Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2008/05/15

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Subject: [Leica] Schneider & Kaufmann shattering news
From: hoppyman at (Geoff Hopkinson)
Date: Thu May 15 08:42:26 2008
References: <>

Mark I actually think that this is the most open interview that I have read
from Dr Kaufmann on the subjects so far. Before I had an M8, I was concerned
about the sensor crop factor too. Now having used the camera it is a
non-issue for me. The practical effect was needing one more wide lens. I
understand people's desire for a perfectly noise free very high ISO
capability too. Right now for me I regard the mature M8's performance as
superb. It's an M, it's not a DSLR. It's about the glass, isn't it?

This sounds just right to me as an M enthusiast!!!

"Basically we provide Leica M photographers with professional caliber
low-light performance the traditional Leica way, with our outstanding line
of f/2 Summicron and f/1.4 Summilux lenses and the f/1.0 Noctilux. And there
will be more to come!...
We definitely will expand and enhance the Leica M lens line in the near
future and there will be some very exciting things shown at the Photokina
exposition in Cologne this fall. We will make more detailed announcements on
this later this summer, but for the time being all I can tell you is what
you already know -- high performance wide-angle and ultra speed lenses are a
longstanding Leica tradition, and we have been expanding our M line with
lenses delivering high performance at more moderate prices to extend the
reach of the entire M system. Incidentally we will show something else
significant for the M system at Photokina, not just lenses."

I will leave any comments on a digital R to those with an interest and
knowledge there, but again, you should not dismiss a smaller sensor as
equivalent to a 'half frame' film camera. Leaving aside all of the other
factors, the images scale in a completely different way. You would have
already seen this at work with your Nikon DSLRs vs. film Nikon 35mm cameras.
I bet that one of our Four thirds folks would send you a Raw file if you
asked nicely. Print it big and compare for yourself.


-----Original Message-----
Subject: [Leica] Schneider & Kaufmann shattering news

In this interview with Jason Schneider at RIT Andreas Kaufmann shatters a
couple of very key assumptions or opinions I have about Leicas very much
needed direction.

Imagine no full frame digital Leica rangefinder.
Imagine no digital R body.

The second because our new Top Leica man seems to feel that a DSLR needs to
be AF.
A very very wrong feeling in my opinion.

Imagine whirled peas.

That's a whole lot of very bad news in one interview.
Very bad PR.
If I was the boss I'd fire myself on the spot.

The R lineup of glass is nothing to cough at.
The R system needs and deserves a compact R digital body.
And so does the world.
Including me!
I'd buy one. I'd buy two! How about you?

I don't need AutoFocus;
I AM AutoFocus.

I focused my 24mm Nikkor 2.8 lens down Broadway for three miles tonight from
62nd to 110. On a Nikon D40x.
A whole lot of DSLR shooting is done with the AF turned off or with older AI
lenses not just by me but by a lot of serious non Leica loving people I

R&D needs to be continued to bend those little image grabbers at the ends of
the CCD sensors inward so a lens right in the sensors face can be used right
out to its intended image non crop circle on a digital M.

And they should make for for a  Hasselblad superwide while they're at it.

A high end imaging company investing into crop circle formats strikes me as
a highly questionable paranormal eyebrow raiser.
Within 9 months with Nikon and Canon both in heavy competition bringing the
prices down a huge movement will be created to anyone with the slightest
pretensions to shooting a quality image to shooting 24x36 format. Kids at
RIT for sure. Anyone with a bigger than letter sized inkjet printer. Ebayers
who need to be shooting with the perceived latest best thing.

The idea of Leica M glass coasting thousands of USD each only being used in
its middle area is going to seem very off beat wacky in the year 2009.

Can half frame film cameras compete against full frame cameras?
Not in the production of quality images.
Which means
BIG PRINTS. And smaller prints and images made at very high ISO's.
Imagine Leica modern mediocrity.

Hasselblad went AF became it was bought out by a high tech company with
little empathy and touch with Hasselblad tradition and it customer base.
No heart. Hasselblad is dead.

I expected more from what's happening now with Leica.
I thought I was looking at some heart.

You gotta have heart.

Mark William Rabiner

Leica Users Group.
See for more information

Replies: Reply from philippe.amard at (Philippe AMARD) ([Leica] Schneider & Kaufmann shattering news)
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