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-   -   How do you justify the Leica prices (for yourself) ? (http://www.rangefinderforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=116186)

pdexposures 02-20-2012 11:40

It was something I had always wanted. So when I decided to sell all my digital gear and only shoot film. It was the only camera that ever crossed into my mind.

bowieknife 02-20-2012 11:56

if your desire is to drive a Porsche, or a Ferrari, no other car could ever satisfy you, even if it brings you fast & safely from A to B.
same holds true for cameras ! and if you can't justify the money spent on a Summilux, you probably can't really afford it, therefore you'd be better off anyway with a lens that gives you the same speed, like a Jupiter-3 plus M-bayonet adapter for example, at a price that doesn't bleed your bank account-
certainly your photography won't go down, Jupiters are fine lenses too !
sell that Summilux to someone who needs it REAL BAD, pocket your cash and ENJOY YOUR LIFE !

mdarnton 02-20-2012 12:13

All of my rationalizations for owning a Leica disappeared the second I realized that there wasn't any correspondence between which of my pictures I liked best and what camera they'd been shot with. At that moment, about three or four years ago, I decided to sell my Leica stuff and go with a system where I could both have and afford more options. I went with the system with the longest history of compatibility and functionality, the greatest amount of high-quality stuff on the used market, that would almost ALL still function on new cameras (sorry, Canon!), and it wasn't Leica.

pdexposures 02-20-2012 12:18

Quote:

Originally Posted by mdarnton (Post 1817131)
All of my rationalizations for owning a Leica disappeared the second I realized that there wasn't any correspondence between which of my pictures I liked best and what camera they'd been shot with. At that moment, about three or four years ago, I decided to sell my Leica stuff and go with a system where I could both have and afford more options. I went with the system with the longest history of compatibility and functionality, the greatest amount of high-quality stuff on the used market, that would almost ALL still function on new cameras (sorry, Canon!), and it wasn't Leica.

What is Nikon?

tbarker13 02-20-2012 13:01

Quote:

Originally Posted by Roger Hicks (Post 1816905)
You are conflating 'justify' and 'afford'. I don't drive a Bristol because I can't afford one. If I wanted a second-hand BMW or Mercedes I could afford one, but I've driven both and been underwhelmed. As it is, my car is a '72 Land Rover and my wife's is a '90 Seat: hardly flashy motoring. But we can both go out and shoot with two Leicas 'round our necks if we want, 'cos that's how we prefer to spend our money. There's no 'justification' involved at all.

Cheers,

R.

Roger, I think we'll disagree on this.
Justify: "To show to be just or right."
or: "to show a satisfactory reason or excuse for something to be done.

Buyers do justify their purchases to themselves. And there is nothing wrong with it. I can afford to buy an M9. But I cannot justify the purchase to myself. So I don't buy one.

Roger Hicks 02-20-2012 13:04

Quote:

Originally Posted by mdarnton (Post 1817131)
All of my rationalizations for owning a Leica disappeared the second I realized that there wasn't any correspondence between which of my pictures I liked best and what camera they'd been shot with. At that moment, about three or four years ago, I decided to sell my Leica stuff and go with a system where I could both have and afford more options. I went with the system with the longest history of compatibility and functionality, the greatest amount of high-quality stuff on the used market, that would almost ALL still function on new cameras (sorry, Canon!), and it wasn't Leica.

And mine went the opposite way decades ago, when I realized that most of my best shots were taken with Leicas, because they best suit the way I work. This is, without question, the best rational way of deciding which cameras to use: which give you the most good pictures? If Leica, stick with Leica. If not, not. Unless, of course, you just enjoy using Leicas. Which is also rational.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks 02-20-2012 13:08

Quote:

Originally Posted by tbarker13 (Post 1817162)
Roger, I think we'll disagree on this.
Justify: "To show to be just or right."
or: "to show a satisfactory reason or excuse for something to be done.

Dear Tim,

Perhaps you would care to attempt to define "just" . . . "right" . . . "a satisfactory reason or excuse"

That's all pretty subjective from where I'm standing.

Cheers,

R.

tbarker13 02-20-2012 13:11

Quote:

Originally Posted by dave lackey (Post 1817023)
This is where we disagree...if I want it and I can afford it, I buy it. If not, I don't. No justification of anything to anyone. :angel: I don't have a guilt complex about what I do with the meager amount of money I spend each year and I don't have anyone to answer to either. I don't understand this so-called value scale at all but everyone is different!

