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Thread: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

  1. #1
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    Thumbs down So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Here's the story of a photographer who thought Leica was a serious camera company who cares about their trustful customers.



    My name is KaÔs, french photographer based in Paris, France.

    I started my Leica journey with a M9, ten years ago, sold and upgraded with a M9-P
    A Monochrom (version 1) quickly followed him all of them bought brand new.

    Wanting to get my hands on a "real Leica", I bought a M6 Titanium set with its Summicron 35/1.4.
    The medium lust was too hard to resist: a S2 with a Summarit 70 joined my stable.
    Let's add a wide angle to my S system: a brand new Summarit 35.

    Time has past, I added a M7 (0.58 finder), a Q Titanium, a Monochrom version 2, a M5, an Elmarit 90/2.0, a Summicron 50, a Summarit 35/2.4...

    We are talking about minimum 44 500Ä (including the S007)!!!!!

    Then, the problems begun: both my M9-P and Monochrom I had a sensor failure (cracked sensor).
    How come a "pro" camera could have a sensor cracked?
    During my carreer, I owned a 5DmkII, a D3x, a Df, a 5DmkIV (I'm still using today) that NEVER failed me, NEVER.

    Anyways, Leica has been kind enough to replace both sensors for free.

    When the S007 came out, I was tempted to upgrade my aging S2.
    At my usual Leica dealer, they kindly checked my S2 before it goes on sale and discovered a corroded sensor!

    Come on! A third failure from a so serious comapany? I must be the unluckiest photographer on earth then.

    Still, I upgraded to a reconditioned mint grade SOO7, checked by Leica with a one year guarantee.

    During my second shooting, the 70 started to rattle from time to time, missing focus lock.
    Of course, my poker face never let any worries showed to my clients.

    Back home, I uploaded the photos into Capture One and got struck by what I have discovered:
    See attached photos.
    DNGs avaiaible upon request.


    I thought my memory card failed (I exclusively use hi-speed Sandisk Extreme and Extreme Pro SD).
    I tried with different cards, same problem.

    The DNGs are available if requested.

    I met the people of Leica at Paris Salon de la photo (photoshow) and, after hours of friendly chat, they acknowledged that there was a video card failure.

    Wait a second. Are we talking about Leica's flagship camera here?
    The one that is supposed to compete with a Hasselblad HD6-50 or a PhaseOne XF???
    A failure after less than 2000 photos taken? Is this german so-called excellence?

    Since November 8th, 2018 my SOO7 is at the customer service (I hope) and I have NO NEWS from them!!!

    How come a pro photographer can trust such miserable products?????
    How come my 2400Ä 5DmkIV works like a charm after litteraly thousands and thousands of photos???
    How come it takes 10 days max to Canon to fix and upgrade the firmware of their pro camera when I have been waiting 6+ months to get any information from
    Wetzlar???

    I'm over with this overrated brand.
    Keep on releasing limited edition for rich Qataris and Russians and let the pros (Canon, Nikon, Hasselblad, Fuji, to name a few) run the photography
    business.

    SHAME ON YOU Leica to ignore and disrespect your loyal customers!!!

    We made you, never forget that.

    I sent them a letter and I know the drill: they will send me apologies.

    But I'm not paying for apologies!!! I don't need them!!! I'm paying for equipment that pays my bills and feed me!


    Today, I'm waiting to get my hands back on my S007 to trade it for a Hasselblad H6D-50c.
    I am so disappointed by Leica...







    KAŌS DE BALI
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  2. #2
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Can’t help but agree - 30 years fine performance and service in the analog era; but delivery of defective products and truly abominable service in digital era.

    I remain loyal to some of my Leica lenses, but will never use them again on a Leica body.

    Kirk
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    For the money you've invested in Leica, it's unacceptable. I sold my Monochrom and M9, but was appalled at what the S was selling for at the time. Now, look at the re-sale of those, it's abysmal. Leica film cameras were the apex of quality, but their digital counterparts never could match that. Germans have a reputation for craftsmanship that their digital cameras could never achieve. Leave that to the Japanese whose skills are legendary.

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    Senior Member vieri's Avatar
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    I am really sorry to hear about your misfortunes, and I completely agree with you on digital Leica's poor QC / reliability track. The only Leica that is completely bullet-proof and never fails is the Leica SL, which is simply perfect as far as reliability goes. I was a Leica Ambassador (2016-2018), had two Leica SL for three years, used them in any weather / temperature / storms / ice / sand / younameit etc, and they just kept working, never a single bug or problem. The new M240 and especially the M10 seems to be doing very well without any problems so far.

    Your complains and frustration are perfectly understandable. While I have been using Hassleblad for some months now, I love Leica (brand, history, etc) and I really hope that: 1. that Leica understood the issue, and the new products will be above any suspicions (as it seems they are) and that, slowly, this will help regains the trust of customers that have been burned during these past years; 2. they will implement solutions for whatever problem there has been, and these solutions are: free, fast and painless. While on point nr. 1 I see definite improvements, I am afraid point nr. 2 still needs some work.

    Best regards,

    Vieri
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    I'm sorry to hear of your problems with modern Leicas.

    Back in the day, Leica/Leitz were mechanical and optical precision engineers. Today's digital cameras are more like computers with added sensors and lenses. Leica are not computer engineers, and surely buys in all these type of components, and perhaps even the motors in AF lenses. Their M series lenses are purely mechanical, and don't seem to give similar problems, though they need servicing from time to time.

    Up until the mid 1930s, Rolls-Royce made all the components for the rolling chassis, bar the frame, the spark plugs and the wheels. they made their own electrics, starter motor and dynamo, and their own carburettor. And they tested all the bits of steel they used. Royce was originally an electrical engineer, hence that expertise.

    Later they supplied whole cars; it's very apparent that in the models from the mid 60s to the turn of the century, the problems they have today are with the 'ancillaries', the bits that RR didn't make.

    I suspect that Leica have similar 'problems'; the bits they make are fine, the bits that are outsourced are the ones that can be problematic. Further, Leica were late arrivals on the digital scene; it's only now with the M10 and the SL that their products seem to be 'mature' and reliable. And we as consumers were the ones who did 'extended test drives' on their earlier products, discovering the problems that they had.
    SlŠinte

    Robert.
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    Senior Member JoelM's Avatar
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Harsh first post, but welcome to the Forum. I was a Leica user for just over 40 years. I started with a pair of M4-Ps just out of high school and went forwards and backwards to cover the M2-M8, sans the M5. I never had even one failure on any lens or body. Perhaps I was lucky, but I treated my gear like the jewels and treasures that they were. After using some Sony gear a few years ago, I saw absolutely no benefit to the Leica and the things I adored and still do, in the rangefinder format, I can now live without. The Sony does everything my Leicas did but even much better. While Leica was expensive back then, it has gotten ridiculously expensive now. Also, the lens rendering has gone completely against their original philosophy and is giving the same images as everyone else. I don't blame them as that is their business model and they are competing with other computer generated razor-sharp lens makers.

    My 2 cents,

    Joel
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by vieri View Post
    I am really sorry to hear about your misfortunes, and I completely agree with you on digital Leica's poor QC / reliability track. The only Leica that is completely bullet-proof and never fails is the Leica SL, which is simply perfect as far as reliability goes. I was a Leica Ambassador (2016-2018), had two Leica SL for three years, used them in any weather / temperature / storms / ice / sand / younameit etc, and they just kept working, never a single bug or problem. The new M240 and especially the M10 seems to be doing very well without any problems so far.

