Leica M8 Dealer Information

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by uk, Jun 8, 2006.

  1. uk

    uk

    I called a UK Leica Dealer yesterday to put my name on his mailing list for M8 specifications and launch
    information. His response was interesting and may contain information new to you. Forgive me if you
    know this and more.

    The Dealer is way past the point of collecting names for an information mailing list, he is busy taking
    orders. A 10% deposit of the assumed list price of ᆪ3,500, (converting into $6,480) !! Leica's US prices
    seem to me to correlate directly to UK prices, unlike Canon & Nikon who sell at lower prices in the US
    on many lines.

    The only new lens design is a 17mm, f2.8, to provde a suitable wide angle with the cropping of the
    21mm. All other lenses perform exceptionally well with the M8.

    Launch is on tartget for September with first availability planned for October 2006. He mad eit clear
    that availability could move as Leica will not release a product with know problem issues.

    Pressure on supply will be enormous in comparison to production capacity and only 20% of his first
    order is expected in first 12 months. If a buyer doesn't pre-order, he might not get one this side of
    2008.

    I've no idea how much of this is solid information, but the dealer is an important cog in the Leica
    network and he stuck to the facts as he knew them.

    $6,840 might cause a the sale of a few complete DSLR outfits for funding. It leaves the latest Leica as
    an exclusive product, a place it's always been.

    Something to chew on ??
     
  2. it will be very disappointing if Leica will change the rumoured price of 5000$ in the USA, but
    I cannot say that it is absolutely unexpected. Leica tends to price their products just above
    what one was willing to pay after deciding it is worth donating a kidney to buy a new product
    ; >) 6500$ leaves a lot of space for R-D2 and Zeiss or anybody else to compete on the
    market. VC will certainly make a lot of profit from a decently priced 17mm lens. I was already
    planning to place a deposit for the M8 but at 6500, if verified, I will keep on using my R-D1
    and my 5D (with my M7) for a little longer. I hope the M8 will not be delayed as the M7 was.
     
  3. > If a buyer doesn't pre-order, he might not get one this side of 2008.

    By then he will not WANT one even at $3000.
     
  4. Good point. It's like paying for a brand new 2004 Mustang when the 2006 Mustang design is all the rage now.
     
  5. It seems there is no limit to how foolish Leica & WE can get!
     
  6. A dealer stating that only so many of a product will be available sounds like a sales pitch to reap deposits if you ask me. He gets interest on your money and you have...um, nothing?
     
  7. + 6.000 Dollars for that camera is crazy. It just demonstrates what a luxury item it is.
    Leica has always been luxury, but now they are going over the top! Pretty soon their new
    stuff is strictly for people with too much money. The rest of us will do fine with Nikon or
    Canon :)

    http://studio135.net/
     
  8. If it is true that the production will take that long to fill out orders, it should mean that used prices should stay high.

    If there are people on a waiting list, they would be willing to pay near new prices for a used camera.

    If the production is that slow, it looks like if you can get one early on it would be close to riskless to get one. Assuming the camera actually works.
     
  9. Leica's catalogue number for the Md (or M8) is 10701. Make your orders!
     
  10. If there are people on a waiting list, they would be willing to pay near new prices for a used camera.

    Or more than new price. I must make my mea culpa and admit I payed a used DMR 10% over new last year to get it in July rather than November. I do not regret because I have been using it instead of waiting 5 months. The man who sold it to me had ordered two at different dealers to be on the safe side and could make a nice windfall profit.
     
  11. >+ 6.000 Dollars for that camera is crazy.

    It is, or it isn't. Unfortunately for our US friends, Leica don't have control over Dollar-Euro
    exchange rates. Suggest you discuss with your government. ;-)
     
  12. I'm getting mine by hook or crook.
     
  13. Does the price of the M8 at your unnamed UK dealer include VAT?
     
  14. Given that by the time it comes out there will be 2 10MP CCD chip DSLR's on the market, the Nikon D200 and the Sony Alpha, that the Alpha will have Zeiss primes available (not that it matters any), and that each body with a good lens or 2 would cost less than a 50/1.4 ASPH, I feel safe in saying that unless you have a sugar daddy, you'd have to be a complete wanker to get an M8.
     
  15. You're excepted from my categorical statement, but only because I know you're an incurable romantic university type of guy :).
     
  16. funny stuff. I have to admit I would love to have one because I really enjoy the portability in carrying M series around but I will have to put a rubber band on my wrist and snap it everytime I want one.
     
