Shooting with the 75mm Noctilux-M

Akademie Instructor Nick Rains discusses his experiences of shooting with the amazing 75mm Noctilux-M on the Leica M10 and and Leica SL cameras.

SL2-S at high ISO

We have been getting quite a lot of questions about the high ISO ability of the new SL2-S when compared to the SL2, so here are the results of some tests done by Nick Rains. These are simple visual tests, not optical bench tests, but should serve to give you an idea of the differences. All images are straight out of Adobe Lightroom V10.1 using default settings. Noise Reduction is on defaults of 15 (Luminance) and 15 (Colour). The SL2 images have been resized down to match the size of the SL2-S and so this test takes into account the downsampling advantage of the SL2.

The test subject was shot in semi-darkness rather than daylight. This makes it a very realistic low light test and it’s even harder for the camera to record good data under these conditions. Black objects in the dark are very hard to record! The base exposure was 8 secs at f8 @ ISO100, then adjusted from there to account for the higher ISO settings. The lens was the Vario-Elmarit 24-90mm at 90mm and f8.

Please bear in mind that these are 100% crops from unadjusted raw files so are brutally unforgiving. The noise you see in all the images is only seen like this on screen and, when printed or reduced in size for device viewing, this noise is much reduced.  At the bottom of the page you will find a link to download some original DNG files so you can see for yourself.

Executive Summary.

The advantage of the SL2-S over the SL2 increases with the ISO. At low ISO they are identical but by ISO3200 the SL2-S clearly takes the lead and by 12500 it is well ahead. Low noise is related to higher Dynamic Range and this is born out by the results.

The SL2-S clearly has more detail in the deepest shadows at high ISO compared to the SL2. This is exactly what you’d expect to see – the SL2 is the best camera for high resolution imagery, and the SL2-S is best for difficult lighting and shooting conditions.

Test Image

Two original DNG files can be downloaded here – both at ISO 25000, one from each camera.



Leica M Lens Design

In this online presentation Leica’s top lens designer, Peter Karbe, shares his insights into the process of designing and manufacturing M lenses.

Leica CL - Customising the Controls

In this Youtube video Leica Akademie Instructor Nick Rains explains how to customise the controls of the Leica CL to suit your shooting style.

Leica M10R Menu Settings

Leica Akademie Instructor Nick Rains takes an M10-R to Noosa National Park in Queensland to shoots some sample images, and explains in detail how he adjusted the menu settings before heading out to shoot. Lenses used were the 18mm Super-Elmar-M, the 50mm Summilux-M and a vintage 180mm Elmarit-R adapted to M Mount.

Portrait Photography with Russell Shakespeare

This is a 1 hour 13 minute recording of a Webinar featuring magazine photographer Russell Shakespeare who specialises in portrait photography – Russell’s work has appeared in well known publications such as NY Times and Time Magazine, as well as many of the major Australian magazines and newspapers. Russell was also the face of Leica Camera Australia’s launch of the new M10-R, the 40MP rangefinder released in July 2020.

Leica M10R with Russell Shakespeare

A recording of the M10-R Launch interview with portrait photographer Russell Shakespeare where he discusses his documentary work and experiences of using this new member of the M-System.

Kristian Dowling Webinar Recording

Kristian Dowling has been one of the top global celebrity-entertainment photographers for the past 15 years. Best known for his flexibility and understanding of light, he has earned a reputation of being a master photographer that can deliver striking results in a variety of challenging situations, without the use of photo manipulation. Working with the world’s biggest names on key assignments, his experience has taken him to the world’s most important events including Beijing Olympics, Cannes Film Festival, NY Fashion Week, MTV Music/Movie Awards, and on tour with Pop Star Katy Perry.

Webinar Recording - Documentary and Street Photography with Craig Semetko

Craig Semetko discusses his classic street photography, serendipity, and his current ‘View from the Window’ series. A recording of a Live Q&A with Leica Akademie Instructor Nick Rains.

Shooting with the Leica D-Lux 7

Leica Akademie Instructor Nick Rains takes a look at the highly competent Leica D-Lux 7, shows some images which will give you an idea of its versatility and then goes through the more important controls and menu settings.