Service Menu on the Leica M8

If you are after finding out how many shutter activations your Leica M8/M8.2 has then you can check the exinf information within the DNG, I am told it is buried in there somewhere.  Not very useful if your checking out an M8 in a shop and want to know.

There is a way to find out but it involves getting into the Leica Service Menu.  To do this you have to follow the following steps:

  • 4 times right arrow button
  • 3 times left arrow button
  • 1 time right arrow button
  • INFO button

Scroll down to body debug data, press set then scroll down to NUMEXPOSURES.

My M8 now has 5240 and according to Lightroom 2643 of these are mine, so  in the last year I have put on half the activations its had since it was made.

Once in this menu you can also get at other interesting options.  The M8 uses Compressed RAW files, they are compressed from 14 bit to 8 bit and its not lossless.  To get lossless compression you have to have an M9 or M240.  Once you have been in the service menu another option is available, not just jpg or DNG but also jpg+raw, this produces a real 14 bit raw file.

dng conversionThe downside of this is few programs can read it, you have to process it and create a packaged 14 bit dng; a program like m8raw2dng and a quick trip to the command line will soon create one.  Once created this can be imported into your favourite raw processor.  The other downside is that you lose the colour profile and editing is far harder. So while you get an image with better image quality but the time taken to edit the file increases enormously.

I may blog about it some more, if I get the hang of it.


One Reply to “Service Menu on the Leica M8”

  1. Thank You for publishing “the secret” of the service menu on the Leica M8. It is very helpful indeed, great! I wish you a Happy New Year.
    Peter – a not so young M8 Photographer 😉 from Winterthur.

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