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Herr Barnack

T, X2 or X-Vario? Which would you choose and why?

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There is currently a healthy demand for secondhand M9 cameras with dealers posting 'Wanted' adverts on their websites - so the ME might not be a suitable compromise for many aspiring M digital photographers.

 

The 'T' is an interesting but relatively 'unknown' option because we have yet to receive quantity feedback regarding its capabilities as an everyday practical camera. But given the success of the MM I would not be surprised if a 'T-M' camera surfaces at Photokina -especially if MM production becomes uneconomical.

 

The M240 is only just becoming widely available after many months of production delays and is now likely push the ME into the 'also ran' category for many Leica enthusiasts. Given the success of the MM an MM 240 (if possible with a CMOS sensor) could be even more successful.

 

The X series now competes with the 'T' but they do need updating to compete with other manufacturers' offerings - especially as regards the X2's slow AF speed. I have an X1 and XV but if I didn't, and I needed a Leica APS camera, I'd probably choose a 'T' - because it can be configured as a pocketable quality P&S - or a system camera capable of use with c/u accessories e.g. 'M' or 'R' bellows. The latter is important for me but maybe of no interest to others.

 

However, I continue to find new uses for my XV and have not yet had my "££££-worth" out if it - so as long as it continues to produce the required images I'll stick with it for the time being rather than trade it for a 'T'.

 

All in all we are spoilt for choice - but I cannot imagine the current X series models or the ME remaining popular choices as new cameras. I'm also intrigued by the fact that some X2 users still maintain that their X1 cameras give better results - despite the X1's lesser pixel count.

 

dunk

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To be frank i am totally confused. My Leica X1 seems to be producing photographs as good as M 240 (i searched in Flickr) if not better !!!!!

 

I want a full frame camera i want to use 28mm and 50 at f.2, but i have yet to find a sterling photo in Flickr.

 

Type "Leica X1 Portrait" then "Leica M Portrait"

 

See for yourself.

 

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To be frank i am totally confused. My Leica X1 seems to be producing photographs as good as M 240 (i searched in Flickr) if not better !!!!!

 

I want a full frame camera i want to use 28mm and 50 at f.2, but i have yet to find a sterling photo in Flickr.

 

Type "Leica X1 Portrait" then "Leica M Portrait"

 

See for yourself.

 

 

 

No where near at the pixel level

Possible at the web site level

But then Ming Thein even manages to process a coolpix l25 within an inch of its life for the web:

 

http://blog.mingthein.com/2015/02/18/review-mystery-camera/

 

Camera revealed here

http://blog.mingthein.com/2015/02/26/the-mystery-camera-revealed/

 

Best Rgds

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I am 68 years of age now and I used all of my life Leica.

M 3, 4, 6, 7, 8.2 with several summicron and summilux lenses and in the end also a 1.0 Noctilux.

The last M would not become my friend and I switchend to Nikon. I now have a D810 and I love it but it is rather hefty.

For two weeks I own a Leica T (beside The Nikon) with the summicron and the telezoom and it gives me the old leica pleasure again. Simple, light, direct and typical Leica pictures.

For me no more M, I love my T!

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T vs. X2 vs. X-Vario?

 

My choice has been the T for its implementation of modern technology (Visoflex 020) and the new user interface, which turned out to be rather well done. I have struggled for a while whether or not I should buy an M8.2 again. The M9 is a different budget, as is the M (240). Those will have to wait.

The T basically only lacks the rangefinder, otherwise it probably beats the M8 in every aspect (except the 1.33 vs. 1.5 crop maybe). Unless you really want the rangefinder, you'd be better off with a T - with or without M lenses. I am not getting younger and the large LCD is a just a joy to use.

 

The X-Vario was disqualified only because it still uses the EVF-2, which I didn't like on the Olympus and which I don't like any better on a Leica. Otherwise, I think the X-Vario is a fine camera and the limited aperture range can be managed.

 

The X2 is the oldest and one can tell. I had both the X1 and the X2. My gut feeling tells me that the X1 pictures were magical, but the X2 not so much.

In any case, my choice for a fixed focal length Leica would be the X (113) - better lens, better Visoflex (020 version), much better screen.

 

It comes down to:

- T for lenses

- X for fixed focal

 

Interestingly, the studio images on dpreview show a very noticable resolution/sharpness advantage for the Leica T compared to the X - can anyone comment on this?

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In trying to get a handle on Leica's product strategy, a few questions have been rolling around in my mind; here they are for your consideration (due to the prohibitively high cost of the S system, I have deliberately omitted it from consideration) -

 

1: If for whatever reason the M240, M Monochrom or M-E are not options for you and you were to choose between the T, the X2 or the X-Vario cameras - which of these three would you choose, and why?

