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Thread: First Shooting with the Leica S2

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    First Shooting with the Leica S2

    I received a Leica S System Newsletter email today which has a link to the first shoot with a prototype S2.

    http://www.s.leica-camera.com/robert-grischek/?mid=429

    It is difficult determine much about the image quality from the photos posted, but there is an interview with the photographer and he seemed impressed. I know I really liked the handling of the S2 when I saw it at PhotoPlus. It was love at first sight. I am anxiously awaiting official pricing before I get to worked up about it, but it definitely has my interest. Anyway here is a photo of me (taken by Justin with my M8) with the S2 at PhotoPlus which give a good size reference.


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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Mark

    To me the incredible thing about the S2 is its super small size compared to other "medium format" cameras. This is smaller than the Nikon D3 and has three times the pixels and then those "yummie Leica lenses."

    Now if would only come in at about $10 grand we would declare this a winner

    Woody

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Don't we all wish. What will you bet it'll be $20k+ with a lens or two....

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    You are right Woody. I think price will be one of the most important factors in the success or failure of the S2. An aggressive entry price would go a long way toward attracting buyers and establish a base of customers that success can be built upon. Leica has said repeatedly that S2 pricing will be competitive to other digital MF systems (similar resolution). I just hope Leica doesn't put too much of a premium for their name. I would love to see it come in at $10k, but I will be surprised if it is less than $20k. I am keenly interested in this system - Leica glass and a 37 mp MF sensor sounds like a great combination.

    Mark

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Mark,

    The S2 looks good on you, buddy!

    David
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    Don't we all wish. What will you bet it'll be $20k+ with a lens or two....
    The initial indication was $25,000 BODY ONLY!

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Well, the quote was between 10000 and 20000 Euro, with the expressed hope (and I guess more than just hope, given how conservative Leica is in such things), that it would come in at less than 15000 Euro. That is somewhat less than 25K$, and if the economy and currency improves before then, even less. It was never mentioned if that would be body-only, or with the 70mm lens. I presume body-only, but maybe that was deliberately left open as well.
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Looks good so far but I do want to see the raw files myself. At the moment it is not putting my system up on the block. It's good but i want to see tremendous. I want to hear specific words come out of my mouth when i see the files. Sorry folks but this was not a grueling test on any camera. It's all controlled with one model and most of it is lighting. Next newsletter please. There REALLY going to have to sell me on it.

    What I really want is Leica to lend me one for our workshop next month just before PMA. Okay I put the plug out there. Trust me i will give it a grueling test.

    This way we can see how it stacks up against the P25, P30 , P45 and P65 . Plus the M8's, Hassy 39 and 31 and hopefully some Leaf backs.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Actually file quality I am sure will be just great - who makes a bad MF chip these days? Workflow is set to be Capture One so that box is ticked...

    I am wondering if it will be easier to shoot with hand held than my MF bodies - @ 25/40 + megapixels it is an important consideration - the whole issue of hand holdability - especially with Leaf shutter lenses. If it is easier to get a sharp shot than a Contax - that would be an incentive for me.

    The other big deal is viewfinder brightness and size - the BRIGHTER the better and I prefer some space around an etched capture area for composition - magnification factors required please as well as interchangeable viewfinders with split screen as an option for peopel like me who prefer manual focus mostly.

    The other factor is image stabilisation - I am hoping for some good news here - that would differentiate the system immediately from the traditional MF bodies and lenses.

    Finally - I hope that there is a neat way to clean the chip - if this is a pro camera designed for rugged useage..chip cleaning has to be easy.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Leica knows something about viewfinder brightness. If you have ever looked through an R8 or R9 you know that already. Also, apparently the SL had the best viewfinder of all time. With an R8, I found it easy to focus the 180 Cron exceedingly exactly. I expect the S2 viewfinder to trump all the 645 cameras, and at least be on par with the 6x6 cameras.
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    I got the same email and went to check the portfolio. As already mentioned, nothing much one can tell about resolution, etc., from the reduced JPEGs, but the colors did look nice. It seemed to hold the skintones while still being able to handle the various gelled lights from darker shadows through bright end. It was interesting to hear the photog mention that the files are easy to work with and very robust (this is great news).

