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Archive 2013 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format
  
 
Bijltje
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p.7 #1 · p.7 #1 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


sflxn wrote:
This contributes to the Leica is for rich people idea. Compared to Leica, Zeiss is relatively cheap. Zeiss makes quality lenses that doesn't tries to add in exclusivity tax like Leica. There are a lot of famed, old lens makers out there, and it seems Leica is the only one that makes all their prices seem like bargains. I was browsing Leica R lenses on ebay for my NEX. It funny how the M lenses are atleast 2-3 x the prices of the R lenses, simply because there isn't any new cameras coming from Leica to use the R lenses.
...Show more

As I used both leica M and zeiss ZM lenses (and also ZE and R lenses), the leica M lenses really are on a different level in build quality.
So were the two german build ZM's by the way. I only tried the 15mm ZM and it felt like a leica.


Optically they both are great and it really depends on what is to your liking on what brand u take. I prefer the drawing of the leica's so sold all my ZM's. Others (like edward) like the zeiss look better and take the ZM's.

Optical performance with the leica looks was for me the big reason to go for the leica's, but the extra build quality was for me a close second. To me its worth the extra money.
And I can't say I'm really rich or a dentist.

Comparing R and M lenses I find a bit difficult. The M's are current lenses, have totally different designs (also designed to be really compact), to my knowing the M lenses have higher optical quality also because most are more recent and last, there is a bigger market with a current camera for the M lenses.
You really can't use that to say leica M lenses are to high in price.


edwardkaraa wrote:
Red, I don't intent to start a Leica vs Zeiss debate. My reply was precisely to your allegation German made ZM are the same price as Leica M, no more no less. The Sonnar 85/2 is better than the 90/2 summicron, which is quite weak wide open. I never mentioned the C-Sonnar, which is a classic design dating to the early 50s if I'm not mistaken.


Edward, do u mean the 90 cron AA or the older 90 cron?


To my understanding the 90AA vs 85/2 sonnar is like an all purpose lens which has plenty of sharpness also wide open (leica) against a good sharp but not to sharp lens ideal for portraits to give them some softness (not a non sharp lens!, but a forgiving lens) (zeiss).

Were did u find that the 90 cron is weaker wide open?

I ask because Im looking for a long M lens and the 90AA seems to me like one of the better options.



May 12, 2013 at 06:23 PM
carstenw
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p.7 #2 · p.7 #2 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


The older 90 Cron is a bit soft wide open, the 90AA not.


May 12, 2013 at 06:44 PM
edwardkaraa
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p.7 #3 · p.7 #3 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


Hi Robert,

Yes, you're right, I have confused the 90 cron with the current AA. As far as I understand the Sonnar is quite similar to the AA wide open, despite the literature claiming a softer look. The older cron is soft wide open. I was planning to buy a used one, but I didn't like the wide open performance at all. Ron took some very nice photos with the Sonnar a while back.



May 12, 2013 at 06:49 PM
Bijltje
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p.7 #4 · p.7 #4 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


Thanks both! Its clear


May 12, 2013 at 08:48 PM
warrenjrphotog
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p.7 #5 · p.7 #5 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


sflxn wrote:
No, Warren, you don't get it. Not trying to be insulting, but reading comprehension is the problem here. I'm sorry you don't understand what was written, but I'm not wasting another calorie on trying to explain what I wrote. The fact is that you're arguing with an idea in your head. An idea you think that I am supporting. I'm saying one thing, and you're hearing something completely different. You think I'm saying megapixels. You think I'm saying smartphones will catch up. You think I'm saying everyone is fine with p&s. Whatever. I'm not wasting another second of my life
...Show more

You're the one that doesn't get it.

You wrote that smartphones are starting to take the place of FF DSLR's. Please go back and read what you wrote.

End of.

All the best.



May 12, 2013 at 08:57 PM
Jack MacD
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p.7 #6 · p.7 #6 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


Interesting reading this all now that we know Sony is making a sensor that would work for the S and that the other competition have shrunken their sensor sizes down to approximately the size Leica chose 5 years ago for the S.


