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The price of Leica photography

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Are You sure about the figures for Norway?

I checked

 

Tabell 37 Gjennomsnittlig inntekt og skatt fra ligningen for bosatte personer 17 år og eldre. Hele landet og Norge nord for Saltfjellet. 2005

 

These seem to be the most recent figures from the ssb and indicate an income AFTER taxes of about 233,000 NOK (appr. 42000 US$).

 

Yes, I am. You must see the difference between 'average' and 'median'. These are two different statistical parametres.

 

Tabell 1 Median inntekt etter skatt, etter fylke og husholdningstyper. 2006. Kroner

 

You find the median for the whole country up in the left corner. The US figures I have from a newspaper article.

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So why do the prices of the NEW Leica gear bother you, you've already got what you wanted.

 

1. Because the M9 will not be introduced at U.S. $4,795.00

 

2. Because I had to re-do the replacement costs of my existing glass to match current prices therefore raising my insurance premium.

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Yes, I am. You must see the difference between 'average' and 'median'. These are two different statistical parametres.

 

Tabell 1 Median inntekt etter skatt, etter fylke og husholdningstyper. 2006. Kroner

 

You find the median for the whole country up in the left corner. The US figures I have from a newspaper article.

 

Sorry, I missed the referral to a houshold. I thought You were talking about single incomes.

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Sorry, I missed the referral to a houshold. I thought You were talking about single incomes.

 

It is a 'households statistics' - could be both single and several earners, but this is the comparable figure compared to the 'California' statistics ('Household income'). What I see now, however. is that the Norwegian figures are from 2006. It is good reasons to believe that the 2007 figure for Norway is higher, but I haven't found them.

Searching, I found this map showing salaries in 'private sector' of Europe. http://www.ssb.no/lonn/kart1-bruttolonn-euro.jpg Figures are from 2005.

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My stuff is also insured for all risks. As a result, tho I don't worry about the gear (unless you think about replacing the stuff in time for the shoot NEXT week!), I often fantasize about asking the mugger if he minds if I take the SD card out before he takes the camera.

 

Just remember to engage the assailants mouth with the top plate, that way, while he's searching for his teeth, you'll have plenty of time to remove the SD card and the bottom plate won't be covered in blood.

 

BTW, I have the same fantasy.....

 

LouisB

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You guys can twist this any way way you want, but it doesn't change the simple fact that Leica has priced itself out of the reach of 90% of the people, who would otherwise buy their gear.

 

Having read this list for quite some time it is obvious that there are a lot of well to do people here, for whom dropping $6,000 on a lens is not a big deal and seem to lack perspective on how the rest of the world lives. It is that or some of us here are living way beyond their means.

 

Ultimately Leica can't survive on sales to a small and financially elite group. They need a tiered product line like everyone else. 'Cheaper' doesn't mean 'crap' and even a $3000 dollar body can hardly be described as a bargain.

 

I think and hope that Kaufmann understands this, but only time will tell.

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You guys can twist this any way way you want, but it doesn't change the simple fact that Leica has priced itself out of the reach of 90% of the people, who would otherwise buy their gear.

 

Having read this list for quite some time it is obvious that there are a lot of well to do people here, for whom dropping $6,000 on a lens is not a big deal and seem to lack perspective on how the rest of the world lives. It is that or some of us here are living way beyond their means.

 

Ultimately Leica can't survive on sales to a small and financially elite group. They need a tiered product line like everyone else. 'Cheaper' doesn't mean 'crap' and even a $3000 dollar body can hardly be described as a bargain.

 

I think and hope that Kaufmann understands this, but only time will tell.

 

Absolutely!

 

The fall of the dollar and purchasing power - and purchasing willingness of the US customers, just might make Leica go under. I have made this point here over and over again. - But the dollar fall is not the work of the Leica managment. The fall of the dollar - and with the up coming Wall Street bail out is going to make the dollar fall even more, is a catastrophy for european exporters dependent on the US market. It gives a picture of how we in Europe are going to be effected by the crisis in USA.