    Not getting hung up on the price part yet, as it is still at least 6 months away, and a lot can happen there. I think Leica is banking a lot on this, so an aggressive pricing AND making it available in rental houses could be very important for success. Did notice that they only had the CS lenses listed on the "system" page, though the photo showed the others. Would really like to get more info on those lenses also.

    As Peter mentions, image stabilization could be a nice feature, but it would have to be in the body and not sure if there would be a different mechanism needed for CS versus FP lenses. Maybe not, but just not sure what they have working inside. I think it would differentiate the S2 from other MF cameras also, but only if they got it right and it really worked without compromising shooting.

    All in all, it is still looking like quite a nice entry to the market, and maybe able to fill the needs/wants of a fair number of folks that use this kind of gear. Getting folks to switch from existing MF gear may be a bigger hurdle than getting folks to migrate up from 35mm DSLRs if they price it for folks to really buy it. I know that I have been holding out, waiting to see how the S2 comes in both on performance and price, but things are leaning in its favor for me right now....just want to see economic improvement and a reasonable price on the body and lenses. I still think this could be a real winner.

    LJ

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    Well, the quote was between 10000 and 20000 Euro, with the expressed hope (and I guess more than just hope, given how conservative Leica is in such things), that it would come in at less than 15000 Euro. That is somewhat less than 25K$, and if the economy and currency improves before then, even less. It was never mentioned if that would be body-only, or with the 70mm lens. I presume body-only, but maybe that was deliberately left open as well.
    What I heard from Leica was saying pricing competitive to other MF systems.
    For my understanding this means the S2 should not be more expensive than a Hassy 31MP or a phase with P30+ back.
    The other info I heard was that the lenses wouldnt me much more "expensive" than The Leica R lenses.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by PeterA View Post
    The other big deal is viewfinder brightness and size - the BRIGHTER the better and I prefer some space around an etched capture area for composition - magnification factors required please as well as interchangeable viewfinders with split screen as an option for peopel like me who prefer manual focus mostly.
    The viewfinder of the handmade prototype S2 shown at PhotoPlus was outstanding - very large, bright, and a joy to look through. I don't recall seeing frame lines in the viewfinder so I'm thinking the entire viewfinder is the capture area. It would be nice if my memory is off on this one because I like the idea of frame lines for composition. David Farkus or someone else who has handled the camera may recall better than me.

    Mark

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    I think that the 37MP body should rather be compared to the 39MP competition on price, not the 31MP. Or why did you choose the 31s?
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    I think that the 37MP body should rather be compared to the 39MP competition on price, not the 31MP. Or why did you choose the 31s?
    Carsten, probably you are right - maybe just my wishfull thinking.

    I was refering more to the size and tyoe of sensor and less on the MP

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    I think that the 37MP body should rather be compared to the 39MP competition on price, not the 31MP. Or why did you choose the 31s?
    Actually the S2 is more in line with the 31 with micro sensors but more in line with the P65 with 6 microns BUT and this is a big one it obviously given the same micron size as the P65 in real estate is only slightly bigger than half the the actually size of the P65 even though the dimensions will be different the total area is just more than half. This is the interesting part, it is a small sensor in relative terms compared to 645 format. So pricing on this will be interesting if there going what the market will bare in MF. Seriously and I am not joking here they should almost give this away at cost. Reason why i say this and it seems strange but it is brand new and I mean brand new in all sense of the word. Get the market rolling on it sell 2000 units at 10 percent above costs and get this in the hands of people and get the buzz going on it than slowly raise the prices as it get's in more hands after the first 2k. They need to bring something to the party for folks to jump into a unproven system that offers no used lens options and prove they are worthy of the Pro market in the real world with service , support and all that. I know this sounds nuts but anything like this kind of pricing to get the system proven is the key. Now it could be many things and many ways of doing this but coming out of the gate at 30k with 4 lenses is suicide and I will NOT switch like this and many others will not either. They have to prove themselves to the market first, the only way to do that is get it in the hands of people and they need some discount way of doing that and than go up from there.
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    The other info I heard was that the lenses wouldnt me much more "expensive" than The Leica R lenses.
    Not more expensive than which Leica R lenses? I hope the S lenses are not in the same price range as say the 180mm APO-Summicron

    Robert

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    The link at the top of this thread has some images in it. Most were pretty small. This one wasn't a bad size. You would think there would be moire in this.