    Your complains and frustration are perfectly understandable. While I have been using Hassleblad for some months now, I love Leica (brand, history, etc) and I really hope that: 1. that Leica understood the issue, and the new products will be above any suspicions (as it seems they are) and that, slowly, this will help regains the trust of customers that have been burned during these past years; 2. they will implement solutions for whatever problem there has been, and these solutions are: free, fast and painless. While on point nr. 1 I see definite improvements, I am afraid point nr. 2 still needs some work.

    Best regards,

    Vieri
    Hello Vieri.
    First of all, I am an avid reader of your website and I want to thank you for all the time and passion you share with us.

    Thank you for your answer.

    Like many, I truly trusted this brand and I felt like I was continuing and helping the legacy.
    But romantism aside, this brand has proven me to be unreliable, disappointing and arrogant.

    We, the photographers, are the best ambassadors: we support the brand, we talk about their products, we use them, we influence other photographers to discover and use their products.
    But what we get is faulty products, an awful customers service and lousy apologies letters.

    This is not acceptable whether you buy a Leica pouch or a full S007 set.
    It's about trust and respect but neither one or the other has been shown by the Leica.

    My bad, I shouldn't have trusted them.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by JoelM View Post
    Harsh first post, but welcome to the Forum. I was a Leica user for just over 40 years. I started with a pair of M4-Ps just out of high school and went forwards and backwards to cover the M2-M8, sans the M5. I never had even one failure on any lens or body. Perhaps I was lucky, but I treated my gear like the jewels and treasures that they were. After using some Sony gear a few years ago, I saw absolutely no benefit to the Leica and the things I adored and still do, in the rangefinder format, I can now live without. The Sony does everything my Leicas did but even much better. While Leica was expensive back then, it has gotten ridiculously expensive now. Also, the lens rendering has gone completely against their original philosophy and is giving the same images as everyone else. I don't blame them as that is their business model and they are competing with other computer generated razor-sharp lens makers.

    My 2 cents,

    Joel
    Hello Joe.
    I wish I never had to write such hard words but this is reality.
    Like I replied to Vieri, it's all about trust and respect.
    Leica don't give a cow about us, the photographers.

  9. #9
    Senior Member vieri's Avatar
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by KdB View Post
    Hello Vieri.
    First of all, I am an avid reader of your website and I want to thank you for all the time and passion you share with us.

    Thank you for your answer.

    Like many, I truly trusted this brand and I felt like I was continuing and helping the legacy.
    But romantism aside, this brand has proven me to be unreliable, disappointing and arrogant.

    We, the photographers, are the best ambassadors: we support the brand, we talk about their products, we use them, we influence other photographers to discover and use their products.
    But what we get is faulty products, an awful customers service and lousy apologies letters.

    This is not acceptable whether you buy a Leica pouch or a full S007 set.
    It's about trust and respect but neither one or the other has been shown by the Leica.

    My bad, I shouldn't have trusted them.
    Kais,

    you are welcome, and thank you for your words about my blog, I am glad you are enjoying the articles

    I completely agree with what you say here, as I said before. To me, the only thing I would consider is that I think you are leaving just when things are changing: SL, M10, Q are all great cameras with no problems, at least so far. The L-mount alliance is promising, and there might be a SL2 coming up soon. So, if you love the lenses / cameras, perhaps it's worth one last effort in terms of granting Leica some trust a bit longer.

    If you are (rightfully!) fed up to the point of no return, on the other hand, the good thing is that we live in amazing times to be photographers, under a strictly "gear-oriented" point of view. Technology is mature enough, and - not counting Leica - you can find great cameras and lenses from Fuji, Nikon, Canon, Hasselblad, PhaseOne, with prices to suit pretty much all pockets if you also condor second hand gear.

    Best regards,

    Vieri
    Vieri Bottazzini
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Kdb, I sympathize with your experience with Leica cameras.

    That Leica using outsourced parts, and that might cause issues, is of no help to a customer whose Ď expensive Ď equipment fails. And the service turnaround is dismal.

    The camera bears Leicaís name and logo. They and they alone are responsible for it to function in a professional environment. Put a brand name on equipment, and a company puts it reputation on the line. More so if one markets their cameras n lenses as a sine qua non for photography.

    Romanticism and history of the past is overdone in Leicaís case.

    I, for one, can neither afford nor indulge in way over the top expensive romanticism, cameras or women ( for that matter...well almost ).

    But good light and times to those that prefer it.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by KdB View Post
    Here's the story of a photographer who thought Leica was a serious camera company who cares about their trustful customers.



    My name is KaÔs, french photographer based in Paris, France.

    I started my Leica journey with a M9, ten years ago, sold and upgraded with a M9-P
    A Monochrom (version 1) quickly followed him all of them bought brand new.

    Wanting to get my hands on a "real Leica", I bought a M6 Titanium set with its Summicron 35/1.4.
    The medium lust was too hard to resist: a S2 with a Summarit 70 joined my stable.
    Let's add a wide angle to my S system: a brand new Summarit 35.

    Time has past, I added a M7 (0.58 finder), a Q Titanium, a Monochrom version 2, a M5, an Elmarit 90/2.0, a Summicron 50, a Summarit 35/2.4...

    We are talking about minimum 44 500Ä (including the S007)!!!!!

    Then, the problems begun: both my M9-P and Monochrom I had a sensor failure (cracked sensor).
    How come a "pro" camera could have a sensor cracked?
    During my carreer, I owned a 5DmkII, a D3x, a Df, a 5DmkIV (I'm still using today) that NEVER failed me, NEVER.

    Anyways, Leica has been kind enough to replace both sensors for free.

    When the S007 came out, I was tempted to upgrade my aging S2.
    At my usual Leica dealer, they kindly checked my S2 before it goes on sale and discovered a corroded sensor!

    Come on! A third failure from a so serious comapany? I must be the unluckiest photographer on earth then.

    Still, I upgraded to a reconditioned mint grade SOO7, checked by Leica with a one year guarantee.

    During my second shooting, the 70 started to rattle from time to time, missing focus lock.
    Of course, my poker face never let any worries showed to my clients.

    Back home, I uploaded the photos into Capture One and got struck by what I have discovered:
    See attached photos.
    DNGs avaiaible upon request.


    I thought my memory card failed (I exclusively use hi-speed Sandisk Extreme and Extreme Pro SD).
    I tried with different cards, same problem.

    The DNGs are available if requested.

    I met the people of Leica at Paris Salon de la photo (photoshow) and, after hours of friendly chat, they acknowledged that there was a video card failure.

    Wait a second. Are we talking about Leica's flagship camera here?
    The one that is supposed to compete with a Hasselblad HD6-50 or a PhaseOne XF???
    A failure after less than 2000 photos taken? Is this german so-called excellence?

    Since November 8th, 2018 my SOO7 is at the customer service (I hope) and I have NO NEWS from them!!!

    How come a pro photographer can trust such miserable products?????
    How come my 2400Ä 5DmkIV works like a charm after litteraly thousands and thousands of photos???
    How come it takes 10 days max to Canon to fix and upgrade the firmware of their pro camera when I have been waiting 6+ months to get any information from
    Wetzlar???