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You guys can twist this any way way you want, but it doesn't change the simple fact that Leica has priced itself out of the reach of 90% of the people, who would otherwise buy their gear.

 

Having read this list for quite some time it is obvious that there are a lot of well to do people here, for whom dropping $6,000 on a lens is not a big deal and seem to lack perspective on how the rest of the world lives. It is that or some of us here are living way beyond their means.

 

Ultimately Leica can't survive on sales to a small and financially elite group. They need a tiered product line like everyone else. 'Cheaper' doesn't mean 'crap' and even a $3000 dollar body can hardly be described as a bargain.

 

I think and hope that Kaufmann understands this, but only time will tell.

 

a perfect summary in my opinion.well said.

 

andy

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I believe the stopping power of the all metal body, pushed with enough force into the face of an assailant is greater than these plastic cameras from Canon and Leica.

LouisB

 

Slinging it could be quite effective but I am quite concerned as to how to explain the blood stains if I have to send it in for repairs. I decided that sacrificing a couple of voigtlanders 28f3.5 might be my best option. Small compact and quite good for throwing accurately.

 

My 1DmkIII is quite good too but I am too weak to last long swinging it. I think the M8 is best in this regard.

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You guys can twist this any way way you want, but it doesn't change the simple fact that Leica has priced itself out of the reach of 90% of the people, who would otherwise buy their gear.

 

Having read this list for quite some time it is obvious that there are a lot of well to do people here, for whom dropping $6,000 on a lens is not a big deal and seem to lack perspective on how the rest of the world lives. It is that or some of us here are living way beyond their means.

 

Ultimately Leica can't survive on sales to a small and financially elite group. They need a tiered product line like everyone else. 'Cheaper' doesn't mean 'crap' and even a $3000 dollar body can hardly be described as a bargain.

 

I think and hope that Kaufmann understands this, but only time will tell.

 

HELLO, IS ANYONE HOME?, SUMMARIT!!!

 

So let me think, Summilux, Summicron, Elmarit, Summarit, that looks awfully like a tiered product line to me.

Take the blinkers off, other than 3 expensive new lenses there is a whole world out there that you're just not seeing!

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A colleague of mine who is living in California pays $3000 per month for healthcare for his youngest child, and $5000 for his oldest. I have no idea how he copes. Someone on a 3D list I subscribe to who lives in CA as well pays $30000 per year for just himself, and claimed that this was just basic coverage. Insurance in the States is wildly out of control.

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You guys can twist this any way way you want, but it doesn't change the simple fact that Leica has priced itself out of the reach of 90% of the people, who would otherwise buy their gear.

 

Having read this list for quite some time it is obvious that there are a lot of well to do people here, for whom dropping $6,000 on a lens is not a big deal and seem to lack perspective on how the rest of the world lives. It is that or some of us here are living way beyond their means.

 

Ultimately Leica can't survive on sales to a small and financially elite group. They need a tiered product line like everyone else. 'Cheaper' doesn't mean 'crap' and even a $3000 dollar body can hardly be described as a bargain.

 

I think and hope that Kaufmann understands this, but only time will tell.

 

 

You have to take all the talk of Oooo's and Aaaa's on the forum with a pinch of salt. While people may indicate their desire for any of the newly announced lenses or M8.2, the reality may perhaps be slightly different when one has actually pay for the item.

 

People are often very accepting of something until it directly effects their own pockets. I remember thinking how expensive Canon L glass was compared to standard Canon offerings. Since moving to Leica I have dropped a largish sum of cash on a select few lenses to build my system. When I look back now at Canon prices they seem to be a bargain in comparison.

 

Of late you also read of some people thinking about buying a 2nd hand M8 for €2500 and

upgrading that for €1000 giving a quiet M8 for €3500 with a full 1 year guarantee. Perhaps sensible thinking.