I think a lot of people feel that way. But some of us make choices between different things we want to do. I'm not sure why you'd equate those choices with guilt.
I have two passions. Photography and competition shooting. They are both quite expensive.
When I take money from one and put it toward the other, there is never anything close to guilt. It's simply a question of where I will get the most bang for my buck. (No pun intended on the bang part.)
I never felt guilty about having a 35 pre-asph lux. But at some point, I started thinking that was a lot of money to have tied up in something I seldom used. So it no longer felt right to keep it. And so there was no justification for keeping it. But never any guilt.

tbarker13 02-20-2012 13:16

Quote:

Originally Posted by Roger Hicks (Post 1817171)
Dear Tim,

Perhaps you would care to attempt to define "just" . . . "right" . . . "a satisfactory reason or excuse"

That's all pretty subjective from where I'm standing.

Cheers,

R.

Well sure. That's the point. It doesn't matter to me where you are standing when I'm deciding if I can justify an M9 to myself. People justify purchases to themselves, based on what they feel is "just" "right" , etc.

mfunnell 02-20-2012 13:37

Just thinking: what Leica gear do I own?

Confining it strictly to "Leica" branded gear I own an M3 (picked up on eBay some years ago for a very good price), an Elmar-M 50mm/f2.8 (bought near-new at some discount from full-whack, but it wasn't one of their more expensive lenses), a Summilux 75mm/f1.4 (bought 2nd-hand before the big price increases at a still-better price as it required a CLA before it was usable), a Summitar 50mm/f2 (quite cheap 2nd hand) and a Summaron 35mm/f3.5 (also inexpensive 2nd-hand).

Adding all my other LTM and M-Mount gear (Hexar RF cameras, a Canon P and 4xKonica, 2xCanon, 1xCV and 1xCZ lenses) and I have quite a lot of good "Leica-ish" equipment which I enjoy using. Yet all this hasn't gone near to costing what I've spent on Canon Digital SLR gear.

Sure, I could easily spend more that I have for all the above on a single brand-new Leica item. But just because I can doesn't mean I have to. I've had a great deal of use of most of the above without breaking my wallet.

Sure there are things I'd like to have or try (we can all dream!). If I really pushed, I could probably afford them. (Well, with top-end Leica gear, probably only one at any given time.) I just don't want to, at least not that badly. If others do, or are in a position where they can afford whatever they want, that's no skin off my nose. In fact I'm sure it helps: they're the ones keeping Leica in business - and 2nd hand gear has to come from somewhere.

...Mike

wjlapier 02-20-2012 13:39

I don't.

ala carte M7 for me.

Alfasud 02-20-2012 14:06

I suspect that most of us reading RFF like beautiful, well made equipment almost as much as we love the pictures we make. A fine piece of equipment, for which you may have sacrificed, may make your pictures better...or not.

Mr. Fizzlesticks 02-20-2012 14:34

As far as I am concerned you haven't hurt anyone so you can do whatever you want, no justification needed.

agfa100 02-20-2012 14:56

I have been using M cameras and lenses since 1971, I bought most of my M lenses in the 70's used except for my 90mm 2.0 and 28mm 2.8 which were new in 74. You don't want to know the price I paid for them then. I have never wanted to replace any of my M lenses it was a lifetime purchase, so they were very cheap in the long run. Now I stopped using them for about 3 years and really missed them. Kept looking at M-8's but glad I waited for a GXR and M module. Remember don't ever sell your M lenses....

wbill

Turtle 02-20-2012 19:45

I personally wanted NOT to like Leica. I did not want to spend the money and did not want to enter into what some regard as an elitist realm. It was despite these concerns that I did so, purely because the 35mm RF tool gave me what I needed:

Small, easily hidden under clothing, coats etc.
Simple, rugged, reliable.
Great lenses.

I wanted something longer lasting than the CV bodies and the Zeiss Ikon was still a little untested, I had read about RF drift and other niggles that I could not deal with when stuck in Afghanistan, so I put my money down on Leica.

I bought into the system in 2006, with a great market new body, now worth what I paid for it despite going from new to used.

Were I doing it today, I would likely buy used M6s, rather than MPs and not bought any of the new products I did.

The only mistake I made with Leica was in selling gear. I sold a lens worth about $3000 more now than it was then. Stupidest thing I have ever done.

Niko 02-21-2012 00:48

This turned out as a very interesting thread indeed! :)

I feel now that itīs possible to own and enjoy using these silly priced lenses/cameras and at the same time admit that they are indeed silly priced.

I think asking these questions hardly indicates that one couldnīt enjoy his/her life ??

This isnīt buyerīs remorse, iīd say. I had that many years ago when i bought some nice lenses i couldn't really afford for my Pentax SLR... This isnīt the case now.

OddE 02-21-2012 02:02

Quote:

Originally Posted by DanOnRoute66 (Post 1816309)
DSLRs that are worth as much now as they were when you bought them? I'd like to know what those are!

-I must have been unclear; what I was trying to say was that with the exception of two DSLRs and a lens, just about all my gear can be sold for what I gave for it in the first place.

