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Thread: Double honors for the LEICA M7

  1. #21
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    Hi

    hey hey guys.......this post was meant to be a news posting, not a camera brand war

    i thought the discussion would have been whether the M7 deserves the awards or some other camera like the EOS 1D (or has it already won last year? not sure.)

    in any case, IMHO, if u have never tried a Leica M rangefinder body before for an extensive period, you don't know wat u're missing. I have never used the R SLR system, so i cannot comment on that.

    they are pple who have tried and genuinely hate the rangefinder system and prefer SLR viewing. These are the pple who, rightly, decided on SLRs over rangefinders. Then there are those who fell in love with the small unobstrusive picture taking machines. they end up being Leica users. Some like the lenses. Some think their Canon Ls or Nikkor AFS lenses are just as good. Some like the quietness of the shutter, or the simplicity and feel of operating one. And so on.

    Don't just criticise because others do the same. One shouldn't look merely at the prices and dismiss the Leicas. That's waaaaay too shortsighted.

    I think Mike said it very well:

    If you are a carpenter and your hammer felt bad in your hands, you would replace it right?
    If you like your oversized complicated film holding light tight boxes, fine. Enjoy your craft with it. For some of us, we prefer simple, basic, well machined and well crafted tools designed to last a long time. (how long? i have a second hand 90mm f4 Elmar lens that was made in 1957 or thereabouts. I bought it second hand and am still using it today. And it still beats the socks off most SLR lenses when it comes to sharpness and bokeh!)

    i only have one misgiving with my m6 TTL - i wish it is digital
    maybe some day.....
    David Teo
    View my work and blog at http://www.5stonesphoto.com/blog

  2. #22

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    Originally posted by Red Dawn
    ... only have one misgiving with my m6 TTL - i wish it is digital
    maybe some day.....
    LD? Leica Digital!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. #23
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    Originally posted by Red Dawn
    Hi
    I think Mike said it very well:

    If you are a carpenter and your hammer felt bad in your hands, you would replace it right?

    But would you pay $2000 for a simple hammer? Or would you pay $2000 for an electric hammer if there is one? Or would you pay $2000 for a gold plated hammer in a nice velvet box?

    Regards
    CK

  4. #24
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    Originally posted by ckiang


    But would you pay $2000 for a simple hammer? Or would you pay $2000 for an electric hammer if there is one? Or would you pay $2000 for a gold plated hammer in a nice velvet box?
    if all these items are all $2000, i'll get the gold hammer and then resell it at a higher price

    i would pay $2000 for the simple hammer than i can still use years from now, rather than the $2000 electric hammer which won't last that long, UNLESS the $2000 electric hammer can do ESSENTIAL and USEFUL things which the simple one can't, in which case i will have both. (i can't imagine wat that essential thing the electric one can do that the wooden one can't, though ).
    David Teo
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  5. #25
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    Originally posted by Red Dawn


    if all these items are all $2000, i'll get the gold hammer and then resell it at a higher price

    i would pay $2000 for the simple hammer than i can still use years from now, rather than the $2000 electric hammer which won't last that long, UNLESS the $2000 electric hammer can do ESSENTIAL and USEFUL things which the simple one can't (i can't imagine wat that would be ).
    So you are saying :
    1. You don't need fast and silent AF (aka USM)
    2. Image Stabilisation support
    3. Auto Exposure
    4. E-TTL flash exposure

    Granted, these are all NOT essential in the first place. But if you just sit down, close your eye, throw away all the emotional baggage attached to the super expensive German camera, you will find that Leicas ARE overpriced.

    This is fact.

    Considering that Leicas are plain and simple no-frills cameras, they shouldn't cost that much. Sure, they are well built and all, but so is a EOS 1V, a F5, etc. Even a Hasselblad X-pan is well built and handles nicely, and costs the same as an M6 body alone.

    When evaluating equipment, leave emotional factor out. Just like in photos. Don't try to justify for it just because you have it, have a liking for it, want to buy it etc.

