Leica M7 vs Leica M10 : Film vs Digital

Leica M brothers
Leica M brothers

Well, this happened so quickly. Before Leica M10, I never thought I would own multiple Leica systems. Not only they are pricy but also one ‘M’ should suffice. However, when I needed 28mm lens, I thought of Leica Q which is in fact cheaper than Leica M 28mm lens. Then recently I wanted to experience analog film camera so much. So I bought Leica M7.

 

Leica M7 with Kodak TMAX 400
Leica M7 with Kodak TMAX 400

 

I was curious about digital Monochrome, then I realized that you can’t really simulate analog film with image post processing with digital output.  So I decided I would go for black and white film. My first black and white film was Kentmere ISO 400. It was good. But I felt too much green in the black and white while I found that TMAX produces high contrast deep dark black.

Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:1.4/50 ASPH / Kentmere 400 black and white film
Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:1.4/50 ASPH / Kentmere 400 black and white film

 

Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH  | Kodak TMAX 400
Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak TMAX 400

Like I expected, it produced high contrast clear image. Even with ISO 400, I don’t feel much grain. Also it had great dynamic range. So I was able to capture both bright and dark area equally good.

 

Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak TMAX 400
Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak TMAX 400

 

I always wanted to capture snow scene with black and white film. Here it is. Just the way I expected.  My dream became true. Of course, I wouldn’t notice if I was asked to tell which photos are from film vs digital black and white converted version. But no matter what others would say, I love this film photo a lot!

 

Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak TMAX 400
Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak TMAX 400

 


 

when it comes to film photos, I like it even better with a color negative film especially Kodak Portra 400 film!

 

Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak Portra 400
Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak Portra 400

 

Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak Portra 400
Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak Portra 400

 

Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak Portra 400
Leica M7, Summilux-M 1:2/35 ASPH | Kodak Portra 400

 

Not only Korak Portra has rich color but also ISO 400 produces enough grain to tell me this is indeed film output.

Leica M10, Summilux-M 1:1.4/50 ASPH
Leica M10, Summilux-M 1:1.4/50 ASPH – Kodak Porta 400 is my favorite film so far
Leica Q
Leica Q – More films
L1020698
Leica Q

 

I bought more films today. It’s definitely pricy. Kodak Portra 400 costs $10 per unit, and if you need to develop it in high-resolution, you need to pay $9 more. So 36 photos will cost you around $20 with a film. On top of that, I need to spend more time in visiting a photo development shop or purchasing a film weekly or so. I am not sure why I fell in love with this slow yet pricy analog Leica M system, but it sure gives me more energy and inspiration for my photography work!

 

Leica M7 taken by Ricoh GR II
Leica M7 taken by Ricoh GR II

 

I sure like my digital Leica M10, but I would take maybe 50% of my photos with Leica M7. Let’s see which version makes more precious memories for my life!

Analog film vs Digital what would be your choice?

 

Check out this link if you are interested in Leica M10 digital Leica M system.