    I'm over with this overrated brand.
    Keep on releasing limited edition for rich Qataris and Russians and let the pros (Canon, Nikon, Hasselblad, Fuji, to name a few) run the photography
    business.

    SHAME ON YOU Leica to ignore and disrespect your loyal customers!!!

    We made you, never forget that.

    I sent them a letter and I know the drill: they will send me apologies.

    But I'm not paying for apologies!!! I don't need them!!! I'm paying for equipment that pays my bills and feed me!


    Today, I'm waiting to get my hands back on my S007 to trade it for a Hasselblad H6D-50c.
    I am so disappointed by Leica...







    KAŌS DE BALI
    Bonjour KaÔs et bienvenu au forum alors. I do understand your frustration. My takeaway from using Leica products for more than ten years now is the following:

    • I had less issues with used products than with new ones. They do assemble most of their products by hand. This is a gear in the wrenches of any Quality Control activity
    • If I need somehting ultimately dependent, I either take my Nikon or bring backup(s)
    • If you stay polite and friendly, they do a lot for you. I agree however it would be good to not even getting there
    • I use an S2 (bought for 2k used three years back) with a used 120S lens. AF gear replacement for free. The images this combo takes are absolutely fantastic
    • Everything Leica produced body-wise after the M3 was a step down


    Like you I wonder how may real pros are using Leica as their main brand. I guess you are fine if you do a certain type of people photography and got clients who even may enjoy the idea of being photographed by fancy equipment (and got lots of back-up in place).

    I also wonder on your pictures: how did they look on the LCD monitor of the camera?

    Cheers
    Ivo
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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    As bad as this is ..nothing new in this post . I ve responded to these situations many many times .

    Stuff you should know ...

    1. Leica does not care one bit about your history or current situation . Their culture prohibits any employee even acknowledging a problem exists . Never assume anything else .

    2. Your dealer is a much bigger issue than Wetzler . They are a huge part of the problem and not at all worthy of any of your business .

    3. When you send a item to Wetzler for service they establish a work order in SAP (their business software ) . You can look up your status with the work order number . You can call them directly and determine the status of your S 007 . However if they are waiting for a vendor supplied part ...you are out of luck .

    My dealer has solved much worse problems for me with Leica and I have quite a lot of experience .

    My advice is not to ever expect that you can use Leica or any other gear professionally without plenty of backup . This often makes Leica gear just too expensive for professional use . Without a great dealer its not even possible . I agree that Leica is not positioned well for most working professionals and better alternatives exist .

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by Photon42 View Post
    Bonjour KaÔs et bienvenu au forum alors. I do understand your frustration. My takeaway from using Leica products for more than ten years now is the following:

    • I had less issues with used products than with new ones. They do assemble most of their products by hand. This is a gear in the wrenches of any Quality Control activity
    • If I need somehting ultimately dependent, I either take my Nikon or bring backup(s)
    • If you stay polite and friendly, they do a lot for you. I agree however it would be good to not even getting there
    • I use an S2 (bought for 2k used three years back) with a used 120S lens. AF gear replacement for free. The images this combo takes are absolutely fantastic
    • Everything Leica produced body-wise after the M3 was a step down


    Like you I wonder how may real pros are using Leica as their main brand. I guess you are fine if you do a certain type of people photography and got clients who even may enjoy the idea of being photographed by fancy equipment (and got lots of back-up in place).

    I also wonder on your pictures: how did they look on the LCD monitor of the camera?

    Cheers
    Ivo
    Hello Ivo. Thank you for your support.
    Of course, I do bring a backup system on locations, that would be suicidal not to do so.

    I never check my pictures on my LCD, waste of time. I set my exposure, speed and aperture with my trusty Sekonic 308 and here we go!
    When you know your equipment, you know when a photo is good or not (still, I always make two pictures of my sybject, just in case od an eye blink).

    I have checked the pictures on the LCB back home and they look like the ones posted.

    Regarding the size of the camera, in France, it's important to show "you have a big one"
    Clients think the bigger, the better.
    Most of the time a 1000Ä camera is more than enough for the job. But the pleasure, the shooting enveloppe are a part of the equation we can't ignore.


    Cheers.

  14. #14
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Leica makes cameras for people who want them.

    If this guy's story was true for 99% of the people who bought the cameras, no one would want them and Leica would stop making them, for a variety of reasons. No matter how many people on line are posting sad stories like this, they represent a fraction of a percent of Leica owners.

    Personally, I've had very few problems with my digital Leicas. I've had more problems with my Sony, Fuji, Nikon, and Canon cameras. All were repaired, easily, but that's my experience. The only cameras I've had fewer problems with have been my Olympus pro-line cameras.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    Leica makes cameras for people who want them.

    If this guy's story was true for 99% of the people who bought the cameras, no one would want them and Leica would stop making them, for a variety of reasons. No matter how many people on line are posting sad stories like this, they represent a fraction of a percent of Leica owners.

    Personally, I've had very few problems with my digital Leicas. I've had more problems with my Sony, Fuji, Nikon, and Canon cameras. All were repaired, easily, but that's my experience. The only cameras I've had fewer problems with have been my Olympus pro-line cameras.
    Hello Godfrey.
    Of course, any brand makes products for people who want/need them.

    But customer service is as important as the product itself, if not more.
    Fuji, Sony... don't market their product like ultimate picture taking devices or excellency products like Leica do.
    They MUST live up to their reputation, which in my case is total failure!!!

    You can not compare a 3000$ camera to a 17 000$ camera, can you?

    You don't excpect the same level of service/care from Ford that you do from Bentley or Rolls, right?

    Of course, failures/problems happen, this is not my point.
    What I find unacceptable is the absence of concern from Wetzlar.

    I'm one of the very few photographers unsing a S007 in France, still Leica ignores me. This is not how you treat customers.

    At least, they conviced me to switch to Hasselblad.

  16. #16
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by KdB View Post
    ...

    At least, they conviced me to switch to Hasselblad.
    Welcome to the club I am loving my X1D!

    Best regards,

    Vieri
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by vieri View Post
    Welcome to the club I am loving my X1D!

    Best regards,

    Vieri
    I will go for a H6D. I tried the X1 but never liked the viewfinder ans the haptics.
    Enjoy yours

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Customer service is at least as important as the product itself in many cases, but not all.

    To wit: I have no idea what Bentley or Rolls Royce service is like because I could never afford one of their cars. I do own a Mercedes-Benz and I like it a lot, but I have it serviced by an independent mechanic who does at least as good a job as the dealer could and costs me far less, with far better customer responsiveness ... the stories I hear about every dealer in the area fill me with loathing. I bought the car ten years old and shaped it up. The dealer service doesn't matter to me in that case, not at all.

    Likewise, on the few occasions I've needed Leica service, both my Leica dealer and Leica USA have done an outstanding job of supporting my needs. I can't ask for better than that, for me.

    I can compare anything I want to compare. The key is whether the comparison has any merit. On the issue of service, I expect the same service from any product provider I'm dealing with ... the price of the product is irrelevant to the service as it is NOT included in the purchase of the product. Fuji, Leica, Nikon, et al ... are all largish companies and should all provide the same, high level of service. Why shouldn't they?

    They all care about you the way big companies care about anything: they want your money, they want their products to succeed in the marketplace and be profitable. One user in a country isn't going to make or break their profitability no matter what they do. Expecting personal treatment from a large company because you've paid a lot of money is, to me, just a false expectation—an unwarranted sense of entitlement. Buy what you want to use because it has value to that use and you feel the price is justified by that use... that's what I do.

