The Leica M8, the first professional digital rangefinder in Leica speak has been introduced in september 2006 at the Photokina 2006, exactly 81,5 years after the original Leica at The Leipzig Fair in spring 1925 and 52 years after the introduction of the M3 at Photokina 1954. There seems to be one new Leica system for every generation of photographers.
The rumor circuit gave the M8 extremely high marks and this was the camera that would learn the manufacturers of digital cameras a lesson. The M8 camera has been showered with praise and also with critique.
The true verdict may lay between these two extremes: the camera is not the world beater some had anticipated it to be and it not so bad as some severe critics may assume.
It is a camera that needs a clean look and appraisal that cuts through the dense fog of faithful admiration and the deception that follows when expectations are set unreasonably high.
This series of articles looks at the various aspects of the M8 and tries to evaluate the camera on its measurable qualities and some subjective reflections.
This series has been written over several months of working with the camera. Some changes in view and opinion will be noticed in the course of the reviews.