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No more R9

Steen

Senior Subscriber Member
Pete, I assume you received the same L-Camera Newsletter as I did, saying this:

"After the good news regarding the LEICA M8 Firmware, not so positive news about the Leica R-system in this newsletter issue:

Leica yesterday informed their sales agencies and dealers, that Leica has no more stock of Leica R9 cameras and Leica R Lenses. A new production is not planned either.

Leica also writes that they are working hard "on making a generation change possible for the current R-System", for this the knowledge gained through the development of the LEICA S2 has helped tremendously.

This fits into the Leica's and Dr. Kaufmann's commitment to a digital R camera during the photokina.

In this moment I have no clue what this means for the Leica R photographers among us. But I'll keep on pestering my contact persons with questions in order to keep you up to date."


I think the good news is "a digital R camera during the photokina".
 

Steen

Senior Subscriber Member
Yeah, 1½ year from now, but usually good things are worth waiting for :)
 

Steen

Senior Subscriber Member
So do I, and fortunately this is actually all about the R successor, just referring a little bit to the knowledge gained through the development of the S system. So there's still hope.
In my mind the direct competitor is the Sony Alpha system, the only other 24X36mm sensor based system with weak sensor filters and autofocus primes at approximately the same level.
So if only Leica will know to compete with Sony, then I'm seriously interested.
 

Erik Five

Member
Im not feeling down over those news. I can still buy whatever R lenses and bodies I want used. I wont buy a dslr from Leica anyway. The m8 and S2 yes, but id rather buy Nikon or Canon when it comes to dslr´s. Buying in to a new AF R system with QC issues and extreme prices + 3 months turnaround when something goes wrong. No thanks... But hey, thats just me ;)
 

robmac

Active member
+1 on Erik's comments. Sadly, many leicaphiles seem to think an simple production cut on a body/lens line no one was buying (new anyway) means an R10 is coming next week ...

If/when the the S2 is proven successful, an R10 MAY transpire (I'm not as optimistic as some).

The classic axiom of 'having too many irons in the fire' aside, given Leica's lousy 3Q results, their "..markedly negative" outlook for fiscal 2009-10 and the recent (modest) influx of cash from Dr. K's (IIRC) management/holding company due in part to "product delays", trying to intro the S2 AND launch a DSLR into that (eat your own young) market while in the midst of a global recession would be corporate suicide.

Hell, the whole reason d'etre for the S2 was because they DIDN'T want to bet the firm on the intensely competitive (and player-rich) DSLR market.

Love it or hate it, but Leica's flagships products will be the M line, the S2 (hopefully) - followed by any new R as (hoped for if resources permit) tertiary product line based very heavily on S tech to keep costs down and margin up.

Hell, you could probably do it with secure firmware on an S2 - crop the sensor, disable some features, etc ;> . I can see it now "....paypal us $10,000 and we'll email you the PIN so you can S2 your R10..... Hey call it the R2 (or RII to be cute).

Pricing will have to be above the normal 1DS_ and D_X to help differentiate the line from the rest of the pack. It will likely take S glass via some NAM1 style adapter (or native amount) and R glass - again to keep costs down, minimize new lens development needs and aid use of the R10 as an S backup.

Ah, it's fun to speculate.
 
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Jack

Sr. Administrator
Staff member
However, the big thing in there to my thinking is regarding R lens stock: "Leica has no more stock of Leica R9 cameras and Leica R Lenses." I think it is safe to assume the future R digital platform, whatever it is, will not likely be able utilize 'old style' R lenses.
 

robmac

Active member
That is a risk - and would not go over well. The current dumping of new R gear on the market won't do much good for used R glass prices in interim. If the new R doesn't happen - or won't take old R glass, that will further depress values.

On the other hand, give it a couple of years and Nikon and Canon shooters will have snapped up supplies ;>
 

Jack

Sr. Administrator
Staff member
On the other hand, give it a couple of years and Nikon and Canon shooters will have snapped up supplies ;>
Except that paradigm is changing quickly with the introduction of Zeiss lenses in C and F mount, AND both companies (finally) doing some needed re-designs to their own heritage lenses...
 

dhsimmonds

New member
The writing was on the wall last year when Leica UK dumped R lenses around the Leica Premier dealers who promptly sold them off for around 50% of list prices as "ex demo stock".....all with full passport warranty! One dealer bought the entire stock of DMR batteries and chargers and is now making a killing as he is selling them at full list prices.

Any manufacturer who does this is clearing the decks for a new model and demonstrates total lack of interest in supporting the existing or newly obsolete production. The timing of this announcement comes a day before the other announcement that Dr Kaufmann is to step down as Chairman in favour of a new appointee (ex Zeiss) who will doubtless now take all the flak from the many disgruntled R users around the world! Thats the way of business, but as far as the new R10 or whatever it will be named, let this experience be remembered, as it is "Caveat Emptor" from now on with Leica products.
 

mark1958

New member
It is sad to see the R lenses go by the wayside. I still think they represented some of the best 35mm optics. I guess I am concerned that Leica is in trouble and I would not be totally surprised if they do not survive long term. I hope i am wrong.
 

robmac

Active member
I hope so to. But they'll need to make all the right and tough decisions from a cold-hearted business perspective not from the perspective of a Leicaphile (one of my key concerns with Dr. K) and execute them with authority -- and quickly.
 

Hacker

New member
The R system is best remembered for some its outstanding lenses in today's digital age. Body wise, I cannot see why a Canon or Nikon be used. I bet the R10 will have the equivalent quality of today's sensors when launched, not tomorrow's.
 

mark1958

New member
Well the question is whether or not you would trade your 401K in on Leica R glass :). could not do much worse than my current 401K.
Seriously a number of companies i work closely with have closed shop. Putting in a new CEO is not necessarily something that will revive the company. Could be someone to help with the fire sale.


I hope so to. But they'll need to make all the right and tough decisions from a cold-hearted business perspective not from the perspective of a Leicaphile (one of my key concerns with Dr. K) and execute them with authority -- and quickly.
 
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