    I don't see any Moire here:


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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    There are no framelines because the viewfinder is full frame relative to the sensor.

    BTW, did anyone check out the MTFs on these first four CS lenses? Wow! I was looking around today, trying to find published MTFs on Mamiya and Hasselblad HC lenses without any luck. Anyone know where such info can be found? I'm keen to compare the Leica 35 f/2.5 ASPH with the Mamiya 35 f/3.5 and the HC 35 f/3.5... not to mention the other three as well. Should be fun.

    The other non-CS lenses (24, 30 T/S, 30-90, 100, and 350) should be rolled out in the six months following the release of the S2 with the initial four CS lenses (35, 70, 120 Macro, 180). The priority is on the CS lenses, as these have the most appeal to fashion shooters and rental houses.

    I'm serious about those MTF charts. Who knows where to get them?

    David
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Not sure David but the Mamiya 35mm is a old design and is acceptable. It is not there best lens and no one would argue that one. The new 80 D and 150 d are by far much better and we even seen that with a 60 mpx sensor. Honestly after shooting MF having the best highest resolving lenses is not nearly as important as it is in 35mm format and actually not even close to that need 35 has. Of course having good lenses counts but just like film medium format the bottom line comes down to bigger is just flat out better and digital is not any different. No question the sensors in all of the MF will handle anything thrown at it pretty much , sure there will be some limits with glass but after shooting the P65 Plus i do question how great the lenses really need to be in MF , obviously i have the P65 images here and they are shot with a variety of Mamiya glass and i certainly do not see any shortcomings. Even the Schnieder lenses that are supposed to be superior in every way are not miles above it. Trust me when you get this big the pixel peaking comes to a halt. The images are just popping off the screen and huge prints can be made and that is extremely satisfying. Any of these MF system will get it done. What I find MUCH more important is functions , ergonomics and software really that is the part that is much more important. This comes from one of the biggest lens whores around. I seriously have taken a different view on glass when you hit this format size and until you start shooting it daily you realize the other things matter more. The S2 will produce a great image i will bet big money on that but the other factors are much more important and frankly David and i am a big Leica fan but if they can't do better in terms of service , support , rentals , loaners and stability of camera than there will not be many Pro's even thinking about it. You Leica dealers want to sell S2's. Than get on leica's case and give them this real feedback because without PROVE that this is the cats meow than no one in there right mind will just cut you a 30 k check on faith. That is the reality and I don't care how damn good the lenses are it HAS to work on all 12 cylinder engines. There is much more to this than glass and mechanics. You want my 30k than someone needs to figure out how to get that out of my pocket along with many other Pro's. We need to remember this simple fact it is not how good leica can make this but how good it will make the photographer work. Let us not lose sight of that, yes it is all about the end user.

    I know that sounds very critical but the hard fact is this there coming into a new market that they have no prove they can succeed at it, not saying they can't do it but they need all 100 parts to it and not 92 parts to it. We users need prove they can pull this off and not just the hardware

    Now that being said there are still some shortcomings in MF to begin with on almost all the systems. Obviously nothing is perfect but my expectations are really high on this one.
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Time will tell but I would expect the S2 to be more expensive than the best 35mm yet slower with worse AF and high iso performance, yet inferior in terms of image quality to some of the MF solutions with similar or higher pixel count.

    Heat build-up can be an issue especially if they're looking to utilise the 4 readouts on the chip (otherwise it is going to offer a fairly slow capture rate).

    I heard 20,000,000 as the number of Euros that went into this project...if this is true it will need quite a few units sold to recover the costs...

    all IMHO

    yair

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Guy,

    I totally agree with you that Leica needs to step up and offer truly pro-level support and service. In January 2009, there should be an official announcement of a new pro support service in conjuction with the S2. Not sure what the details are, but we should see in a couple of weeks.

