How to Upgrade Your Fujifilm X-E1 Into a Leica M9 on the Cheap

Well, what do you know: upgrading a Fujifilm X-E1 is easy! A photographer named Richard over at Fuji Rumors figured out how to transform his $1,000 X-E1 into a $6,400 Leica M9 digital rangefinder. The upgrade costs just pennies — it only requires four strategically placed decal stickers.

Here’s another view of his enhanced camera:

For comparisons sake, here’s what a standard Leica M9 looks like if you buy the full version directly without going through the X-E1 upgrade path:

As a tip: the X-Pro1 is a bit closer in design to the Leica M9, so if you’d like to save yourself a viewfinder decal, you can upgrade to the M9 using that camera instead.

If you want to avoid unwanted attention from thieves, however, this upgrade probably isn’t the way to go. After all, photographers pay extra to not have that red dot.

(via Fuji Rumors via Mirrorless Rumors)

Image credit: Upgraded X-E1 photos by Richard, Leica M9: Front by bfishadow

  • michaelp42

    Sad :-) I got asked twice last week if the XE1 around my neck was a Leica.

  • Michael Zhang

    Haha. How are you liking the camera?

  • Julian Trœps

    It looks quite same haha

  • Duke Shin

    A couple weeks ago I was shooting for the yearbook with a Lomo for shits and giggles….
    Anyway, one of those rich snobby kids walked up and asked “Oh, is that a Leica?” and I explained that this was a 50 dollar russian piece of crap and a Leica was a 7000 dollar handmade rangefinder.
    Know what this motherfucker says? He smirks at me and goes “oh, they’re that cheap?”
    He actually showed up with an M9 and summicron the next day and complained that it wouldn’t zoom.

    That’s what I get for living in Palo Alto.

  • Duke Shin

    It can actually take pretty decent pictures and the exposure is always spot on.

    It’s just that the hipsters using it rely on extreme cross processing and expired film instead of careful composition and proper exposure.

  • Alex

    I agree, and stuff like this really wastes space on this website.

  • michaelp42

    Early days, but i am loving the image quality.

  • herman latief

    this is pathetic. if you want a leica, go get a leica then. why bother other say about your gear?

  • Baa Bra Brack Ship

    I think you misspelled “downgrade”. *wink

  • Nathan Blaney

    I can easily afford Leica gear, but why buy it? Its about triple the price its worth. If I mangle my X-Pro 1 or X100 on a job its easily replaced without feeling bad about it but too many people treat this Leica stuff like treasures. Best move I’ve made was to get rid of my Leica (for a profit, even!)

  • Nathan Blaney

    The funny thing is that for all the talk about the XP1 and X100 being vintage and subtle looking, they’re like a magnet for photo nerds. Even at the PhotoPlus Expo, I got hounded by a bunch of people asking about my Fujis… while standing 20 feet from the Fuji booth.

  • Nathan Blaney

    I found using the XE1 to be fine, although I’ve gotten used to the feel of the XP1. Image quality is comparable when using the same lenses. I do not care for the zoom, at all, but that’s just me.

  • madmax

    The Fuji XE1 is already better and good looking than a Leica M9. This is nonsense.

  • michaelp42

    I’ve used my X100 lots this year, and I expect the XE1 will also get lots of use. Both are great little cameras.

  • michaelp42

    harmless fun. if it gets people talking / interacting then its a good thing?

  • Tim

    Someone needs to lighten up a bit :)

  • bob cooley

    That’s because he didn’t buy a camera – be bought (or his daddy bought) a fashion accessory. (not that Leica’s aren’t incredible cameras – they are; its just clearly not why his daddy bought it for him).

  • Paulo Batelli

    Ridiculous! Simply ridiculous! Leica is Leica, Fuji is Fuji!

    A white man is a white man, a black man is a black man!!

    Both values ​​are the essence of the world!

    The photographer, you know that the image is in the essence of being, the tool only helps!!

    Find yourself in the essence of the photograph produces something machinic and not in the mindset of a short little man!

  • Paulo Batelli

    My X 100 leaves a lot of M8 or M9 in the “pocket”, one thing is the fetish created around the brand Leica! I’ve had mine, the fantasy takes over common sense and spend more to produce much less!! The optical Leitz is absurdly superior, yes, but the sensor developed by Fuji team is absurdly superior to Leica sensors, … Sorry Oskar … ! Hats off to those toys X series, wow!