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View Poll Results: Poll: Has Leica alienated photographers?
Yes, I feel alienated by Leica's High Prices 144 40.91%
Maybe, sometimes yes, sometimes no 68 19.32%
No, I want Leica quality and that means Leica prices 93 26.42%
YES, I am alienated by Leica targeting bling marketing (late poll addition) 47 13.35%
Voters: 352. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-01-2015   #41
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Funny how people read what they want to read.

Not a leica bashing thread. Not a price bashing thread.

Some interesting points made throughout. Just curious that's all.

I'm sure one can find quality work made with modern leica gear by photographers who get paid fairly.

It seems that Leica rides on an old heritage, that's all.
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Old 10-01-2015   #42
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I was thinking today about the prices of Leica bodies and lenses today, and the amount of alternatives available that, when pixel comes to pixel, deliver the image.

In 1969, an M4 with a 35mm and 50mm sum micron set would set you back about $700. In today's dollars, about $4600.

The modern equivalent will cost you just under $12.000 at Adorama.

Leica relies today on a heritage built by working photographers of all different walks in order to sell what can only be understood as luxury products.

In doing so, I wonder if they've not completely alienated a generation of photographers who now turn to alternatives?
And in 1969 you could buy a Nikon F with a 50 1.2 lens for just a little more than $400. So top o the line Nikon was less than half the price of Leica M. Now Leica digital M is about the same price as top of the line digital Nikons and Canons. So wouldn't that make Leica the better deal. What was once over twice the price is now about equal? All digital stuff is way to expensive but it is what it is.

I remember when I bought my Canon F-1s the new ones in 1983 Leica M was almost twice the price. When I bough my Blads in 1986 they were about 5 times as much as Canon F-1s. It's all relative. Leica has aways been expensive when compared to the alternatives.
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Old 10-01-2015   #43
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The digital Leicas are probably too expensive for what they offer.
But not at all the film Leicas:
Paying about 4000 for a camera you can use 50 and more years if you only take a little bit care for it, which you then even can give to your children for using before you pass away.....
Well that is an excellent deal!
A film Leica is a "once in a lifetime" camera, and therefore considering its lifespan a very cheap camera with excellent price-performance ratio.

Cheers, Jan
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Old 10-01-2015   #44
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I look at digital cameras the same way that I look at computers.

And that raises a difficult question for me, is there such a thing as a luxury computer?
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Old 10-01-2015   #45
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I got lucky and made great deals on used Leica gear a few years ago and never changed since. What's most important ? My main interest is making picture and having fun doing so, not chasing the most exciting new toy.

Also, for all those doing inflation math, let me know how salaries and purchasing power have progressed (or regressed) over the same period of time.
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Old 10-01-2015   #46
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I look at digital cameras the same way that I look at computers.

And that raises a difficult question for me, is there such a thing as a luxury computer?

My belgium relatives have some Apple Pro Station. Huge price tag and it was needed for work. They are using it as only home PC now and I never seen video so good from Web camera as from their Mac on Skype connection to Canada. It is kind of luxury to use professional computer for home needs.

Mac laptops seems to be luxury comparing to regular laptops. With Macs to be more limited in terms of use.

Leica rebranded Panasonic cameras seems to be in luxury category.
RF aren't, because where is no other digital and film (soon) RF in-production cameras on the market.
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Old 10-01-2015   #47
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And that raises a difficult question for me, is there such a thing as a luxury computer?
Apple Watch Edition effectively is a $10000+ wrist computer.
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Old 10-01-2015   #48
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I do black and white and now use M246. Below is my math to justified it ... had I stick to 35mm films, it will cost me:

Development: $10 a roll development x 10 rolls a month x 12 months x 5 years (planned) = $6,000
And I can double this price for contact sheets and test sheet printing.

My current iMac handles the files nicely. I have the following new computer related expense:
New external hard drive for file backup: $100
Lightroom on Creative Cloud: $10 a month x 12 months a year.

So, has Leica alienated photographers? Not me!

John
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Old 10-01-2015   #49
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Has Leica alienated photographers?

How would I know?

But this is what I do know.

They appear to be profitable when other companies are losing money.

They continue to make and sell digital M cameras.

They continue to make and sell film M cameras.

They continue to expand their product line.

They worked hard to correct a problem with a sensor from one of their digital cameras that was introduced 5 years ago.

And every now and then they produce a limited edition version that we can all make fun of.