    I actually think that besides image quality, there are other factors that make the S2 unique in MFD. It is the only weather-sealed MF camera, the only AF MFD camera with both focal plane shutter and leaf shutter (until Mamiya starts shipping leaf shutter lenses, at least), the smallest MFD camera, and it offers the fastest focusing and fastest frame rate, with the least amount of shutter lag and mirror blackout. The ergonomics are really a step above what is currently in the marketplace. So, I agree with you that ergonomics and other features are just as important as phenomenal lenses and outstanding image quality. And it will work with C1 and LR out of the box, so software is covered. Can it be used on a tech camera? No, but the reality is that those who will use a tech camera represent a much smaller niche than, say, photographers who want weather sealing and compact build.

    As a dealer, of course I want to sell the S system, but as a photographer, this is the camera that I have been dreaming of for a really long time. I was in love with my DMR. It was the first digital camera I used that didn't feel digital. The R glass was/is outstanding and the S glass improves upon the best that the R lenses have to offer. I do think that lenses are important (even in MF), but that dicussion might have to wait until we start seeing more S2 sample images (preferrably DNG files). Bottom line is that I personally want to shoot with this system and am just as anxious for summer to arrive as anyone here. I am a photographer that loves to shoot and loves to print big and has a weakness for the best gear. I also happen to be lucky enough to be in the business. I sell cameras because I love to be around photography and talk cameras all day, not because it is just something to sell. Believe me, there are much more profitable things to sell than cameras. I do it because I truly love it, not just because it is a job.

    Leica does listen to customers. Guy, you put together a wish list last year from l-camera-forum members for fixes to the M8 and submitted it to Stefan Daniel. 90% of those suggestions made their way into the M8.2. The S2 design and feature set was influenced heavily by direct input from pro photographers. Leica understands the needs pros like you have and is working hard behind the scenes to get the framework in place. I know that you have a close relationship with a mutual friend of ours at Leica, Christian Erhardt. As Christian has expanded his role to include service and support, I'm sure he has listened carefully to what you've had to say regarding pro-level support.

    Leica is banking a lot on the success and market penetration of the S2. As a Leica insider, I see how seriously they are taking into account the wants and needs of professionals. Yes, the M8 was rushed to market (thanks to a certain ex-CEO), but is still ultimately a great camera. With the S2, working prototypes were shown nine months ahead of release (Nikon didn't even show the D3x at Photokina). This isn't a rushed camera, and I expect that any kinks or wrinkles will be ironed out before release in the summer.

    David
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    I agree David the S2 has a lot to offer and yes i am being very critical of them because they do listen to what Pro's like me say and they react to it. I love the relationship I have with Leica no question we get along very well and idea's and suggestions have come to light in the M8. I know i am being hard on them in these comments because they do listen and it's tough love sometime but in the end it is for the greater good for them and for us end users. I actually almost deleted my post but this is true and they need to know what is going to make it sell and do well. I want them to be successful and in turn want a product that i can stand on top of if you know what i mean. It has to work and has to produce with everything that goes into a complete system approach. From nuts to bolts we can't be out there in fear of failures and such. The new M8.2 is a lot nicer than the original version and maybe that is what it should have been out of the gate. Okay nothing wrong with growth and improving the system. The do need to keep costs down though and my biggest worry is they may price this S2 out of our means. Business is down all over for Pro shooters and costs need to reflect that too. I agree the kinks will be worked out before release and was even told they put a big time cushion in there just for this purpose which I think is smart. i think they should make a 100 or so units and get them out to the Pro's for trial about a month before release and get the needed feedback on firmware and such to help make it 100 percent out of the gate. It needs a new approach because it is a completely new system coming to market.
    Also was not picking on you as a Leica dealer per say and i think you know that but Leica needs to fill the dealers shelves to and figure out a way to make that easy for the dealer to have plenty of stock on hand. People are going to want to come in and play with it before writing that check. It does not have the established system like Nikon and Canon when folks just mail order stuff. this one folks are going to want to get there hands on and try it.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    I held the S2 for a minute or two at Photo Expo so I'm an authority. !:^)

    Being a happy M8 owner, I wish Leica all success with the S2, but I doubt I'll buy it. I've heard people remark on how small and easy to handle the S2 is. But, to me it felt very heavy. Harder to handle than my Hy6. I know this is not a weight thing. It's that the Hy6 has a big adjustable handle which makes it very easy, and secure to lug around with one hand until you're ready to shoot with two hands. The Hy6 ergonomics are also great, not that I can judge the S2's which maybe equal. Plus the waist level finder.

