Tom Abrahamssonbs Softie

G

Guest

I've just acquired an M2 camera that has a "softie" attached and I've tried dry-firing it. It seems to make releasing the shutter easier and I can well imagine it will help me keep the camera steady. If it works out, I'll get a couple more to use with my M6TTLs, both of which have Motor-Ms atrtached.

I'd be interested to hear other people's experiences with softies.
 
G

Guest

Is this "softie" from Abraham something else then the winder described in another thread?

dirk
 
G

Guest

Tom's "softie" (Soft Release) is a dome-shaped anodized metal button, the same diameter as the collar surrounding an M camera's shutter release button. It has a male screw-thread on its underside that can be inserted into the female thread of the shutter release, the one intended for attaching a cable-release. Softies can be purchased in different colours, including black, silver, red, green and blue.

The softie's objective is to facilitate smoother and easier operation of the shutter, thereby avoiding a jerky operation that can cause camera movement and blurred pictures. It spreads the pressure of the finger operating the shutter release over a larger area and enables the last joint, rather than the pad, of the finger to be used to apply the pressure.

You can see pictures and an explanation of the softie, as well as Tom's other products, at his web site:
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G

Guest

There are other accessories for Leicas which make a bigger spash but unyil you have used a "Softie" you have no idea how great it works. I've found that I can hand-hold my M6 at 1/8 of a second with a 35MM or 50MM lens and get excellent 8X10 photos using it to trigger the shuuer. I now would feel very uncomfortable without them.
 
G

Guest

For $10 a piece (including shipping), I think Softies are the most cost effective accessory for Leica. I used them on all of my Ms and Rs. I am a fan of soft shutter releases because it helps me reduce blur when I am hand holding a camera. While soft releases made by other manufacturers for standard cable release thread can be fitted to Leica cameras (such as Nikon AR-1 which sells for about the same price), I think Tom’s Softies are better for the following reasons:

(1)Softies do not come off inadvertently yet they can be easily removed when you wanted. Before I discovered Tom’s Softies, I used number of other soft shutter releases. They usually become loose easily and before you know it they are gone. This never happens with Softies.

(2) Large size and domed shape. I think the size and the shape of the Softie, make much easier to release than the other ones. This will help further reduce movement of your camera.

(3) Unlike others, Softies come in different colors. You can match the color with your body (especially for chrome or titanium bodies) or use it as an identifier.

The only draw back is that it may make it too easy for the shutter to be released. This is a point that Tom also indicates on his web site. You may hear “click†when you take camera into/out from a camera bag. But I strongly think the benefits outweigh this drawback.
 
G

Guest

All my Ms have Tom's Softies attached to each one of them. M is just not the same without the Softies.

Prior to using the Softies, I used to wind my camera after taking picture so that it is ready for the next shot. Since I installed the Softies, I changed my habit. I no longer wind the film, especially when I know I am going to keep the camera in the bag. This minimize lost film due to that inadvertent "click". I don't miss any photo either as I can quickly wind the film when needed.

For all M users, go and order the Softies.
 

ray_moth

Member
Yesterday, I used my Softie for an indoor photo session, with a hand-held M6TTL .72 camera and both 90mm f/2.8 Elmarit-M and 135 f/4 Elmar-M lenses. I had the film processed and printed immediately and was pleasantly surprised to see that only one of the shots was blurred owing to camera shake. I am now convinced that the Softie is a very effective asset for camera stability and I'll definitely be buying another one.
 

jay

Member
> Or it could be that having bought into the soft release hype (and bought the > soft release!) you are subconsciously exercising better handholding > technique. If it works for you it's a win-win for you and Tom.
 

ray_moth

Member
Jay, I obtained my Softie, unintentionally, when I bought an M2 camera to which it happened to be attached. So, I didn't select the Softie as such but, finding myself in possession of it anyway, I was curious to know whether it actually helps. Frankly, like you, I was rather skeptical at first and I would have been quite happy if the Softie turned out not to be useful but - I have to admit it is useful! I don't have very steady hands but my success ratio in taking low-speed shots has definitely improved. What else can I say?
 
H

hektor

Jay and Ray,

I was also cynical until Chris (Singapore) very kindly gave me one. Prior to that I considered it a gimmick and never considered buying one.

It so impressed I bought one for every camera I use and can assure you the novelty and placebo effect has worn off and I am converted.

Justin
 

melhjt

Member
> Justin, I'm thinking of trying the softie for my M6, but do you find that the camera is more prone to being triggered accidentally when you put it in your bag. Considering there's not off switch on the mechanical cameras, I guess the only other way is not the wind after each shot, but before. comments?
 
S

swann

Hi, I am reading the Softie discussion for a while now and like to add something, I fear, not very qualified - but don't you think that softie just looks so ugly on that beautiful M cameras?
 
T

tmanley

>If you only want to look at your camera, you don't need a softie. If you >want to use it, the softie will give you the ability to take photos at >slower shutter speeds.

Tina
 

mattinasi

Well-Known Member
>

I actually think the softie looks perfect on an M. I have a silver one on my silver M7 and when it comes off, as it does once in a while, I think the M7 looks less finished, like an integral part has fallen off. Also, I had a red one on my black M6 and it was as cute as a button ;-) I just wish I could get an olive green one for the Safari...

As for the function, well, yes it works! Even when shooting at faster shutter speed, it helps me with the exposure lock on the M7 and on the R8, it imakes it easier and faster somehow.

Oh, and I found the mini-softie to be less satisfying, both aesthetically and functionally, so I use the full size, original version.

Cheers! - marc
 
H

hektor

Dear Christopher,

If the colour of the Softie matches the colour of the camera it is almost unnoticeable.

Justin
 
S

swann

Dear Justin
Thank you, I think you are right, I have just seen the pink one on a black M7, that indeed didn't look good. Maybe I try a black one.
 

judge

Member
funny how a discussion on function always end up a discussion on form in this forum. for goodness' sake, if tom called it as plain as "softrelease" then it must have been made to release the shutter softly, not to look good on your camera. in fact if you visit tom's site, you will not see words like "gorgeous, stunning elegant or attractive" to describe the thing. for conservative people, there's gloss or matte black for black bodies or chrome for chrome bodies or titanium for titanium bodies. and for those who doesn't take leica life damn too seriously, he even made funky colours like green, blue and purple. maybe, he even made those colours to serve as an ice breaker when you actually use the camera to shoot outside your homes. makes the guy behind the camera look more like a "friendly" clown than a "brooding-threatening" serious photographer.
 

kajabbi

Active Member
Ithink the variety of colors are made available fot those who want to code a camera using color film in contrast to another camera using black and white. For companies having several photographers, each one can color code the camera they normally use.Don't you have a favorite color? Mine is orange. So far Tom hasn't made one that color.
 

capocheny

Member
They should be considered a "STANDARD" accessory on any of the M-cameras as far as I'm concerned!

Melvin... of course it'll be a bit more prone to being released. It's like a hair trigger on a shooting pistol! Crazy-glue the shutter release and it'll NEVER go off. (Just kidding!:>))

Tina... well put! :>)

Abrahamsson Softie: Double Thumbs up from this user!

Cheers
 
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