Coming Soon, my Leica M8/M9/RF Users Guide

Happy Tuesday to all! I just wanted to do a quick update today to let you all know that I have been working on a “users guide” to the M9 (also some M8 info in there) that will be available as a PDF in March. I have been working on this for a couple of weeks now and still have quite a bit to go but will be working on it daily until it is complete. It will have ten sections in an easy to read format and will include some great info on the the digital M and RF photography as well.

Why would I spend hours every day for weeks on end to do this? Well, quite simple really. As this site is growing it is getting to be more of a challenge to pay the bills associated with running it. Yes, when you guys use my links to B&H and Amazon to buy gear it helps tremendously and this is the only way I have been able to grow this website. Well, I want to be able to make this site even better so I have found another way for you to help but to give you something back in return.

I do not take donations on this site like many others do and I get e-mails asking me about this quite often. Many will say the info on this site is enough to warrant a donation, but still, I want to give something more and hopefully something that can be used to help those who are new to RF photography. Also, many of my readers are outside the USA and do not usually buy their gear in the USA so this is a way for you guys in Germany, the UK, France, Canada, etc to help out!

So sometime in March I plan to have my “Leica M8/M9/RF Users Guide” available as a PDF download. You will choose the amount you want to pay for it (starting at $5). The proceeds will go towards paying for this site and improvements. I will use google checkout and basically you will not be “donating” but naming your own price for the guide and in doing so you will be supporting this site!

Stay tuned….

Here is a snippet from the first page (which still may change a bit) and it will also have many sample photos as well…

The Leica M8/M9 Users Guide For Those Who Like To Keep It Simple

Welcome to my Leica M9 users guide! I am happy and thrilled that you chose to help support my website with your donation and in return I wanted to give something back to you for that support. I wrote this guide to show you my experience with the Leica M9 as well as show you how to get the most out of it. What I write here will not be technical as that is not my style, rather I wanted to show you with easy to understand words and sample images. So again, thank you for your “donation” and I hope you enjoy this guide. Remember, your credit card will be charged through google checkout as “Steve Huff Photo”. You picked your price so I hope you find this information worth the cost. The amount you paid for this simple guide will go directly towards funding this ever expanding and growing site.

This guide will not be long, or boring, or confusing. The Leica M9 is a very simple camera with minimal controls and minimal distractions. This is a good thing, and it allows you to take control of your photography and let you concentrate on the task at hand, which is getting great images! I wrote this guide with the “Leica Mindset” meaning I kept it simple. Many of you already know this information but many of you may not. This was created for those new to rangefinders and after reading it you should find using your new Digital M to be simple and enjoyable.

This guide was created within my web editor and exported as a PDF. It is not your typical PDF and resembles the web site in its look and feel so you will read it just like you would a post at the site. Here is what will be covered in this guide:

  1. Part 1 – Why choose a rangefinder camera over a DSLR in todays world?
  2. Part 2 -Rangefinder shooting explained. How to focus, meter, and frame your shots with a Leica M camera.
  3. Part 3 – The M9 menu options explained.
  4. Part 4 – The M9 controls and what do they mean?
  5. Part 5 – Tips for the best image quality from the M8/M9.
  6. Part 6 – My favorite lenses on the M9.
  7. Part 7 – Processing M9 DNG files for best results.
  8. Part 8 – Accessories for your M8/M9 that I can recommend. Bags, grips, and even some cool black dots.
  9. Part 9 – If your M camera need repair or adjustment do this…
  10. Part 9 – Wrapping it all up, my final thoughts on the Leica digital M and where I think it should go in the future.

Part 1 – Why choose a rangefinder camera over a DSLR in todays world?


  1. Hi Steve, are these books still available? I just acquired a pre-loved M8 and it would be great to learn how to use it. (:

  2. Do the guide excist? Just bought myself a M8 and would really need some good guidance. I´ve read all off your test and comparison about the M8, thank you for them. But still waiting for your M User guide..

  3. Pretty strange, this guide was announced in March 2010 and after 1 year and 4 months it hasn´t been released 🙂

  4. Steve,

    Will you be releasing your M9 at all? Hopefully it hasnt been forgotten, looks like it could be quite the money spinner – I know I would buy it!