 

I am tempted to upgrade, but not for the reason of the quieter shutter, but more for the extra years guarantee, there have been to many reports of shutter failure here over the past few months, I'm just waiting for mine to fracture after my warranty expires in November. My sensor needed to be replaced last june due to a row of blue pixels, guess what, 3 months later I've got another row of blue pixels on the new sensor, how long am I going to get out of the 2nd sensor replacement (assuming Leica replace it) before it starts to give issues.

My sense of reliability and trust in this camera is very low at the moment, while mechanically and from an operational point of view it has worked well and has been a pleasure to use, I am concerned about it's long term reliability.

 

I don't know, perhaps it's just me, I got a Noctilix as part of the 30% off apology from Mr Lee. It was a fine lens providing you didn't need to use it from f:/2.0 to f:/5.6 and suffer the focus shift, For that reason it didn't work for me and I replaced it with the superb 50 Summilux Asph, I don't care what rational others put on the pros and cons but the 1+ stop difference is not worth €3700 price difference between the current Lux and new Nocti, well not to me anyway.

 

I can only speak for my self, I can't justify the cost of the new offerings, even if I needed them. But at least I have an option if I ever got to the point where I needed to seriously consider them.

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…People are often very accepting of something until it directly effects their own pockets. I remember thinking how expensive Canon L glass was compared to standard Canon offerings. Since moving to Leica I have dropped a largish sum of cash on a select few lenses to build my system. When I look back now at Canon prices they seem to be a bargain in comparison.

 

 

…My sense of reliability and trust in this camera is very low at the moment, while mechanically and from an operational point of view it has worked well and has been a pleasure to use, I am concerned about it's long term reliability.

 

Yes I used to think Canon L glass was very expensive!

 

I agree about the M8s reliability when out of warranty. It is a worry, the possible costs may simply not be economical and the M8 will end up taking up shelf space.

 

I wonder if problems like lines appearing in photos have been sorted for the M8.2? Or will owners of that camera will go through the same experiences?

 

Jeff

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Experience shows that Leica lenses keep their value rather well, same for the film M1-7&P. The M8 is depreciating somewhat for instance I bought mine 4195 euro last october, now 3990 at Meister new and in the 2800 - 3000 euro ball park in the buy and sell section. I would be surprised if they will drop below 2500 second hand over the next couple of years. So the M8 would cost you about 300-400 euro per year if you resell after 5 years.

 

My annual health service bill is 4-5x higher, fuel 10x more. Considering the fun I am having with it - it is not at all expensive, it is good for my mental health and it does not produce any CO2 to speak of.

 

If and when I do get rid of the body I will still have the lenses which will continue to produce stunning results on the M9 or whatever it is called, and in fact they will keep doing so long after I am dead and buried.

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Someone on a 3D list I subscribe to who lives in CA as well pays $30000 per year for just himself, and claimed that this was just basic coverage. Insurance in the States is wildly out of control.

 

Our household in the Netherlands, 2 people on more-than-median salaries, pays about 7000EUR for basic+ coverage. On top of that our employers also pay a considerable amount. Not nothing, but still less than in the US. Enough to have to say no to a new Nocti:(

 

But my perception is that, over there, the litigious society combined with an uncurbed free health market has rather pushed sickness costs, including those for liability coverage, out of control, and that insurance just follows.

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HELLO, IS ANYONE HOME?, SUMMARIT!!!

 

So let me think, Summilux, Summicron, Elmarit, Summarit, that looks awfully like a tiered product line to me.

Take the blinkers off, other than 3 expensive new lenses there is a whole world out there that you're just not seeing!

 

Good point, but other than for the "luxes" (or wathever the plural form is), competition offers alternatives, performance wise on par with Leica at a fraction of the cost. Maybe with one or two exceptions, such as the Cron 75.

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Having read this list for quite some time it is obvious that there are a lot of well to do people here, for whom dropping $6,000 on a lens is not a big deal and seem to lack perspective on how the rest of the world lives. It is that or some of us here are living way beyond their means.

 

.