    So for me the big S2 advantage is weather sealing, not a small thing, but not enough to change systems.

    Of course, image quality and high ISO are yet to be judged.

    Best,

    Mitchell

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Given the experience many of us have had with Leica's service (mine was actually good), I wonder about the impact of a high level pro service system on camera prices. (I assume lenses will be sorted out and not need to go home to Leica.) If you want a system that provides for the loan of an already expensive camera while yours is in Solms, it seems to me you'll be paying even more when you buy.

    I guess if you have enough work for which the S2 is clearly better than what you're using now the calculation is different, but it seems to (an amateur like) me that the economics of the camera present a bigger problem than the design and production. It's one thing to buy a $5000 camera like the M8 and have it worth half that if you want to trade up in two years, but quite another to spend $20,000.
    Last edited by stephengilbert; 21st December 2008 at 08:13.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    @ Stephen:
    actually the M8 is the camera with the best holding its value from all digitals I had so far.
    I replaced one M8 with a M8.2 and could sell the 1 year old M8 (I paid about 3800 new) for over 3000 .
    I have had several digital SLRs from Canon, Olympus and Nikon in the past and they all lost value faster.

    @ Mitchel: while I liked the size and feel of the S2 I agree on the weight. It felt much heavier than it looked. I wouldnt mind that much though.


    For me it would be the follwing factors making the S2 interesting or not:
    1) Is the AF better than other MF cameras? Is it more like a dslr?
    2) Are the Leica lenses clearly better than other MF systems?
    3) does it have an iso advantage?
    4) price

    Right now I like using 2 systems. A "real" MF with MF-feel and a "real" SLR with SLR feel and speed.
    If one would have to keep a DSLR (like D3) fro speed and real high ISO and for Tele anyways - would one really go the S2 route or rather a "real" MF-camera?

    I might be more interested in the R10

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    T, My point wasn't that the M8 lost value faster than other cameras; I don't know about that. All I was saying is that the likely much higher prices and losses involved in such a transaction with the S2 are something that people will have to consider and that may be a problem. What I neglected to say is that if the S2 works as people hope it will, it could be a camera that one will buy and keep for a long time.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    @ Stephen:
    actually the M8 is the camera with the best holding its value from all digitals I had so far.
    I replaced one M8 with a M8.2 and could sell the 1 year old M8 (I paid about 3800 new) for over 3000 .
    I have had several digital SLRs from Canon, Olympus and Nikon in the past and they all lost value faster.

    @ Mitchel: while I liked the size and feel of the S2 I agree on the weight. It felt much heavier than it looked. I wouldnt mind that much though.


    For me it would be the follwing factors making the S2 interesting or not:
    1) Is the AF better than other MF cameras? Is it more like a dslr?
    2) Are the Leica lenses clearly better than other MF systems?
    3) does it have an iso advantage?
    4) price

    Right now I like using 2 systems. A "real" MF with MF-feel and a "real" SLR with SLR feel and speed.
    If one would have to keep a DSLR (like D3) fro speed and real high ISO and for Tele anyways - would one really go the S2 route or rather a "real" MF-camera?

    I might be more interested in the R10
    Agree on the residual value. Nikon D2x was $5000. Less than two years later it was $1000, 20% of its inital value. The first M8s were $4795. Two years later we were giving $2800 in trade-in value, 60%. So, for digital, this is pretty darn good.

    Regarding the weight issue, the S2 body currently weighs 1.3kg (2lbs 13oz). This is same weight of the D3x. I was told that the prototype is machined from aluminum, but the production cameras will be made of cast magnesium allow, which should weigh a few ounces/grams less. So, the S2 will actually be smaller and lighter than a D3x or 1DsIII.

    I am very curious to see what the R10 will be as well, but for my shooting style, I am personally more tempted by the S2.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by yaya View Post
    Time will tell but I would expect the S2 to be more expensive than the best 35mm yet slower with worse AF and high iso performance, yet inferior in terms of image quality to some of the MF solutions with similar or higher pixel count.
    Right, but luckily for Leica, they don't have to make a camera which trumps every system's strengths. They just have to make a compelling compromise.