  5. Hi Steve,love your site and the great info I find here! I am desperately in need of this guide having just been lucky enough to get an M9! But as a real newbie to rangefinders am hungry for all the basic lessons and tips I can find. And rec’s on lenses! Also enjoying the pimp my leica series. Want to support the site and pay for the guide – how do I get one?!

  6. Very excited to hear that the Leica M9 Guide will be out soon. I will definitely be a purchser—and I agree with others that $5 is just not enough–saving up now to contribute to your book. I enjoy your web site so much that I try to visit it daily. Keep up the great work !

  7. Steve, your site is the first site I have ever visited daily or even more than once a day. When there is nothing new I feel disappointed. Trust me, I know this is an enormous task for you. That being said, you have inspired me and through your site I have learned much and even hired Riccis Valadares to photograph my upcoming wedding. I met him at your NYC event this past year. Anyway, I will be more than happy to make a donation for your M9 guide and will remain a loyal follower. Thanks for the inspiration. Louis

  8. Hi Steve,

    Man, this is awesome! Your guide will come out with just the right timing, because I’ve planned to buy a M8 in March….By the way; 5 dollars seems to be way to little for what promises to be a gem. I hope a lot of the fellow Leica enthousiasts will pay much more than that Steve, just like me! 🙂



  9. Did the user guide get created or are the articles somewhere else? I am mostly interested in the metering and exposure recommendations to get the best image. Also, the DNG processing tips would help too.

    • Steve, can you recommend a screen LCD protector for the M9

      Also what is your opinion about the “soft release button” —the type that screws into the shutter release button. I’m having some trouble with camera shake at my age 71.

      • Hi Marcus, the soft releases work really well and they do minimise the camera shake. You can buy them from Leica expert Tom Abrahamsson at Good luck and have fun!

  10. Great News, I have a problem with my M8 in focusing.
    Is it true or not the M8 have a back focusing??

    from Indonesia

  11. Hi Steve,

    This is Simon from HK. I’ll have my M9 soon and I learnt a lot from your site.
    Sure, I’ll buy one copy and keep the site running.

    Anyway, good job!



  12. Hi Steve,

    great news – I’ll be sure to buy one.
    One suggestion for content. Thorough description of how to adjust white balance manually, teqniques etc.

  13. Looking very forward to this guide Steve. Perhaps you can name it “The M9 Bible”. Kidding! You should name it “The M9 Bible by Steve Huff”!

  14. I’m in, Steve. I’ll be happy to purchase the M8/9 manual…and yes, $5 is way too little for your efforts.

  15. Hi Steve,
    excellent idea!
    I live in Zagreb/Croatia, Just like You, I have also huge passion for photography actually, me and my wife are living from photography.
    Thanx to Your love and passion for photography, now I am really serious of purchasing RF with some lenses.
    I became a huge fan of Your real live reviews.
    Like George, I also read Your site carefully at least twice a day.
    Look forward to download new guide.
    Regards, and Thank You and Your family a lot.

  16. Big Steve ….
    I do not know when I can afford a Leica, but your job allows me to dream ….
    I look forward to your guide!
    Thank you!
    Domenico Fabiano

  17. Steve ….chapeau;)

    I am looking forward to my m9 maybe in april/may.
    This user guide would be a perfect way to start shooting in a rangefinder world;;;)))*

  18. Steve
    I read your site everyday and most of the time twice a day. It has grown to be one of the best on the web. You , your guest writers and the information are the best. I look forward to the guide and will download a copy, as well as refer some friends of mine who are not quite sold on the rangefinder camera.
    Thank you for all you do!

  19. Steve can’t wait to download your new guide and I will definitely purchase it. $5.00 seems a small price for your valuable insights on the M8 and M9.

  20. Steve, you’re too kind! That’s very thoughtful to offer the guide as value (in addition to what we get from the site) for a donation. As soon as it’s available, I’m definitely purchasing! This is yet another example of why this site has become one of my favorites to follow.

1 Trackback / Pingback

  1. Struggling to fall in love with the M9 - Seite 2 - Leica User Forum

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.