Home Cameras/Lenses Leica Leica rumour mill still grinding but lack of facts so far

Leica rumour mill still grinding but lack of facts so far

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The persistent rumour of a new full-frame interchangeable-lens camera announcement this week has new legs. Leica Rumors (which has a good record on rumours) seems convinced there is such a camera, the CM, and other writers —including Steve Huff — are backing the call. 

  What will be behind the mask when Leica makes its announcements later this week? Taken with the full-frame Leica Q — a possible base for a lighter full-frame system camera
What will be behind the mask when Leica makes its announcements later this week? Taken with the full-frame Leica Q — a possible base for a lighter full-frame system camera

While I would be delighted if this were true, I remain to be convinced. Perhaps the factory will surprise us all. If it is true, Leica has this time done a remarkable job of keeping things quiet. For one thing, there have been no leaked product images, which is unusual, especially so near to the rumoured launch. But we have to remember that Leica will never deny a rumour because that would create an unfortunate precedent. What happens when it is true? 

A Leica Q with the L mount — a mini SL —would make a lot of sense for Wetzlar if only the factory could simultaneously announce at least a couple of smaller lenses to match.

Lens problems

The Sony a7III I am currently using shows that it is possible to embody full-frame excellence in a smaller package than the undoubtedly overweight SL. And the excellent 40mm Voigtländer f/1.2 Nokton-E is no bigger than the APS-C 35mm — it is a fast full-frame optic that is actually 55g lighter than the Leica cropped prime. So it can be done; it’s just that it’s a lot for Leica to do all at once. 

As an illustration of Leica’s problem, the current equivalent to the 35mm Summilux-TL, the 50mm Summilux-SL ASPH is huge and tips the scales at 1,065g, over twice the weight of the Nokton-E (which, admittedly doesn’t have autofocus to add to its weight). It’s a wonderful lens but over-engineered as a complement to a new, lighter full-frame camera. There’s a lot of work to be done because this lens, triumph that it is, would not prove a suitable match for a smaller full-frame camera based on weight alone. 

Despite my reluctance to believe the rumours this time around, I do hope they are true. No one will be more delighted and I will be keen to compare this chimera with the Sony before it goes back. Just a few more days and we will know. Is it to be a C-M, CM or a little C-Lux? Or, perhaps, both?

Whatever happens this week, I do believe that a smaller full-frame camera will come at some stage; it’s just a matter of when.

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3 COMMENTS

  1. Mike, I have been advocating something like this for years. We can only hope! I will be there myself this week to see what, if anything like this, is announced. Fingers crossed!

    • Let us know what the new hotel is like Bill. Mike and I are already booked in for next October.

      I’m still hoping for a Leica /Zenit CM with an autofocus L mount version of the Jupiter 3 (Zeiss Sonnar for those who prefer the German version). It looks like there could also be a Leica clone of the Lumix DC-ZS 200 to be called the C-Lux or something similar.

      My M10 is currently in Wetzlar on its holidays due to a problem with the lens mount lock. I hope to get it back soon and then bring it back to Wetzlar in October.

      William

  2. Only a few days and we will know, I think it will be interesting. There is also lots of discussion about what Fuji have up their sleeve for next year, and naturally Nikon are about to enter the fray.

    Exciting times for photographic enthusiasts.

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