If that is alienating photographers than I think I want more of it.
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Old 10-01-2015   #50
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i actually think it's both ways. why do you think used leica gear is so expensive ? - bcos someone is willing to pay the money. i never understood how a 40 years old summicron is going from 1000-2000, but that's probably just me. and there's always the wonderful zeiss glass which in some cases is even better than leica ( optically speaking ). Leica is what it is bcos it got cult status among the photo market, and they make it to the digital world. Not bcos it's better than anything else and i actually mean it. It's not 50's anymore and the market is full of options. But, ofc a Leica camera is a pleasure to use - that's something you can't ignore
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Old 10-01-2015   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks View Post
"Has Leica alienated photographers"

As the company appears to be doing quite well at the moment, the only easy way to get a "yes" answer is to restrict "photographers" to "people of whom I approve".

Cheers,

R.
If "doing quite well at the moment" is the only requirement for determining a companies customer satisfaction and therefor viability, then you are correct. If not, then a "yes" answer needs little restriction to obtain.
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Old 10-01-2015   #52
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Professional photographers moved away from range finder cameras during the 60's.
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Old 10-01-2015   #53
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Certain types of professional photographers have moved away from SLR cameras during the last few years.

John
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Old 10-01-2015   #54
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I remember reading about a PJ who would use two or three compacts, tied together on a lanyard, so that he could operate quickly. 3 shot burst on each one, pick up the next one during buffer and carry on. Her covered Iraq 2 for big publications. May have won a prize. Can't remember the name.
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Old 10-01-2015   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bonatto View Post
I remember reading about a PJ who would use two or three compacts, tied together on a lanyard, so that he could operate quickly. 3 shot burst on each one, pick up the next one during buffer and carry on. Her covered Iraq 2 for big publications. May have won a prize. Can't remember the name.
Here you go:

http://www.robgalbraith.com/multi_pa...id=7-6468-7844

Story stuck out to me at the time too... I found this article because I remembered the cameras used.
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Old 10-01-2015   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hsg View Post
I look at digital cameras the same way that I look at computers.

And that raises a difficult question for me, is there such a thing as a luxury computer?
Oh yes, it's called the RiMac:


L1024524 by unoh7, on Flickr

the 5k retina iMac, and it's worth every penny you pay, just like the 50 APO.


L1024539 by unoh7, on Flickr
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Old 10-01-2015   #57
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Quote:
Certain types of professional photographers have moved away from SLR cameras during the last few years
Indeed and those who did investigated new avenues. Very few embraced Leica. See above. Cheers, P
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Old 10-01-2015   #58
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But it is returning to that original Leica ideal. Simple, small, quick, quiet, point and shoot. Anticipate the shot. 8mp file size is good enough. Just build it tough so it holds up and make it repairable.
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Old 10-01-2015   #59
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I wish they would make a rangefinder just like my m6..weight and size wise that is..but with fully articulated screen and full vid capabilities..I may end up getting the m240 eventually..maybe..
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Old 10-01-2015   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ned Bojic View Post
I'm talking used. Sorry for the confusion.

But let's not forget; just before the M8 came out Leica wasin big trouble. They were offering huge discounts on lenses. Bankruptcy was latent, present.

Kauffman's strategy was a price hike to support an extremely uncertain digital adventure. Back then, a Full Frame M was impossible to make. The official story from Leica was that a FF M leica would simply never exist. The director was fired shortly thereafter.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaapv View Post
Source please. There was never any statement from Leica to that effect.
Mr. Lee was fired because of his perpetual upgrade program ideas and for clashing with the corporate culture.
Perhaps you are being too literal? There were many statements from Leica, to the effect that even the M8 was impossible. However as you note - Leica never said "never."
Start here for sources: http://www.nemeng.com/leica/004fa.shtml
Lee was fired, for reasons which have never really gone public. But the reason atributed by Ned comes from here: http://www.wired.com/2009/03/leica-wants-to/

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Last year the former Leica CEO Steven Lee suggested that the company would be making a full frame M8. Leica fired him.
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Old 10-01-2015   #61
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If "doing quite well at the moment" is the only requirement for determining a companies customer satisfaction and therefor viability, then you are correct. If not, then a "yes" answer needs little restriction to obtain.
Dear John,

OK. Enter the restrictions you'd like. Including what sort of buyers you think should be allowed to buy cameras.

