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Thread: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

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    Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Some might find this PopPhoto interview interesting. Discusses future of M, R, Digilux, etc.

    The "..Nikon rumor.." apparently relates to a rumor Nikon is going to re-launch their RF line with a digital model.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    and the link:

    http://www.popphoto.com/popularphoto...-of-leica.html

    just trying to highjack your thead, Rob .-)

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Oh how interesting.
    So, reading between the lines, there isn't going to be a FF M9 yet, but there is going to be something M at photokina that isn't a lens . . . It must be Guy's digital CL!

    Thanks for the link.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Oops - thanks Steen, I was on way to Vet's and kept thinking I'd forgotten something (other than not going to Veterinary School) ;>

    M hint - my bet is on lower-end/priced M digital. As for any FF R10-esque DSLR R10, well..

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Oops - thanks Steen, I was on way to Vet's and kept thinking I'd forgotten something (other than not going to Veterinary School) ;>

    M hint - my bet is on lower-end/priced M digital. As for any FF R10-esque DSLR R10, well..
    Hi Rob
    I agree with you about the lower priced M. Let's hope it's the small one.

    As for the R10 . . even on this forum the enthusiasm for the D3 makes it seem difficult to see how they can compete. They could certainly manage the 'photograhic' side, they might be able to manage the image quality, but it's hard to see how they could compete with the software and facilities side . . . and if they need to bring out a new autofocus lens range . . . It's a really tough ask.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Hi Rob
    I agree with you about the lower priced M. Let's hope it's the small one.
    Help understand the small M.....I thought the M8 was pushing the limit on size because you needed the base length to for more accurate focus.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Sounds positive to me as an R shooter. I doubt very much that the July announcement he refers to is to be about the end of the R line, but rather the opposite.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Not small M, lower-priced/end digital M.

    They've stated and logically it holds true that if they intend to keep the M as their 'flagship' product (K's words), they need to get it into more hands. To do that they need to get the price down and the market awareness up (I'll ignore service turn around for now).

    If they go it alone, would requires a margin cut (in hopes of higher volumes), polycarbonate vs. metal housing, maybe a different choice of sensor - a more off the shelf unit that includes an AA filter, etc. That said, the most logical choice would be do it through a higher-volume manufacturing partner with a stronger marketing and service operation. It will be interesting to see what their strategy will be.

    How about a wild-hair thought? Nikon buys Leica. Immediate access to RF glass and digital RF design that can be re-costed by them. Ownership of a premium glass line that they can design their AF system into. Turn Solms into a design and (maybe) an a la carte or bespoke manufacturing shop for a line of premium kits. Sony also makes sense for other reasons, but Nikon seems more appealing. Like I said, just some wild speculation while my brain warms up for the day ahead.

    Oh, there is also an Economist article on Leica (don't have link)if anyone is interested.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Not small M, lower-priced/end digital M.

    They've stated and logically it holds true that if they intend to keep the M as their 'flagship' product (K's words), they need to get it into more hands. To do that they need to get the price down and the market awareness up (I'll ignore service turn around for now).

    If they go it alone, would requires a margin cut (in hopes of higher volumes), polycarbonate vs. metal housing, maybe a different choice of sensor - a more off the shelf unit that includes an AA filter, etc. That said, the most logical choice would be do it through a higher-volume manufacturing partner with a stronger marketing and service operation. It will be interesting to see what their strategy will be.

    How about a wild-hair thought? Nikon buys Leica. Immediate access to RF glass and digital RF design that can be re-costed by them. Ownership of a premium glass line that they can design their AF system into. Turn Solms into a design and (maybe) an a la carte or bespoke manufacturing shop for a line of premium kits. Sony also makes sense for other reasons, but Nikon seems more appealing. Like I said, just some wild speculation while my brain warms up for the day ahead.

    Oh, there is also an Economist article on Leica (don't have link)if anyone is interested.
    Hi Rob - nice idea, but don't you think that Panasonic is a more likely candidate?

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Panasonic is more likely, but i can't see Panasonic getting the best value out of it - and from our perspective P would suck. They'd get more from/for their assets and deliver us stronger goodies if bought by a well-heeled SLR manufacturer.