    I don't personally expect any quality penalty from using the S2 compared to any similar-resolution MF camera. You will have to go to a 50MP or 60MP MF camera to see gains, and even then, we all know that it is diminishing returns that high. Very few people will want to pay more for more MPs than an S2 can offer, just for resolution or any other aspect of IQ.

    It won't have the same flexibility (wrt. LF adaptation and view-finder options), but the lenses will almost certainly be at the very least the equal of anything out there, and quite possibly significantly better than the majority. The Mamiya 45mm "D" disappointment, for example, would not happen with a Leica lens.

    In the end, rather than being slower and more expensive than DSLRs and less flexible than MF, one could equally well say that it is significantly faster and easier to use than MF, but with a significantly higher IQ than DSLRs. That makes it very compelling for certain types of users, perhaps especially studio fashion photographers, typically a battlefield between DSLRs and MF.

    My personal guess is that if Leica gets the mix of price and performance right, both MF and DSLRs will lose a small chunk of their traditional market. DLSRs probably less so, simply due to their massive price advantage.
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    I'm hoping to be surprised. I guess I'm jaded having seen the Sinar M under a coat of dust in a local shop here. The well-engineered, out of the normal arrangement, superbly lensed European product for big $.... well, its hard to get traction in the larger marketplace if one is out of the norm and expensive.

    Perhaps its a question of numbers - if you wanted to sell say 2000 of them, that's one thing - and there is a small group that will support that. Between European pros, Leica buffs, and well-heeled sorts in the US, that size of market is available. However, if the target is 20,000 units, that is another issue.

    Leica clearly wants to bring DSLR ease to MF sensor capability. The worry is where such a heavily engineered new product ends up in the $/value range. It seems that it will require all new (proprietary) lenses, also not cheap.

    Leica can clearly engineer a quality product - and I have little doubt (after the DMR) that it will be a quality product. But can they invent a sizeable niche in the middle of the market for such a camera? Given the recent price trends for the M8.2, lenses, and the cost threshold for well-engineered and made European products, there is ample reason for concern.

    Please, someone, prove this wrong! Maybe they really have this all figured out - but what if they did their analysis based on MF digital backs at $20-30k, and the cost of those backs in a year is say $10-20k? Still so eager?

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    The backs are already much cheaper now, so I guess that I take the fact that Leica is forging ahead as a good sign. I presume that they have done best-case/worst-case analysis, and that even their worst case holds up. This might be what is happening now with the MF DB prices falling so fast.
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    I don't personally expect any quality penalty from using the S2 compared to any similar-resolution MF camera. You will have to go to a 50MP or 60MP MF camera to see gains, and even then, we all know that it is diminishing returns that high. Very few people will want to pay more for more MPs than an S2 can offer, just for resolution or any other aspect of IQ.

    In the end, rather than being slower and more expensive than DSLRs and less flexible than MF, one could equally well say that it is significantly faster and easier to use than MF, but with a significantly higher IQ than DSLRs. That makes it very compelling for certain types of users, perhaps especially studio fashion photographers, typically a battlefield between DSLRs and MF.
    Like I said time will tell but whenever it comes out it would be interesting to run it head-to-head against let's say an AFi-II 7 (33MP, 20K EURO inc. 80/ 180mm) in a studio, tethered to a laptop and a 2nd 30" ACD and to see how well it copes with a fashion shoot...what is the buffer like, if any and how does the file quality compare.

    Regarding size and weight, both the 1Ds and the D3x have a built in vertical grip (with quite allot of battery power in it).
    Add a grip to the Leica and it becomes much bigger and heavier. I agree that the prototypes feel very heavy but they are not the final product.

    Yair
    Last edited by yaya; 21st December 2008 at 14:09.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by dfarkas View Post
    I was looking around today, trying to find published MTFs on Mamiya and Hasselblad HC lenses without any luck. Anyone know where such info can be found?
    David
    You need to try harder...

    http://www.hasselblad.com/downloads/datasheets.aspx

    /Henrik

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by hvk View Post
    You need to try harder...

    http://www.hasselblad.com/downloads/datasheets.aspx

    /Henrik
    Thank you for the link. Much appreciated. Now I just need to find data on the Mamiya 645AF lenses.

