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Roger Hicks
05-27-2007, 05:06 PM
Somewhat sideways from the above, I was in Solms a couple of weeks ago and they tell me that M-series sales are back at 1968 levels, WAY above recent years.

Of course much of this is down to the M8 (a superb camera, by the way, despite the internet hoop-la) but M7 and MP sales are increasing as well.

Either way, Leica is in a better state than for a very long time. Deservedly.

Cheers,

Roger

Andy K
05-27-2007, 05:27 PM
... is down to the M8 (a superb camera, by the way...

Subjective. Personally I wouldn't part up with 2,500 for an unproven digicam with so many 'teething problems'.

Roger Hicks
05-27-2007, 05:41 PM
Subjective. Personally I wouldn't part up with 2,500 for an unproven digicam with so many 'teething problems'.

I hear what you say, but I've tried it (maybe 3,000 pics so far), and the drawbacks are wildly overstated. The problems are mostly encountered by lawyers and dentists 'testing' the camera, not by photographers who shoot pictures with it.

A wonderful quote from someone I met recently (not at Leica!):

'People ask digital cameras to do things they couldn't do themselves. Then, when the cameras can't do it, they don't understand why, because they can't do it themselves.'

A powerful argument, in itself, for learning with all-manual cameras, preferably film.

The M8 is the only half-affordable digitable camera that I enjoy using. Yes, some of the scanning backs are great (at three times the price of a Leica, plus camera and lenses) and the Hasseblad is very nice, if ugly. But even at three grand, you can see where the money goes on a Leica. Note that I say 'half affordable', not 'affordable'.

Or, of course, you can use film: cheaper and better, but without the instant feedback that is often invaluable for professional photography, where getting a decent picture, in the can, before you strike the set or leave the scene, is often more important than a 99 per cent chance of getting the best possible picture.

Cheers,

R.

copake_ham
05-29-2007, 09:12 PM
I hear what you say, but I've tried it (maybe 3,000 pics so far), and the drawbacks are wildly overstated. The problems are mostly encountered by lawyers and dentists 'testing' the camera, not by photographers who shoot pictures with it.

A wonderful quote from someone I met recently (not at Leica!):

'People ask digital cameras to do things they couldn't do themselves. Then, when the cameras can't do it, they don't understand why, because they can't do it themselves.'

A powerful argument, in itself, for learning with all-manual cameras, preferably film.

The M8 is the only half-affordable digitable camera that I enjoy using. Yes, some of the scanning backs are great (at three times the price of a Leica, plus camera and lenses) and the Hasseblad is very nice, if ugly. But even at three grand, you can see where the money goes on a Leica. Note that I say 'half affordable', not 'affordable'.

Or, of course, you can use film: cheaper and better, but without the instant feedback that is often invaluable for professional photography, where getting a decent picture, in the can, before you strike the set or leave the scene, is often more important than a 99 per cent chance of getting the best possible picture.

Cheers,

R.

Are you on the payroll now Roger?

Kobin
05-30-2007, 12:31 AM
I'm waiting on the glut. i keep hearing about it, but I don't see much downward deflection in the price of the cameras and gear I'm interested in (from about five years ago). I probably won't live to see it.

Shoot, I just checked the completed listings on epay today and the average winning bid for a C330(,f,s) w/ 80mm lens set is about 20% higher than when I was researching my own purchase four years ago. Anecdotal, sure, and just a frozen slice from the dynamic process of time, but still indicative of stable or rising prices for this item.

The Mamiya 6s, 7s, and 7iis ain't budged either.

Just my observation.

K.

steven_e007
05-30-2007, 03:43 AM
The danger of wives throwing stuff in the trash is bigger than you might think!
Not in a fit of pre-divorce pique, neccesarily, but very often widows (and I suppose widowers too) often have no interest in, and no understanding of, their deceased loved ones hobbies.

Many years ago our next door neighbour died in his late 80s. He was a collector of 'memorabilia'. Or, to his wife's viewpoint, 'rubbish'. After he died she had a nice big bonfire. We don't think there was ill feeling at work, she simply had no idea that anyone would be interested in this old rubbish.

Old 'rubbish'... well, my Dad was leaning over the fence trying to see what she was burning, (whilst my Mother was dragging him back shouting 'leave her to greive in her own way!" Roughly translated this means "I don't want any of that garbage in my house!")

Point is, he had a large collection of photographs. My Dad did sneak in and casually ask if he could have a look at one album, which she willingly gave him. It was a collection of views of sailing ships in Whitby harber. Apparently the old man was raised there.... before the first World war, which seemed to be the vintage of the album. The prints were all stamped "F.M.S." :-o

I don't even want to think about what went onto the bonfire....

A similar well known story concerned a guy whose hobby was photographing the canals in the Midlands of Britain. He went out most weekends from the 1930s until his death photographing this changing industrial landscape. Historians who new his work realised his negative collection must be a treasure trove of history. When they discovered he had died they made approaches to his widow tentaively enquiring about plans for this archive - a few weeks after she had dumped the whole lot in the skip. The local council even organised a search of the local landfill, but nothing was ever found...

