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Thursday, 04 March 2021


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Help me understand who needs an $8200 lens? If general photography delivers an adequate ROI it makes sense but if it's only for a highly specialized version of imagery is the benefit it delivers sufficient to merit the cost?

Of course, a fast, prime tele from Nikon or Canon might run twice that amount so maybe this is a bargain....

Semantics, perhaps, but the new 35 M Summicron APO does not ‘replace’ the 35 M Summicron ASPH; rather it supplements it. In fact, the current ASPH was updated somewhat recently to version 2. This is the same approach Leica used for the 50 M Summicron APO (more expensive than the 35 APO) and its less costly 50 Summicron sibling, which remains in the product line.

Small, beautiful lenses are like jewels, and at that price, exactly what they are.

I have no doubt that the new Apo-ASPH 35mm Summicron will be excellent. For those who might prefer to spend somewhat less than $8,200 for an excellent manual focus 35mm f/2 lens, the inevitable M-mount follow-on to the recently-announced Sony E-mount Voigtlander 35mm f/2 APO might be worth considering at about 14% of the Leica's price, even if it is somewhat larger. But that's just me--and I enjoy the Zeiss ZM 35/1.4.

"I never want to be hired for a real job."

Mike, when was the last time you had a real job? 8-)

I know a political consultant for the Democratic Party. He has to button both his cuffs and his collar due to tats. Tattoos are common, I know women in their seventies who have them.

I can remember going thru my slow immersion into the Leica M system, taking the then usual route of M3s and M2s with contemporary chrome lenses, and always thinking, that I must be missing something since my Nikkors and even Pentax lenses were better in every way. The Pentax screw mount 50mm f/1.4 would give any Leica 50mm a run for its money.

I finally pulled the trigger and got a new M6 classic and version IV 35mm Summicron in the late '80s and all was clear about the Leica hype. Loved that combo!

Then the pre-aspheric Summicron was replaced in the early '00s and I was back to being a second class shooter.

My M6 and Summicron together costs half the price of the current going rate of today's lenses. I have to tap out.

My vote is for the 35mm over the 50mm for an M body. Once you learn to use that focus tab to focus via its orientation and the field of view being equal to the distance from the subject, discreet street shots are easy.

It's an interesting reverse fetishism: unlike a Mercedes, a Leica needs to be as small as possible to be best at status signaling. Mike, do you know what is the most expensive "commonly available" lens per gram or per cubic centimeter? This 35/2 looks like a serious contender but there must be another Shmeica that serves as an even better trophy.

It's Friday morning in this part of the world. Thanks for posting on a Friday.

Those face tattoos have a most-accurate nickname: Job stoppers.

I feel your Mac pain. After decades of reading about Mac problems the best advice is to move to Win10 -- it just works.

Hmm, this new Summicron would look nice on my Minolta CLE. How to rationalize this?

Albert Smith speaks some truth...back at the dawn of my career, I was constantly being shown photos by Leicaphiles purporting the beauty of their lenses and I never could see it; I know I had better lenses from Nikon, Pentax, and especially Contax. I remember in school, someone showing me a "fantastic" Leica photo from a 50mm, and I whipped out one from my Miranda Sensorex 50mm that he had to admit was better!

I never drank the Kool-aid though, I never bought in, since I never did much 35mm for money anyway, there was no reason to. Plus, by the time I was a photographer, the rangefinder was not a "thing". I was raised on SLR's, and rangefinders were too "iffy".

But I kept up with my friends that kept showing me stuff, and I'm sure that in every generation, I still owned lenses that were at least as good, if not better for a fraction of the price.

Unlike most Leicaphiles, I have "reverse" Emperors New Clothes Syndrome. Buying an 8 thousand dollar lens wouldn't automatically make me think it was the best thing I've ever seen! I would shortly realize the total mistake I made, and how I owned a lens 40 years ago that had better attributes. My experience with Leica tells me so!

And Mike, Mike, Mike...really? After your last entry about cordless mice, when I said I've been using cheap wired mice for years and never, ever had any problems; just plug in and forget? You had spent a ridiculously inordinate amount of time messing around with blue-tooth mice just to eliminate a cord? And you're still messing around with this, and now it's actually taking down your computer?

