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Zenit launching rebranded Leica SL? Never Ever…

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+1.  

 

Otoh, I have heard that the SL is not selling well, both here in the forums and from dealers.  So, it makes me wonder if there might be a shred of truth in there somewhere.  Zenit would be the last company I would think for Leica to partner.   

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Well... the Russian Photo Industry, one day or another, must move in some direction... must re-enter in a market in which they anyway played a certain not too marginal role (I say this as a Zorky buyer in 1975... 

) ; will they re-start with a mirrorless EVIL ? Ok, has a sense... will they simply REBRAND the Leica SL ? : ridicolous imho... will they COPY the Leica SL ? Has a sense... of course not like the good ol'times of Fed/faked Barnacks and Industar/faked Elmars, but with a more "modern and commercially correct" approach based on some agreement... some licensed piece of technology (style/lensmount /contacts...) ... why not ? Edited by luigi bertolotti

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Fake news to try and make Leica enthusiasts huff and puff …  so many obvious reasons why such a camera would likely not find buyers … but not worth documenting same.

 

dunk  

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Yes! This is how Lada came to the world. It was old FIAT 124 as technology, production line sold to USSR after FIAT 131 came. 

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And the Fiat 126 to Poland, nothing new there - the old Hillman Minx to India, VW Beetle to Brasil, Rover 75 to China, etc...

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+1.  

 

Otoh, I have heard that the SL is not selling well, both here in the forums and from dealers.  So, it makes me wonder if there might be a shred of truth in there somewhere.  Zenit would be the last company I would think for Leica to partner.   

 

 

 

If the SL is not selling well one reason could be the lack of long lenses and converters … i.e. longer than 280mm. And none hinted at on the SL roadmap.  

 

The SL system deserves better. 

 

dunk 

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The Internet is full of rubbish which vastly exceeds the quantity of information you can find on the web.

 

The "source" for this rumor is a site called "USSRPhoto" which calls itself a "Soviet Photo Equipment Collectors Resource".

 

The site is in English, it has a forum. Many users seem to come from Western Europe or USA.

 

In August a thread was started about the rumor that Zenit would come back to the market with a mirrorless digital camera. In the thread this rumor was met with some scepticism.

 

http://ussrphoto.com/Forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=3219

 

On 9/10 a "Radio 1" news was translated there as follows - with additional remarks in brackets by the poster "Zoom" in the Forum:  

 

Next year, the legendary Zenit camera will appear on Russian and foreign markets. This was told by "Radio 1" head of the department for the development of civilian instrument making JSC "Shvabe" Igor Sergeyev.
"We ("Shvabe") plan to revive the direction of production of digital photographic equipment. We ("Shvabe") have a working out project of close industrial cooperation with one of the leading photographic equipment companies (is meant Leica Camera AG -- it's not a secret), in order to create a joint product, where KMZ is involved in the production of infrastructure for the production of optics for these cameras (I do not know how to explain this). And electronics (camera body) will be made abroad. Our ("Shvabe") road map provides for the withdrawal of this product in the next year," -- said Sergey.

 

So the connection to Leica was only in the remarks by the poster in brackets, not in the "Radio1"transmission of a statement by "Igor Sergeyev".

 

The same "Zoom" stated one day later, that one already knows this camera, it was the "Leica SL". This was commented immediately in the Forum: "Which kind of mystery is that". 

 

"Zoom" replied on 9/15:

 

"According Igor Sergeyev (JSC "Shvabe"): "KMZ is involved in the production of infrastructure for the production of optics for these cameras".
As I said, I do not know how to explain this sentence, sorry. May be simple: KMZ produce lenses...
A camera body presumably (but there are no other variants) based on Leica SL, with another design and named as "Zenit", will be made by Leica. I do not think that the price will be very much lower relative to the original. Miracles do not happen."

 

So poster "Zoom" says, he does not know how to explain parts of the statement from "Igor Sergeyev". He just presumes, that it would be the "Leica SL". In a further posting he states, that it  "is difficult to understand Sergeyev... May be nothing (only "involved in the production of infrastructure for the production of optics for these cameras")

 

That's all.

 

The source is legitimate: a Forum where people write about collectible cameras from the Soviet aera. It is legitimate for anybody to presume something - even if he doesn't really understand it. No facts involved - just personal presumptions. 

 

Out of this "Petapixel" makes the - wrong - news that "the Forum" heard "from a Zenit source" " that the innards of the upcoming Zenit camera is presumably the german made Leica_SL". That's wrong, since it was just a poster in the forum, who heard something on "Radio 1", which he calls difficult to understand. It was not a "Zenit source", but someone at "KMZ" -, about which "Zoom" thinks they produce lenses. 

 

Out of this "mirrorlessrumors" makes the - wrong - news that "This is simply going to be a rebranded and cheaper version of the Leica SL :("

 

Make up your minds.  