Cheers,

R.
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Old 10-01-2015   #62
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Originally Posted by SuperUJ View Post
I do black and white Development: $10 a roll development
Develop them at home and it will cost you $1.8 per film.
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Old 10-01-2015   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks View Post
"Has Leica alienated photographers"

As the company appears to be doing quite well at the moment, the only easy way to get a "yes" answer is to restrict "photographers" to "people of whom I approve".

Cheers,

R.
That's a bit too quick IMHO. Restricting it to 'people who own a (substantial part of their) income through photography' would also mean a 'yes' answer to the question and that's what I meant.
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Old 10-01-2015   #64
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Develop them at home and it will cost you $1.8 per film.
Living in New York City, I tried, from bath tub to darkroom rental for years. I still need to print. Adding my time together to develop and print, I found it not worth it any more. Between outsourcing the film development, or digital workflow, I went with the latter. It's a more viable solution for me in the City.

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Old 10-01-2015   #65
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All I have to say is that I'm glad I'm not into cars, watches, golf, or Air Jordans. Leica, film or digital, as a hobby, is not extremely expensive comparatively.

Has Leica alienated photographers? Leica might have alienated the professionals. But then again, I'm not sure if rangerfinders would even appeal to the professionals nowadays.
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Old 10-01-2015   #66
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First, please define what a photographer is, in reference to your statement.

If that means anyone who takes pictures, well, 95% of "photographers" have never even heard of Leica.

If that means professionals who earn their income with photography in a commercial setting, then 95% of them use tools that are quicker, easier, and give as high or higher quality images for less money. That's just business.

I'll ignore the category of "artists" as that's a different kettle of fish.

It's no wonder they go for the luxury goods / passionate photo enthusiast market.

I own and use an M9 and while it's my favorite digital camera, my Nikon FF DSLRs totally thrash it in every meaningful comparison except size/weight. I enjoy it for what it is. But I'm not 100% commercial so I can afford to splurge on my passion for RFs. Otherwise, I certainly wouldn't own it.
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Old 10-01-2015   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HHPhoto View Post
... A film Leica is a "once in a lifetime" camera, and therefore considering its lifespan a very cheap camera with excellent price-performance ratio.

Cheers, Jan
Hi,

I hate to disagree because I agree with the rest of this post but dare I mention (again) the Minilux 02 Error? I now use a mini 3 for my carry everywhere camera but not as often as I should or would like as I fear it will go the way of the Minilux...

Regards, David
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Old 10-01-2015   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperUJ View Post
I do black and white and now use M246. Below is my math to justified it ... had I stick to 35mm films, it will cost me:

Development: $10 a roll development x 10 rolls a month x 12 months x 5 years (planned) = $6,000
And I can double this price for contact sheets and test sheet printing.

My current iMac handles the files nicely. I have the following new computer related expense:
New external hard drive for file backup: $100
Lightroom on Creative Cloud: $10 a month x 12 months a year.

So, has Leica alienated photographers? Not me!

John
Hi,

Where and how do you get the free printers (they don't last long) and the free paper and the free ink cartridges?

Regards, David
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Old 10-01-2015   #69
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I see value in the Leica M rangefinder design for certain shooting situations. And I am a huge fan of the way a good CCD renders a color image. So for me, I had to cough up the money for a Leica digital full frame camera (in my case an M-E), I bought a new one because I wanted a warranty to fall back on. It was more expensive than I would have liked, but in reality it was about 3/4 the price of the Nikon D4 I use for work.

Prior to the M-E, the last new Leica equipment I bought was in 2000, a brand new M6-TTL and 50 Lux, which coincidentally the package came out to be the same price as the M-E. All my other Leica gear was bought used. I have a Leica shooting package now that I hope to keep for as long as I'm making images. It fits very nicely with the personal projects I love, projects over a longer term where I immerse myself with the subjects.

I just finished a four year project, shot entirely with Leica M rangefinders, that was published on the iBooks Bookstore this week. I believe the project would not have come out the same had I used an SLR camera system, as I believe the Leica became almost invisible between myself and my subjects.

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Old 10-01-2015   #70
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Hi,

Where and how do you get the free printers (they don't last long) and the free paper and the free ink cartridges?

Regards, David
I don't own a photo printer. For proofing, I now do it on screen. With a monitor, I don't need test prints any more. The final prints were not in my equation for comparison between the two workflows.

