Steve Huff is a photographer with a prominent YouTube channel and many reviews online. He found the same frustration with the Leica X typ 113 that I have been having.
He also posted about it on his blog: http://www.stevehuffphoto.com/2014/10/06/the-leica-x-typ-113-review-in-under-3500-words-gorgeous-iq-but-with-a-flaw/
This is the second year that Vanessa and I have gone to the Northwest Chocolate Festival - http://nwchocolate.com/. It's a great place to buy exquisite chocolates for less than you would pay online or in the stores. Chocolate makers from around the country come and bring lots and lots of samples.
We learned our lesson last year - stock up on enough chocolate at the festival to last you for a full year. Otherwise, you will spend even more at the store. Incidentally, the best place we have found to purchase chocolate in the Seattle area is a store called Chocolopolis - http://www.chocolopolis.com/
I shot all of the photos with the Leica X typ 113. These are all the JPGs from the camera, and they are indeed lovely. The camera is fairly easy to shoot. Once you learn the handling of the camera and it's quirks, it's quite responsive.
My biggest complaint is that I feel Leica improperly calls the lens a f/1.7. It's more like an f/2.x lens for pretty much everything I shoot. Most of these shots were fairly close range, indoors, and fairly poor light. I attempted to shoot most of these images at f/1.7. Only two of them were because the subject was quite a distance away from the camera. Most were actually shot at f/2.5 and f/2.8 even though I had the camera set to f/1.7. It's very misleading and false advertising. Honestly, had I known about the variable aperture nature of this camera, I probably wouldn't have bought it. To me, the lens - a Lieca, 35mm equivalent, with a fast f-stop of f/1.7, for the price, was going to be a winner, but that's not really what you're buying. Shame on you Leica!
I did happen to find in the manual on page 136:
"To enhance picture quality, the aperture setting is also corrected automatically between 2.8 and 1.7 in the close-up range, i.e. at distances of 0.2 - 1.2m to the subject."
I didn't realize I had to download a manual and read the fine print before buying a camera.
Just for reference, here is a PDF from their website, advertising the f-stop of 1.7. Nowhere do they say it's variable.
All of these are JPEGs straight out of the camera (resized for this blog using JPEGmini). I shot these using the vivid mode in camera. I'm quite pleased with the image quality, the autofocus isn't fast, but mostly adequate. Still, I would like more manual control with regards to f/stop, shutter speed, and aperture. Also, the lens almost always stops down to f/2.8 even though I have it set to f/1.7.
My analysis? It's better than nothing. Here is a home movie of Anya's birthday party at McDonald's this evening.
- Feels and looks cheap and plasticky.
- The manual controls are not as manual as I would like. I would like more control over the shutter speeds - not these wide jumps from 1/30, 1/60, 1/125, etc. I would also like more control over the ISO, not just 100, 200, 400, etc.
- The live preview doesn't accurately reflect the shooting conditions. I would like it to be a more realistic representation of what I'm shooting in regards to the exposure.
- Lens is sharp and images are cleaner than the X100S.
- The aperture is variable and isn't constant - this is an annoying and not positive surprise. The closer the focus is to the subject, the aperture shrinks down to 2.8. That's a big difference than the advertised f/1.7.
- Images are clean.
- Autofocus is reasonably fast and more accurate than the X100S
- Battery and SD card slots are less than desirable - it's easy to put the battery in the wrong way, and the SD card removal seems to grab on the sides of the card.
- Lightroom 5.6 seems to oversaturate the DNGs and increase the exposure - I had to dial both of them way back to get a decent starting place for editing the images.
I love photography, cameras, and lenses. Of course, funds are limited, and I can’t own every piece of gear that I want to. Renting is an option, but it is a costly one. I’ve found that I can find some good deals online, play with the gear, and sell it later without too much of a loss - sometimes, I’ve even been able to sell gear for a profit.
Without going into any detail (you can always Google it yourself), personal experience has taught me that eBay, PayPal, and dealing with that entire eBay ecosystem as a seller or a buyer is an awful endeavor plagued with scammers, time wasters, non paying bidders, and inane and stupid questions. Thus, I now use Amazon for the majority of my online sales with Craigslist being a few here and there.
There’s no secret to buying or selling online, it comes down to price - that’s it! How do you get your items to sell? Have your price lower than everyone else! How do you know what price to pay for something? Look at the lowest price that the item you’re interested in buying is selling for and pay that. The end! So why am I still writing this blog entry then? Because so many people selling or buying on Craigslist have no clue about this basic concept. Here’s an example:
This weekend, I was in the market for a used Fuji X100S. Any seller should realize that a person savvy enough to send an email to them off of a Craigslist ad should have the wherewithal to check prices on other websites, but apparently not. The X100T was just announced, that alone drops the price of the X100S. Other X100S’s were selling online for about $750 - some more, but why anyone would pay more eludes me. So, I emailed a few sellers, and they were staying “firm” at $1,000! Even after emailing them the locations of retailers and other ads for less, they insisted that their price was “fair.” One reasonable seller had his listed for $800, I emailed him the same info, and he agreed to $750. Bingo! Now, had I offered him less, he should have told me to pound sand - it does work both ways.
Bottom line, be reasonable with your pricing when selling and be reasonable with your offers. Stick to your guns, don’t be impatient, and move on if the seller or buyer is unreasonable.