    Okay, so time for some comparisons.

    First up is the 35 group. It is worth noting that the Leica chart is at f/2.5 and f/5.6 respectively, while the Hasselblad one is at f/3.5 and f/8. I'd say there is a pretty big difference here, but you can judge for yourself.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Next up is the normal lenses: 80mm for Hasselblad and 70mm for Leica. The only difference in the charts here is that the Leica is being tested at f/2.5 vs. f/2.8 for the Hasselblad. Again, judge for yourself, but I was told by Peter Karbe that this lens performs very much like the 50mm Summilux-M ASPH (but better).

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Next we have the 120mm Macro lenses, f/2.5 for Leica and f/4 for Hasselblad. So, be aware that the Hasselblad chart is at f/4 and f/8 and that the Leica chart is at f/2.5 and f/5.6. Peter said this lens performs like the 100 APO Macro-R, but better.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Lasty, we have the Hasselblad 210mm vs. the Leica 180mm. I decided to use the 210 instead of the 150 as it is closer in effective focal length and intended use. Arbitrary choice on my part.

    Again, different charts. f/4 and f/8 for Hasselblad and f/3.5 and f/5.6 for Leica. Enjoy.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    Leica knows something about viewfinder brightness. If you have ever looked through an R8 or R9 you know that already. Also, apparently the SL had the best viewfinder of all time. With an R8, I found it easy to focus the 180 Cron exceedingly exactly. I expect the S2 viewfinder to trump all the 645 cameras, and at least be on par with the 6x6 cameras.
    Carsten why would you expect the S2 viewfinder to trump all 645 cameras ? What do you base this opinion on?

    If the S2 can trump my lowly H3D11 viewfinder I would be ecstatic - because NOTHING in SLR land comes anywhere near close to the brightness of the Hasselblad finder - you would know this if you used one. The Mamiya viewfinder and the Contax viewfinders are dark tunnels in comparison - both of which btw kill the R9 viewfinder with or without DMR attached.

    Regarding 6x6 brightness - I can only compare with 205 and 500CW finders and Mamiya RZ finders - both excellent with the Hasselblad easier to focus. I would doubt very much that the S2 can be this bright anyway..

    I would buy an S2 because I am a Leica NUT - I am a Leicaa FANBOY.<--- note full stop.

    Also hilarious to read people consistently suggesting that Leica is going to target the typical 'working pro'..man what a crowded field!!!

    better to focus on well heeled collectors and fanboyz - we will pay. btw - if 20,000,000 Euros was the cost - then that means 2,000 @ 10,000 or 1,000 @ 20,000 for break even -the question is - who are these 2000 users? They should start a special club immediately - and focus attention on these people - because WE are the real market for Leica.

    Happy to take contra views on this - it will be great news for Leica.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by PeterA View Post
    Carsten why would you expect the S2 viewfinder to trump all 645 cameras ? What do you base this opinion on?
    Maybe I am be wrong, but of all viewfinders I have seen (and I admittedly haven't seen the H3D) I preferred the R8/R9 for manual focusing. Note that some are brighter, but none were better for focusing. So, I expect Leica to make no mistakes here. I do prefer the R8 to my Contax 645, specifically. The latter is larger, but it was easier to focus the R8.

    In fact, there are people here who have seen and held the S2 at Photokina. Did anyone try manual focusing with it, and can compare to the H3D? That is probably the acid test here.
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    Maybe I am be wrong, but of all viewfinders I have seen (and I admittedly haven't seen the H3D) I preferred the R8/R9 for manual focusing. Note that some are brighter, but none were better for focusing. So, I expect Leica to make no mistakes here. I do prefer the R8 to my Contax 645, specifically. The latter is larger, but it was easier to focus the R8.

    In fact, there are people here who have seen and held the S2 at Photokina. Did anyone try manual focusing with it, and can compare to the H3D? That is probably the acid test here.
    R8/R9 viewfinder was amazing delightful to use. Hassy viewfinder also very good, bright and open (seat of the pants impressions). Either would be just fine.

    The MTF charts are pretty impressive. The new lenses show remarkably well. Congrats to Leica for making them.