    Or think of it this way. Will you buy a EOS 1V for $8000, a EF 50mm f/1.4 for $2000, a 70-200L IS USM for $5000? They are all very high tech, precision which performs very well, and for all the technology and electronics inside, should be worth well more than a brass tube with 5 glass elements inside.

    Regards
    CK

  6. #26
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    Originally posted by Red Dawn


    if all these items are all $2000, i'll get the gold hammer and then resell it at a higher price

    i would pay $2000 for the simple hammer than i can still use years from now, rather than the $2000 electric hammer which won't last that long, UNLESS the $2000 electric hammer can do ESSENTIAL and USEFUL things which the simple one can't, in which case i will have both. (i can't imagine wat that essential thing the electric one can do that the wooden one can't, though ).
    Btw, wooden hammer is known as a mallet. Cannot be used to drive nails.

    Regards
    CK

  7. #27
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    Originally posted by Red Dawn
    they are pple who have tried and genuinely hate the rangefinder system and prefer SLR viewing. These are the pple who, rightly, decided on SLRs over rangefinders. Then there are those who fell in love with the small unobstrusive picture taking machines. they end up being Leica users. Some like the lenses.
    that's me. I used rangefinder camera long time ago, but decided to go to SLR. Altough I'll miss all of those advantages of the rangefinders.

    Don't just criticise because others do the same. One shouldn't look merely at the prices and dismiss the Leicas. That's waaaaay too shortsighted.
    I think the issue here is not criticising the high price of Leica, but because somebody claimed that Leica equipments can be acquired at the comparable value as the Japanese brands. In which, such claim doesn't have a solid ground.

    Now you're saying that "one shouldn't look merely at the prices and dismiss the Leicas. That's way too shortsighted".Could you please elaborate further, what you mean with that?
    If I buy something at a price higher than other equivalent brand, logically there should be some benefit (or advantage) I expect from that product which I paid for. In this respect, could you please let me know what is the advantage of Leica equipments as compared to equivalent brands?
    Sorry, I'm not against Leica brand, I used it before, so I surely know what it is. I just feel difficult to accept your statement without further explanation on how you justify for that extra price.
    As statement like this:
    "If you are a carpenter and your hammer felt bad in your hands, you would replace it right?"
    That statement actually doesn't explain anything other than saying everybody have their own taste and preference.

  8. #28
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    Originally posted by ckiang


    So you are saying :
    1. You don't need fast and silent AF (aka USM)
    2. Image Stabilisation support
    3. Auto Exposure
    4. E-TTL flash exposure

    Granted, these are all NOT essential in the first place. But if you just sit down, close your eye, throw away all the emotional baggage attached to the super expensive German camera, you will find that Leicas ARE overpriced.

    This is fact.

    Considering that Leicas are plain and simple no-frills cameras, they shouldn't cost that much. Sure, they are well built and all, but so is a EOS 1V, a F5, etc. Even a Hasselblad X-pan is well built and handles nicely, and costs the same as an M6 body alone.

    When evaluating equipment, leave emotional factor out. Just like in photos. Don't try to justify for it just because you have it, have a liking for it, want to buy it etc.

    Or think of it this way. Will you buy a EOS 1V for $8000, a EF 50mm f/1.4 for $2000, a 70-200L IS USM for $5000? They are all very high tech, precision which performs very well, and for all the technology and electronics inside, should be worth well more than a brass tube with 5 glass elements inside.
    hey i tot we were on hammers???!

    if u read my first posting in this thread carefully, u will see i made no mention of pricing.

    yes Leicas are expensive. Even Keltzar said "......expensive in many quarters....". So nobody is denying that.

    speaking about being emotional, don't u think the pple who don't own Leicas are the more emotional ones in this thread, attacking every aspect of the "super expensive German camera" as you put it, while the Leica users, like Mike, Greg and me (my first post) aren't that vehement in pointing out the virtues of the camera?

    in fact, our general point is "you use wat pleases you, and we use wat pleases us". Fair enough?

    Even Keltzar was trying to point out that you can get good deals on used equipment. He wasn't bashing cameras of other makes.