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Old 10-01-2015   #71
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That's a bit too quick IMHO. Restricting it to 'people who own a (substantial part of their) income through photography' would also mean a 'yes' answer to the question and that's what I meant.
Really? I know quite a few professionals who own at least one Leica. Also, who says a "photographer" has to earn a living with a particular camera? Or that it must only be with one camera? I've earned more over the years with my Leicas than my Linhofs. Does this mean I have been "alienated" by Linhofs?

Sure, frame the question (and definition) to suit your own prejudices and it's easy to get whatever answer you like. Which was my point, really. Of course, there are those who would say that there are no "photographers" in Arles -- which makes the number of Leicas there a bit odd, really.

Cheers,

R.
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Old 10-01-2015   #72
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i agree with Helen: As for Moi, I'm still content with a Leica M Film Body, as for digital still looking…..

outside of the M5/M6 though for me the x100 for digital is doing it for me and hoping the XProII was worth waiting for…….D.
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Old 10-01-2015   #73
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Quote:
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I don`t think Leica has alienated people.
Still selling plenty of cameras and compared to the cost of other pastimes the cost of a Leica is very reasonable.

Yes ,you can buy cheaper cameras ... so buy them and stop worrying about the price of Leica.
+1! it is all relative is it not.
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Old 10-01-2015   #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Hicks View Post
Really? I know quite a few professionals who own at least one Leica. Also, who says a "photographer" has to earn a living with a particular camera? Or that it must only be with one camera? I've earned more over the years with my Leicas than my Linhofs. Does this mean I have been "alienated" by Linhofs?

Sure, frame the question (and definition) to suit your own prejudices and it's easy to get whatever answer you like. Which was my point, really. Of course, there are those who would say that there are no "photographers" in Arles -- which makes the number of Leicas there a bit odd, really.

Cheers,

R.
I don't have any prejudices on Leica (anymore), Roger. I liked the film M's, until I found out my photography improved by refraining from them. I simply ran into this thread posing the question and I answered it. Yes Leica has alienated me and yes it was due to the price they charge for their digital gear, a price I cannot pay and would not pay considering the quality it gets me. And yes I think I'm not alone. And yes I'm right on all counts and yes your opinions may vary and yes that's okay.

I don't know if you feel alienated by Linhof, do you? Wanna start a thread on it and see what others feel? Your prerogative!

Let's not try to reason a simple opinion into extremes to prove its right or wrong, it's really not worth it. No need to declare absolute truths here, IMHO.
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Old 10-01-2015   #75
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I was very active and passionate about it all back then, so I'm very accurate in what I am saying. There's no need to moderate what I am saying. No, Really. The reasons I have attributed do not come from your wired link. This is a bit insulting.

Lee was fired for public BS such as the impossibility of a FF sensor, the infinite sensor upgrade program that was about to be launched, the free iR cut filters and obviously not running the company properly.
Why insulting? Wired just agreed with what everyone was saying, they were not in the least an original source.

We all got our information, and mis-information, from the press and interviews which to this day, seem self-serving on both sides. No way to know where the truth lies, and to top it off Lee never went to court.

This 2008 Wall Street Journal article has always seemed the most balanced to me. But it too, is not nuanced. http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB122152...9231?mg=id-wsj

Why Lee was there at all, is the same question Steve Jobs must have wondered about John Scully.
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Old 10-01-2015   #76
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Leica appeals to everybody, but mostly to those who can afford them.
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Old 10-01-2015   #77
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It could be that the (new) China market for Leica allowed them or encouraged them to aim at ventures that have more to do with being a profitable company than being a cult company alone.
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Old 10-01-2015   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by literiter View Post
Leica appeals to everybody, but mostly to those who can afford them.
Please don't presume to speak for everyone.
In the 38 years that I have been photographing, I have never, ever had the slightest desire to own any Leica equipment, despite being able to afford it.
Whether or not they have alienated photographers is a question I am unable to answer, because I was, and still am basically indifferent to, and have no interest in, their equipment.
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Old 10-01-2015   #79
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Quote:
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Leica appeals to everybody, but mostly to those who can afford them.
As noted -- not to all of us. The black paint M6's I had were nice, but still did not hold a candle to a black paint Nikon S2.
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Old 10-01-2015   #80
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It could be that the (new) China market for Leica allowed them or encouraged them to aim at ventures that have more to do with being a profitable company than being a cult company alone.
a la Mercedes, Porsche, and BMW?

Luxury Goods. Swiss standard of living. We have made it!
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