Mar 10, 2014 at 10:06 AM
Tariq Gibran
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p.7 #7 · p.7 #7 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


Jack MacD wrote:
that the other competition have shrunken their sensor sizes down to approximately the size Leica chose 5 years ago for the S.


The Sony sensor is the same size and aspect ratio as that used by Pentax and it is also the same size of the cheaper/ lower price option that has been offered by "the competition" for a long time now. The Leica S uses a slightly smaller sensor of different aspect ratio. So, what will be interesting to see is if it is Leica that changes the aspect ratio of a future S model to take full advantage of this Sony sensor or if they end up "cropping" it and accepting a lower MP output. Note that the higher MP, more expensive options offered by the competition are closer to full size 645. Not sure where this "shrunken their sensor" is coming from given that the smaller size of the Sony has been a lower cost option by the MF makers for a long time.



Mar 10, 2014 at 11:06 AM
Bijltje
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p.7 #8 · p.7 #8 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


Tariq Gibran wrote:
The Sony sensor is the same size and aspect ratio as that used by Pentax and it is also the same size of the cheaper/ lower price option that has been offered by "the competition" for a long time now. The Leica S uses a slightly smaller sensor of different aspect ratio. So, what will be interesting to see is if it is Leica that changes the aspect ratio of a future S model to take full advantage of this Sony sensor or if they end up "cropping" it and accepting a lower MP output. Note that the higher
...Show more

Is it clear already leica is going to use the sony MF sensor?



Mar 10, 2014 at 12:32 PM
Tariq Gibran
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p.7 #9 · p.7 #9 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


Bijltje wrote:
Is it clear already leica is going to use the sony MF sensor?


I don't believe so. Leica tends to go their own way when it comes to sensors traditionally. I don't know how possible that would be with a larger than FF 35, CMOS sensor though (is it a size their current FF 35 supplier CMOSIS could/ would supply?).



Mar 10, 2014 at 01:09 PM
 

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Jack MacD
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p.7 #10 · p.7 #10 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


When the competition offers the smaller but new sony sensor for $35,000 that doesn't seem cheaper.

If Leica chooses the Sony sensor, I suspect it will be if Sony has manufactured it to allow for retention of current pixel dimensions, not changing aspect ratio. We all know what camera makers have announced, we do not know if Sony would make a version for Leica that allows a 3x2 ratio or if the Sony sensor has a few unused pixels to allow for 3x2.

I suspect Leica will buy their own sensor or we would already have heard of a new S. The recent trade in offer suggests they want to keep selling the S between now and Photokina and a $5,000 trade in is pretty attractive. I hope that unlike the past, the new S will be available at Photokina rather than merely announced. I forget when the new factory opens up? But, I must admit, Leica seems to choose to make things available when they are up to their standards rather than when we might wish. The CS lenses were announced years before availability.



Mar 11, 2014 at 07:10 PM
douglasf13
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p.7 #11 · p.7 #11 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


It's still $9K cheaper than the IQ280. It'll be interesting if Pentax gets the same chip in the 645D II down to the $10K level.


Mar 11, 2014 at 07:17 PM
carstenw
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p.7 #12 · p.7 #12 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


It's half the resolution.

douglasf13 wrote:
It's still $9K cheaper than the IQ280. It'll be interesting if Pentax gets the same chip in the 645D II down to the $10K level.




Mar 12, 2014 at 12:33 AM
Lotusm50
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p.7 #13 · p.7 #13 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


So, how hard would it be for Sony to apply the A7 concept to a "medium format" size sensor, to produce a mirror-less medium format camera that will essentially taken anyone's medium format lens? Most the work has been done, it would just have to be scaled up (broadly - size, processing power, cache, etc.) and implemented. Further, what do you think Sony would be able to charge for it (note pricing considerations: that production volumes would be small, but a good share of the development costs are already spread across the A7 model and perhaps others). $6000, $8000, $9000? I think it could easily sell for less than $10,000.

Thoughts? What would the implications be for Leica and the "S" (given their boast about having "scale"), and the other medium format players?




Mar 12, 2014 at 01:02 AM
Tariq Gibran
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p.7 #14 · p.7 #14 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


Given what the Pentax 645D II/2014 is supposed to priced at around $10,000, It seems reasonable to think Sony could make their A7 on steroids for quite a bit less given how mechanically simple it would be by comparison. I think $5-7K would be easy for them if they tried this.