 

2: Are the M240 and M Monochrom to be looked at as Leica's premier cameras, the holy grail cameras for the most passionate/obsessed/committed Leica shooter?

 

As sacrilegious as this may sound, I think that the M is actually not a professional camera. It is more of an enthusiast's camera. It is built like a professional camera in build quality but when it comes down to actually shooting professionally, with only a few exceptions people use a camera other than the M. Even people who shoot other things professionally, may want a Leica or shoot a Leica personally because they like photography. Also, a notable number of people who buy and use Leicas are people who make/made their money some other way and just like photography, they are enthusiasts.

 

I would say the the S and their new C series lenses which won the Oscar are Leica's professional products.

 

 

3: Is the M-E to be considered a second tier camera?

 

 

As part of the tactic that they use to maintain the high price of the new product that they currently sell, Leica must maintain the price of the used market. By continuing to sell the older model under a new name, this supports the used market. In essence it says, "the old camera is worth this much". It makes it so that the value of the M type 240 doesn't drop precipitously when the M type 260 comes out. It is part of what they do to maintain their brand. I think that I first started to understand this when I listened heard this: Episode 584: What The LeBron? : Planet Money : NPR

 

 

4: And are we to regard this trio of Leica cameras as their "midrange" digital cameras?

 

5: Are the T, X2 and X-V enthusiast's cameras for the market segment who wants a high performance, small but capable digital camera who cannot or will not spring for an M240 or MM?

 

 

The X and X-V are both large sensor compact cameras. Although not widely recognized as such because they didn't crunch it into a tiny form factor the way that the Japanese did, Leica basically invented the idea of the large sensor compact cameras. Now the rest of the industry have discovered that segment and most of the Japanese vendors have put something out which is a large sensor compact. e.g. LX100 RX100Mark3 and RX1

 

While the M is wrapped in tradition and the rangefinder concept and can't wander too far from that reservation without losing its essence, the T and the T mount are designed to be a platform where Leica can innovate. While the other camera vendors drown in feature-itus and grow ugly and warty with buttons everywhere, the consumer's relationship with technology has changed with the introduction of the iPhone. People no longer accept ugly complexity as required for capability and want simple while not sacrificing functional capability. How to tackle the collapsing camera market (video) | Photo Rumors The T just set a new standard for the camera industry with regards to user interface. How many times has a review said, "This is the camera that Apple (or Steve Jobs) would make." For Leica because of their price, their position as a luxury brand, and because of their limited R&D budget and production capacity, this may be an insider's game. They maintain their position in the camera industry and continue to be considered to be innovative by insiders but other companies will come along with products aping their innovation and sell many times more units.

 

The T is also a platform where Leica can gain experience with new production techniques. The M designed decades ago is a difficult camera to build and requires a lot of trained labor to assemble. The T on the other hand is designed to explore modern production techniques to bring the labor costs down to so that Leica will ultimately have the option to maintain their margins while potentially lowering their price to increase market share.

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M + 35mm sumicron some day. Its my dream.

For now X Vario without any doubt. The X vario interface is simply delicious, is what a photographer expect about controls, dials , continuos mode, iso everything is near well designed. If you add the silent shutter and an slow but formidable lens is a winner. For my taste the T is a beauty but have lost all the controls and dials tradition of a real Leica. Give me a T in the body of a X Vario and I´ll buy it inmediattly.

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I like the X-Vario but prefer the T. I think it is more flexible (due to the exchangable lenses), feels more responsive (maybe most important factor) and the Visoflex external viewfinder is visibly better.

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In my case I prefer the T even over the M for the following reasons:

 

- I'm not interested in rangefinder cameras (I know the M is a unique great camera with fantastic lenses, no offense to M owners

)

- I like a versatile camera that allows me to use autofocus, manual focus, zoom lenses, wide angle, tele lenses and old lenses with adapters.

- I do like the innovative and well thought of interface: after all I was among the first to get an iPhone when available here in the old Europe

- I do like Electronic Viewfinders even if I grew up with a Nikon SRL: yes optical give you a better vision but the technology is improving, in few years EVF will probably be almost indistinguishable from the optical ones.

- I do like the solid metal body design, as a matter of fact i don't like plastic things, I like objects made of metal, stone, glass etc.

 

In the end it comes down what are your needs and preferences. If there were no T I would probably buy the X Vario again because it is more versatile than the X with fixed focal length and if I ever win the lottery, I would buy the S just for landscape work.

 

Overall I think Leica has a good range of cameras from the compact rebadged Panasonic to the medium format. The only missing link is a full frame non rangefinder mirrorless camera, I bet the Leica guys are thinking about it (no I don't have any inside info, just betting:)).

 

Best

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