    I can't see Panasonic selling $3000 lenses - or even $1500 lenses for that matter. Nikon, if interested in a RF re-entry could use all of L's assets - even in their P&S line if the Panasonic/Leica JV legalese would permit.

    Just wishful thinking on my part.

    Hate seeing a firm such as Leica with such a strong technical asset/knowledge base running the RISK of imploding and extinction by going it alone in some David vs. Goliaths op, when their assets and strengths would be leveraged X fold (from the perspective of customers and shareholders) by being folded into one of the Goliaths.
    Last edited by robmac; 23rd May 2008 at 05:01.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    As for the R10 . . even on this forum the enthusiasm for the D3 makes it seem difficult to see how they can compete. They could certainly manage the 'photograhic' side, they might be able to manage the image quality, but it's hard to see how they could compete with the software and facilities side . . . and if they need to bring out a new autofocus lens range . . . It's a really tough ask.
    Jono, while in certain respects you may be on target I would have to add that not everyone is looking for a D3 competitor from the next Leica R. Yes, the D3 is a winner but that is not what I want from the Leica R10 (SL10) and I would be disappointed if it were. I will agree that to appeal to a larger audience, auto focus would be a great benefit but I would be happy with manual focus only. Same with clean ISO 3200, etc., not essential.

    Depending on the criteria used, sometimes the D3 is a clear winner but other times it is still no match for the DMR, IMHO as we say on the net.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by cmb_ View Post
    Jono, while in certain respects you may be on target I would have to add that not everyone is looking for a D3 competitor from the next Leica R. Yes, the D3 is a winner but that is not what I want from the Leica R10 (SL10) and I would be disappointed if it were. I will agree that to appeal to a larger audience, auto focus would be a great benefit but I would be happy with manual focus only. Same with clean ISO 3200, etc., not essential.

    Depending on the criteria used, sometimes the D3 is a clear winner but other times it is still no match for the DMR, IMHO as we say on the net.
    HI Chris
    You mustn't misunderstand me - I don't mean the D3 per se (it's not quite what I want either). It's the principle of the D3 - so effortlessly accomplished - that I'm talking of. Soon there will be a 24mp version as well. I quite understand the Leica magic, and I definitely subscribe, but there are only so many compromises I'm willing to make to get it.

    As for manual focus only - I don't think there will be many would would be satisfied - it limit's it's scope so much - of course, if they bring out an 18mp full frame body, which is fairly small, weatherproof, uses all the old Leica lenses 'as is' and will also fit a new range of autofocus lenses - I'll probably be there myself . . .

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Not small M, lower-priced/end digital M.

    They've stated and logically it holds true that if they intend to keep the M as their 'flagship' product (K's words), they need to get it into more hands. To do that they need to get the price down and the market awareness up (I'll ignore service turn around for now).

    If they go it alone, would requires a margin cut (in hopes of higher volumes), polycarbonate vs. metal housing, maybe a different choice of sensor - a more off the shelf unit that includes an AA filter, etc. That said, the most logical choice would be do it through a higher-volume manufacturing partner with a stronger marketing and service operation. It will be interesting to see what their strategy will be.

    How about a wild-hair thought? Nikon buys Leica. Immediate access to RF glass and digital RF design that can be re-costed by them. Ownership of a premium glass line that they can design their AF system into. Turn Solms into a design and (maybe) an a la carte or bespoke manufacturing shop for a line of premium kits. Sony also makes sense for other reasons, but Nikon seems more appealing. Like I said, just some wild speculation while my brain warms up for the day ahead.

    Oh, there is also an Economist article on Leica (don't have link)if anyone is interested.
    While a Nikon buyout would make business sense it would not achieve Herr Kaufmann's goals. He is eminently passionate about Leica and that is why he bought every share. He is committed to pouring more of his estate's wealth into the company (where else are they going to get the 30 million Euros he refers to for R&D) and is determined to rebuild its reputation. So my opinion is that product development will be slower than if bought by Nikon but it will be all Leica and Kaufmann will make all the decisions.

    Woody

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    As for manual focus only - I don't think there will be many would would be satisfied - it limit's it's scope so much . .
    Jono:

    Are the pastural scenes you shoot moving so fast you need af I think that is the market where AF has lttle impact.

