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Thread: BJP article, interesting read

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    Senior Member routlaw's Avatar
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    BJP article, interesting read

    At the risk of starting another contentious thread I thought some of you might find this article of interest. In regards to the Leica S2 discussed in the article I thought Phase One's Hankonsson comment about it hitting the nail on the head.

    Rob

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Have a link Rob
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read


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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Guy, It's never too early to close a thread.

    Steve

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    Senior Member Graham Mitchell's Avatar
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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Those comments read like a bad joke. Really, was that the best they could come up with?

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    I should just end it here to be honest. Bottom line who gives a rats arch. Buy gear, go shoot, make prints , collect check. End of story

    Have tech issues or questions let's discuss. Better yet let's see some images

    I should add but if you folks want to discuss marketing, sales tactics, system failures for end users, what employee had lunch with another employee and slept together afterwards go right ahead but it has nothing to do with putting a image on a piece of media so I personally have no interest. Myself I am interested in photography the art of it and the technical ways to get images and figure out how to overcome the limitations of any system to get it to work for the end user. Bottom line I like to have fun that stuff for me is not fun but BS politics. I have enough of that already in this country and ignore 90 percent of it. But that's me. I'm going to go spend more money. NOW that is fun
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    All the BS banter aside....has anybody actually used a production S2 yet and able to share some images, or is there yet another NDA/embargo until the camera actually goes on sale later this month? (That "?" applies to both the bigger question, as well as wondering if Leica is going to slip the delivery date.)

    Seriously, aside from the small images on the Leica site and the very few postings from a pre-production camera, am I the only one that is really wondering about the S2 at this point?

    LJ

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Bottom line is that until we have S2 files in the hands of real, everyday shooters, accurate comparisons are impossible. However that said, I do think the point about obsolescence of the fixed digital engine aspect of the S2 is a credible concern for at least SOME shooters. OTOH, S lenses should remain usable well into the foreseeable future S bodies and that may be all other shooters want require ...

    PS: Am I the only one who wonders what happened to the S1???

    ,
    Jack
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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    That is kind of my point, Jack.....why are there no images available anywhere yet? I realize that the official sale date is still a few weeks away, but they have to have the software and stuff locked down by now, and there should be a few folks shooting the production version at this point. Heck, even the M9 shipped without a final final production version, and there were some images spread around. The S2, on the other hand, keeps getting hyped and trashed, yet there is nothing to really judge its performance and capability at this point....either way. Even the sales guy (David Farkas) has yet to post anything more than one single heavily worked image and still has not gotten his "review" posted that he said would be up over a month ago. What is the deal? Anybody know anything with some value at this point?

    LJ

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    LJ,

    I do not have any inside knowledge at all, but do have some experience in product marketing --- so here is just a guess: First, this is a new concept, and Leica is breaking new ground from a form-factor and usability standpoint. I further suspect they want to be absolutely certain this camera hits a grand-slam when it's released. As such, any nits found during whatever their beta test program was, regardless of how minor, Leica are likely going to want resolved before the S2 hit's the streets; I'd suspect the last thing Leica wants to have happen is another performance issue similar to the IR leak on the M8, or deal with what Canon had to on replacing bad AF sensors with its last batch of 1 series cameras. With any new product there are bound to be glitches for sure, and glitches that can be dealt with in firmware are one thing, while mechanical glitches are another...
    Jack
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    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    There are lots of risks associated with big hype in advance of any product release. Spinning expectations to the moon can put a lot of pressure on a company when it comes time to deliver. Personally, I'd prefer a soft rollout and a more subtle approach. Kind of a "Here's something we're working on. We're excited about and hope you like it too. It's not finished, but what do think so far?..." approach.

    Or just announce and deliver (more Apple style). Now, if the S2 is simply "very good" and not "freaking amazing on every count" some people will be dishing it, etc.

    Personally, I agree with Guy's remarks, "buy gear, make images, have fun...".

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Jack and Dale,
    Fully understand and appreciate your perspectives and comments. What just seems amazing at this point is that Leica has been chatting about the S2 for quite some time. They have rolled out prototypes for folks to look at and "test" a bit at numerous locations worldwide. They created a junket for a few select reviewers to play with it, and start some marketing buzz. They have even redone their own Web site with a section devoted to just the S2, presenting more marketing hype, etc. At this point, planned delivery date minus 14 days or so, they have yet to release anything really tangible or substantive on a product that they are claiming will be revolutionary in the pro market.

    Sorry, I guess I am just a bit more than frustrated at all the smoke and mirrors with no real fire to be found beneath at this point. Personally, I think they are way past any real roll-out strategy at this point. Instead they are now engaging in interview banter to defend a product that everybody has heard about for over a year, lots of folks have seen or demoed at events for just as long, have released specs and prices for several weeks/months ago, but have yet to put any decent images into the mix for potential buyers to make their own decisions about, sans hype and sales pitch. Not promising or encouraging at this point.