Edited by UliWer

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I found the original news on the Radio-1 site in Russian. Indeed, Shvabe wants to begin manufacturing of the Zenit line of cameras at KMZ and they plan to put the new camera in the price bracket above smartphone's price. It means it's a pretty cheap mirrorless camera. Leica was not mentioned in the original news story.

The link in Russian:

 

http://radio1.news/news/v-2018-godu-na-mirovykh-rynkakh-poyavitsya-legendarnyy-fotoapparat-zenit/

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Edited by ynp

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Vodka usually is very clear.

 

Ynp confirmed that the original Russian broadcast did not mention Leica, nor the SL

 

The user "Zoom" at the "USSRPhoto" forum doesn't seem to be Russian (and the whole forum seems "western"), as he states several times that he didn't completely understand what was said. He was just presuming.- 

 

Petapixel which started the wrong "news" about a russian SL doesn't look as if it was fond of vodka, nor does "mirrrorless rumors".

 

It smells more like Coke or something like that.  

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I got curious and googled the news sites. It became apparent that Leica and KMZ are talking and a KMZ company newspaper published a short article in May 2017 about the visit of Leica management and designers to the plant. In 2016 Dr. Kaufmann visited the company.

 

The main source of all Leica-KMZ rumors is the web site below. It freely interprets the KMZ company newspaper articles and fantasies about obviously confidential negotiations. It's there I found the name of SL mentioned in the context of a future KMZ camera platform.

Sorry that I did not translate the articles, but I think that's a waste of time.

 

The cameras to be manufactured called in the publication Zenit D1 and Zenit D11, they also talk about the revival of Zorky brand, what I found the most interesting. I want a Zorky digital rangefinder just for fun, I still keep my Epson rangefinder and will not part with it.

 

But it's all about rumors. I would believe when I seen a finished product, Zenit or Zorky.

 

https://www.zenitcamera.com/rec/news-2017-05-15-01.html

Edited by ynp

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Google translate:

 

From the article "Collaboration in action" ...

 
In the May issue of the factory newspaper "Patriot" an article with a somewhat strange title "Collaboration in Action" was published. We cite part of it without comment, especially since, with the exception of factory brands, more about the Krasnogorsk plant nothing was said:
 
In the modern world, cooperation and knowledge sharing between large producers to achieve a common goal, in other words, collaboration, is becoming an increasingly popular phenomenon. On April 5 and 6, our factory received a return visit * from representatives of Leica Camera AG. The delegation included Marius Eschweiler, Business Development and Licensing Director, Christopher Gredler, Industrial Designer, Manfred Born, Head of Industrial Engineering, Stefan Albrecht, Business Development Manager. The meeting was also attended by representatives of the company Smirnov Design - General Director S.A. Smirnov and the leading artist-designer E.L. Grigoriev.
 
At the meeting, issues on new key pricing factors for the production of Zenit-D1 and Zenit-D11 cameras, release editions, and the design of a new camera were discussed. Christopher Gredler (designer Leica Camera AG) presented the first design proposals for D1 cameras in the style of Zenit. Until the end of April Smirnov Design will present an alternative design proposal and in the future it plans to support the company Leica (Christopher Gredler / Stefan Albrecht) regarding design issues and feasibility studies.
 
Camera D11 on preliminary arrangements, will have the design and name Zorki. Also, the need to lower the retail price of the camera was discussed, but the circulation was increased, in contrast to the original production and sales plan.
 
Based on the materials of the factory newspaper "Patriot" (number from May 5).
 
*) - On the visit, see the news of April 17, 2017.
 
Published on the web server "ZENITcamera.com" in the News section.
 
 
Blackstone pulls out … Zenit puts in … and ...
 
 
… the new camera company is called LEISKII 
Edited by dkCambridgeshire

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At first this news sounded quite outlandish to me, but then I remembered that KMZ now is a part of Schwabe, which is a pretty powerful formerly Russian and now international hi-tech holding. Taking it into consideration, I can see what could get Kauffman's attention there. Yet, let's wait and see. In any case, there is nothing to worry about on the Leica side of the world.

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It isn't a stupid idea, far from it. From Zenit's viewpoint it is a shoe-in with modern high end technology and association with a luxury brand, from Leica's point of view it gives them an introduction to a vast market that is currently restricted to an elite customer base. Leica may not have their name on the body, but what is the first thing a photographer upgrades......the lens.

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If Zenit can make  an SL compatible AF 560mm prime with 1.4x extender quicker than Leica I'm all for any collaboration … Would not be 'rocket science' and the Russians do have good lens designers … they make some of the finest astronomical telescope lenses.   

 

dunk 

Edited by dkCambridgeshire

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There is a lack of some native lenses with the SL. For ultra wide angle lenses, there are some other

solutions, because the AF is not so important in this case. But for teles stronger than 280 mm the AF

is a very useful and often necessary thing. In the road map not even a converter for the 90/280 is

mentioned. Same is valid for macro lenses. There is plenty room for other brands to step in if the can

provide full functioanality with the SL.

Edited by HeinzX

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