    Robert

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by woodyspedden View Post
    While a Nikon buyout would make business sense it would not achieve Herr Kaufmann's goals. He is eminently passionate about Leica and that is why he bought every share. He is committed to pouring more of his estate's wealth into the company (where else are they going to get the 30 million Euros he refers to for R&D) and is determined to rebuild its reputation. So my opinion is that product development will be slower than if bought by Nikon but it will be all Leica and Kaufmann will make all the decisions.

    Woody
    Well, lets hope Herr K's goal turns out to be the right one in the bright light of history. Sometimes an avid (and obviously very wealthy) collector the best CEO does not make.
    Last edited by robmac; 23rd May 2008 at 10:00.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    You mustn't misunderstand me - I don't mean the D3 per se (it's not quite what I want either). It's the principle of the D3 - so effortlessly accomplished - that I'm talking of. . . .
    Yes, I meant it in the same way as well.

    >Leica magic, and I definitely subscribe, but there are only so many compromises I'm willing to make to get it<

    One of the points I was trying to make is that for some, maybe only a few, they will not see it as a compromise.

    best -CHARLES-

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Edit: Actually he reminds me of a couple of well known and very wealthy CEOs (who shall remain nameless) I knew VERY well as an analyst. Driven, they took their firms from startup to a top market position. Now wealthy due to their respective firm's growth, they were all passionate about they're company's technology/products established engineering reputation and future 'legacy' in the market, were very hands-on... and basically all round nice guys to have dinner with. Not one idiot among them by any definition.

    That said, their focused passion (like that an avid collector of X) was also their greatest weakness; for they lacked that objectivity and situational awareness that outsiders viewed the firm with and within.

    To a man they had an unrealistic perspective of competitive threats and subtle (and sometime not so subtle) changes taking place in the market. They also, with some exceptions, typically had a senior executive suite staffed with like-minded technocrats. The result was that things invariably started to go pear shaped for each firm in question.

    At that point they, again, to a man, refused to make the cold hard decisions necessary to haul things back. They (and their senior most staff) believed too much in the technology and firm's reputation accordingly to step back and take cold perspective necessary to realistically determine just what it would take to not only survive but re-establish a position of defendable strength in the market. Eventually each firm in question either faded into obscurity or was acquired for chump change at the 11th hour.

    In this case lets hope the resemblance is only fleeting.
    Last edited by robmac; 23rd May 2008 at 10:11.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by robsteve View Post
    Jono:

    Are the pastural scenes you shoot moving so fast you need af I think that is the market where AF has lttle impact.

    Robert
    HI Robert
    Of course . . . BUT and it's a big but, the M8 does well for the pastoral scenes anyway. The D3 was bought because I do other stuff (some of it is even vaguely commercial) - I have some wedding work to do this summer, some PR work and concerts . . . and I like to do macro . .. for all of these things an SLR is important, and so is autofocus. An R10 would do most of the things I LIKE to do, but not all the things I need to do.

    I wouldn't want to buy into a Leica dSLR system simply for the things I like and to have a Nikon system for the things I need.

    Perhaps you've really proved the point - it would seem superficially that I am the perfect market for an R10 . . . . but EVEN I would not be interested in it if there was no autofocus.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Oh, there is also an Economist article on Leica (don't have link)if anyone is interested.
    Try this:

    http://www.economist.com/business/di...TOKEN=95019916
    Sláinte

    Robert.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Edit: Actually he reminds me of a couple of well known and very wealthy CEOs (who shall remain nameless) I knew VERY well as an analyst. Driven, they took their firms from startup to a top market position. Now wealthy due to their respective firm's growth, they were all passionate about they're company's technology/products established engineering reputation and future 'legacy' in the market, were very hands-on... and basically all round nice guys to have dinner with. Not one idiot among them by any definition.

    That said, their focused passion (like that an avid collector of X) was also their greatest weakness; for they lacked that objectivity and situational awareness that outsiders viewed the firm with and within.

    To a man they had an unrealistic perspective of competitive threats and subtle (and sometime not so subtle) changes taking place in the market. They also, with some exceptions, typically had a senior executive suite staffed with like-minded technocrats. The result was that things invariably started to go pear shaped for each firm in question.