    Jack, I fully appreciate your points about their needing to get the delivery as perfect as they can, but they should have put more time and effort, plus more cameras into the hands of some testers so that they could iron out any bugs and prevent another potential fiasco. Maybe they really have, and it is the embargo that holds things in check, but why the junket for Reichmann et al.? This all seems so bass-ackwards for such a major new camera system.

    Last comment from the BJP article.....how amazingly arrogant for Leica to now say they are just going to let the S2 define its own use and buyers, and not feel the need to compete/compare with others that are talking trash about them at this point. They started the trash talk when they announced the S2 and claims to revolutionize the MF market. The first shot in the foot for them was the issue over "competitive pricing" and then dropping bombs with prices and delivery dates. Seriously, I can see how they are now very defensive over comments from Hassy and others, but they brought that upon themselves. If they would just let the camera and images from real photographers do the talking for them, a lot of this could have been avoided.

    O.K., I will go back to shooting real stuff with my real and older gear, make some money and just tune back in several months from now to see if things have changed.

    LJ

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Quote Originally Posted by LJL View Post
    That is kind of my point, Jack.....why are there no images available anywhere yet? I realize that the official sale date is still a few weeks away, but they have to have the software and stuff locked down by now, and there should be a few folks shooting the production version at this point. Heck, even the M9 shipped without a final final production version, and there were some images spread around. The S2, on the other hand, keeps getting hyped and trashed, yet there is nothing to really judge its performance and capability at this point....either way. Even the sales guy (David Farkas) has yet to post anything more than one single heavily worked image and still has not gotten his "review" posted that he said would be up over a month ago. What is the deal? Anybody know anything with some value at this point?

    LJ
    LJ,

    The review is done. I'm waiting on the go-ahead from Leica to publish my images online. Part of the deal was that my images had to be signed off on by Leica QA in Germany. Currently, they are just a bit busy finalizing the S2 for global release. So, while I would have like to have had my full review online already, I would prefer to do so with all the pictures. Seriously, 8,000 words with no pictures wouldn't be very fun to read. So, I'm being patient.

    And, no, there is nothing to hide. The files look amazing. In fact, if anyone wants to see the full files I have no problem showing them on a one-on-one basis (neither does Leica). I'm just not allowed to publish or distribute them electronically yet.

    I've shown the files to several people, many on this forum. If you are in my area (Ft. Lauderdale/Miami) you can drop by anytime. I will also be in NYC from Oct 21-25 for Photo Plus and have already made some appointments there. If anyone is interested in handling a production S2 and seeing real files at full res in DNG, I encourage you to contact me so we can meet.

    David
    David Farkas
    Leica Store Miami

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Maybe Leica finally compared the S2 to a H3D50 or P1/P40+ and didn't find it better. So now they try to improve it to get it better than the "competitors".
    Now, that might take another few months or so

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Thanks for the response, David. Understand what you are saying about releasing stuff, but that is part of the Leica problem, from what I see now. You shot stuff in August with pre-production firmware, cameras, and lenses. Great to hear things look wonderful. Still cannot understand why that stuff cannot be shared more broadly at this point, but hey, I learned long ago to not try to understand things for or from Leica ;-) (Think about it.....pre-production stuff being held back until sales actually start with a production camera/software that may deliver something different. Makes a lot of sense....not.)

    Unfortunately (or maybe more fortunately for me), I will not be in New York or Florida to see things one-on-one. I am shooting here in Houston, and that comes first. I will just pour myself another BenRiach single malt, work in some more shooting with ancient Canons, and wait for something substantive to come out to look at later.

    LJ

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    The danger in Lieca's approach here is that it raises suspicions that there are issues with the S2. And that can lead to market concerns/resistance as potential buyers decide against being "paying-beta-testers". I doubt it has much affect on the wealthy who might buy it as jewelry, but that's a risky business model.

    I remain open-minded, and hope for the best for Leica and the S2, but will say that the marketing approach leaves me a bit cautious in my expectations. Stuff happens, deadlines are missed, PR nightmares occur, but how a company handles such events can make or break a product's chances for success.

    I guess we will see...

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Personally, I found Leica's response appropriate. They are refusing to join the mudslinging that the other CEOs have started, and are saying that they believe in the camera, and trust it to win people over based on its technical merits, rather than CEO comments.

    All that remains is the release of the camera so people can judge it for itself. If the camera is not out by the end of the month, I will start getting skeptical, but if it is, they have held their end of the bargain. I have seen some results on an engineer's computer, and believe that they have nothing to hide.

