

    Right now, the only advantage of the CS lenses is higher sync with strobes … (which is still one of the competitive S advantages). If you lock up the mirror, the FP shutter still has to get out of the way before CS exposure.

    Frankly, I'm far more worried about the CMOS sensor than any of this other stuff.

    I just did an all day review of my work over the past few years, and the only stuff I really liked for its' look and feel (or “presence” for lack of a better description) was from the M9 and S2P.

    – Marc

  • #4629

    Many thanks Jack and Marc,

    I can see the points you both made. Maybe there isn't so much advantage in using a CS with a CMOS sensor. I guess I'll have to wait and see if and how Leica will implement this in a CMOS S.

    I agree that no matter what, the use of a Mono-Pod or Tripod can really help getting the most out of the S system. I would't be surprised if a new CMOS S would have electronic connections in the hot shoe for an optional EVF, so that using live view handheld would not have to be at arms lenght.

    FWIW, I've listened carefully at the sound the CS makes, and it certainly is very well audible, nothing like an RX1 for example. So it remains to be seen if and how a CMOS S would benefit from CS lenses in the future, apart from the advantages that are already there.


    I understand your thoughts about the look of the current CCD. I've worked with the M8 extensively and then the A900. When I go back in my archive and I see my M8 files, I feel there's nothing quite like it, except for my S2. (and the M9, which I didn't own)

    Did you see the interview with Mr. Stephan Daniel, in which he states that it just electronics and that Leica feels there is no difference between CMOS and CCD, or words to that effect?

    Thanks again,


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