Now that "film to flange" distances are the same
in mirrorless cameras as rangefinders, I wish more manufacturers would take a leaf from Leica's book and make a line of small not so fast lenses with excellent image quality for their cameras. Can you imagine if Canon or Sony put their R&D into a small 50 or 35mm f2 lens with fast autofocus? (No, Canon's RF 50mm f1.8 doesn't qualify.)

I think Leica should be applauded for the engineering feat of developing a lens so small with such high optical performance. Goes against the trend of uber-big & heavy FF lenses that all companies are making these days (which at least have some excuse in weather sealing and AF), and which I personally would never use. I've read your article on Veblan goods, and while that may factor into recent Leica lens pricing it may just be that they have decided to build the best they can and let the pricing fall where it has to given the sales expectations and profit level needed. Also, given the values of used Leica lenses maybe they just want to get as much as they can up front since they never get anything from those second-hand dollars!

I bought a Leica 35/2 ASPH lens in 2001. In 2010 I had to sell...it sold for what I'd paid. Now that lens (a very fine one) trades for quite a bit more.
So perhaps the new version will do the same; you could invest in it like it was a piece of real estate in a good neighborhood.

One correction - the new Summicron doesn't replace the Summicron ASPH, which will continue in Leica's product line.

I've used USBOverdrive in the past. If it turns out to be the culprit, perhaps try the mouse controller I now use, called "SteerMouse." http://www.plentycom.jp/en/steermouse/download.php

In my company we've seen recent random problems with upgrades to Big Sur across our entire Mac fleet that required a full re-install, that may or may not be related to that application -- so yeah, spit happens :(

That Leica lens reminds me of a recent post of your about the reduction of volume in the camera market. The strategy of Leica as a luxury item and maker of small volume cameras, whilst selling IP where the volume is (e.g. to camera phones) seems more relevant than ever.



Command R to boot up, then restore from Time Machine...

[Recovery mode didn't work... --Mike]


I hope you recover your computer 100%. Good that you have a Time Machine and Cloud backup. Cross your fingers, and hope that everything is recoverable.

I use my computer everyday for work and personal projects. I configured two identical computers, one at home and the other at work and carried a USB memory stick with current files between the two machines to keep them both synchronized.

A year ago the hard drive failed on the computer at work, I was up and running again a few hours later with a new hard drive and restored files from a backup.

My backup strategy needs re-thinking since I am in lockdown and working 100% from home, I have not been back to my office for six months.

I am in the slow process of upgrading my home computer with a new replacement. I will end up with two computers at home that I can work from.

In general, if you want to install anything that's a kernel extension or device driver (as USB Overdrive appears to be), you should think thrice since the risk of ending up with problems is on a whole other level than with plain apps. I have heard many complaints of early versions of MacOS Big Sur and kernel extensions not getting along, resulting in unbootable systems.

I also recommend to have a spare system of some kind; even an iPad can work if one has a keyboard to go with it. Doesn't need to be a fancy computer either, just something to give a bit of flexibility if the main machine acts up for some reason.

Fast lenses have their own reasons for existing—for me, low light, for some people it's more about selective focus.

Super-"good" lenses tend to be about having any kind of visible failure in fewer and fewer situations. This is mostly irrelevant for art photography, since you get to choose your shots at leisure. It can however save your life (or at least make your career) in fast-moving situations, photojournalism as the broad term. Often things like not enough veiling glare to really notice, but photo just doesn't look punchy, or visible color fringe when cropping something important that ended up at the extreme edge, or something. But most of the time, any decent lens will do.

I don't think photojournalists are mostly buying $8k lenses these days, is the only thing. Tech millionaires are, maybe. (Remember that a millionaire is anybody who owns a house anywhere near silicon valley, for example. Heck, my house in Minneapolis is valued at nearly half that, and several friend shave houses well over the line. A million bucks ain't what it used to be.)

Sorry recovery mode didn't work. Argh.

Having a computer "die" is stressful to say the least, how did we ever live without them? Thankfully prices are much more reasonable these days, but still. Any kind of unanticipated expense gets my stress levels going, emergency car repairs come immediately to mind. Hopefully good luck at the Apple Store.

On another note: I went from iPhone 8 to iPhone 11. So...iPhone 7 to iPhone 13 seems quite fair, and you're almost doubling the numbers, lol. But if you get the 13, don't wait for 26 I don't think.

Woohoo, this will give Pentax something to aim at for the DFA*35 f/wide aperture. They've been waiting for Leica or Zeiss to blink first ;)

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