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marknorton

Hot Air and Broken Promises

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Yes, one of my M8s is in bits and I have the circuit diagram in front of me and that's what I am doing. My plan is to do away with the C mode and make that delayed winding (haven't worked out what C stands for now - suggestions?) and there will be a small micro in there which makes the camera think it's talking to the shutter but it's actually talking to me and my micro controls the winding based on the setting of the switch and the position of the shutter release.

 

I'll also be doing an "Anatomy of the Leica M8 framelines" so that people can see how they work.

 

That will be interesting. If you ever open up an M8.2 we might know more about what, exactly, is involved with the delayed shutter cocking. Leica has not, to my knowledge, talked about what would be required to offer the delayed shutter cocking as an upgrade, they've simply said that it isn't available.

 

I'd love to see all of the M8.2 features available as upgrades for the M8 but, on the other hand, I'm also glad to see Leica pursue the very unusual path of physically upgrading a digital camera. As such, I can't agree that "Hot Air and Broken Promises" describes the situation at all. Some of us would simply like to see the options list expanded.

 

But it is true that repeated requests, in numbers, for the delayed shutter cocking upgrade option may be worth trying.

 

I will try to find out, from Leica, what the technical obstacles to this upgrade are. But they may choose not to comment on that.

 

Cheers,

 

Sean

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If I were Leica I would want to ensure that the M8.2 had at least one USP to encourage people to upgrade from the M8.

 

Result - M8s released to the secondhand market by existing owners

Result - greater penetration of the M8 in general

Result - new customers attracted by new features

Result - M8.2 bought by more people because they want the unique features only it has

 

The absolute last thing I would do, whether technically possible or not, would be to allow my market to stagnate.

 

Did all the existing M8s cease to operate when the M8.2 was announced, I wonder? Did they all lose their ability to capture decent images? No. What they actually got was a "makeover" that made them better cameras. But are people happy? No. Instead they moan and whine about what they haven't got rather than appreciating what they have.

 

I think an awful lot of this "j'accuse Leica", sour grapes nonsense comes from those who cannot bear that they no longer own the dernier cri of digital rangefinder cameras. Somebody who has not earned the battle scars through M8 ownership thus far can now - horrors - own a better camera than them just by walking into a dealership and buying one. This type of thread is mischevious at best and corrosive at worst.

 

Regards,

 

Bill

 

 

Bill,

 

Well, I did have a look at the M8.2 at Photokina, and yes it is quieter, but as my wife tells me, she thinks my current M8 is quite quiet already and she sees no reason to make the upgrade. As far as I am concerned it is a great camera that has quirks, but then they all do, and I am still perfectly happy with it even after 3 months of vacation here in Europe, and I have 17 days left before going back to the US. It is the only camera I have with me also, and I have not had a single person tell me it is too loud, even in quiet churches and cathedrals here, in fact, I actually had a fellow photographer ask me if I was going to take any photos, when I had taken almost 200 photos at this particular location. I see no reason to complain, if you do not like it, then sell it and stop whining.

 

Gene

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Wow! And people accuse me of being negative, patronizing and insulting to others:p

 

 

See that is what others are talking about. Why even open with that.

After reading your opening line I didn't bother to read the rest of the post.

Just trying to be of some help. Take it or leave it.

No reply is necessary.

Thanks.

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Before Bill - not even an M8 owner anyway - bursts a blood vessel, it's worth pointing out that I'm not saying this function should be made available to every M8; however, if you have shutter upgraded - at a total cost roughly equivalent to a new M8.2 - I think the function should be made available as part of the upgrade to provide equivalent functionality.

 

While it maybe that the original email was issued at SLK's behest, it's clearly now misleading and they should explicitly withdraw it or honour the original commitment.

 

Mark,

 

If I understood the Leica Rep at Photokina, the upgrade of the shutter does include the delayed wind feature. At least that is what he told me. However at teh noise level I heard compared to my M8, the wind is also much quieter, so the delay would not really be an issue after the upgrade. Now the feature I would like is the exposure compensation on the dial on the back, which you get with the 8.2.

 

Gene

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I think it would be fair to sell only M8.2 as M8 but they chose instead of selling both M8 and M8.2.

 

We'll see how long they sell original M8 and I think it is maybe that updates for M8.2 are a bit expensive to replace original M8 with M8.2? Or we ought see that like a la carte when some people dont want black paint, silent shutter, 2m framelines etc.

 

M8 and M8.2 look much like resp analog brothers M7 and MP

 

Bill's input is clever, kudos

They are currently selling both because they have M8's left over. I seriously doubt they are building anymore M8 at this time or will in the future.

When the M4 came out you could still buy a M3 or 2. Same goes for the M5 and so on.

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Guest DuquesneG
See that is what others are talking about. Why even open with that.

After reading your opening line I didn't bother to read the rest of the post.