    If the development cost is right, it has to be spread over the number of cameras, plus the actual cost of making the camera. Say 3-5k Euro per camera (to make it), and add that on too?

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    Maybe I am be wrong, but of all viewfinders I have seen (and I admittedly haven't seen the H3D) I preferred the R8/R9 for manual focusing. Note that some are brighter, but none were better for focusing. So, I expect Leica to make no mistakes here. I do prefer the R8 to my Contax 645, specifically. The latter is larger, but it was easier to focus the R8.

    In fact, there are people here who have seen and held the S2 at Photokina. Did anyone try manual focusing with it, and can compare to the H3D? That is probably the acid test here.
    No direct side-by-side as yet but I held the S2 on a few occasions already and did not feel it was as big/ bright/ clear as the AFi, RZ or H3D. It was better than the AFD and the Contax though.
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Peter there target is the working Pro, they said it repeatedly. Now getting them to buy is the hard part because we know the well healed will buy them. They are touting Pro camera with Pro service aimed at the Pro.

    Here the word professional photographer comes up repeatedly in there website

    http://www.s.leica-camera.com/leica-s-system/
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by PeterA View Post
    better to focus on well heeled collectors and fanboyz - we will pay. btw - if 20,000,000 Euros was the cost - then that means 2,000 @ 10,000 or 1,000 @ 20,000 for break even -the question is - who are these 2000 users? They should start a special club immediately - and focus attention on these people - because WE are the real market for Leica.

    Happy to take contra views on this - it will be great news for Leica.
    They will have to sell much more units to break even, because they would have to earn that amount for R&D additionally to the cost for making and selling the cameras.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    I doubt the S2 viewfinder will be better than the Hy6 except it will have the advantage of the image fitting full sized. The size of the actual image real estate on the ground glass may be similar.

    Best,

    Mitchell

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    ...In fact, there are people here who have seen and held the S2 at Photokina. Did anyone try manual focusing with it, and can compare to the H3D? That is probably the acid test here.
    Carsten,

    I tried the manual focus on the S2. The viewfinder is nice and bright. Certainly, fast lenses help out here as well. You could certainly tell when you were or were not in focus. The image crisped up nicely, similiar to R9. The feel on the focus ring was perfect, with just the right amount of drag. I never liked plasticy-feeling focus rings on other AF lenses. The S lenses had great manual focus feel and balanced very nicely in the hand, so you could fingertip focus.

    Unfortunately, I didn't do a similiar test at Hasselblad. There I mostly played with their new zoom lens and the T/S adapter.

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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Quote Originally Posted by yaya View Post
    No direct side-by-side as yet but I held the S2 on a few occasions already and did not feel it was as big/ bright/ clear as the AFi, RZ or H3D. It was better than the AFD and the Contax though.
    Yes, I don't expect the S2 to out-compete the 6x6 cameras (or 6x7), but I was curious about the H3D. In fact, brightness is not necessarily as important, at least to me, as focusability, and this is where Leica traditionally excels.
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    Re: First Shooting with the Leica S2

    Guy - I know what Leica are saying - but for a lot of reasons, I doubt that they are going to get working pros who are already set with Hasselblad/Phase/Leaf etc to change their whole system and lose big time on what works already to switch to somethign that isnt proven and wont have the established support networks that already exist. ie - exactly what you and others have been saying.

    Switching people is going to be a big challenge - especially in current economic circumstances - good luck Leica! Thats why I say ( tonge in cheek) only fan boyz are going to buy this system...

    so much detail yet to be disclosed - so much 'working pro' detail not asked by those who have had a chance to play with teh pre-production versions.

    Regarding manual focussing Carsten - it is iportant to me to have a very bright viewfinder in cameras I use - because after 20 years of staring onto computer screens all day my eyes arent the best. When I say NOTHING compares to HAslblad viewfinder in SLR - it is just my experience and my eyes - and I own or have owned pretty much any system you care to name.

    Lets start usng disclaimers from now on hh - Ihave used or do use this and this is my experience. Otherwise all teh firum becomes is a repetition of internet babble - lots of places to get that 'experience' from.


    Yaya - is quietly asking the right questions about the S2. So lets see what Leica actually pts on teh table - when/if theydo.

    Anyway just my 2 cents worth.

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