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What's next?


chmilar

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Now that the M9 is released, isn't it time to start speculating on what comes next?

 

I expect that there will be an M9.2. But it might be better if the M9 joins the "a la carte" program where you can choose colors and finishes, sapphire glass, viewfinder magnification, framelines, framing distance (ie. 1m, 1.5m, 2m). Maybe a minor upgrade of the LCD screen. Existing M9's can be sent in for modifications to install some of the a la carte options.

 

The next iteration in the M9 will probably be in 1.5 years, right after the special edition "Hello Kitty" M9 is released.

 

More significant changes will have to wait for the M10. That is where we will see a change to the Maestro processor and a major upgrade to the LCD screen (larger size, more pixels, maybe even OLED). Maybe something more esoteric like electronic framelines which compensate for parallax and focus distance, and electronic focus confirmation will arrive with the M10. This is 3 or 4 years out.

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Well, I'd plan on a fairly quick firmware upgrade to fix the "*****" serial number bug, and probably some improvements to some of the lens corrections (still a few purple corners to clean up, e.g. in the f/1 Noctilux).

 

For M8 owners, I'd expect an "M8.5" firmware upgrade, implementing anything from the M9 that is compatable with the M8 hardware (lens tables, finer ISO gradations).

 

I think a Maestro M10 may come sooner than expected - as I hear it, that was planned for the M9 in 2010, until Leica realized they'd be broke if they waited until 2010 to introduce full-frame.

 

I'd expect both C-Lux and D-Lux upgrades at the start of the new FY (announced at PMA, available April 2010). The "R-solution" is still wandering around out there in the fog.

 

And, yes, I'd expect (but have no interest in) some cosmetic options available for the M9 - at a price. Real chrome, skin of your choice, sapphire screen.

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For M8 owners, I'd expect an "M8.5" firmware upgrade, implementing anything from the M9 that is compatable with the M8 hardware (lens tables, finer ISO gradations).

 

Actually Stephen Daniels already put any notion of this to bed. The M8 is a "finished" camera. They are not going to add any new features to a discontinued camera. It would just cost Leica money and net them no new revenue. He mentions this in the interview published by LL.

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