    Whereas it's the non Leica users who goes all out to discredit the Leica line.......

    who's being emotional here?
    Nikon users?
    David Teo
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  9. #29
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    Originally posted by tsdh

    Now you're saying that "one shouldn't look merely at the prices and dismiss the Leicas. That's way too shortsighted".Could you please elaborate further, what you mean with that?
    [/i]
    it simply means u criticise something without first getting enough knowledge about it and trying it out for yourself.

    applies to the purchase of anything.


    If I buy something at a price higher than other equivalent brand, logically there should be some benefit (or advantage) I expect from that product which I paid for. In this respect, could you please let me know what is the advantage of Leica equipments as compared to equivalent brands?
    Sorry, I'm not against Leica brand, I used it before, so I surely know what it is. I just feel difficult to accept your statement without further explanation on how you justify for that extra price.
    this is going to be VERY long. i'm leaving office right now (6:30!!!)so i'll leave it for another post.


    As statement like this:
    "If you are a carpenter and your hammer felt bad in your hands, you would replace it right?"
    That statement actually doesn't explain anything other than saying everybody have their own taste and preference.
    CORRECT!

    the point i'm trying to make, as well as Mike, and Greg. And i believe, Keltzar too.....

    if everybody can accept that, then we wouldn't have pple waiting at the sidelines waiting to pounce and bash Leica at every opportunity. See wat happened to this thread.

    I've had the M for wat feels like a long time now. One of the reasons why i didn't tell many pple is i know i'll have to respond to pple like these. Pple who get too emotional when they learnt someone else has a Leica.

    why? i honestly dun understand. While i'm out burning film (now THAT'S the expensive thing, not the Leica), these pple mess themselves trying to figure out things.

    can't we just get along and take pictures?
    David Teo
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  10. #30
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    Originally posted by Red Dawn
    speaking about being emotional, don't u think the pple who don't own Leicas are the more emotional ones in this thread, attacking every aspect of the "super expensive German camera" as you put it, while the Leica users, like Mike, Greg and me (my first post) aren't that vehement in pointing out the virtues of the camera?
    Your statement is void.
    Surely you're right, if the people who use Leica are attacking Leica brand, isn't it making a fool of himself?

    in fact, our general point is "you use wat pleases you, and we use wat pleases us". Fair enough?
    That's the point. The people here want to hear from Leica users, how they justify that extra price. But seems as nobody can answer, instead of just making many excuses.

    So if you're a truly competent Leica user, please share with us how you could reasonably justify that extra cost.
    No emotional here, just logical reasons.

  11. #31
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    Originally posted by tsdh

    Your statement is void.
    Surely you're right, if the people who use Leica are attacking Leica brand, isn't it making a fool of himself?
    not quite.

    not attacking per se, but point out certain defects. Certainly many Leica users are critical of some features of their own camera. And why not? There's no perfect camera.

    Don't Nikon users lament the lack of USM like motors in consumer glass lenses? (amongst other things) Didn't Canon users whine about the ETTL flash system? (some do, at least)

    I'm not too sure wat Minolta or Pentax users whine about their own camera brands. i'm sure they do though.....

    My previous point here was that it seems to be a favourite thing to do, to zero in on this particular brand and start tearing it apart. (it must be quite gratifying...)


    That's the point. The people here want to hear from Leica users, how they justify that extra price. But seems as nobody can answer, instead of just making many excuses.
    now i'm puzzled by your seemingly rude reply. i dun think i have in anyway challenged or offended u in my earlier reply.

    it's 12:22 and i just got back home. do i have to apologise for having a life other than the posting on the net (and photography)? who's making excuses?


    So if you're a truly competent Leica user, please share with us how you could reasonably justify that extra cost.
    No emotional here, just logical reasons.
    where did that come from??! maybe if u learn to ask politely, u'll get answers. Your netiquette leaves much to be desired. Sacarsm gets you nowhere.

    and stop putting words into my mouth. i LIKE the system. i never claim i'm a "truly competent Leica user".

    just why would u need a truly competent Leica user to "justify that extra cost" as you so eloquently put it? You just need someone who likes it.

