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Have Leica Abandoned The M8?

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Well, maybe they should have studied the feasibility of the "perpetual upgrade" program *before* sending the world an email promising it (just a year and an half ago).

Whether he who decided to use this kinds of ads was a madman who got fired shortly after or not, Leica is risking to loose its face with its clients (which are, supposedly, the ones who receive emails from Leica!).

 

I don't want to jump to conclusions, since we still have to view an official announcement from Leica, and everything can still happen. The time is near now, I will go out shooting some pics for fun, and go to work. Let's hope they've find proper solutions for everyone!

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Well, maybe they should have studied the feasibility of the "perpetual upgrade" program *before* sending the world an email promising it (just a year and an half ago).

Whether he who decided to use this kinds of ads was a madman who got fired shortly after or not, Leica is risking to loose its face with its clients (which are, supposedly, the ones who receive emails from Leica!).

 

Did you get an exhumation order before dragging that up? For goodness' sake, 18 months is an eternity in the digital world. Stephen K. Lee was a loose cannon and he got fired for his trouble. The company today is not the company it was when that perpetual upgrade nonsense was bandied about, and more critically the people making the decisions are different too.

 

In any event, anyone who really bought into that concept in the first place must have a degree in naivety...

 

Regards,

 

Bill

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In any event, anyone who really bought into that concept in the first place must have a degree in naivety...

 

eh.. Bill, don't know how to break it to you. have you read the papers lately.

 

We live in a world where microwaves come with warnings not to put your pets in there. and clothes irons say not to use them in the bathtub.

 

And people expect a first generation digital camera to be a perpetual upgradable device. I should thing about suing Nikon because my Nikon D1 should be full-frame 20+ megapix by now.

 

.

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Well the new model is on the showroom floor with some impressive specifications and high desirability but the new sales brochure is missing a model-the M8 line is no longer shown. A couple of years back (or maybe less) we M8 owners were assured that the M8, a camera many of us bought in to despite what many considered glaring deficiencies (some of us capitalized on those deficiencies and produced some pretty good images), poor and or lengthy service, long periods between firmware upgrades and a host of other issues, because we were told by Leica that the M8 was an upgradeable not a replaceable camera. This idea of a camera that was progressively improved over time, instead of ending up on the scrapheap of electronic gadgetry, was something I greatly admired about Leica as it flew in the face of the ever resource intense wasteland we photographers live in with other brands But has this quietly ended? The Leica rep I know is suddenly mute on the subject. Leica is building up the release of the M9 as the new era of Leica photography and in my opinion they should also assure those of us who choose to stay with the M8 that we will not suddenly find we have an obsolete, unrepairable un-upgradeable, abandoned camera. What are your thoughts?

 

Amen brother, amen.

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Well, maybe they should have studied the feasibility of the "perpetual upgrade" program *before* sending the world an email promising it (just a year and an half ago).

 

It is annoying - the M8 was out of my price range (I had to sell my motorbike to afford it - a really nice motorbike!), but a major reason I decided to buy the M8 in the end was the upgrade programme, knowing that the huge cost (for me) would be softened as upgrades and advances in technology would keep the camera (relatively) current - for a few years, anyway.

 

The upgrade programme was not a binding contract, but Leica did market the M8 under the "camera for life" slogan. If I say I'll do something, I keep my word, and I expect others of repute to treat me the same way.

 

OK, Leica messed up: the programme wasn't feasible. It happens: sometimes I can't keep my promises either. But then I (a) am upfront about it and (

make recompense in some way.

 

It's been obvious for some time that the upgrade programme is dead, and was deliberately run down by ridiculous pricing to put off people: I would still like modified frame lines, but not at the extortionate current price.

 

I haven't said anything on this forum about the upgrade programme before, but the way I've been treated by Leica has left me disgruntled with a sour taste in my mouth. I feel let down by Leica - hung me out to dry somewhat.

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Gentlemen,

 

Nobody stood over you at the cashpoint.