  17. "...you'd have to be a complete wanker to get an M8..."
    Rene, perhaps you should put that rubber band somewhere else...
     
  18. uk

    uk

    "John Graham , jun 08, 2006; 09:08 a.m.
    Does the price of the M8 at your unnamed UK dealer include VAT?"

    Yes, VAT at 17.5%.

    Price compares favourably with a Canon 1Ds Mk II, I suppose. :)

    Has to be GBP 3,500 to make it out of my reach. I'd be there at GBP 2,700 as I don't want
    the bulk of a DSLR, but the extra is a doughnut too many.
     
  19. I believe the 3,500 English pounds quoted by the first poster includes VAT; the basic price,
    less VAT, should be a bit less than 3,000 pounds, which would translate to about $5,000 US,
    just where Leica has said it would be. Tony Rose, a West Coast US dealer, has confirmed the
    US $5000 price in the last week or two.

    JC
     
  20. If Leica prices this item correctly -- at no more then the high end of most people's comfort zone -- then they will probably sell many, many, many of them, despite advances in digital technology and back orders, because of the intense brand loyalty Leica enjoys, as well as the ability to use Leica's great optics on a digital camera. I believe there are many M users just waiting to go digital, and this M8 will be the vehicle for them to do so.
     
  21. "VAT at 17.5%"

    1.175x=$6480

    x=$5515=appox. price in US dollars excluding VAT. Not that far off the $5000 estimated US price.
     
  22. "...you'd have to be a complete wanker to get an M8..." Rene, perhaps you should put that rubber band somewhere else... They don't make them that small.
     
  23. If the pricing is as you say your dealer suggested then Leica have pitched the price about right. Serious buyers will pay that and to have an order bank stretching over 12 months gives them efficiences. I don't think they will lose any serious customers. Sounds to me as if Leica have got the marketing dead right. I do hope so. Certainly there have been more optomistic sounds from those that know and the owners are trying to mop up all the available stock.
     
  24. Film rules!
     
  25. As there are many London and Manhattan orthodontists and bankers around, I have no doubt that lots of "serious" buyers will snap up all that Leica can make. Here's another prediction: the good photos/$ ratio for the M8 will be the lowest of any camera ever made.
     
  26. At that price, with still a 1.33 crop, I think I'd be embarrassed walking around with one,
    and certainly too afraid to take it out much on my assignments. Leica has long been the
    choice of working professionals for its qualities, but this seems to have fully entered the
    glam market. Ultimately Leica has made its name (and can command its pricing) because it
    has captured so much history, because it's an inconspicuous workhorse with practical
    benefits for professionals. aside from speed of transmitting photos, I don't see the
    advantage with an M8 for professional work, and see a few disadvantages. If you use Leica
    professionally, you probably have the luxury of time. If you have time, you can shoot film
    for far, far less money. It sounds like a great camera, but I hope Leica continues to
    highlight its real world, professional advantages. To me that's what makes Leica Leica, and
    not a wealthy person's toy. Fifty years from now, will the $6,000 M8 be the usable,
    desirable classic that the M3 is today? I've already spent my $6000+ on my Nikon DSLR
    system, which offers me far more practical range.

    I wonder if the new 17mm will cover full frame? I can't see why it wouldn't, and that's
    exciting for film users, too.

    I do suppose I'll benefit from the existance of the M8, as Leica can now claim it's a major
    player in both high-end film and digital. My film camera isn't a dinosaur, it's now part of a
    complete film/digital system. It's no longer a "dead end" system.

    This said, I can say I don't want an M8. I want two...
     
  27. Flickr and Photo.net have links where you can purchase a 'pro account' for someone as a gift. I would like to add a request for the moderators to add a link to the subscribers icon that would say 'Purchase a Gift Leica M8 for this Member'

    ... or something like that.
     
  28. Tony Rose (Leica Dealer in U.S.) posted on RFF asserting a $4,995 US price for the M8.
    Andy referred to two other 10 mpxl cameras. I wouldn't be shocked to see a 3rd or even a 4th coming out. Keep in mind that Canon at the moment offers no camera as a real 'rival' to the D200. How long will that be the case? Moreover, Olympus and Pentax are due/overdue/long overdue (take your pick) for introduction of their next pro or near-pro dslr's. Perhaps one or both will offer something ?
    But whether at $4,995 US, or L 3,500 (UK), or whatever, the M8 is going to occupy a place in the market that it will in a sense have all to itself. Priced well above the 10 mpxl crop-factor dslr's and even well above the Canon full-frame camera (the 5D, a 12.8 mpxl body), and at more than double the cost of the Epson RD-1s, the M8 will simply not appeal to the "most-bang-for-the-buck buyers" of digital gear.
    Memo to Pete: listening to the old Spiro Agnew tapes again ? (Nattering nabobs of negativism .... )
     
  29. I expect is will be $4995 + US tax and maybe something like ᆪ3495 including UK VAT. Compared to the cost of an R9/DMR combo, it's a (relative) bargain.