    At that point they, again, to a man, refused to make the cold hard decisions necessary to haul things back. They (and their senior most staff) believed too much in the technology and firm's reputation accordingly to step back and take cold perspective necessary to realistically determine just what it would take to not only survive but re-establish a position of defendable strength in the market. Eventually each firm in question either faded into obscurity or was acquired for chump change at the 11th hour.

    In this case lets hope the resemblance is only fleeting.
    Rob The difference is that he didn t grow up in the business and had nothing to do with the growth and success of the company. Unless I am mistaken his "family" owns a major packaging conglomerate in Austria. The business model in packaging is about the effective use of capital(capacity)....the firm that produces at the lowest cost wins. Packaging companies sell to food and consumer products companies. I haven t read anything that showed he has any of the appropriate experience to head up Leica. Better lessons could be learned at either Porsche or Zeiss. The family that owns Porsche realized they were cooked unless they played to their strengths and adopted lean manufacturing techniques. They hired Nissan engineering to help them design their factory for 911 s. They built a factory in Finland to build the lower cost sports car and a new SUV. They improved their quality to the top of their class. Zeiss gave up on consumer products and focused on industry with the exception of lenses and sports optics . They built effective partnerships with the Japanese and created products with decent quality/cost characteristics. Somebody needs a "great idea" ! sure hope we see some at Fotokina ....I love my M8s

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Glen,

    Realize his background, the lack of experience in the sector is an excellent point that you're wise to bring up - as was the Porsche example. Actually the analogy between Leica and a low-volume (e.g. lower than Porsche) exotic car maker such as Lambo, etc., is a fit one.

    Me, I was drawing some analogies between the passion of an wealthy avid collector with (as you say) no technology/photo business background willing to acquire the producer of his 'hobby' (for lack of a better descriptor) and some ground-up 'better mousetrap' CEOs I knew.

    Devoted passion in and of itself is admirable and can drive you thru challenging times - but more often that not it and cold-hard objectivity don't easily co-exist. In this case you need to realize your strength for the weakness it can become -- under the right (wrong?) circumstances and make @#$% sure those in your immediate circle posses such objectivity - and listen them.

    As much as I hate to say it, Kaufmann's wealthy collector background, utter lack of experience in the sector and total control position (financially and managerially) IF he is surrounded by long-term Leica execs (as I suspect is the case) is one of THE classic recipes for gradual decline intermixed with various 'fits & start' attempts at a corprate re-work -- followed by an 11th hr bargain-basement acquisition.

    Again, hope I'm wrong, but it will be interesting to watch regardless of the outcome. I'm sure many a B-School business case is being crafted based on the firm's current strategic position as we speak. Makes a very interesting case study.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Rob my name is Roger Dunham..glenerrolrd is my handle a street name. Before I retired I had a career as a management consultant and worked both large and smaller product/manufacturing clients. Everytime I ran a major program ...I was the person trying to effect change. In a typical assignment I would have worked for either Lee or Kaufmann. Lee was a client at best buy (not for me but my firm). I am sure you can size up his POV and strategy. He was never playing long term ..he wanted to make a big splash and turnaround the companies prospects. On the other side you had the existing management team .....not exactly a stellar track record over the past 10 years or so. The rest would be obvious to that 1st year MBA reading the case study. The dirty stick Lee inherited was the initial design and quality problems with the M8. This sucked away resources and funds from the new development teams .... so you can guess where the new products must stand. Now add in a world wide economic slow down and some decent competition from Nikon for the high end market. I don t think they can make it without a significant partnership with a stronger complimentary business. I sure hope they are working with some one . Roger

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Roger - nice you 'meet' you. If we ever get the chance to have a beer, we could have some VERY interesting discussions. Reading your post, I started having flashbacks... ;>

    After grad school I worked at Nortel in their M&A and Strategic Planning (a.k.a CEO Ego-Projects) Group, then on Bay & Wall Streets as a telecom analyst. Initially it was all laughs and giggles, but it was soon followed by my playing Don Quixote trying to get Pension Fund clients to stay AWAY from folks like Nortel (your perspective changes when your the guy who helped fold the skeletons into the closet).

    Fed up tilting windmills, I left the Street to create a business/financial consulting team within a well known US optical communications market forecasting/consulting firm. All I can say is I must sub-consciously like to be challenged. Imagine a team of all Street analysts in a firm led and staffed almost exclusively by PhDs in Optics and EE.