 

Nobody twisted your arm at the dealers.

 

Nobody forced you to buy the M8.

 

Sometimes I think that taking responsibility for one's own actions is a dying art...

 

Regards,

 

Bill

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The M9 SHOULD be more expensive than the M8 in constant terms. It is reported to have a much bigger sensor. Not your off-the-shelf sensor but one specially designed to cope with the difficult angle of entry of light.

 

Though not an expert, that suggests to me that the M9 sensor may be priced differently to others.

 

As I wrote here it would be suspicious if the price was the same: Leica would have to have cut corner to do that.

 

In fact, it HAS cut corners. Look at the top left, next to the viewfinder

 

The idea that products must necessarily become cheaper is a myth but a cherished one.

 

Former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan erroneously believed lower prices must indicate rising US productivity. He failed to notice that when products get cheaper it's often because they have been built to lower quality standards.

 

There's a good article on this by Andy Trigg, called: Why don’t most modern washing machines last very long?

 

But then people always want a bigger plate for less.

Edited by markgay

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the issue is not really about "taking responsibility" for ones own actions or "naivety", is it? it surely more about the points richC raised: a vendor stated a position as part of the sale proposition and "may" (let's wait and see) have reneged on it within a short period (within two years...not long when they used the word "perpetual"). It's simple commercial pragmatics around offer/consideration/acceptance. Now, they never said how much and under what terms the perpetual upgrade was offered, and there's plenty of wriggle room for weasel words. But I think Leica is honourable - and I hope that remains so - and i expect they'll come up with a sweetener which represents a win/win. Generally, Leica's positions (after some short delays in some cases) have tended towards very, very fair, I'd say.

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the issue is not really about "taking responsibility" for ones own actions or "naivety", is it? it surely more about the points richC raised: a vendor stated a position as part of the sale proposition and "may" (let's wait and see) have reneged on it within a short period (within two years...not long when they used the word "perpetual"). It's simple commercial pragmatics around offer/consideration/acceptance. Now, they never said how much and under what terms the perpetual upgrade was offered, and there's plenty of wriggle room for weasel words. But I think Leica is honourable - and I hope that remains so - and i expect they'll come up with a sweetener which represents a win/win. Generally, Leica's positions (after some short delays in some cases) have tended towards very, very fair, I'd say.

 

1. We have been over this ground so many times we have worn a rut.

 

2. Leica are honourable, in my experience. Equally, they appear to have learned from past mistakes.

 

3. Don't even bother to go into pseudo-legal terms. "offer/consideration/acceptance" indeed. More like invitation to treat.

 

4. I think they would be insane to "come up with a sweetener" - they are a business not a charity.

 

5. "win-win" = "Leica lose, I win" - I think not.

 

Again, I say, there are those around here who should take responsibility for their own decisions and actions instead of expecting Leica - indeed anyone or organisation - to bail them out.

 

Regards,

 

Bill

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bill. i maybe rather sensitive, but i found your tone rather rude.

As do I Bill and I think you are missing the point of this post, it is not about Leica customers taking responsibility for their actions as the upgradeable statement came along well after M8 sales had reached their peak, it is about a company who made the statement taking responsibility for their actions. It is not about Canon or Nikon as they never have made a statement that their cameras are upgradeable. Where do you separate the actions of the individual and the actions of a corporation to influence the individual Bill when something affects you personally? This post is about corporate responsibility to a GROUP of its clients who supported them when things weren't looking so good by buying a camera that admittedly was flawed in some ways because it is a Leica. This post is not about pointing fingers at individuals or a corporation or assigning blame to any particular entity because we don't really know what Leica is going to do. This post is about gathering individual thoughts on the subject of the M8 and hopefully Leica is reading what their

M8 owners are saying and will come forth with a reassurance that the M8 will be serviceable and upgradeable now and in the future.

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As do I Bill and I think you are missing the point of this post,

 

I think not. Like many threads this one has drifted like snow on a blustery day.