    Anyway, I have cracked open my Distiller's Edition Lagavulin, and will start processing my images from this afternoon.
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    remember leica has had the advantage of comparing what the s2 can do as compared to other mfdb that are out in the market..I have seen the dng's and they are impressive, I have not seen them in comparison to others. I think we were all a bit surprised and I was again impressed with the launch of the m9 and x1 last month, they certainly have not been sitting on their hands in solms. From what I saw of the s2 raws they still had some tweaking of the software to finalize. I will check out the production model next week here in ny and post something if possible..if the laphroiag will see me through.

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Well most camera companies don't get it. Why is it so hard to give a camera 1-2 weeks before it ships to some good photographers in different fields and than provide a nice over view of work on a website. WITH RAW Images. I know that some will worry about (c) and stuff, but there are certainly enough willing to shoot a new camera for some none client stuff and show what the camera is capable off. I like the S2 concept, but I still can't image how stupid one must be to order that camera before I even get some real quality images.

    I think the question is, does it make sense to buy a S2 System or any other MFDB ? I still think, it makes only real sense if you print big and need larger files. I have to admit, that after seeing some D3x stuff I'm not so convinced anymore that a S2 or P30 or H31 has ANY advantage than it comes to DR, Noise, Sharpness. I really think the question is what will happen once you can buy a 30Mp system for 8k in a DSLR. Oh and yes there are even a lot of DSLR lenses which outperform the current 24. (certainly not the whole range and just a small fraction of all lenses, but than again, the MFDB selection isn't that great either.)

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Quote Originally Posted by Dale Allyn View Post
    The danger in Lieca's approach here is that it raises suspicions that there are issues with the S2. And that can lead to market concerns/resistance as potential buyers decide against being "paying-beta-testers". I doubt it has much affect on the wealthy who might buy it as jewelry, but that's a risky business model.

    I remain open-minded, and hope for the best for Leica and the S2, but will say that the marketing approach leaves me a bit cautious in my expectations. Stuff happens, deadlines are missed, PR nightmares occur, but how a company handles such events can make or break a product's chances for success.

    I guess we will see...
    I am with you on this thinking, Dale.

    LJ

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher View Post
    I like the S2 concept, but I still can't image how stupid one must be to order that camera before I even get some real quality images.
    If no deposit is required, and no commitment necessary, I don't see the problem with being on a waiting list.

    I think the question is, does it make sense to buy a S2 System or any other MFDB ? I still think, it makes only real sense if you print big and need larger files. I have to admit, that after seeing some D3x stuff I'm not so convinced anymore that a S2 or P30 or H31 has ANY advantage than it comes to DR, Noise, Sharpness. I really think the question is what will happen once you can buy a 30Mp system for 8k in a DSLR. Oh and yes there are even a lot of DSLR lenses which outperform the current 24. (certainly not the whole range and just a small fraction of all lenses, but than again, the MFDB selection isn't that great either.)
    The Leica M9 has for me what the D3x has for you. I am wondering if I still need my Sinar back after that, but I will test them against each other before deciding. I am quite happy using my Contax just for B&W film, if the M9 delivers.

    Christopher, you forgot to mention which Scotch you are drinking
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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Christopher prefers red wine and does have a M9! And a P65+

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Hmmm... A shot of single malt sounds very good right now. Excuse me whilst I go peruse the liquor cabinet...

    Hmmmph. Good ones vanished, must remember to lock away when mother-in-law visits. So for this evening, its the few fingers of Ardbeg remaining in the bottle...
    Jack
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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Well there is nothing wrong with being on a waiting list. I meant more people how probably will slam down the money on the first day the thing ships. I have the fear that even than we won't have seen any raw file from a S2. Just some jpgs. While I love the M9, I am again quite pissed in how Leica handles the whole Cyan problem. It just shows again, that there are some real problems with Leica especially when it comes to the software site.

    Oh and yes here in New Zealand right now, with 10 degrees and rain the last two days I could use any type of liquor ;-)

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    Chris,the REDS are excellent in New Zealand,some people say even better than the AUSSIE REDS!
    How are things anyway?
    I enjoyed your company here in Sydney,
    Cheers,
    Willem.

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    The S2 isnt going to be perfect. The question is - will it be less less perfect than other not perfect systems -

    Questions:

    My main concern is the 'odd' format and the fact that the lens image circle is designed accordingly - will this be a medium to long term limitation? Then again - smaller and smaller pixels with better and better light catching is not my preference for MFD - 40 megapixels is all I need. therefore low interest in 50/60 + megapixels on my part.