    My 'guys' spent 5 years rearranging the drywall in Palo Alto with our foreheads trying to point out the rather large dung-covered elephant in the room. To their credit, they eventually listened (and then some), but it was too late.

    As you well know, when option-laden CEOs, bonused on yr/yr EPS growth pay $10,000+ per Powerpoint slide for warmed-over 'forecasts' that (coincidentally enough) tell them exactly what they want to hear (and repeat), not too many folks want to be the first to tell everyone the punch bowl is empty.

    Like yourself, I firmly feel that if Leica doesn't find a complimentary (read control-position) 'partner' with deep pockets, an objective mindset and a decent service structure I don't hold a lot of hope. Again, as you say, lets hope they've got some discussions ongoing behind the curtain.

    Cheers

    Rob

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Rob I am keeping my fingers crossed.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Amen brother - they offer too much value to see fade away.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Cryptic and playful rhetoric.

    "Incidentally we will show something else significant for the M system at Photokina, not just lenses."

    He didn't say something "digital."

    " ... rediscovering a few traditional product categories that Leica was famous for."

    Hmmm. ???

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Cryptic and playful rhetoric.

    "Incidentally we will show something else significant for the M system at Photokina, not just lenses."

    He didn't say something "digital."

    " ... rediscovering a few traditional product categories that Leica was famous for."

    Hmmm. ???
    Microscope related, such as the mount to put a M8 on a microscope?

    What else were their traditional product categories?

    Robert

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Visoflex?
    JAAP
    http://www.jaapvphotography.eu
    The colours of my generation are black and white.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by robsteve View Post
    Microscope related, such as the mount to put a M8 on a microscope?

    What else were their traditional product categories?

    Robert
    Spotting scopes with a M mount? Enlargers? ... best enlarger I ever owned was a Leica ... maybe a digital one ... LOL. Digital projector via Panasonic?

    Maybe he's just [email protected]#king with us

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    I would like to see a small M or Cl type camera. Actually a small camera with a fixed 3 step lens 24/35/70 at 10 mpx. That I would buy
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    I would like to see a small M or Cl type camera. Actually a small camera with a fixed 3 step lens 24/35/70 at 10 mpx. That I would buy
    I am afraid they make this CLD with a 4/3 sensor for a low entry into the M digital system (low is a way to speak, I don't see it bellow 3K). Then the R10 has a great chance to have the same M8 sensor for the same rocket price.
    I guess I will be out of the game still.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by sinwen View Post
    I am afraid they make this CLD with a 4/3 sensor for a low entry into the M digital system (low is a way to speak, I don't see it bellow 3K). Then the R10 has a great chance to have the same M8 sensor for the same rocket price.
    I guess I will be out of the game still.
    If Leica made a small camera like the DP1 with either an M8 sensor or a 4/3 sensor and good controls, I would be ecstatic.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Hi there

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    I would like to see a small M or Cl type camera. Actually a small camera with a fixed 3 step lens 24/35/70 at 10 mpx. That I would buy

    Quote Originally Posted by TEBnewyork View Post
    If Leica made a small camera like the DP1 with either an M8 sensor or a 4/3 sensor and good controls, I would be ecstatic.
    Absolutely - it's there to be made it really is - 4/3 would seem to be the obvious sensor size.

    I'd be in heaven too! (but please could it have a Kodak rather than a Panasonic sensor?).

    While we're about it, please could it have accurate electronic framelines as well

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Canon has apparently ceased 35mm [SLR] camera production - I don't know about Nikon. Does that just leave Leica among 'serious' makers producing bodies for 35mm - the film is still available.

    So, if digital is the way 'forward', then to survive, Leica must introduce a DSLR - at full frame or close to it. And given their customer base, with lots of R lenses, it must be backwards compatible. Whether they can produce a model in time for Photokina is a different problem - they can hardly exist on M series alone, and relegate R series to the dustbin of history. They have the experience of the digital module; 'all' they need to do is repackage it in an R series body. Doing this might well stretch their resources - and autofocus lenses might be a step too far at present - and they might see these as deviating from Leica purity.
    Sláinte

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Your logic is on the money, but the question is if, as Kaufmann as been quoted as saying, the M line is their "flagship" product and with VERY limited resources vs. C or N or Sony, and with no AF body experience, how much effort/attention will (or can) they put into a new AF DSLR and lens line given the miniscule (relative) market share they can expect to, best case, win?