 

I had to stop bawling and regain my composure before I could respond. I'm just so crushed that you didn't deign to read the rest of my response. The double standard around here is utterly sickening. Any of the good ole boys can make whatever disgusting insult pops into their head and out through (being polite) their fingers, but my posts are purposely cut and quoted out of context in lame attempts to make it look like my purpose here is to be combative. Some of you gentlemen are gentlemen, but others of you really ought to grow up.

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Mark,

 

If I understood the Leica Rep at Photokina, the upgrade of the shutter does include the delayed wind feature. At least that is what he told me. However at teh noise level I heard compared to my M8, the wind is also much quieter, so the delay would not really be an issue after the upgrade. Now the feature I would like is the exposure compensation on the dial on the back, which you get with the 8.2.

 

Gene

 

Hi Gene,

 

According to my information from Leica the delayed cocking is not part of the shutter upgrade.

 

Cheers,

 

Sean

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Think that the real point here was made by Ken; Leica is not going to sell any real quantities of the M8.2 for the foreseeable future. Discretionary spending is rapidly dwindling to naught against a backdrop of global economic uncertainty. Few are going to view the latest Leica as a necessary purchase.

 

On the bright side, Leica may not abandon the M8.beta; on the negative, Leica may or may not emerge financially sound

 

Stefan

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I had to stop bawling and regain my composure before I could respond. I'm just so crushed that you didn't deign to read the rest of my response. The double standard around here is utterly sickening. Any of the good ole boys can make whatever disgusting insult pops into their head and out through (being polite) their fingers, but my posts are purposely cut and quoted out of context in lame attempts to make it look like my purpose here is to be combative. Some of you gentlemen are gentlemen, but others of you really ought to grow up.

Like I suggested there was no reply necessary. So other then what I've already wrote.

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It's a pity this thread has descended into personal insult.

 

Leica must have known they were opening a can of worms when the original upgrade program was announced. For the engineers, the need to be able to retrofit any product changes into old product is like trying to work with one hand tied behind their backs.

 

There is then the question of where do you stop and I think most of understand the need for the cosmetics to reflect the product generation. However, when it comes to firmware, it's right and proper that early adopters benefit if hardware pre-requisites are met. We have benefitted from the AWB improvements, the auto ISO and the SHDC support, but I think we should also benefit from the EV adjustment and the delayed shutter wind, providing the hardware can handle it.

 

As of now, we don't know why Leica have excluded these functions. There may be some hardware reason, it may be the marketing boys saying we cannot sell this product (M8.2) without more blue sky between the two. Whichever it is, it goes against the principle (however mis-guided) established in that initial email.

 

That's why I wrote to Stefan Daniel asking for an explanation. He was away last week, but I remain hopeful of an explanation. The fact that we even know who to write to speaks volumes about the Leica-customer relationship but, sorry, I'm not about to spring for a couple of M8.2s.

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It's a pity this thread has descended into personal insult.

 

Quite. Which is why I was surprised to read this:

 

Before Bill - not even an M8 owner anyway - bursts a blood vessel...

 

Hmm... And this well-known choice of mine is relevant to my right to express an opinion here for what reason, pray tell...? Oh... of course... it's because I am...

 

Somebody who has not earned the battle scars through M8 ownership thus far...

 

Funny that...

 

Regards,

 

Bill

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I do believe that Leica Camera should take the time to explain the rational behind not making the delayed shutter cocking business available in the current upgrade plan.

 

I believe that it might go along way to acknowledging their 'pioneer' M8.1 customers with a simple explanation. It may indeed be as simple as a way to differentiate the M8.1 from the M8.2 or it could be a major job that can not be justified as an upgrade.

 

I feel Leica being transparent with those of us who own and have supported, and invested in the M8.1 would be the right thing to do in the face of their original comments on keeping the M8 upgraded.

 

Mark's point should not disrespected so quickly and somewhat harshly. As someone who has lept to the defense of Lecia's M8 I find Solm's lack of candor on this subject disengenous - they started it - so to speak and should respond with their reasons marketing or otherwise.

 

For the sake of full disclosure - I have two M8.1s I will not at this point be doing any upgrading for several reasons. At this point cost being the primary reason - as I am watching my meager cash flow given the economy et al.

 

Best to all. Terry.

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However, when it comes to firmware, it's right and proper that early adopters benefit if hardware pre-requisites are met. We have benefitted from the AWB improvements, the auto ISO and the SHDC support, but I think we should also benefit from the EV adjustment and the delayed shutter wind, providing the hardware can handle it.

But that’s the point: Can the hardware handle it? If it can and if those features could be retrofitted by a mere firmware update, it would be natural to expect Leica to offer it free of charge. Only we don’t know whether that’s the case.

 

There is a possibility that some features of the M8.2 would require exchanging the electronic parts of the camera. In that case, a complete upgrade from an M8 to the M8.2 would be technically feasible, but would make no sense economically. Ripping out most of what’s inside would be so costly that few owners of an M8 would even consider it. And that only if there was no M8.2, and upgrading the M8 would be the only way to get those features. But there is an M8.2 and thus selling the M8 to get an M8.2 would be the better choice for all concerned.