    I daresay there will be some people who buy them and immediately put them on ebay hoping to sell at a premium, in the same way there's a market for some new cars over list price.

    If the new wide angle is 17mm that's a bit of a disappointment, but depends on cost and weight. It will be interesting to see what they do about finders as well.

    I'm in, and my lenses are going off to Solms next week to be striped/coded/zebra'd.
     
  30. Is there going to be the equivalent of a Leica CL or CLE?
     
  31. Don't forget the lenses!

    If you have a wide range of Leitz lenses, $5,000 or $6,000 isn't a lot to spend to be able to use those lenses for digital imaging. If the sensor works well with the 21mm Elmarit and everything longer, that is not much money, considering that to move to Canon or Nikon for a system will cost you a lot more than the cost of a body. With most of Canon's L lenses running over $1,000 each, it adds up pretty quickly.

    A 5D with 24mm f:1.4, 35 f:1.4, 50mm f:1.4, 85mm f:1.8 and 135mm f:2 will set you back about $7,000.
     
  32. Nice one Rene!
    : )
     
  33. Andy - "Given that by the time it comes out there will be 2 10MP CCD chip DSLR's on the market, the Nikon D200 and the Sony Alpha, that the Alpha will have Zeiss primes available (not that it matters any)"

    Well, if you count CMOS, you've got at least 4: 10mp Nikon D200 and Sony A100, 12mp Nikon D2X and Canon 5D. Not to mention the 10mp Pentax that is supposed to be launching at PhotoKina with the same sensor as the D200 and A100.

    "As there are many London and Manhattan orthodontists and bankers around"...

    The orthodontists will have rubber bands small enough for Rene. ;)
     
  34. uk

    uk

    Peter

    .... the 5D example is exactly what my personal dilemma is. I know that the M8 is what I
    want to own and use, along side my MP & M3, rather than a $5-7,000 of DSLR. Designers
    willing, the camera should give any DSLR a run for the money, within its RF capability.

    However, at this price, a Hasselblad CFV back starts to look attractive as a means to bring
    existing owned and cheap to buy used accessories to the forefront. The CFV would bring
    greater advantage due to the cost and inconvenience of 120 processiing as compared to
    the beautiful FF performance of my Leica film cameras.

    So pricing is sensitive as far as I'm concerned, but not for the reasons mentioned above.

    VAT is important, but many professionals are VAT registered, myself included, and can
    claim this back from the Government. Leaves a net cost of GBP2978, or US$5,500.
     
  35. I find all this comparison of a potental M8 to current DSLR's foolish. Someone who buys a MP or M7 is usually not thinking of a Nikon F5 or Canon EOS as an alternative. The Leica M is a unique instrument.

    People who have Leica M glass (going back to 1954) will buy a M8 if it makes sense to THEM, a DSLR probably doesn't come into the decision.
     
  36. uk

    uk

    "I find all this comparison of a potental M8 to current DSLR's foolish. Someone who buys a
    MP or M7 is usually not thinking of a Nikon F5 or Canon EOS as an alternative. The Leica M
    is a unique instrument."

    We all agree, King David hath spoken the Law.

    I thought it was a tool for making pictures, just like the others, but different. Ya' learn
    summat every day. Brown bread is good fer ya'.
     
  37. You could bring a 1DS and a pair of f/2.8 zooms on a cycling tour of Tuscany, and you could use a 30-lb sledgehammer to put up a picture hook. Like you said, they're all just tools. There's no law that governs how selective you must be in their use.
     
  38. >"VAT at 17.5%"
    >1.175x=$6480


    Sorry guys, but $6480 for a digital M is a little nuts, although there will be plenty of
    people who will buy one.

    I have more Leica gear than I care to admit in polite company, but even for a diehard user
    like me that's a little too crazy.

    Feli


    www.elanphotos.com
     
  39. I think the best thing about these prices is that it will allow Zeiss plenty of room to bring out there own dRF. A Zeiss Ikonis 60% of a M7 pricewise? That would be about $3000 for the Zeiss?

