Leica M Lenses on the Sony A7 & A7R – Confusion Galore

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

When Sony first announced its 24 megapixel A7 and its 36mp A7R in full frame and with a NEX mount, poor Leicaphiles everywhere rejoiced and danced in the streets. I exaggerate a bit, but let me just state that many people who love and/or own Leica M mount lenses but were unable to or uncomfortable with shelling out $7,000 for the latest Leica M camera to put those lenses on, now saw light at the end of the tunnel and drooled over the possibility of putting those sweet lenses on a much cheaper full-frame camera. Okay, the drooling part might still be an exaggeration, but the rest is just about right.

But since the internet takes up more time for most photographers than actually taking pictures, it was not long before the second-guessing started. On the web, we can never be happy. Otherwise, we have nothing to talk about.

So, the questions emerged: Will these lenses actually perform up to their expensive standards on these Sony’s? Which adapter will be best? Is any adapter good enough? What about color shifts? How will the Sony sensors deal with wide angles, known for vignetting and distortion? Which camera is the better one for Leica lenses, the A7 or the A7R? Lots of sleepless nights, no doubt. [Read more…]

Leica Responds to Questions Lingering on the Web

This article should have a lead. I should write up the most interesting observation right here. But I won’t. Instead I tell you that this interview I had yesterday with Roland Wolff, vice president of marketing for Leica USA, covers the current questions floating about in the world – ever-wide and never-quiet – web concerning Leica. You take your pick. Choose your own lead. Go ahead:

Leica’s take on the new  Sony A7/A7r as an alternative body for Leica Lenses

“People have been trying to use our lenses on different camera systems before. There are adapters out there. We have never had a negative effect from it. In fact, we always have a positive effect. It broadened the market for us. People maybe are not ready to buy the Leica, so it’s not direct competition, but it might actually get them into the system because they might pick up a used lens or maybe even a new lens and a cheaper body. So, whenever  bodies came out in the past that accepted Leica lenses, it has always helped us.”

“It’s an interesting trend, when you look at the industry and you look at what other manufacturers do. I think Leica is being noticed at the moment, because we have been very successful with the products we have created recently. It’s interesting that even major players in the photo industry are specifically mentioning that you can do this.”

Do you agree with the notion that you can put a Leica lens on another body?

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That ‘New’ Leica Consumer Camera & Other PPE Tidbits

So, yes, Leica did announce a new camera at the PhotoPlus Expo today, as I wrote they would. But it turns out that the word ‘new’ in their communications to me was a bit of a misnomer.20131024-_DSF1623

What they did introduce today was an additional Leica D-Lux 6 in glossy black with a silver lens. And that’s it. Just a cosmetic makeover. Same camera otherwise.

Sony A7/A7r

I briefly handled the new Sony’s. Unlike so many others, I do think they look beautiful. They felt good in my medium-sized hands. They focused fast, but I couldn’t compare it with any other camera. They don’t feel as sturdy as the RX-1, even though they apparently are. A Sony rep said the RX-1 feels sturdier because the lens is an integral part of that camera, whereas on the A7/A7r the lenses are interchangeable.

[Read more…]

Leica to Announce New Consumer Camera at PPE New York

Leica will announce a new consumer camera at PhotoPlus Expo in New York next week, most likely on October 24.

The company isn’t providing any further details at the moment, other than that Roland Wolff, vice president of marketing for Leica Camera USA, will make the announcement.

Leica’s consumer models are often virtual copies of Panasonic models, but the company isn’t willing to say if that will be the case with the upcoming camera as well.

The rollout is part of a series of events Leica is planning during PPE, among others a chance to shoot with the S-system at Go Studios on West 39th Street.

More details about the events in LEICA CAMERA AT PHOTOPLUS EXPO (opens PDF).