Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 1998/06/28

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Subject: RE: [Leica] Leica - R8 not quite right M6 only just perfect
From: Alan Ball <>
Date: Sun, 28 Jun 1998 11:05:41 +0200

On Sunday, June 28, 1998 1:27 AM, apbc [] 
> Leica's reputation was after all founded upon an ability to
> innovate not simply to catch up.

You are right with the "was". Today, the Leica reputation is based on other 
objectives. I find Leica interesting because they strive to offer product 
ranges that offer the best quality possible today in a certain number of 
fields, optics in particular, with very few concessions to the 
price/quality ratio. Leica is no technology leader anymore, but that is not 
necessarily a big problem. For a great number of applications, their 
technologicla level is sufficient. For some applications it is not 
sufficient. It all comes down to accepting or not to pay the price, in all 
senses of the word. And that decision is in the hands of the photographer, 
depnding on his main applications and on his budget.

> You don't need to get so hot under the collar when people criticise the
> R8 - if it works for you then that is good. I wish it was the camera for
> me and feel it is quite legitimate to weigh in with my observations on a
> discussion group that exists for the purpose of discussing such matters.

Thanks for doing so. it is good to sober "us" (as "they" say) up 

> One other issue - I would love to see a new M with some of the features
> of the R8 such as faster shutter, better flash facilities, more metering
> options, auto bracketing and a (real) motor. Functionally and in terms of 
> manufacturing efficiencies it would make a lot of sense to share
> electronics and key components such as the shutter and metering systems.
> Just keep the size and sound down and don't mess too much with the RF/VF
> is all I would ask. Oh and keep the M6 in the line - or perhaps an M6.2
> that matched the R6.2 with TTL flash, more info in the finder and a
> decent motor option. Whatever they do with the M it should be ahead of
> the competition - which is only other, older Ms these days. And yes I
> have a G2 system too but I use the Ms 10x more often.

I second these proposals, and I'm sure there is a relatively large market 
out there for such a modernised strategy.  I'm quite sure it will come. But 
with Leica it is often "pianissimo" but not always "sano"...