    I'm not wedded to the FF sensor idea. If they can come up with a 10-12MP with good DR in a CL sized camera, I'm all for it. Even if they come up with a dM lens mount, that would allow the use of old M and Scremount lenses with adaptors. I saw somewhere once that camera companies make more off the lenses than onthe bodies. New digitally optimized lens mount with capapbility for Av and Tv modes. Sounds interesting. Let's remember Leica broke NEW ground with the 35mm format and smaller cameras. The brand DNA is for innovation and excellence, not sticking with by-gone standards.

    Mark
     
  40. An M digital camera is very nice, but I think I rather would buy a good manual digicam sized camera with RF/viewfinder, traditional controls and good low light capability. Then they can solder a lens to it, be it a fixed focal length in the 35-50mm area or short zoom.

    I can even take a Bessa T style camera with separate RF and big brightline viewfinder and a fixed 35mm lens.

    It cannot really be all that hard, can it? Though looking at the current product offerings, it obviously is..
     
  41. >Let's remember Leica broke NEW ground with the 35mm format and smaller cameras. The brand DNA is for innovation and excellence, not sticking with by-gone standards.

    That's the old LEITZ you're talking about. The Leica M has been stuck in a time warp for at least 30 years. Those lenses deserve a far better body than the current M or the M8.

    A waiting time of more than 1 year for a digital camera which isn't cutting edge even in 2006, coupled with their semi-annual price increases, sounds like a perfect death spiral to me.

    Solms should hire Mr Kobayashi as their CEO if they want to survive in the so-called "luxury market" which is, for them, even smaller than their traditional fan base.
     
  42. Solms should hire Mr Kobayashi as their CEO if they want to survive in the so-called "luxury market" which is, for them, even smaller than their traditional fan base.

    Fred, do you come on here just to bash Leica? It seems that's about all we hear from you. That above statement makes very little sense. Since when has Cosina been in the "luxury" market? The cameras and lenses that are their own (under the Voigtlander name)

    These are low price items designed to offer a low price alternative to Leica (some of these quite good but still low cost items).

    This is hardly the luxury market. One could say that the ZI manufactured by Cosina is a step up. But these are Zeiss designed items made for Zeiss. Cosina has long been involved in making low cost cameras and low cost lenses. Not luxury items.

    Your comments about the current Ms and the M8 (which you haven't even seen) are just place silly. Why so much hate for Leica? What has Leica done to you? Why inhabit a Leica Forum?
     
  43. They'll sell every M8/MD they'll be able to make and they know that, but for my budget I agree with Håkan Thörngren, how about a fixed lens digital rangefinder similar to the old Olympus XA, and maybe along the lines of the recently discontinued Olympus 7070, but with a fixed fast lens around 35/2.0 and rangefinder focusing.
     
  44. Yeah, I forgot Leica can do no wrong, just like the good old US of A. Any criticism is just mere hatred.

    Steering Leica back on the right track has nothing to do with good business sense and management, competitive products, realistic pricing and strong marketing. It all depends on your experience in the "luxury market." Guess that's why Bentley, Rolls Royce, Aston Martin, Jaguar, Lamborghini ... all with decades of experience in the luxury market, had to sell themselves off to foreigners just to survive. I wonder why Leica had to do the same thing, and did it more than once already?

    If Leica goes the way of the dodo, it's still not their fault. No one's to blame except all those "Leica-bashers."
     
  45. r s

    r s

    $4-5,000...hmm..yeah I'd probably end up getting one.
     
  46. Gary: If you're going to estimate a price in U.S. dollars - do NOT include European VAT. (Or at least include a dose of Digitalin or Adrenalin or some such to prevent heart failures!)

    This side of the pond we distinguish between what the company is charging, and how much bureaucrats are raking off the top. So taxes are not included in the price (except for auto fuel, for some reason)

    And U.S. sales taxes run from 0% to 9%: http://thestc.com/STrates.stm
    not 17%.

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

    I'm buying a Leica M8 because I want a rangefinder. SLRs need not apply - at any price.

    The M8 has 6 specific features that I like: SD card option in place of Cr*p-Flash; split-image manual focusing; 1.33x (or better) crop; big viewfinder; 10+ megapixels; metal exterior.

    The only SLR that even vaguely starts to meet all those requirements is a Canon 1DMkII (list price $3999). SD - check, Split-image screen available - check; 1.3x - check; big finder - check; metal - check; 10+ megapixels - ooops!