    I buy Leica equipment because I like what Leica lenses perform like, because I like what the Leica bodies I'm using do. I've had no problems with my equipment, other than one with a bad sensor and one with a control pad that went bad after a year or two. Both were taken care of by Leica USA expediently and efficiently, and at little cost to me.

    That said: I feel the same about Hasselblad equipment. I'm now planning to sell my digital M and maybe two or three lenses to acquire an X1D body and one lens. Hasselblad has an up and down reputation for service, in my perception, but it really doesn't matter much to me. I'm pretty sure the X1D is a reliable and usable piece of equipment, and what I've seen of the lens I want looks like it lives up to the reputation and rendering quality I expect. I'll keep the rest of my Leica gear because it's working just fine.

    As you might judge, I'm not very emotional about camera gear. I like certain things a lot, for sure, but it's all just equipment to my photographic ends and not much more.

    G

    Equipment is transitory. Photographs endure.

    Quote Originally Posted by KdB View Post
    Hello Godfrey.
    Of course, any brand makes products for people who want/need them.

    But customer service is as important as the product itself, if not more.
    Fuji, Sony... don't market their product like ultimate picture taking devices or excellency products like Leica do.
    They MUST live up to their reputation, which in my case is total failure!!!

    You can not compare a 3000$ camera to a 17 000$ camera, can you?

    You don't excpect the same level of service/care from Ford that you do from Bentley or Rolls, right?

    Of course, failures/problems happen, this is not my point.
    What I find unacceptable is the absence of concern from Wetzlar.

    I'm one of the very few photographers unsing a S007 in France, still Leica ignores me. This is not how you treat customers.

    At least, they conviced me to switch to Hasselblad.
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    Senior Member JohnBrew's Avatar
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Never a problem with ANY Leica body, film or digital. R5 through M-P 240.
    Heading for Lisbon next week with M9-P and two lenses.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    The plural of "anecdote" is not "data."
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by stephengilbert View Post
    The plural of "anecdote" is not "data."
    Interesting comment. To what do you refer?

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    With Leica's boutique marketing strategy they want you to think you'll get more. Which, obviously, is not what happened here for our friend in France. When you pay top dollar for "elite" products you expect the finest in quality and customer service...period.
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    I think this L Alliance is going to expose leica and their QC issues. I have been a leica loyalist since the m8. Lately, I have had a love affair with the SL. I had 2 bodies, all the zooms and the 75 cron. I recently got the Lumix S1R and have to say, it is a much better camera. The ibis is a game changer and, while people complain about all the buttons, it is the easiest, most ergonomic camera I have used. It is fantastic with the SL and my m and r lenses. Iíve sold off one SL body and am going to list the second. I have come to realize the leica mystique is overrated and vastly over priced. Now that there are much more affordable options (S1, and Panasonic S 50mm), Iím over leica bodies. I think a lot of others will feel the same.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    This is all about expectations. If you buy a camera with your value for it based on brand mystique, you will always be dissatisfied. I'm sorry for anyone who thinks that paying a large amount of money entitles you to any more than the product you're buying.

    To me, Leicas are just cameras. I buy and use the ones that suit me if I feel they're worth paying the price. So far, I've not been disappointed: They've all worked well and did what I wanted, the way I wanted. I have lots of other cameras too, the ones I've kept have worked the way I wanted and have not disappointed either.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    A camera released in 2015 is not as advanced as one newly released. Details at 11.

    I don’t hear any complaints about the ancient Leica lenses, especially for the SL.

    Matt

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    You missed the point. No matter what leica comes out with, it will be more than twice the money and half the features. Iím betting there is no ibis in the sl2 which is huge. Anyway, I believe a lot of folks will shift to the lumix bodies. Donít get me wrong, I love the leica lenses but, to your point, most of these are ancient technology.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by Timkr View Post
    You missed the point. No matter what leica comes out with, it will be more than twice the money and half the features. I’m betting there is no ibis in the sl2 which is huge. Anyway, I believe a lot of folks will shift to the lumix bodies. Don’t get me wrong, I love the leica lenses but, to your point, most of these are ancient technology.
    So what? If it does what I want and I prefer having Leica back it, I couldn't care less. Getting service and support out of Panasonic has been almost as horrid as getting it out of Sony ... I've had far far better success with Leica when I needed it.
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Leica has never been made for pro's. Not even back in the days when they were actually used to document important parts of history. Back then, there simply wasn't a lot of choice. The Japanese manufacturers didn't have anything comparable at the time.

    These days Leica are for traditionalists, hobbyists, people passionate about photography, posh people, hipsters and collectors.

    I've had so many issues with digital Leicas and modern complex lenses (FLE based ASPH lenses). They've been back and forth to Wetzlar/Solms so many times, I have lost count... If my income was based on photography I would NEVER even consider Leica. Ever. They're service times are 4-8 weeks for basic things like cleaning dust from the eyepiece of an M. Seriously!

    Their service has gone downhill in the last years as well. Previously it was OK to pay a lot for a Leica, because the service and goodwill was exemplary. But that has gone down hill in the last years. "German Policy" has taken over the customer service department it seems like. A lot of new employes, and the old ones are gone. And the new ones are far, far, far less friendlier and have zero goodwill by comparison.

    I will probably never sell my black paint MP and Summicron 35mm. But my M10 is listed for sale (my 2nd one, and they BOTH had to go back to clean out the viewfinders that are supposed to be sealed, and the rangefinder needed calibrating, and the shutter needed to be replaced on one just after 2000 clicks). I've returned an APO-Summicron 50/2 ASPH recently, because it was sold with a sloppy, loose and flimsy aperture ring. And not only that, but the included lens cap in the box was an 49mm cap... It was kind of difficult to use this on a 39mm lens! And this is on a $8000 lens. Crazy!

    Just tested a new Summicron 35 ASPH v2 also. Completely decentered. The entire right side of the image as blurry and soft. Leica CS doesn't want to deal with it and refers me to my dealer. My old Summicron 35 asph v1 is noticeably sharper across the field. Great job Leica!

    And I've owned M240's and Noctilux ASPH's that has had to go back for service 3-4 times before they were properly adjusted...

    The craziest thing about it is the fact that I still keep using the brand at all. My Sony A7rIII hasn't skipped a beat since day one. My old Canon 5DII that looks like it's been through a war is still functioning perfectly. Leica ownership is frustrating.
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Gentlemen,

    just to put a little perspective back in the thread - I am a professional landscape photographer, and I have been using Leica SL (2 bodies) for three years for my work. Never had a problem. So, there is at least one And, I know of a few Italian professional photographer the use Leica SL for their work, also without any problems (https://eoloperfido.com is one).

    To me, the Leica SL is a professional tool, no questions about it. The Leica M, not so much, at least up to the M10 (and maybe the M240 before that). The Leica S could have been, if Leica stayed behind it a bit more.

    Just my .02 of course.