Please bear with me; English is my third language. :)

David Hughes 02-21-2012 02:34

OK, well, um, we seem to have exhausted our definitions of "justify" and now can we decide who we have to justify it to?

As I see it, it's my money, I've not had other priorities at the time and so can't see that it matters what I spend or what I spend it on. As it's not illegal yet...

Regards, David

sig 02-21-2012 03:02

Quote:

Originally Posted by David Hughes (Post 1817558)
OK, well, um, we seem to have exhausted our definitions of "justify" and now can we decide who we have to justify it to?

As I see it, it's my money, I've not had other priorities at the time and so can't see that it matters what I spend or what I spend it on. As it's not illegal yet...

Regards, David

So you justify it with 'it is my money'. I agree as long as you can justify it to yourself it is ok (as long as it is legal and so on).

I have a lot of other things to spend money on and my photograpic adventures can be done with much cheaper alternatives. So I guess I can not justify leica prices.

Paul Jenkin 02-21-2012 03:24

Balancing "needs" with "wants" is a tricky bit of economics.

Recently, I felt I wanted a second M body so that I don't have to change film or change lenses if I'm using the same film in both. Sheer convenience and sheer luxury in my opinion as I'm not a professional and I could have managed if I'd needed to.

Although I could have afforded a second body in addition to my existing stuff, I didn't want to and I was prepared to sacrifice / trade some of it to offset the cost. However, there are some bits of kit whoch, though lovely, have little attraction for me as I don't perceive the need for them - given the way I shoot and the kit I have already. A Leica Noctilux lens is in that category as far as I'm concerned as I'm more than happy with the output from my Summicron and Elmarit lenses. But that's just me....

If you can "afford" it (i.e. it doesn't cause you to have to make difficult compromises elsewhere in your life) it makes you happy and gives you the results you want, don't worry about it. If it does any of the aforementioned, it's probably not what you need and possibly not what you want.

jsrockit 02-21-2012 03:58

The M9... sold a bunch of used items (photographic [M8.2] and non) to get the cash because I wanted a digital camera that was closest to my favorite film camera, the M6. Regarding lenses, I only own a 50mm summarit 2.5 as my only Leica lens (bought used)...the rest are CV or Zeiss because I cannot justify Leica lens prices.

mfunnell 02-21-2012 04:45

Some perspective (if you'll excuse the word). There's some Leica equipment I'd love to own but can't and won't afford, but Leica isn't the only company who produces expensive lenses. In some ways I lust after this even more:

http://www.adorama.com/CA400282U.html

It may not be the kind of shot that's much appreciated around here, because it's not the kind of photo many here like to take. But as much as I like, well, Leica-like photos, I also enjoy this kind of thing:



It isn't the best photo in the world, and far from my best shot of a Rainbow Lorikeet. But it was taken this afternoon, and the lens I took it with is not a Leica lens, won't mount on a Leica camera and probably never will nor should. It's also the most expensive lens I own. The one referenced above is a lens I'd dearly love to own, but can't or won't afford.

Sometimes I think people here get too carried away. Leica isn't the only photographic company in the world which produces very expensive equipment.

...Mike

David Hughes 02-21-2012 08:11

Quote:

Originally Posted by sig (Post 1817581)
So you justify it with 'it is my money'. I agree as long as you can justify it to yourself it is ok (as long as it is legal and so on).

I have a lot of other things to spend money on and my photograpic adventures can be done with much cheaper alternatives. So I guess I can not justify leica prices.

Um, well, I was justifying not justifying as it's my money and that's the end of the matter. So I asked who I had to justify it to.

My fear is that they will knock on the door and ask me to justify buying German equipment when English is available. Pointing out that I'm Welsh and the Germanicans* were a Celtic tribe also might not get me far.

Regards, David

* The ones the Romans duffed up, not Hitler's dream world.

Kent 02-21-2012 08:19

I can't.

That's why I only own the (relatively) "reasonably" priced Leica stuff and fill the gaps with other brands. :o

anjoca76 02-21-2012 08:43

Photography for me is purely a hobby. I love it, but it's a hobby, therefore I buy used and only buy what I really want and what I can afford. I guess that means I "justify" it to myself before buying something for photography.

When it comes to music, however, which I do semi-professionally, and at times professionally, I have no problem investing in top-notch guitars, amps, etc., because I need to rely on them for my career. I need to know my guitar is well-maintained and will work and that it will sound as best as it can. I can't cut corners when it comes to music gear. Justification isn't really needed.

When I go to the classifieds and see someone selling off excess gear and see numerous lenses going for $3K and $4K apiece, I am dumbfounded that anyone could possibly have much money invested in glass, but then again, if those people actually needed them for professional work, then so be it. If you can afford it and you need it, the more power to you! Life is too short. You can't take it with you!


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