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g2van

11-23mm TL: why no stock everywhere?

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It seems like the 11-23mm is out of stock everywhere.

Anyone know why? Sudden surge of demand or just production issues?

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This has been the case for a long time. Leica is not a huge conglomerate with the vast manufacturing resources that implies, nor do they have the huge consumer audience that would justify higher manufacturing volumes. Their lenses are expensive and sell in modest numbers. Products are often sold out quickly when demand spikes high, and require some patience to acquire. 

When I need to buy a new lens or whatever from Leica, I put in my order and relax. Product usually shows up within a few weeks, which is quick enough for my needs.  I never plan on having something for a particular date until I already have the item in my hands ... and this goes for all products, not just Leica's. :) (I can hope, but I don't count on it... LOL!)

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When I took my damaged copy in to Leica Mayfair they said they had been waiting on orders for a year......

Mine has been categorised as unrepairable (the mount came adrift - see a separate thread) and I don’t know when a replacement will arrive...😟

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Am I correct that Cosina produces the T mount lenses? They, of course, have far, far greater production facilities than does Leica. But I suspect they have some sort of formula for this, and their labor teams probably rotate through Voigtla"nder, Zeiss, Leica, and then some individual lenses for other companies on a pretty regular schedule based on predicted need.

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Most lenses are built in batches.

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Leica Store SF told me last week that they had sold the last one they had just a couple days before, but were expecting a shipment within a week or two. 

I have no idea who manufactures the T series lenses for Leica. It's irrelevant; the lenses are made to Leica's spec and in the quantities that Leica requests, no matter who's doing the manufacture (including their own). Sometimes issues arise that slow down the production. 

Being out of stock for a year seems absurd. They've been in and out of stock at B&H, my vendor in Chicago, and LSSF several times over the past year. the 11-23 is a very popular lens and sells out quickly. 

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Posted (edited)

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I don’t remember seeing them in stock anywhere in the UK for ages....no stores even have demo copies.

If you can get hold of one it’s a great lens for travelling - I use it in combination with an M+50Lux 

Edited by NigelG

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I got one from Glazer’s in Seattle in January along with the long zoom.  I’m not sure I’ll get much use out if it so I may put mine up for sale here.  

Amy

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20 hours ago, ramarren said:

When I need to buy a new lens or whatever from Leica, I put in my order and relax. Product usually shows up within a few weeks,

48 weeks and counting since I placed my order for one....relaxation has turned to frustration...

 

best

George

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1 hour ago, gfweir said:

48 weeks and counting since I placed my order for one....relaxation has turned to frustration...

best

George

I'd try a different retailer, but perhaps you have done that already. 

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i have it, its great lens in terms of image quality, AF etc, a little bit too large.

I would try to buy in Germany, I saw one this week at Frankfurt Airport shops and at Meister Camera (at least "available").

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As of this moment, in stock , and available for next day delivery from LeicaStore Manchester here in the UK .

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just a wee heads up...I've decided to part with mine...I put it up on ebay today  (just too wide for me, 18 is wide enough for my style of photography) 

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My interest in the TL11-23 was targeting the widest part of the zoom range. For that purpose, I bought the Voigtländer HyperWide 10mm f/5.6 in M mount—easily available and 1/3 the price. I have to say it is one stunningly good performer on the CL with a very very wide FoV (and massively, hugely wide on the M-D!). It's also small and light weight by comparison to the TL lens.. :)

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45 minutes ago, ramarren said:

My interest in the TL11-23 was targeting the widest part of the zoom range. For that purpose, I bought the Voigtländer HyperWide 10mm f/5.6 in M mount—easily available and 1/3 the price. I have to say it is one stunningly good performer on the CL with a very very wide FoV (and massively, hugely wide on the M-D!). It's also small and light weight by comparison to the TL lens.. :)

Thanks for the suggestion. Have seen some of your photos taken with the 10mm - would like to see more when you can upload. Also, have you used it with an M body like M10? Wondering about colour cast. Thanks!

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, g2van said:

Thanks for the suggestion. Have seen some of your photos taken with the 10mm - would like to see more when you can upload. Also, have you used it with an M body like M10? Wondering about colour cast. Thanks!