    Best regards,

    Vieri
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    KdB, I am really surprised to read that your camera has been in repair since November. I am a S007 user (had the S2 before). While I've had my share of issues with the equipment (4 lenses with failed motors, vertical or horizontal lines running through the images, corrupted images etc), Leica always fixed these really fast for me - the turnaround for lens repairs has been within 10 days, usually just a week; same thing on the one or two occasions when one of the bodies needed to go to Wetzlar. Once, they sent me a file by email with a firmware fix (remapping of pixels) which resolved my issue immediately. All repairs have been free of charge for me, including recently for one lens that I had bought back in 2012 (this was thanks to my dealer doing the persuasion). I have bought all of my Leica equipment through Leica Shop Vienna and whenever there is a problem, I just bring the defective item in the shop, they pack it, send it to Wetzlar and then call me in a week or so that it is ready for collection. So, yes, I recognise the issues you have had (and consider them unacceptable for a camera at this price level) but your post leaves me wondering why you dealer is not providing you with the same level of support that I have been receiving from mine.

    In reference to Vieri's comments, I also think that the SL is a very reliable camera and the SL lenses are free of the issues we've faced with the S lenses. I bought the SL only recently but I am very pleased with the image quality - instantly more appealing to me than anything I've seen from the major brands. What makes the SL less than "professional grade" however, is (a) the absence of a reliable tethering solution, and (b) lack of support by major strobe makers (e.g. Profoto) as far as TTL/HSS radio triggers are concerned. I have been writing to Leica repeatedly about these points but I always get the usual "we continuously improve but we can't confirm if and when". It is frustrating me with Leica that they can get "nearly there" but seem unable to stretch the last bit to make their cameras as usable as other "pro brands" out there.

  31. #31
    Senior Member vieri's Avatar
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by baudolino View Post
    ...

    In reference to Vieri's comments, I also think that the SL is a very reliable camera and the SL lenses are free of the issues we've faced with the S lenses. I bought the SL only recently but I am very pleased with the image quality - instantly more appealing to me than anything I've seen from the major brands. What makes the SL less than "professional grade" however, is (a) the absence of a reliable tethering solution, and (b) lack of support by major strobe makers (e.g. Profoto) as far as TTL/HSS radio triggers are concerned. I have been writing to Leica repeatedly about these points but I always get the usual "we continuously improve but we can't confirm if and when". It is frustrating me with Leica that they can get "nearly there" but seem unable to stretch the last bit to make their cameras as usable as other "pro brands" out there.
    Some interesting points here. The main point is, to me, the "universal" camera conundrum. Back in the day, Nikon & Canon used to produce two version of a same body, a fast one for sports and the like, and a high-res one for landscape, studio etc. The Leica SL is a professional camera for many genres of professional photography, meaning that it is an indestructible, reliable tool, producing great IQ, has two cards for backup, is weather sealed and so on. Whether the native lenses it offers and the feature it has are good enough for your kind of professional photography, that is obviously a completely different story. Now, and just for example:

    - If you are a nature photographer and need 600mm native lenses with very fast AF, the SL is out of the question;
    - If you are an architectural photographer and need native TS lenses, the SL is out of the question;
    - If you do macro photography and need native macro lenses, the SL is out of the question;

    However, for all these scenarios there are non-native lenses that can be adapted and solve the issue. Not ideal perhaps, but it works. I agree with you on the strobe support; however, TTL is not the end-all for studio work and I don't know many studio photographer using complex combinations of i.e. Profoto strobes via TTL. Of course, if you need TTL with on-camera flashes, you can use Leica's own (and the brand that shall not be named which produces them and which work as well). I just tried tethering once myself when I was an Ambassador working for a portrait project for Leica Italy, and it seemed to work just fine, but I am not expert enough to give a meaningful comment on this one.

    So, to me the SL is a professional camera. Whether it is the camera for your professional use, that's of course up to you to decide.

    A different example of the same thing is the Hasselblad X1D. Far from being an universal camera, it does however work fantastically well for landscape photography: in fact, I think it's the best camera system for landscape today, and I use it professionally for my work day-in, day-out. So, the X1D is definitely a professional tool, however if you do sport photography is also definitely one of the worst tools for the job, methinks, and you wouldn't consider it a "professional" tool for that kind of photography

    Question is, do we prefer "jack of all trades" cameras, or very specialised ones?

    Again, I think there is room for both kind. Personally, I use my cameras pretty much for my professional landscape work only. When I am in the street, I use a Leica M2, and am considering perhaps a Leica Q2 or the new, vapourware Zeiss camera (?) which looks like a great concept. My ideal situation would be a market offering: 1. specialised, professional tools great at one or a few genres for professional photographers needing something very specific, and 2. some more "universal" tools good at everything but perhaps not excelling at anything, for people doing many kind of photography and with a less demanding approach on one specific genre.

    Best regards,

    Vieri
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    It seems some of the posts here, specifically from the US West Coast, are preoccupied with the usual self serving interests and contradictions. Although, Vieri has shown that the SL is very capable of professional results, Leica's are simply not considered for most professional shoots. That's based on rental studios and support of major studio lighting systems. I believe the original intent by the OP was to vent frustration at a lack of support from Leica considering his vast investment in their brand. Emotional attachment to a camera or brand is inevitable when investing at this level. Having a connection to your camera is also essential for a creative extension of one's creative abilities. If you lack confidence in your camera, because of terrible quality control you will not produce lasting, memorable images. Frankly, I'm surprised that Leica was willing to lose you as a customer and thus, you should be mad. Your loyalty went much further than most. All the best to your new endeavors with Hasselblad, but be cautious there too.
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by KdB View Post
    Since November 8th, 2018 my SOO7 is at the customer service (I hope) and I have NO NEWS from them!!!
    Reading the OP and all the answers to it the quoted part above is for me where the crux is.

    Any brand will have technical issues, some more, some less but it is very hard to determine how many in a statistically relevant manner. So judging on the number of internet outcries is probably not very relevant.

    However I would judge a brand on their communication and service once you hand them back the equipment with a problem. I think that's the key bit that seems far below par in this case.
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    I wrote off Hasselblad a long time ago because of the terrible customer service, but that was based on dealing with them from a country without a real support network, and because of a shameful handling of service related to a brand new scanner (I wound up paying over 1500 dollars in shipping and service fees, despite it being a brand new scanner). By comparison, Leica has treated me very well, even though there have been problems. What you are describing is not defensible, but I am left wondering how much of it is your dealer and how much is Leica itself? Did you reach out to Leica directly to see about the camera's status? You should not have to, but I have found that Leica is much better dealt with directly...if you want an answer, you can speak directly to the customer service manager for the S system.

    As for some of the failures of the cameras, I think they are very frustrating. The cracked sensors are terrible, but isn't that related to the fact that in comparison to Canon and Nikon etc, they have had to use an extremely thin cover glass in order for the legacy M lenses to work?

    I get the sense that most of the time Leica has a problem with having a much smaller market and resources than larger companies, while also being held to a much higher standard. The MFD forums are filled with people complaining about Phase One too....probably not as much as Leica, but I think part of that is that there are even fewer Phase users. I think any time you are using equipment that pushes the boundaries, it is a bit twitchy...problems are more visible.

