LEICA

Alternative views on the Leica world by Erwin Puts

Photokina 2018, 2



More news that is hardly surprising. My last paragraph in the previous post referred to the future strategy of Leica to become a system integrator and design hub for all things that have an optical and camera flavour. The association with Huawei showed the direction: input of optical design and sensor knowledge and manufacture in China. The same story with the Leica watches. It is not clear what input Leica has given, because the company who makes the watches is well equipped to manufacture high accuracy miniature mechanisms. presumably it is the outward design.
The cooperation with the French firm that produces spectacle glasses and frames is an identical story. Remember that leitz once made spectacle glasses in their Rastatt Werkstatt.
Sigma will replace their proprietary SA-mmount with the L-mount. Now we get Foveon sensor competition too.



The Zenit M announcement fits in the pattern. The M 240 body has a collection of externally made components that are assembled mainly with the help of computer assisted assembly. Any manufacturer can do this. The only possibly problematic topic is the rangefinder assembly. This is made in Portugal, so there is no reason why an increase in production of the M240 assemblies should be impossible. And to add a wicked thought: perhaps Portugal has a lot of M240 rangefinders in stock, because the M10 rangefinder is different.
The M240 is heavily discounted and approaches its end of life. A cheaper version, made in Russia would be a smart option. At least now users can buy into the digital M line and buy Russian lenses who had a good reputation in the past. A 1/35 mm is now a common item for Chinese niche producers. Not to forget the many Voigtlander lenses, some with interesting specs.