 

T...and hopefully Leica is reading what their

M8 owners are saying and will come forth with a reassurance that the M8 will be serviceable and upgradeable now and in the future.

 

I have every sympathy with that last. What I struggle with and am weary of is the continuous drip, drip, drip, of "suggestions", here and on other threads, that Leica owes anyone anything beyond that.

 

Leica have an unparalleled track record of keeping their old products "on the road" and I don't expect the M8 to be any different, as long as they can source the necessary third party components. It is not unreasonable to expect them to make their intentions in that respect clear.

 

Regards,

 

Bill

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Again, I say, there are those around here who should take responsibility for their own decisions and actions instead of expecting Leica - indeed anyone or organisation - to bail them out.

 

bill. i maybe rather sensitive, but i found your tone rather rude.

 

Ditto.

 

You imply that customers like me should take responsibility for our actions. For what? Believing what a reputable camera company told me (and a reputable London dealer too, come to that)?

 

According to you, then, it's fine for someone - or some organisation - to break their word? And if they do, and we feel hard done by, it's somehow our fault for thinking they were honourable!?

 

Of course, one shouldn't be naive - so I wasn't expecting miracles, and I certainly took "camera for life" with a pinch of salt - so, more like "camera for five years and don't expect us to shove a full-frame sensor in it"! Similarly, it doesn't bother me that there's an M9 - an upgrade programme doesn't preclude new models...

 

Strange ethics, some people!

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Of course, one shouldn't be naive - so I wasn't expecting miracles, and I certainly took "camera for life" with a pinch of salt - so, more like "camera for five years and don't expect us to shove a full-frame sensor in it"!

 

Caveat emptor. Show me another digital camera that has remained essentially unchanged for a lustrum...?

 

Strange ethics, some people!

 

On that, we can agree... it seems there are some around here who regard ethics as a county to the Southeast of London...

 

Regards,

 

Bill

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I'm quite lost here. Is there an M8 broken that Leica is refusing to fix?

Ah yes- the upgrades. I would say that Leica has offered just about all the upgrades that are reasonably possible at present with the M8 package. Now there is a new camera. I don't think that any "upgrade promise" would incorporate the waving of a magic wand to turn an old model into a new one. As for support: the official position of Leica at introduction was: at least twenty years, provided third party parts are still replaceable. That means that if some transistor is unobtainable in fifteen years time they might use a scavenged one.

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It is understandable that Leica's 'promise' concerning the perpetual upgrade programme remains an issue with M8 purchasers who went out and bought an M8 shortly after they made the announcement. Who was more naive, the purchasers who believed in the reputation of Leica or Leica itself?

 

Of course there will be legal wriggle room but I cant see much ethical wriggle room.

 

Jeff

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I'm quite lost here. Is there an M8 broken that Leica is refusing to fix? Ah yes- the upgrades. I would say that Leica has offered just about all the upgrades that are reasonably possible at present with the M8 package. Now there is a new camera. I don't think that any "upgrade promise" would incorporate the waving of a magic wand to turn an old model into a new one. As for support: the official position of Leica at introduction was: at least twenty years, provided third party parts are still replaceable. That means that if some transistor is unobtainable in fifteen years time they might use a scavenged one.

 

Lets be fair about this it was put forward as a new way no limitations were mentioned and it was not whispered.

 

Jeff

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Yes- I can understand that, but is quite unclear to me what upgrade is being clamored for. A new sensor? That would cost 3000 $ at a minimum. I cannot see many takers. Firmware upgrades? No worry - those will come. Service commitment for a long period? - that has been given and we have seen with other cameras that Leica will go to lengths to provide it. So what is all the hoohah about?

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Lets be fair about this it was put forward as a new way no limitations were mentioned and it was not whispered.

 

Jeff

No - but a modicum of common sense should be presumed. Buying a Leica is not like joining a cargo cult. Some technical advances - in fact quite a few- are obviously either impossible or uneconomic to implement.

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