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But that’s the point: Can the hardware handle it? If it can and if those features could be retrofitted by a mere firmware update, it would be natural to expect Leica to offer it free of charge. Only we don’t know whether that’s the case.

 

There is a possibility that some features of the M8.2 would require exchanging the electronic parts of the camera. In that case, a complete upgrade from an M8 to the M8.2 would be technically feasible, but would make no sense economically. Ripping out most of what’s inside would be so costly that few owners of an M8 would even consider it. And that only if there was no M8.2, and upgrading the M8 would be the only way to get those features. But there is an M8.2 and thus selling the M8 to get an M8.2 would be the better choice for all concerned.

 

For all concerned - you mean Leica AG. Your point is however well taken, the cost of the current upgrades when added to the cost of the M8.1 brings the cost of ownership of the M8.1 well past the cost of a new M8.2. I am just not prepared to take a loss on the blood sweat and tears I have invested in the M8.1 by selling for $3000US to fund an M8.2

 

Leica AG is amazing - the dealer gross margin on the sale of an M8.2 is 16% - so it is not like the dealers are making a shit-load on the sale of a new .2.

 

Comments like this make me wonder if the global financial issues have not hit European countries - event though I keep reading about bail-outs in the EU as well as here in NA.

 

Best to all. Terry.

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Bill,

 

Well, I did have a look at the M8.2 at Photokina, and yes it is quieter, but as my wife tells me, she thinks my current M8 is quite quiet already and she sees no reason to make the upgrade.

 

Gene

 

Of corse! My wife thinks the same! She thinks I should even sell my M8 so I can buy her a diamond ring for 10 years anniversary!

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It seems pefectly clear to me that endless upgrades are not possible. That said, I would think that it's up to Leica to state clearly when developments have passed the point where their previous pronouncement reached its limit, and in this case, also outline briefly why. I think most M8 owners would accept such a statement from Leica and go on from there.

 

Even with the present upgrades as announced, it's not obvious whether it's better to upgrade or to sell the old and buy the new. If the cost for a more thorough upgrade reaches the $3500 level or higher for the full functionality of the M8.2, then the upgrades really don't make much sense.

 

One of these days, if Leica survives, we will probably have a full frame M. I don't expect that to be an available upgrade for my M8's.

 

Some of the new features don't really interest me, but the EV compensation improvements definitely fall in the group that do. If I could get that at a reasonable price, I would be very happy.

 

The other things I don't find as important, especially the sapphire glass since Leica replaced that free of charge (and without being asked) when I sent one of my M8's in for calibration and they noticed it was scratched.

 

Henning

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The problem Leica has is that the perpetual upgrade was not just an email to existing customers, they announced it to the press and those press releases can still be found on DPreview and other websites. Here is an extract:

 

“While other digital cameras quickly become outdated and are replaced by newer models, our new concept extends the value retention that stands for the Leica brand. Over time, we will gradually offer new product features and developments as upgrade options,“ declares Steven K. Lee, CEO of Leica Camera AG. “Our customers can therefore still invest in the photographic tools they need without worrying that they will miss out on improvements and technological developments along the way. We are confident that this is the right approach for ensuring customer satisfaction and allowing them to continue to sharpen their vision and refine their skills with the new digital LEICA M8. Our efforts will be focused constantly on giving them the best that the world of photography has to offer.“

 

Now reading that we could all argue over the exact meaning of what was written but it seems clear to me at least that in not offering the delayed shutter release as a paid for upgrade to the M8 they have not kept faith with their intent of February 2008.

 

Nobody asked or expected Leica to make such an announcement, they did it for marketing reasons, to boost flagging sales of the M8. I wonder how many thought what a great idea, I only need to get the camera and then the upgrades as they come along.

 

But now we have the M8.2 and the M8 cant be fully upgraded to current spec?

 

Jeff

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Terry I tend to agree with mjh in that if I was to sell my M8 near the end of the original warranty and buy a M8.2 I would again have a camera that has a 2 year warranty (instead of a 1 year), all the updates/upgrades the .2 offers (insteada of the selective ones Leica has offered on the .1) and to top it off a NEW camera.

Depending on what I sold my M8 for the cost for a .2 would be in the 2800-3400 range which is about double the cost of all the upgrades.

But for me at this time I won't be doing any upgrades or buying anything new.

All I really want from Leica is 2 perfect working M8 Classics. See my other threads for the tail of the elusive properly working black M8.

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Guest Plaubel
Of corse! My wife thinks the same! She thinks I should even sell my M8 so I can buy her a diamond ring for 10 years anniversary!

 

She's right. An M8 is not to last ten years. When your M8 is long gone your wife will still be there...

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She's right. An M8 is not to last ten years. When your M8 is long gone your wife will still be there...

 

 

That can be good or bad.

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