Sorry for the digression from topic; I wanted to answer g2van's question. :)

I did a sunlit test of the lens on both cameras just now, picking a simple flat wall with some windows and structures in it as a test target at 5 foot focus distance setting. Cameras mounted in the same position on the tripod, one at a time, with ISO 200 @ f/8 @ 1/320 exposure setting on both cameras (incident reading via a hand-held Sekonic L358 meter); DNG only in both cases as well. I brought both DNG files into LR v6.14 to compare them. 

The central section of the M-D's full frame that maps to the CL's format FoV looks identical to the CL's frame. On the M-D you can see that beyond the APS-C format frame there is about 0.7 EV light falloff to the corners and edges; this is not visible in the CL exposure. There is a small amount of lateral chromatic aberration easily seen; LR removes it instantly when you click the "remove CA" option in Lens Corrections. Selecting the Voigtländer HyperWide 10mm lens profile supplied by Adobe has almost no visible effect on the CL frame; whatever correction there is is very very small and the vignetting slider produces almost no effect. On the M-D frame, when you apply the lens profile you can see a small amount of barrel distortion removed and about a 0.2 EV reduction of the light falloff. Sliding the vignetting control in the Lens Correction panel to 175, all of the corner and edge falloff in the M-D frame is removed. 

I see no 'italian flag' cross-frame color casts or other artifacts other than the above. Sharpness at the focus plane and in front of/behind it seems identical in both cameras (that says the M Adapter L mount adapter is very accurately dimensioned for the correct mount registration on the CL). Corner and edge sharpness/contrast on the CL frame is excellent, and very very good on the much greater FoV of the M-D frame; there's very little smearing from the wide angle distortion. 

One thing that wasn't apparent to me when I bought the lens: It's not rangefinder coupled on the M-D. The focus changes so subtly in the CL EVF even at maximum magnification that it's best to just set a distance anyway. DoF at f/8 on either camera is simply enormous so focusing is largely a wash unless you're shooting at the very nearest focus setting on either camera. 

Here are the two test images, size reduced but otherwise processed as I outlined above ... Leica M-D image first:

And the CL image: 

If your interest in the TL 11-23mm lens is primarily for use as an ultra wide on the CL, it is hard to go wrong with the Voigtländer HyperWide 10mm f/5.6 in my opinion. 

 

Edited by ramarren

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Posted (edited)
On 6/4/2019 at 6:34 PM, bags27 said:

Am I correct that Cosina produces the T mount lenses? They, of course, have far, far greater production facilities than does Leica. But I suspect they have some sort of formula for this, and their labor teams probably rotate through Voigtla"nder, Zeiss, Leica, and then some individual lenses for other companies on a pretty regular schedule based on predicted need.

Nobody knows who is Leica japanese sub contractor is. They are actually dozens of small optical companies across Japan, working for every brands. They tied by contract to swear secrecy.

Cosina actually owns Zeiss licence for M mount and Voigtländer licence for M and FE mount. Cosina is more specialized into manual focus lens. So I doubt that they will produce japanese TL AF lenses.

What we know, is that Leica did not designed any of its L-mount zoom lenses. Konica-Minolta did the design of the 3 Vario-TL lenses : 11-23mm & 18-56mm & 55-135mm. They also design 2 Vario-SL : 16-35mm & 24-90mm. The SL 90-280mm was designed by Panasonic. 

However Peter Karbe team did designed all TL and SL prime lenses. Which makes sense, Leica is a prime lens specialist. Not a zoom one. 

Anyway Konica-Minolta did not currently own any factory (previously sold to Sony) So the real japanese TL lenses manufacturer is still a mystery. 

Now why the 11-23mm is so hard to get, is also a mystery.

Edited by nicci78

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@ramarren

Thanks so much for your detailed answer and test shots!!!  Good to know the 10mm can be so versatile on both the M and CL!

 

 

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I guess I got lucky. Started looking last week and found one at Leica in Washington.  Got it today.

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On 6/24/2019 at 10:00 PM, nicci78 said:

Which makes sense, Leica is a prime lens specialist. Not a zoom one. 

Excuse me? Never heard of arguably the best zoom lens ever built: the  70-180  Vario-Apo-Elmarit-R f2.8 ? Or the APO-Vario-Elmarit-SL90280 , which is class-leading in a present-day guise? Or the  35-70 Vario-Elmarit-R f/2.8 ASPH? Not to mention the Vario-Elmar 105-280,  80-200, to name but a few.
And what about the Tri-Elmar-M lenses?

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