    A secondary concern I have is the DNG format. being a user of three different RAW programms - I see teh significant benefits that DAC and other processing delivers to Hasselblad files. I see much better M8 files from C1Pro and I see awesome files from Exposure ( albeit clunky software )

    Can Leica get the best possible IQ from a DNG file - out of lightroom? Will ther ebe Leica S2 and M9 specific Lightroom 'tweaks' - that elevate teh raw processing IQ to standards above?

    Positives:

    Ergonomics
    Lens quality
    Processing speed


    Leica pulle done rabbi tout of the hat - can they follow up with an even beter surprise in teh S2?

    I am looking forwar dto the answer to this quesiton - if it is positive -I will buy an M9 and an S2 system.

    Pete ( btw I dont drink alcohol)

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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    All raw file formats are just storage containers for data of various types, such as the raw RGB data, EXIF, and so on, as well as private notes from the camera. The DNG format is no different in this regard, and whatever a manufacturer wants to write into it, it can store. I don't know why Hasselblad hasn't developed their DNG support to the same level. I suppose it is a question of development time and cost.

    With the M9, the corrections are limited to cyan and vignetting correction, but this is necessary only because the M lenses often come very close to the sensor and project the light at dramatic angles. The S2 shouldn't need anything like the amount of cyan correction, being a new system with a very large diameter bayonet, but I can imagine Leica correcting the vignetting.

    Hasselblad uses the DAC corrections slightly differently, in that they chose a middle road, with known aberrations uncorrected, store the relevant data, and then correct in post, for example barrel distortion in the 28mm. They analyzed the market and determined it to be more cost effective this way. Leica has made a statement that they will not be doing this type of corrections in software, but rather in the optical designs. This of course brings up the cost. Both are valid approaches.

    I don't personally see Leica's challenges lying in the optical design or corrections. Leica is perhaps the world's leader in these areas. I think Leica's main technical challenge will be to build a compelling and effective software pipeline with Lightroom. I primarily use Lightroom, but still need to jump to C1 for some shots. I find that the white balance, noise reduction and colours are just better in C1. Leica has to make do with Lightroom for the S2.
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    Re: BJP article, interesting read

    All raw file formats are just storage containers for data of various types, such as the raw RGB data, EXIF, and so on, as well as private notes from the camera. The DNG format is no different in this regard, and whatever a manufacturer wants to write into it, it can store. I don't know why Hasselblad hasn't developed their DNG support to the same level. I suppose it is a question of development time and cost.




    Actually there is a lot of politics involved here among the companies to go DNG because it is heavily supported by Adobe products and the control they can put on the DNG even though it is supposed to be a open platform some companies do not see it that way. Plus they may have secrets built into there Raw that they don't want others to know about. I don't know much about this but when it was introduced several years ago it was a war about it.

    Leica does put corrections in there files the DMR, M8 and M9 they have processing going on before the Raw output for various conditions. Personally there is no doubt in my mind the same for the S2 but no one will admit it and the marketing says they don't need too. This one I really have my doubts about that claim. Just vignetting alone is a obvious one. Like I said many times to build a lens like a 24mm there has to be some barrel correction simply just going by history all of them have some distortion and to build without it is extremely expensive. Now what truly are we paying 7k for a lens for just because it may have that built in when a Hassy or Phase lens cost 4 k and we fix it ourselves to our taste which actually most Hassy and Phase shooters most likely prefer to do themselves anyway or automatically done when it hits the software. To me this begs the question what makes the most sense to you as a shooter and to your pocket.
    But I still never seen a lens without some barrel distortion so here is the area I am skeptical and it is very vague answers about it if any except Leica marketing says there are optically perfect and don't need it , well show me for one and two is it worth almost twice the price for it. Other factors obviously

    Sorry i am having a hard time buying someones claims on this one. These hidden questions are not truly answered and maybe never get a answer to it either.
    Right now this is a ghost until it is hands of REAL users and we can figure things out. These are engineering and marketing answers that have to be seen from the end user . Right now all of this is meaningless since it is not released yet and frankly I don't buy any marketing I buy tools to get a job done and that is what makes me buy. Not saying Leica is doing anything wrong here but until it's in the streets than certain questions will be answered in many area's and until than just not paying attention to the sales pitches and the waving banners. Personally I want it in my hands to see if it will work to the expectations that are expected from it. I know it will be a good product and have no doubts about that but how good and how it works in the field are unanswered at this time. This is too be expected until it is out and out in the hands of MF shooters today. This will be a wet dream answer to any 35mm shooter that never seen , worked with or dealt with MF. So on the surface the best thing you can buy until you get it in the hands of MF shooters that know exactly what it should look like and be like. Seriously this is what leica should be doing is getting it in the hands of MF shooters for real appraisals on it's product and what they currently are shooting to give the best expectations to buyers on it. If this is aimed at Pro shooters than you need Pros testing it that deal in these files everyday.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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