Not for me; for that sort of money,$ 8000 for the Monochrom + $7000 for the new 50mm 'cron
May 14 2012, 2:28 AM
My wife could go on long luxurious holiday ! But then I'm not a pro, or a Mr.Moneybags or a B&W fiend,so although I think the output of the Monochrom and its hi Iso performance is very good, (due to the fact that it has no colour filter I gather,)I feel it's very much a product for a "niche" market .
Only trouble is , even the Leica M9 P is a product for a "niche" market , hence Leica could shortly or eventually, face the prospect of disappearing into a niche in the wall, which to me would be a great pity,since it is such an iconic and historic brand.
Casey (Login shimokita) Photography forum moderator
I am liking what I have read
May 14 2012, 4:23 AM
and although I will stick with film for now, I can appreciate what Leica has done here. Some appeal to the traditional users, yet a small push to move to digital. There was a write up of the launch here in Tokyo (Ginza Leica Store), that sounded like it was fun... The private test images from that event are really good... but like the reviewer wrote, there is no film advance lever .
I have to read more on the (possible) use of filters with the M9-M, but I understand that the "experience" is very similar to the traditional approach.... I believe it will be a success in financial terms, and I do like their attitude with the product.
It also opens up a new area of big prints as a way of displaying the results. Maybe easier for non-pros to print. Leica printer in the future... hahaha. But seriously, the dynamic range of the digital capture is a very nice bridge to alternative print methods that use a "digital negative".
Quite, in fact. If I had that kind of money, or maybe more, I'd go for both (M9 and Monochrom). Why not? I'd love to get my hands on one and limit myself. It's true that with time one can "identify" what would work as a B&W, even if taken in color. The price issue, though... I've even considered the Fuji Pro, (thinking it would do me some good to re-learn the rangefinder method) but I won't go for it. Things are a bit tight. I would love to go out with more than one or two cameras, but there are back issues too
What I don't like, and can't think of any good excuse except making money, are all those special editions (the Chinese ones and the Hermes - don't know if there are others). It seems to me that Leica does a disservice to itself by doing this since Leica cameras are legendary workhorses and not "jewels". But then again, I have the same conflict with watches: Rolexes with diamonds and all that... So maybe I'm too purist.
The Monochrom is a serious tool, as far as I can understand. Very courageous move also. I do wish it would succeed and maybe followed by other manufacturers. Maybe a Fuji, less expensive wannabe?
I guess Leica understands very well that it is a serious camera manufacturer AND also, for better or for worse, a player in the luxury goods space.
I think the Hermes type ltd eds have its place catering to people with a very particular sense of self (again, for better or for worse).
Besides, they really don't look bad and come with extras. If I'm a high-society photographer, a limited ed would serve me well.
I also agree that the Monochrom is for serious photographers as well... and not just the rich types. I plan to get one somewhere down the road. Will let the early adopters do the honors of experiencing all the bugs first
I'd skip the Fuji x-pro if you want the real deal rangefinder experience. A pre-owned M8.2 would be a good start for it and won't break the bank... relatively. The lens will. Hahaha!!!
I don't have anything against Leica as a manufacturer and its equipment, of course, but I think the chinese special editions are made specifically to take advantage of the Chinese nouveau rich. The whole thing is turning into madness. New tall and luxurious buildings are being built right beside shacks, designed by Western architects. I think China is facing a difficult social transformation too fast and inequality is being made more and more noticeable.
On the other hand, the Hermes edition is beautiful, but I don't know how much an owner of this one will really use it. Walter da Silva should design affordable cameras too, why not? The connection between a good designer and an expensive product sends a wrong message for design as a whole.
The Leica attitude (and again, I respect Leica a lot) is sort of perverse in much the same way the Bauhaus designed products became the opposite of what it was supposed to be. Good design became a luxury. One has to wonder about this because this was not the general intention. So, in this sense I applaud Apple (even though their products could be a little less expensive, but they are definitely affordable, judging by the number of sales). I wonder if Leica could lower its prices and I don't have information about this. Which reminds me that once we were going to design a BMW dealer building here. All the "design" clues and requirements were sent to us in a binder, some of which were not very appropriate for our climate, but they wouldn't budge. Anyway, the marque representative here confessed that they could sell the cars cheaper but they wouldn't do it because that was part of their strategy: exclusivity.
But there are other things I wonder about. The 5D Mark III price, for example. Or even the Fuji Pro's.
All these product have a market. Definitely. We're in the middle of an economic crisis but prices won't go down.
...But I'd still love to own a Monochrom. Is there a lens adapter for Contax G2 lenses somewhere?
i'm not sure that the leica M is a "good" design for most. visually, yes. but using it? nothing beats a point and shoot camera after all. so right off the bat, it will not cater to the general public. the great majority don't care for manual focus, bw pics, and prime lenses, and for good reason.
i don't know how their numbers look like but i'm thinking the prices on the M or the S2 suggest also that they sell in VERY LOW volumes. they are nowhere near Canon/Nikon numbers. even if they wanted to mark it down, i'm not sure that they could.
Besides, the Leica is so embedded in the culture that just seeing an image of it reads "camera", which I think is part of what good design is. But looking at things such as the new Pentax K-01 designed by Mark Newson (of the Ikepod watches) makes one wonder why things are not "shaken" more often. It still looks like a camera, but it's more friendly that the regular camera. And, here's an affordable design by a renowned designer.
Leica is a very low volume seller though where the Ms are concerned compared to the Canons and Nikons and that may have an effect on their prices. Of course, I also probably got carried away with the "made by hand" marketing fluff of Leica. Hahaha!!!
I'd like to see direct digital rangefinder competition from Canon and Nikon, to be honest. Or even Bessa. And maybe Hasselblad? Ha! Now that would be a nice one on one right there.
Who's to say indeed. The big boys, at least Nikon, eventually got to offering a cam without an AA filter and I am sure that it was because of Leica.
The BW thing might take a longer while simply because most think that they already have that option anyway in their cams.
I was converting color photographs yesterday to BW and I was thinking to myself how good can it still get with the Monochrom? I mean, the current state of BW is already fantastic. Leica lenses paired with a good sensor hitting the soft spot in that time of day will produce technically great images.
So I totally agree about PROs showing us the limits of this new sensor and also how far it is from what can be done today. i'm thinking it won't be that great great.
Btw, I was looking at that photograph that you developed of my daughter yesterday in light of this Monochrom thing. Totally different worlds. I was actually thinking yesterday, "I wish I had Jeff for a neighbor"