Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1993/01/26

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Subject: Re: New japanese pro rangefinder?
From: David.Bernard@Central.Sun.COM (Dave Bernard)
Date: Tue, 26 Jan 93 13:23:42 EST

Well, Minolta tried it a few years ago with the CLE, using an electronic
shutter and auto-exposure, and it didn't go over too well.  Maybe because
it was priced kind of high for what it was... Minolta thought it could
price it like a leica?  For another, it had the idiosyncracy that there
was no light meter in manual mode.

Interestingly, Mamiya is now offering a 6x6 square rangefinder with 3
lenses... but boy, are they expensive for what you get.  Mamiya, too,
thinks it should price like leica?  (I understand the stuff if far
cheaper in Japan, and, unlike other Japanese kit, marked up for US

What could Shutterbug's rumored "professional SLR maker" do with a new
line of 35mm rangefinder stuff?  Autofocus, built-in motor drive,
lots of exposure modes, all at a premium price?  If so, I'd go out on
a limb and predict a quick death.

On the other hand, if they offered small, durable, accurate equipment,
outstanding lenses, and a little bit of quiet, unobtrusive exposure
automation, they might have something...

What I'd probably predict is something like the Konica Hexar, kind of
a precision point and shoot with interchangeable lenses, and kind of
a disappointment, being neither fish nor foul.  Who would buy it, when
you can get Canon Rebel SLRs for so cheap?  Especially since the manufacturer
will probably be unable to resist charging about $1000 for the (plastic)

Oh, yeah, IMHO!


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>From Tue Jan 26 12:51:22 1993
Subject: New japanese pro rangefinder?
Date: Tue, 26 Jan 93 11:40:48 EST
From: James J Dempsey <>

An interesting note:

In the editor's column in Shutterbug a couple of months ago, the
editor mentioned that he knew of a major Japanese camera company,
known for their pro SLR equipment, that was going to be coming out
with a new pro-oriented 35mm rangefinder camera with interchangeable
lenses.  I seem to recall he said it would be within a year.

It will be interesting to see who it is, what they build and how
affordable it is.  And what effect this has on Leica.

		--Jim Dempsey--

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