 

Yes! And unless one is a self employed pro, the pretax and pre-benefit cost gross income one has to earn to eventually spend USD 6000, is somewhere in the USD 10000-12000 range, depending on tax rates and brackets. On an absolute scale, and not wether individually affordable or not, no small change, irrespective of today's currency exchange rates, mean, median, average or whatever statistics income figure.

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Good point, but other than for the "luxes" (or wathever the plural form is), competition offers alternatives, performance wise on par with Leica at a fraction of the cost. Maybe with one or two exceptions, such as the Cron 75.

 

There have always been cheaper options. My experience is that the summicrons are better than the competition, hardly surprising as Leica have always touted them as having the best performance. The summiluxes are about more speed, not neccessarily more performence per sae, oh yes, and Leica's head of lens design has been quoted as saying the new 24 Elmar is 'one of the best ever', at a bit more than half the cost of the current 24/2.8....

The title of the thread is 'The price of Leica photography' and the contention that it is rising out of reach. The contention is crap because it just considers a few new lenses. The introduction of the summarits, and the new 24/3.4 make Leica's products more accessible than they have been for many years. They are still expensive, but they always have been.

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I bought my first Leica - a CL - over 25 years ago, when I just finished my doctorate in philosophy in California. It was more than I could really afford at the time, but when I noticed how much better my pictures looked than with my Nikon, I never looked back.

For the following years I was only able to afford second-hand equipment - a beat-up M5 which worked beautifully and a 35 summilux which had a lot of speckles between the lens elements, but that didn't seem to affect the quality of my pictures.

When I returned to Europe in the mid 90's and had no longer to worry about paying astronomical health insurance in the US, I bought my first brand new Leica items - an M6 and the 75mm lux. I was nervous in the beginning to walk with such expensive equipment in the streets, but I soon learned to be relaxed about it.

Since then I have only bought new. But I am glad that I had access to Leica quality material when my income was lower, by purchasing second hand.

----------------

Frans

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The only sensible answer to the OP's assertion is to take account of economics.

 

I'm not about to do the calculation now, but I've seen plenty of purchasing power and inflation adjusted calculations that suggest Leica cameras cost about the same as they always have.

 

"Ah don like when ma beeer costs more", is an emotion we all share but it's meaningless as a statement.

 

Historically, goods have been a lot cheaper for Americans than for other nations because of the dollar's strength. Watch the news and you'll see a couple of reasons why that may change.

 

The outlook for the dollar suggests things are going to get a lot more expensive the US. Not just Leica cameras, Stephen.

 

Peter Schiff's analysis of the factors affecting the global economy - and specifically the US and UK economies - explains this

 

FSO Transcription - "Crash Proof: How to Profit From the Coming Economic Collapse" with Peter Schiff 03/10/2007

 

"They’re basically taxing their own citizens to prop up our currency so that we can afford to buy things that their own citizens do without. But I think once this happens – once the Asian central banks stop this practice and allow the dollar to sink, which it will, what’s going to happen is as the dollar loses purchasing power these other currencies will gain it. It doesn’t evaporate from the planet: whatever goods we can no longer afford to consume will simply be consumed by other people who cannot afford them now, but will be able to afford them when their currencies gain value.

 

"And so this is how Americans will see their standard of living lowered. Their currency will buy a lot less, things will be a lot more expensive for Americans, and so we will be doing without things that many people around the world are doing without right now. And they are doing without them because we have them. You know, there is not an unlimited amount of goods – they’re scarce; and everybody can’t have everything. And so it’s going to change. And so what Americans have to understand is recognize this.

 

"We’re still consuming as if we were producing everything, but we’re not. And when it changes, if people have investments denominated in the currencies that are going to gain the purchasing power that the dollar loses, they can at least preserve their relative standard of living."

 

Regards,

Mark

 

This is wrong. There's been a tremendous run up in Leica prices in the last several years; almost a 50% increase. I purchased most of my stuff at cost when stores were selling out of Leica, during those hard years for Leica a few years ago.

 

I agree with Stephen that Leica is too expensive at current prices, for me.

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