    My own experience with Sony is that the camera hasn't broken, but the 35mm 1.4 Zeiss lens was so badly decentered that it was unusable, and the sensor blooms red in the edges of the frame at very high ISOs...Canons and Nikons I have used have all performed reliably...they also have reliably had inferior lenses and image quality to what I can get out of the Leica cameras I have used. So I have been stuck in a limbo between being disappointed with Leica's costs and quality control, but not disappointed enough to settle for what I see as the poorer image quality and handling of most other makers. All of these feelings are intensely personal, and each user has to decide for themselves what is most important. For your sake, I hope that you get the service and image quality you need out of Hasselblad. Since you are in France, you probably have a better shot. Hasselblad's (and Phase One's) model of relying on dealers and country agencies works better in larger countries. For me in Iceland, the ability to contact Leica directly has been transformative. I would not know where to begin to get service for Panasonic or Sony here...and I have cameras from both of them...I basically just have my fingers crossed. The one time I had to contact Panasonic for customer support I had to contact the UK, and the contact seemed to have been trained on televisions rather than cameras....they had no idea what I was even asking. The last time I had an issue with Leica, they followed the sporadic issue for weeks until they figured it out, and then wrote a custom firmware for me. It turns out that being near the Arctic affected the GPS on the S, which caused a problem. I was the only person ever to have an issue, but they still traced the problem and fixed it.


    Oh, and by the way, I am a professional photographer. But I also think it is interesting how people seem to characterize that as something monolithic. Like all professional photographers need the photojournalist cameras from Nikon and Canon...not everyone who is a pro has to capture an event at 14 frames per second and needs lenses from 10mm to 1000mm. I work as an artist, and in the studio I do artwork reproduction, as well as occasional editorial work. I prioritize handling and image quality over indestructibility or dual card slots. Of course I want my cameras to work, and in general my Leica's have. But I just think it is interesting that we talk about professional photography as if everyone's needs are exactly the same. Most of my favorite professional photographers are using view cameras...
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by jdphoto View Post
    It seems some of the posts here, specifically from the US West Coast, are preoccupied with the usual self serving interests and contradictions. Although, Vieri has shown that the SL is very capable of professional results, Leica's are simply not considered for most professional shoots. That's based on rental studios and support of major studio lighting systems. I believe the original intent by the OP was to vent frustration at a lack of support from Leica considering his vast investment in their brand. Emotional attachment to a camera or brand is inevitable when investing at this level. Having a connection to your camera is also essential for a creative extension of one's creative abilities. If you lack confidence in your camera, because of terrible quality control you will not produce lasting, memorable images. Frankly, I'm surprised that Leica was willing to lose you as a customer and thus, you should be mad. Your loyalty went much further than most. All the best to your new endeavors with Hasselblad, but be cautious there too.
    Let's not make this personal.

    I bought the Leica SL in 2015 when I was still doing professional assignments. It worked very very well for that. I sold it when I retired and felt it was more than I wanted for my more personal photography, went to the M-D and CL as my working cameras. They work very very well for me too.

    I don't need to be emotionally attached to equipment at all. Some of my best photos have been made with crap cameras that were a PITA. If you do, well, that's not my problem. I have no loyalty to any manufacturer, and don't need it. I buy what I think I like and keep what works well for me. Yes, I often grow fond of some equipment ... enjoy using it, etc. But I'm well known for selling even that because my needs moved elsewhere.

    Cameras are simply a means to an end. What they cost is what they cost. If I can't afford a particular camera or think its too expensive to be worth buying, I don't buy it. Period. If something breaks down or annoys me in use, I get rid of it and recoup as much of the purchase price as I can. Period. Whining about it is just a waste of energy, other than for humor's sake.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by vieri View Post
    The main point is, to me, the "universal" camera conundrum.
    Vieri, I don't disagree with you and, after all, I have voted with my wallet and enjoy using the SL. All I was trying to say is that Leica position the SL at fashion photographers and to do so without proper tethering and HSS strobe support seems a bit lame. I am not a pro but regularly shoot art nudes in the studio and outdoors for myself, with a full team, tethered, with strobes etc. The first time I tried to tether the SL, it stopped transferring images and froze after about four shots - removed battery, reconnected, tried again - same thing. This was with the latest version of Lightroom and the latest Leica Tethered Plugin. Ok, I know how to circumvent this issue via the Image Shuttle and a hot folder in C1, but that is not as fast and good as tethering "natively" (e.g. no way to apply develop presets automatically when importing images, review does not advance to the latest frame automatically...). On the second point, TTL for strobes is not important for me but syncing above 1/250s often is. Of course, there are a ton of situations where any modern or even half a century old camera can be used professionally. And I have other cameras when I need the features missing from the SL. I just regret that Leica can go a long way to create a superb machine, with amazing glass, but then stop short of providing two seemingly basic features that any competing system within the same category (mirrorless Nikon, Canon, Fuji, Sony) nowadays offers as standard. Again, not a "conundrum" for me, I love the SL and accept its limitations (but still roll my eyes sometimes).

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    You seem to have covered ALL the technical problems with Leica the last 10 years. Bingo!

    Seriously, you have been unlucky, and having the S007 served since November is just impossible!

    The he CCD problems in both Leica M9, Monochrom and S2 are well known. How can it happen? Cutting edge (at the time), thin glass over CCD sensors. But handled by Leica.
    AF mechanism on S lenses, well known problem, also handled by Leica at the time. What I do not understand is your images, this is not just AF failure, something else must have happened..

    What really bugs me is the long repair time for the S007. Do you have a good relation to your dealer? My experience is that this is crucial. A good dealer would never allow such a long waiting, with no information. Did you send it in via your dealer, or directly? Do you have someone you can call?

    I have had my share of problems with the S lenses, but basically very happy with the system. I decided to send in all my lenses for AF upgrade. Supported by myLeica dealer in Norway, I got it at a minimal cost. I had by S007 for full cleanup and removal of dust in optical finder, turnaround time 4-5 weeks (always 1 week in each end for customs, shipping etc.). There should be no reason to keep it for months in repair.

    BTW: Very nice pictures on your site!

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    Quote Originally Posted by KdB View Post
    Here's the story of a photographer who thought Leica was a serious camera company who cares about their trustful customers.



    My name is KaÔs, french photographer based in Paris, France.

    I started my Leica journey with a M9, ten years ago, sold and upgraded with a M9-P
    A Monochrom (version 1) quickly followed him all of them bought brand new.

    Wanting to get my hands on a "real Leica", I bought a M6 Titanium set with its Summicron 35/1.4.
    The medium lust was too hard to resist: a S2 with a Summarit 70 joined my stable.
    Let's add a wide angle to my S system: a brand new Summarit 35.

    Time has past, I added a M7 (0.58 finder), a Q Titanium, a Monochrom version 2, a M5, an Elmarit 90/2.0, a Summicron 50, a Summarit 35/2.4...

    We are talking about minimum 44 500€ (including the S007)!!!!!

    Then, the problems begun: both my M9-P and Monochrom I had a sensor failure (cracked sensor).
    How come a "pro" camera could have a sensor cracked?
    During my carreer, I owned a 5DmkII, a D3x, a Df, a 5DmkIV (I'm still using today) that NEVER failed me, NEVER.

    Anyways, Leica has been kind enough to replace both sensors for free.

    When the S007 came out, I was tempted to upgrade my aging S2.
    At my usual Leica dealer, they kindly checked my S2 before it goes on sale and discovered a corroded sensor!

    Come on! A third failure from a so serious comapany? I must be the unluckiest photographer on earth then.

    Still, I upgraded to a reconditioned mint grade SOO7, checked by Leica with a one year guarantee.

    During my second shooting, the 70 started to rattle from time to time, missing focus lock.
    Of course, my poker face never let any worries showed to my clients.