    Right. so i suppose now i have to write an article for you to "justify the cost" of a Leica, and i better do it fast and now if not i'll be "making excuses". And i have to do it cos if not, i'll not be a "truly competent Leica user". Such perfectly logical reasoning. Why didn't i think of that earlier??
    David Teo
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    Sad, sad, sad. Especially BH and CK, seeing as you two see each other every day. Arguing for the sake of arguing, or for the punters maybe?

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    Originally posted by Red Dawn
    where did that come from??! maybe if u learn to ask politely, u'll get answers. Your netiquette leaves much to be desired. Sacarsm gets you nowhere.
    It come from your statement here:
    "one shouldn't look merely at the prices and dismiss the Leicas. That's way too shortsighted".
    That's a sarcasm to others too. Following that statement, I believe it is correct for those 'shortsighted' people to ask you to explain about the justification of the cost.

    That's the reason why you have to explain. I believe you have a good reason by judging other people with that statement. So why did you retaliate? just keep cool and explain to support your own statement.

    Hopefully you can help to enlighten those 'shorsighted' so they can have vision as good as you.

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    Lets not get too excited/worked up over pieces of glass and metal. Not worth it.

  15. #35
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    Originally posted by Jed
    Sad, sad, sad. Especially BH and CK, seeing as you two see each other every day. Arguing for the sake of arguing, or for the punters maybe?
    Hi Jed,

    u know us. wat do u think?
    we were having coffee yesterday and talking......
    David Teo
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  16. #36
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    Originally posted by tsdh

    It come from your statement here:
    "one shouldn't look merely at the prices and dismiss the Leicas. That's way too shortsighted".
    That's a sarcasm to others too. Following that statement, I believe it is correct for those 'shortsighted' people to ask you to explain about the justification of the cost.

    That's the reason why you have to explain. I believe you have a good reason by judging other people with that statement. So why did you retaliate? just keep cool and explain to support your own statement.

    Hopefully you can help to enlighten those 'shorsighted' so they can have vision as good as you.
    I believe u're the more sarcastic one. Which part of my statement did u not understand? it's a simple and straight forward statement.

    if u were to compare the price of a Toyota with a Mercedes Benz, and u dismiss the Benz for being much more expensive, without considering any other aspects, then u're shortsighted. There's merely looking at prices, without considering other things such as needs, advantages, features etc.

    Not wanting to buy a Benz because u dun need such a car or because u cannot afford it after calculating the costs or because it doesn't serve your purpose is not the same as dismissing something as crap because it's priced more than other products of similar function and nothing else.

    i can't afford the best hifi system, but it doesn't mean i slam them as crap because they are more expensive than say, my simple Panasonic hifi. It's just that given financial status, it's impossible to afford them. it's also given my listening ability, i probably can't hear the difference. It also means, tat i would recommend that same highest end hifi system (if i am convinced of its other benefits and features) to someone who is really into music and who really wants the best and who can afford it. It's that simple.

    get it?

    and seeing as u are bothered by it incessantly, and just so you can sleep well tonight, based on my experience with the M system.......

    - their lenses are some of the best, wide open, corner to corner, excellent contrast, MUCH smaller size, much lighter weight, comparable price as Ls or AFS lenses. In fact, they are much better built than some of the Ls (not all Ls are ALL metal construction)

    are they better enough to warrant their price? do u need to shoot wide open? don't ask me. it's your money, not mine.

    - their lenses have a different optical signature than most other lenses from other brands, sharp point of focus areas, pleasing out of focus areas. you have to look to see, though to be fair, some Canon Ls have that look too. eg the 35 f1.4L i tried before. But the last time i checked, the 35 f1.4L is a monster in size.

    is that important to you? maybe, maybe not. can u see the difference? maybe not.

    - the Leica M system is small, unobstruive, light weight; lets u mix into crowds inconspicuously, looks like point and shoot stuff, and doesn't scream your presence.

    - extremely quiet, non alarming shutter sound. Not the quietest system in the world, but good enough for a lot of us.

    Worth the price? again, dun ask me - go try it and decide your yourself.

