Ever have one of those days where you had the chance to try out something and suddenly fell in love with it? I mean seriously fell in head over heels type of love?
A week ago I met a friend of mine (rich bastard!) who bought a Leica M9 with a 50mm summilux and invited a couple of us to try it out AKA the show off and poison session. It was effective….
As I had my chance to hold it, it felt amazing. I thought to myself “So this is what a handmade camera feels like, made with heart and soul….”
It was rather a surrealistic experience, while taking some photos , it felt completely absent; as if it wasn’t there at all and yet I was taking photos. It reminded me of my old Nikon fm2n (which I’ve already sold off), simply yet elegant.
Usage came naturally to me since I was the only one who had any experience using manual cameras (the rest were dumbfounded by the lack of auto-focus). Even the focusing unique to rangefinder was easy enough to master in a short while.
My god I thought to myself, it was like using my hands, you don’t know its there til you’ve actually stop to look at them. The other guys though spent many frustrating minutes just trying to use it so I kind of ended up using it the most of the time.
For some odd reason, while I was fiddling with it, they went on about how expensive it was and how it was just a luxury item and couldn’t really be effective at taking photos. For sure Leica cameras have never been known for fast pace action nor was it ever meant for such, its primarily meant for those who enjoy photography though whether you make a living using it depends on you.
For it hold just the bare essentials needed in photography just like a rough diamond but what Leica did here with the M9 is they took these bare essentials, polished them till they shined like a 10 karat diamond. As a result, what you have here is a tool so well crafted that you forget your taking photos with it. Something not possible today with overly complex cameras.
Sure it doesn’t have all the whizbang features found in today’s cameras but that’s the beauty of it! Its simple! trimmed down! Lean and mean with none of the fat! I wish Nikon made a digital F3 with either a DX or FX sensor, it would be my favorite camera!
But I digress, we talking about the M9 and in all the songs and praises about it, one cannot overlook the fact that it is priced very high. There is no way on Earth the average person could ever find the finances or reason for such a purchase where a high-end DSLR from Nikon or Canon would only cost a quarter than what the M9 is priced.
Though I believe its as they say, this camera you buy with your heart and not with your mind (can’t remember where I heard that).
If you wanted something to take photographs with and speed is not important (as well as money :P) then this is the one you should get. Other wise avoid it at all cost! It is no doubt the most expensive camera in its size and weight class and where only talking about the body alone. The price of the lenses are another story all together!
But regardless, be careful when given the chance to use this camera, you might end up falling it but a last I had to give up on such a dream. The price is just beyond my means, so I guess it will remain forever just a dream…….