Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2006/06/04

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Subject: [Leica] Leica modifying M-mount for digital M?
From: grduprey at (
Date: Sun Jun 4 16:18:58 2006
References: <> <p06230901c0a905e3615a@[]>

How do you save more than one focal length and aperture in the d200? I have 
one in and thought you had to change it for each lens.  Sorry for the OT 
question to the group.
-----Original Message-----
From: Allen Graves <>
To: Leica Users Group <>
Sent: Sun, 4 Jun 2006 17:02:53 -0500
Subject: RE: [Leica] Leica modifying M-mount for digital M?

Funny. When I use manual lenses on my D200, I just enter the focal length 
and max f-stop. From then on, I can just select that lens from a list.2 
different 50's 2 different 35's, etc. Nothing spent on lens conversion. 
Takes a few seconds.Focal length and max f-stop data available for EXIF 
data. This could also trigger appropriate frame lines, if an SLR needed 
 If this sort of cheesy "conversion" is required for each lens and doesn't 
give a lot more functionality than max f-stop and focal length, then Leica 
will have succeeded in driving one more nail into their coffin-even if the 
M8 is a fine camera. Even by Leica standards, 125 Euros is a lot for 6 dots 
of white (or black) paint. Jeffery could rebuild the entire New Orleans 
Levee system for the cost of converting his 50's. 
>To add to the speculation: 
>This site (in French) seems to have good information. Run it >through 
>AltaVista translator (aka Babelfish) if you don't read >French. 
>It looks like a 6-bit system that is read optically, rather than 
>>electronic contacts. 
>A reasonable conclusion from all this is that the new coding will be >used 
>to tell the camera exactly what focal length is mounted, and >what the 
>maximum f-stop is. This information could be used for EXIF >data, for 
>metering, to compute the working f-stop by comparing the >light read from 
>the lens to the light read from an external sensor. >It could also be used 
>for vignetting compensation, color balance, >and things like that. 
>It could also bring up framelines generated via an illuminated LCD. >This 
>could be quite an exciting development, something I've wondered >about for 
>years. It would be like having the wonderful, clean M2 >viewfinder again, 
>but with individual 28 and 75mm frames also >available. It could shift and 
>expand or shrink based on focusing >distance. This would give us more 
>accurate framing than the current >system, which only shifts. The frame 
>selector could work using the >original lens flange, plus one bit in the 
>coding to tell the CPU >whether to bring up the large or small frameline of 
>the original >pair. Or just use the coding for exact focal length if 
>available, >bring up the traditional pair if no coding. 
>None of this precludes the use of old or non-chipped lenses. It >just means 
>you'd have less information in EXIF data, and you might >have to adjust 
>vignetting or color balance a bit more manually in >Photoshop, Raw 
>converter, etc. And for the framelines, you'd have >to have a manual 
>override for unconverted lenses. 
>My own thought is that Leica would be incredibly stupid if they made >their 
>existing lens base unusable without conversion. And I don't >think they 
>(and their new CEO) are that stupid. Especially with an >R-D1 on the 
>market, and the distinct possibility that Zeiss might >follow suit. They 
>can't afford to lose sales to the existing base >of M and LTM users, 
>because that base will be the majority of their >sales. 
>So Leica, if you're listening, PLEASE allow viewfinder frames to be >set 
>manually, if the coding is used to bring up an LCD-based >frameline. 
>Backward lens compatibility is a MUST. 
>Supposedly Leica will make an official announcement next week. 
>Now, anyone want to take bets on how long it will be before a 
>>do-it-yourself lens upgrade method gets posted on the Web? >Something 
>involving a rat-tailed file, a micrometer, and nail polish >stolen from 
>your Goth-girl daughter or girlfriend . . . Kyle >Cassidy, take note! :-) 
>Leica Users Group. 
>See for more information 
Leica Users Group. 
See for more information 

In reply to: Message from pklein at (Peter Klein) ([Leica] Leica modifying M-mount for digital M?)
Message from allen.graves at (Allen Graves) ([Leica] Leica modifying M-mount for digital M?)