    So for a price 20% higher I get: 25% more pixels (10+ vs. 8+); real aperture rings on my lenses; focus-by-thread instead of by-wire; and about 1/3rd the bulk, 1/2 (at least) the weight, and 1/2 the noise (sound, not image noise).

    Sounds like a good deal to me!
     
  47. Ooops - correction in Canon's favor: "For a 20% higher price I get 20% more pixels) - basically both the Canon 1D and the Leica M8 cost $475-500 per megapixel.
     
  48. A 5D with 24mm f:1.4, 35 f:1.4, 50mm f:1.4, 85mm f:1.8 and 135mm f:2 will set you back about $7,000.

    Peter - First of all, the 5D has more megapixels and it's full frame. You're saying that for just the price of the M8, you could not only have a better camera body, but also 5 top quality primes to go with it. Hmm, which would I rather have...?
     
  49. uk

    uk

    "Gary: If you're going to estimate a price in U.S. dollars - do NOT include European VAT.
    (Or at least include a dose of Digitalin or Adrenalin or some such to prevent heart
    failures!)"

    Sorry Andy, heart attacks are not my speciality. I aploogise to anyone who is now
    receiveing medication as a result of my posting.

    HOWEVER, in case you are sitting comfortably, I just checked Robert White in comparison
    to B&H. Not confident either are the cheapest source:

    So RW v BH at $1 = 0.54UKP

    Leica MP 3275 v 3495

    50mm f2 1253 v 1495

    75mm f2 2222 v 2695

    35mm f1.4 2885 v 3195

    Kit price RW $9635 v B&H $10880

    So it appears that, pre sales tax, UK pricing is a little lower on Leica. We then have 17.5%
    and you have 0-9% (?).

    I can recover the 17.5% VAT and charge the net to my business and reduce tax liabilities
    by 20%, methinks.

    Adding the tax back in, that means a bottom line cost on my business bank account of
    $2,383, but need to check with my accountant.

    Sorry if anyone is now turning green. :)
     
  50. uk

    uk

    The last two lines of the above posting was of course was a reference to the M8 at UKP
    3500 inc VAT. Prior info was to establish a perspective on trans-Atlantic pricing
    comparison.

    Gary
     
  51. The minutiae of UK vs USA prices is not going to matter to Leica's customer base. They will not bat an eyelid if it came out at $10,000

    Not talking about people like me, who just own an M6. We are talking about very well heeled collectors and users. (Only a very few professionals will buy one.)

    Many of Leica's customers will hold back until the A La Carte or 'special' digital versions appear so they can pay even more to be that bit different.

    People who buy brand new luxury items regularly don't ask the price.

    Yes, there will be one or two people living on beans on toast and drinking water for a year, cycling to work and only switching on the 40watt bulb for 10 minutes a day to stare at the M8 poster and to pencil in another bar on the... "Leica M8 fund" chart! But they are an exception.

    The only problem for Leica's 'natural' clientele will be to find a teenager to hire to show them where to put the SD card and how to download a picture of their house.
     
  52. There seem to be some very jealous or envious members on this site who are rueing their purchases of Canon and Nikon outfits. I don't think they need worry just yet. If the M8 outperforms its specification as did the Digilux 2 then it will give Canon and Nikon a very good run for their money. In addition it will not depreciate faster than you can say Sayonara. But all this at a cost.
     
  53. Brent: Why do you keep trying to sell us an SLR? I don't want to use an SLR.

    If you went to the showroom to buy a family car, and the salesman kept trying to sell you a
    pickup truck, pointing out that it was less expensive, and had 4-wheel drive, and more
    cargo capacity - wouldn't you think him a little - slow?

    The Canon 5D is a great SLR - if I wanted an SLR it would be high on my list (although I'd
    wait to see if Canon offers a MkII or "3D" that includes an SD-card option and perhaps
    accepts the 1Ds split-image focusing screen).

    But "better" to me is a rangefinder - so how can the 5D be "better"?
     
  54. "envious members on this site who are rueing their purchases of Canon and Nikon outfits."

    Come on Anthony put your best Digilux 2 stuff up and make us 'rue'.

    You have countless threads where you criticised digital photography. Now Leica are finally going to bring out a digital M you are suddenly a fan!
     
  55. "envious members on this site who are rueing their purchases of Canon and Nikon outfits." Hey that sounds a lot like an Emerald Nuts commercial.
     
  56. Trevor - OK Buthow do I size a digital picture - is it still 511 pixels width or what method do use. I'm fed up with guessing. I now have photoshop 7 if it's any help.
     

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