    Back home, I uploaded the photos into Capture One and got struck by what I have discovered:
    See attached photos.
    DNGs avaiaible upon request.


    I thought my memory card failed (I exclusively use hi-speed Sandisk Extreme and Extreme Pro SD).
    I tried with different cards, same problem.

    The DNGs are available if requested.

    I met the people of Leica at Paris Salon de la photo (photoshow) and, after hours of friendly chat, they acknowledged that there was a video card failure.

    Wait a second. Are we talking about Leica's flagship camera here?
    The one that is supposed to compete with a Hasselblad HD6-50 or a PhaseOne XF???
    A failure after less than 2000 photos taken? Is this german so-called excellence?

    Since November 8th, 2018 my SOO7 is at the customer service (I hope) and I have NO NEWS from them!!!

    How come a pro photographer can trust such miserable products?????
    How come my 2400€ 5DmkIV works like a charm after litteraly thousands and thousands of photos???
    How come it takes 10 days max to Canon to fix and upgrade the firmware of their pro camera when I have been waiting 6+ months to get any information from
    Wetzlar???

    I'm over with this overrated brand.
    Keep on releasing limited edition for rich Qataris and Russians and let the pros (Canon, Nikon, Hasselblad, Fuji, to name a few) run the photography
    business.

    SHAME ON YOU Leica to ignore and disrespect your loyal customers!!!

    We made you, never forget that.

    I sent them a letter and I know the drill: they will send me apologies.

    But I'm not paying for apologies!!! I don't need them!!! I'm paying for equipment that pays my bills and feed me!


    Today, I'm waiting to get my hands back on my S007 to trade it for a Hasselblad H6D-50c.
    I am so disappointed by Leica...







    KAŌS DE BALI
    - ErlingMM
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  38. #38
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    So the overall takeaway here is that any brand can have issues but the service experience is largely country/region and dealer dependent. This should factor into buying decisions... maybe moreso if there are professional intentions.

    FWIW another of my M9ís has sensor issues eventually and after being replaced I sold both. The service experience wasnít bad but I had my cameras in early before the massive wave of problems popped up at once. It was a 2-4 week return of my bodies. I loved the camera but I wouldnít trust them for professional work personally though I have done professional work with them. I've owned Canon and didnít have issues. I own Panasonic without issues. Iíve owned various Sony products over the years to include TVís, cameras, walkmans, discmans, and Playstation and the only issue I ever had was with the first Playstation 2 I bought that didnít actually play Playstation 2 games (but had no issues playing DVDís or music CDís). The service experience was horrible and I elected to forego it and return the unit to the store I bought it from. The Sony Pro Camera services have been quite good though Iíve only ever used it for the included sensor cleaning at this point and for product evaluation. In my case the regional representative lives within 10 minutes of my place and I have a working relationship with her thatís extremely positive.

    It sucks that you've had all of these issues issues and Iíd say this is a bit more than anecdotal evidence. It looks like a trend and I donít think itís a ďLeica problemĒ so much as a company growth issue. There was a massive growth in leica as a company and their production once the M9 and S line were announced... I believe some QA/QC slipped during this phase (and going forward) due to the increased demand and production that they werenít expecting or prepared for. Perhaps the higher quality of the SL (and newer) suggests they figured it out now.

    I wish you better luck with Hasselblad... or wherever you end up.
    Visible Light & IR Photographer
    http://www.iiinelsonimages.com

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    All cameras will experience some issues and recalls. Customer service goes a long way to mitigate the frustration. It's ludicrous to think that one shouldn't anticipate better service when paying Leica's prices. If it's not the quality or service you expect then why are they worth more? You're supposed to get what you pay for...right? For a while Leica actually replaced sensors on the M9, Monochrom, etc. with the exact same one that necessitated the repair. Leica's lack of quality control in some situations directly effect the price of today's cameras. With that said, I miss the colors and rendering of my CCD M9, but not enough to invest in the brand again.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by jdphoto View Post
    All cameras will experience some issues and recalls. Customer service goes a long way to mitigate the frustration. It's ludicrous to think that one shouldn't anticipate better service when paying Leica's prices. If it's not the quality or service you expect then why are they worth more? You're supposed to get what you pay for...right? For a while Leica actually replaced sensors on the M9, Monochrom, etc. with the exact same one that necessitated the repair. Leica's lack of quality control in some situations directly effect the price of today's cameras. With that said, I miss the colors and rendering of my CCD M9, but not enough to invest in the brand again.
    I generally agree with you that there is an implied level of service and quality with premium products. For people to suggest otherwise is just ridiculous. A Mercedes isnít going to last all that much longer than a Toyota but the materials used, craftsmanship of the fit & finish, and experience of the dealer network tends to be at a much higher level. At Toyota itís rather impersonal in general... at Mercedes youíll generally receive a loaner vehicle and often times it can be arranged that they pickup and deliver your vehicle to you.

    Thats the sort of level of service people generally expect with premium products. Looking back to when the original S was announced it was done so with a standard or premium service costs added into the price for working professionals. If the L-mount alliance becomes even more successful then perhaps Leica should look into expanding their pro services to be more like the Japanese brands... and yes this should matter because they often partner with pro photographers to speak about their products in a professional capacity. They clearly intend for the pro market to consider their products the same way Nikon does with the Dxxx or Dx bodies, Canon does with their 1D or 5D bodies, or Sony does with their A7/A9 bodies.

    Just my opinion and i lean lean towards people should just shoot what makes them happy. If it works for them then who am I to say their choice is wrong.
    Visible Light & IR Photographer
    http://www.iiinelsonimages.com

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by erlingmm View Post
    You seem to have covered ALL the technical problems with Leica the last 10 years. Bingo!

    Seriously, you have been unlucky, and having the S007 served since November is just impossible!

    The he CCD problems in both Leica M9, Monochrom and S2 are well known. How can it happen? Cutting edge (at the time), thin glass over CCD sensors. But handled by Leica.
    AF mechanism on S lenses, well known problem, also handled by Leica at the time. What I do not understand is your images, this is not just AF failure, something else must have happened..

    What really bugs me is the long repair time for the S007. Do you have a good relation to your dealer? My experience is that this is crucial. A good dealer would never allow such a long waiting, with no information. Did you send it in via your dealer, or directly? Do you have someone you can call?

    I have had my share of problems with the S lenses, but basically very happy with the system. I decided to send in all my lenses for AF upgrade. Supported by myLeica dealer in Norway, I got it at a minimal cost. I had by S007 for full cleanup and removal of dust in optical finder, turnaround time 4-5 weeks (always 1 week in each end for customs, shipping etc.). There should be no reason to keep it for months in repair.

    BTW: Very nice pictures on your site!

    - Erling
    Thank you for the support Erling.
    Yes, it seems I have the best beta tester for Leica!
    I gave my S007 to the Paris Leica Store directly.

    I'm definitely done with their digital cameras (I will keep my M5 and M6 as these are almost bulletproof).

    Cheers.

    KaÔs.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by iiiNelson View Post
    So the overall takeaway here is that any brand can have issues but the service experience is largely country/region and dealer dependent. This should factor into buying decisions... maybe moreso if there are professional intentions.