    If (any) new body is MF only, any winnable share will be far, far, far smaller. An uber-premium (lets assume) manual focus "DMRII" may win over Leicaphiles, but will do nothing for the firm's growth prospects. Any pro-DSLR effort has to beat the competition in terms of resolution, match the average in terms of ISO, WB, AF performance and flash control, be introduced with a handful of F2.8 zooms covering up to 200mm (to start), be produced in volume, priced (body & lenses) to sell to a wider (for Leica) market and ride hand-in-hand with an improved service organization.

    My fear/feeling is that: a) they may have waited too long to take a strike a the full-fledge pro DSLR market and b) Herr K may be thinking more like an wealthy avid (I assume) M collector vs. a professional photog.

    My gut feel - they focus on M and have sidebar efforts with say Panasonic with bridge cameras (that may take R glass) that don't distract them for what they see as their 'Mission' yet bring in some decent cash flow.
    Last edited by robmac; 28th May 2008 at 04:20.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Any pro-DSLR effort has to beat the competition in terms of resolution, match the average in terms of ISO, WB, AF performance and flash control, be introduced with a handful of F2.8 zooms covering up to 200mm (to start), be produced in volume, priced (body & lenses) to sell to a wider (for Leica) market and ride hand-in-hand with an improved service organization.
    Absolutely Rob . . . and how could they POSSIBLY do that? Panasonic don't have the experience, and although a closer relationship with Olympus might help, it seems that they don't have the will/ability to do this either.

    Currently, the M series doesn't really have any competition, and there is an (albeit small) demand. There are plenty of excellent dSLR systems out there already, and it sounds like Nikon will be bringing a 24mp FF body to market in the next month or so.

    But I do think there are market niche's which could prove lucrative - there very clearly IS a market for a high quality compact with a decent sized sensor, I'd have thought they might be in a position to do something there, and I still think there's life in the M system without a huge amount of changes (accurate electronic rangefinder lines and a few extra controls would probably do it for most of us).

    But I'd have thought that the prospect for the R10 has changed from an unlikely contender to a suicide bid over the last year or so.

    To be honest, if rumours of a Nikon rangefinder prove to be true, I'll worry about Leica's existence at all.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    As much as it is hard to say, I agree entirely re: any true pro-body R10 would be a suicide bid. As a 'bird under glass' at Photokina to try and juice up a potential bid for the firm, maybe - as long as there was some solid R&D under that glass that any due diligence would back up. Leica's ability to DESIGN a nice R10 is a LOT different that Leica's ability/suitability to MAKE (in volume) at the right price and quickly service/support a nice R10.

    If a nice Nikon digi RF comes into being as the rumors suggest, Leica has got a SERIOUS issue on it's hands. As you say, I do think many folks, pros and snappers would love the idea of an M8esque body for low light, Street, as an '"...oh... @#$..." backup to a DSLR, and as a camera of opportunity; BUT it has to be at the right price (for a decent kit) and with a support structure that is at least no worse in turn around time/effort than what people now get from C and N.

    A Summarit-priced M9, assuming they don't lobotomize the camera, would obviously help, but the service and support work will take a lot more time and effort to evolve.

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post

    A Summarit-priced M9, assuming they don't lobotomize the camera, would obviously help, but the service and support work will take a lot more time and effort to evolve.
    Well, let's hope Leica do it first . . . .let's see
    sensor like the D3
    Auto ISO with useable 6400 ISO (like the D3)
    accurate rangefinder lines (electronic)

    Is it too much to ask?

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    Re: Another Kaufmann Interview (English)

    uh..I guess no more than a church with a bar in it

    Concept should be universal (that and giving folks like me immunity at the door from smiting or what have you) - would make sweating your ____ off during endless hot muggy weddings a LOT easier to take.

    That said, it wasn't really still church, being de-hallowed and all, so I guess your wish list may be a bit 'rich'.

    On other hand, crop the D3 sensor down to 1.5, do that micro-lens stuff, leave the AA filter on the shop floor, metal/polycarbonate body, on demand VF grid lines...... could have something there.

    (for those not familiar, above is related to another thread...)

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