    - rangefinder system much more accurate, easier and faster to use than manually focusing your SLR, or manual focus SLRs.

    - rangefinder system allows continuous direct viewing, viewing outside frame which the SLR system can't give

    is that important? not so if u're shooting landscapes, studio and other static stuff. so make up your own mind about it.

    - Leica M bodies (and lenses) are extremely well engineered, and can last many years. I've already quoted my example of my 1955-60s 90mm f4 Elmar, which is still working perfectly well today and certainly looks like it will for the next 50 years. Lots of pple today are still using (in fact a lot prefer) M3s and M2s.

    - Leica M stuff hold their value very well. Even if u're not a collector, this simple fact means you lose less when u trade up or upgrade.

    - Simpler to work with, no messy electronics, no "hold this button while turning that knob" stuff, jsut plain simple back to basics operation, and everything feels good and right.

    This is of course subjective. Some pple actually LIKE electronics in their cameras, to the point of wanting to program them. YMMV.

    - No batteries needed (even the electronic M7)

    the standard disclaimer - YMMV.

    Again, i like to stress - You use wat pleases you, and we do likewise.

    Phew, and i tot this is supposed to be in the News section....
    David Teo
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    Originally posted by kongg
    Lets not get too excited/worked up over pieces of glass and metal. Not worth it.
    actually, hey i tot it was over a hammer.......
    David Teo
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  18. #38

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    Hmmm, have not been following this thread (because I have no interest in Leica - no, really).

    Seems that my humble Coolpix 700 fulfills all the criteria which sum up the advantage of Leicas for street photography. It's small and unobtrusive, takes pictures in complete silence, has a real sharp lens, autofocuses accurately (OK, OK no manual focus. Big deal), and metering is spot-on. Heck, you can even use Photoshop to convert it to B&W and add grain is you like it that way.

    One day they'll make a digital interchangeable lens camera with a lens system designed for the smaller CCD rather than the current 35mm SLR system so that there'll be no 1.6 or 1.3 zoom factor. The lenses will be tinier, lighter and come with beautiful bokeh and narrower effective DOF. My guess is that it will be Minolta or Ricoh or (yes!) Sigma (one of the smaller manufacturers rather than Nikon or Canon). It won't even be an SLR in the sense we know it, but continuous preview, just like a rangefinder.

    [Stereotypical comment on Leica users removed]
    Last edited by StreetShooter; 31st August 2002 at 11:58 AM.

  19. #39
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    Hmmm...somehow, I sense a trail of stereotypical comments on Leica users.

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    Originally posted by Jed
    Sad, sad, sad. Especially BH and CK, seeing as you two see each other every day. Arguing for the sake of arguing, or for the punters maybe?
    What do you think? I love to bring up issues which I think people might have missed out.

    No doubt the Leicas are well engineered, well built, precision cameras and lenses. But will the Leica users just take a moment to think about the pointers below. Remove all emotional baggage and whatever sentiments you have. Evaluate the camera system as a whole, in its own right.

    I still maintain that they are overpriced. Excellent build, excellent lenses, yes, but overpriced. It is like paying for a Mercedes and getting a well built tricycle.

    Case in point, the M7, costing more than say a Nikon F5 or Canon EOS 1V, has a lot less features (not that you need all of them), and is technologically a lot more backward.

    The most direct comparsion in the form of a mechanical camera would be the Nikon FM3A. Both have aperture priority autoexposure. But while the FM3A can operate without batteries at all shutter speeds and even trigger the flash, the M7 can only operate at 1/30 and 1/60 when the batteries die. And flash does not work, somehow. All these at the price of maybe 4 Nikon FM3As.

    Lenses wise, it's similar. Well built, yes. Sharp, yes. Nice bokeh, maybe. But overpriced as well. Name me any other camera maker's 35mm f/2 that costs nearly $2k, and any maker's 50/1.4 that costs more than $1k.

    The point I was trying to make is that the Leica users probably spent too much in their camera, that they now try to justify to themselves the cost. But it just doesn't hold water.

    Regards
    CK

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