Lot's of issues though with finding even a sustainable small niche market with no native lenses nor professional support in MF land I suspect. Another possible issue: Mirrorless AF with a bigger sensor would even be worse than FF 35 mirrorless if they attempted that with native lenses. Finally, with the larger and heavier MF lenses, you might not want a very compact MF body to begin with. What I would rather see is a Sony fixed lens MF camera ala RX1 or a super-wide type fixed lens MF camera from them.





Mar 12, 2014 at 01:18 AM
jim allison
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p.7 #15 · p.7 #15 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


I think that they will truly dominate the medium format special edition market. Make mine
ostrich skin please! What arrogant fools.



Mar 12, 2014 at 01:20 AM
GoGo
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p.7 #16 · p.7 #16 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


Hello,

I just wanted to chime in here and make a few comments.

I have been a Hasselblad user for about 6 years now, I personally like the images and the look that I get from medium format.

MFD has CCD sensors, producing 16 bit files currently producing 40, 60 and 80 mega pixel images. The current Leica S is a 40MP design uses micro lenses in front of the sensor much like the H5D 40. Both Cameras are capable of delivering clean files at up to 800 ISO. Making them more vesatile/useable.

The color out of my H camera is very rich and the flesh tones are amazing, the Leica is similar. When circumstances allow I always reach for the MFD system first and DSLR gets used when I have too.

I first saw the Leica S2 at PhotoPlus Expo and in speaking to the rep asked about the sensor size 30mm x 45mm. He said the camera was designed around this size and aspect ratio (as are the lenses) and this size would not change.

If I wasn't vested in the H system I definitely would have bought the Leica, the lenses and the system are not without flaws but the lenses are superb. 35mm DSLR's will never look as good, and I think you need to shoot and see both to know.

Personally I think I need both systems because they both have their strong points.






Mar 12, 2014 at 10:52 PM
asiafish
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p.7 #17 · p.7 #17 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


I have serious S system envy, but the cost is prohibitive.


Mar 12, 2014 at 11:15 PM
Kolor-Pikker
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p.7 #18 · p.7 #18 · Leica S-System and the future of Medium-Format


asiafish wrote:
I have serious S system envy, but the cost is prohibitive.


The prices of the S lenses, especially if you buy used, aren't too dissimilar from other top-of-the-line MF glass, like Phase's SK leaf shutter line. There are two recent eBay transactions where a 70mm went for around ~2200 and a 120 macro for ~3500 or so. The lenses are built so well, there is no reason to ever buy them new, unless you're a collector and want them nice and shiny.

What is overpriced is the camera body itself, which is by no means a modern design on paper, though the camera is a joy to use in practice. From the two times I shot with the S (never used the S2), it felt astoundingly intuitive, here was a camera I've only seen in a few pics online and I can already make sense of it's operation without a manual. It could have been the ideal camera if it used 2013-14 technology and was a bit cheaper.

$23k for the S2 was just too much, and $21k for the S is still a lot of money, but if Leica continue this trend and makes a 50mp CMOS S for around $19k tops, it would be a much more reasonable option. Unlike four years ago, you can actually find lenses for the system, and they range all the way from 24-180mm, meaning you can actually buy into a system now. The lenses are perfect, the ergonomics and design is perfect, now all Leica needs to do is make the camera technologically competent and price it more in line with it's feature set.

The Pentax 645DII is certain to be $10k, Hasselblad is at $27.5k and Phase One at $35k for the back only; with this kind of lineup it makes sense for Leica to fit somewhere in-between the Pentax and Hass in the price spectrum, about the $19k I predict the CMOS S to be. This trend isn't going to change unless someone, like Sony, comes out with a really "disruptive" camera, like an up-scaled a7R as some people talk about here. However this is not especially likely in this hardware generation, because Sony only just launched a new camera system (the a7 series), and they probably won't be thinking of pushing the limits more than they already have.

I just want to make the distinction that while the next S will be cost-prohibitive for most people, it won't necessarily be overpriced in the grand scheme of things, not as much as the S2 used to be.



Mar 13, 2014 at 10:23 AM
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