    FWIW another of my M9ís has sensor issues eventually and after being replaced I sold both. The service experience wasnít bad but I had my cameras in early before the massive wave of problems popped up at once. It was a 2-4 week return of my bodies. I loved the camera but I wouldnít trust them for professional work personally though I have done professional work with them. I've owned Canon and didnít have issues. I own Panasonic without issues. Iíve owned various Sony products over the years to include TVís, cameras, walkmans, discmans, and Playstation and the only issue I ever had was with the first Playstation 2 I bought that didnít actually play Playstation 2 games (but had no issues playing DVDís or music CDís). The service experience was horrible and I elected to forego it and return the unit to the store I bought it from. The Sony Pro Camera services have been quite good though Iíve only ever used it for the included sensor cleaning at this point and for product evaluation. In my case the regional representative lives within 10 minutes of my place and I have a working relationship with her thatís extremely positive.

    It sucks that you've had all of these issues issues and Iíd say this is a bit more than anecdotal evidence. It looks like a trend and I donít think itís a ďLeica problemĒ so much as a company growth issue. There was a massive growth in leica as a company and their production once the M9 and S line were announced... I believe some QA/QC slipped during this phase (and going forward) due to the increased demand and production that they werenít expecting or prepared for. Perhaps the higher quality of the SL (and newer) suggests they figured it out now.

    I wish you better luck with Hasselblad... or wherever you end up.
    Hello Nelson.
    I totally agree: the customer service is half of the equation if not more.
    Every brand can face problems/issues/failures and it is where their reputation and seriousness comes into play.
    Outsourcing might be the cause here but it is unfait that the customers pays for bad decisions.

    We are supporting them by buying their equipment, we promote them and in the end, all we , at least I, get is arrogance and no concern at all.

    Anyways, my bad for trusting Leica.


    Cheers.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by KdB View Post
    Hello Nelson.
    I totally agree: the customer service is half of the equation if not more.
    Every brand can face problems/issues/failures and it is where their reputation and seriousness comes into play.
    Outsourcing might be the cause here but it is unfait that the customers pays for bad decisions.

    We are supporting them by buying their equipment, we promote them and in the end, all we , at least I, get is arrogance and no concern at all.

    Anyways, my bad for trusting Leica.


    Cheers.
    Perhaps get a Leica film camera like the M2, M3, up to M6 for fun. Incredibly precise engineering and really what put Leica on the map. It's too bad they don't continue building cameras like that.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by jdphoto View Post
    Perhaps get a Leica film camera like the M2, M3, up to M6 for fun. Incredibly precise engineering and really what put Leica on the map. It's too bad they don't continue building cameras like that.
    I have a mint M6 Titanium and matching 35 Summilux and a M5

  45. #45
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by jdphoto View Post
    Perhaps get a Leica film camera like the M2, M3, up to M6 for fun. Incredibly precise engineering and really what put Leica on the map. It's too bad they don't continue building cameras like that.
    The M3 through M2, M4, and M5 (as well as Leicaflex series) were built 'the old way' which sadly nearly destroyed Leica due to the rising costs of such hand-crafted manufacture by the middle 1970s. They were stunningly beautiful in construction. The M4-2 and later model Ms were built 'the new way' which many Leica enthusiasts descried as a cheapening of the brand ... but of course, they allowed Leica to become profitable again and survive as a company. Personally I enjoy the fact that Leica found a way to survive and prosper.

    Quote Originally Posted by KdB View Post
    I have a mint M6 Titanium and matching 35 Summilux and a M5
    I have my two favorite M cameras now: the M4-2 for film, the M-D for digital. Utterly simple and totally reliable. And enough lenses (too many, really) with superb quality and character to keep me happy forever, at least with respect to Leica rangefinder models and its domain of capabilities. I'm lacking nothing in this corner of camera equipment.

    It's other equipment niches that I keep playing with new things in.

    G

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    The issues with Leica parallel other areas of exotic or cutting-edge manufacturing. In the auto world, as one improves performance, reliability suffers. So too the interesting firms are smaller, and their limited engineering departments struggle to handle all aspects now expected by consumers.

    In this light, Leica has done a remarkable transformation. They haven't given up on their optical quality, and they remain committed to a particular brand image/experience that they feel reinforces and supports their markets. Personally I prefer a more understated brand, but a recent stroll down a major retail street confirmed that all the older "quality" modest brands were gone - the only survivors had loud voices and presented a striking image for the next generation. Understated doesn't seem popular these days.

    In addition, there has been a change from a superbly built camera (say an M2) that could last forever to newer consumer-based models. These are still priced signficantly more than their competition, but are still not quite built as well Leica would want if they had their druthers. There is pressure from both directions.

    The changeover from the earlier Leica to the present day came complete with some horrid rough spots. Having bought into the DMR and M8, unhappily left behind, swore never again, until the MM with its joy. And a replaced sensor... but at least at no cost.

    Your SL woes are unfortunate. The SL seems part of a "we'll have something serious for everyone", a difficult strategy to implement. They seem spread thin... wish they would settle down and develop a few really good products, and let a bunch of other stuff go.
    www.gigi-photos.com
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    @kaÔs,
    Anyway, french are arrogant
    Saint honorť shop almost share their place with "Leica France" that your best place when you have a problem.

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    While I've had problems with other camera brands (twice in over twenty years of heavy professional use) they have been rectified by the company quickly and at no cost or fuss to me.

    I, like the OP, have spent many tens of thousands of pounds with Leica and have had significantly more problems with their products and am absolutely shocked by their customer care. I actually find it difficult to put into words how disappointed I am and am truly shocked and dismayed by how little they care.
    Last edited by DB5; 29th May 2019 at 06:40.

  49. #49
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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    ... The SL seems part of a "we'll have something serious for everyone", a difficult strategy to implement. They seem spread thin... wish they would settle down and develop a few really good products, and let a bunch of other stuff go.
    My personal viewpoint reflecting this statement:

    The SL is essentially the replacement for their R system and intended for professional use. The T/TL/TL2/CL models leverage the L lens mount and expands the range of the R system replacement at lower cost, for more casual use.

    Other fixed-lens cameras are simply offerings to fill in the audience desires as Leica marketing sees the need. They seem to have been modestly successful, each in its time.

    The M is special because history has proven that when Leica tries to let go of the traditional M, finances and faith in the company disintegrates. The M is not a state of the art camera, never will be; it is an alternative for people who think that the M is all that matters for Leica. I like the M, but rangefinder cameras are by their very definition limited in many many ways.

    The S system was a bold step into somewhere else ... a "small medium format" choice. I was never taken with it simply because it is too expensive a system for my pay grade. Like the R system was in its day...

    None of my Leica gear has proven to be troublesome or difficult to get serviced when trouble has arisen: They've always done very well by me, both the dealers I have worked with, the independent techs in the service industry, and Leica USA in New Jersey. The number of reports I've heard that loudly proclaim how bad things are seems to always come from the same relatively small number of users who have had problems and whose expectations were not met. I sympathize with their feelings, but really can't extend the notion to suggest that the company is going down the tubes on the basis of a small number of disgruntled users.

    I have no qualms about buying new or used Leica gear. It's always done me well, both when I was shooting professionally and now when I shoot primarily for my own satisfaction. I couldn't always afford it, but that's another matter ... there are lots of things in the universe I've never been able to afford.

    G

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    Re: So Leica makes cameras for pros... Really?????

    I noticed Godfrey did not discuss Leica's lousy USA Service Department. Perhaps he has not experienced problems there, but many of us have including US dealers I deal with who often now just bypass NJ and send gear direct to Germany.
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