And cameras too, they usually turn up at antique centres after the 'house clearers' have been in. An aquaintaince of mine 'in the trade' tells me that they usually collect at least one camera from each house, usually something worthless, but occassionally something priceless. They pay a flat fee to clear a house either way...

I'm sure there is a moral here, somewhere.

jstraw
05-30-2007, 09:24 AM
What is "F.M.S.?"

Steve Smith
05-30-2007, 09:29 AM
What is "F.M.S.?"

Frank Meadow Sutcliffe

http://www.sutcliffe-gallery.co.uk/


Steve.

jstraw
05-30-2007, 09:36 AM
thanks

jsfyfe
05-30-2007, 10:20 AM
Here's another data point. A lot of unsold pieces at Tamarkin's spring auction, and those that sold (e.g. Rolleiflex) went for what I would call a 'low to average' price. Tamarkin usually has pretty good quality stuff. I guess they either didn't get what they wanted or no one wanted them. (Although someone paid big bucks ($55K) for the Leica Gun Outfit).

http://www.tamarkin.com/auction/

Sirius Glass
05-30-2007, 10:40 AM
The danger of wives throwing stuff in the trash is bigger than you might think!

...
A similar well known story concerned a guy whose hobby was photographing the canals in the Midlands of Britain. He went out most weekends from the 1930s until his death photographing this changing industrial landscape. Historians who new his work realised his negative collection must be a treasure trove of history. When they discovered he had died they made approaches to his widow tentaively enquiring about plans for this archive - a few weeks after she had dumped the whole lot in the skip. The local council even organised a search of the local landfill, but nothing was ever found...

And cameras too, they usually turn up at antique centres after the 'house clearers' have been in. An aquaintaince of mine 'in the trade' tells me that they usually collect at least one camera from each house, usually something worthless, but occassionally something priceless. They pay a flat fee to clear a house either way...

I'm sure there is a moral here, somewhere.

Two in fact:
1) Don't die
2) Take it with you

Steve

sjperry
05-30-2007, 01:52 PM
The collectible camera field is indeed interesting. Leicas have always been a prime item, with prices far higher than other equivalent cameras. The reason simply is there are more collectors intersted in the make, and relatively low production. Most of their value is as collectors items - though many are used as well. On the other hand, Hasselblads from the 500c on have been used mainly by professionals, and with the increasing use of digital, their prices have declined considerably. Rolleflexes have not suffered much decline - in fact I think their prices may be increasing! Most cameras were made in such quantities that they have negligible collector value. The prices of those cameras have always been low, and have dropped even further. I collect some cameras such as old Rolleis, and use each of them as well. I think I concur with the thought that there is increasing use of MF and LF cameras. That might have some effect on certain Leicas and other 35mm's.

keithwms
05-30-2007, 02:05 PM
Hmm I'd sure like for someone to dump an M7 in my general direction! Okay an M6. CLE? Pretty please?

I don't see these RFs as shelf gear, they are extremely robust & reliable tools, right back to the first Ms.

Seems to me that even if I had an M8 I would still find lots of routine use for my film RFs.

Terence
05-30-2007, 02:09 PM
I'd say there's an increasing use of MF and LF by hobbyists. Unfortunately, the professionals were the ones who really made the market viable. The output of LF from Canham, etc is probably much smaller than the big guys (Toyo, Sinar, etc) even 10 years ago. And the current producers of MF cameras are an ever smaller group now that Bronica, Pentax and (I think) Fuji have bowed out. I'm hoping that there's enough demand to keep Hasselblad, Rollei and Mamiya film-based options afloat for at least a few more years.

Don't get me wrong, it's allowed me to graduate from a Rolleicord to a Hasselblad, so it has its positives. But I'm sticking with non-electronic models to increase my chances of longevity of equipment availability.

steven_e007
05-31-2007, 04:12 AM
Two in fact:
1) Don't die
2) Take it with you

Steve

:D

I was thinking maybe.... don't rely on your wife or kids to value your Leica collection or FMS albums as highly as you do (or at all :rolleyes: ).

Maybe get the plans for your collection in your will....?

Steve

copake_ham
06-02-2007, 07:47 PM
Two in fact:
1) Don't die
2) Take it with you

Steve



:D

I was thinking maybe.... don't rely on your wife or kids to value your Leica collection or FMS albums as highly as you do (or at all :rolleyes: ).

Maybe get the plans for your collection in your will....?

Steve

This is similar to a "problem" a lot of us ham radio ops occassionally discuss.

For many of us "old timers", although now long gone, the ham radio "equivalent" of Leica was Collins Radio. Ham radio collectors can list all the gear by model names over time just like Leica enthusiasts.

There are many anecdotes about the widow who, having long resented her late husband's hobby, simply tossed this "priceless" gear in the trash can right after the interment!

Oh, and there are also anecdotes of "helpful hams", usually from the local club the dear departed was a member of, calling on the grieving widow offering to get rid of this gear for a few dollars! ;)

You camera collectors may want to look around for some geezers - espescially if you're in a club! :o

Peter Black
06-02-2007, 08:22 PM
Just every now and again I get a Leica twitch and start watching prices in the dealer listings and on the auction site. This is generally cured by putting a film in my Kiev 4A and going out with my Weston to experience the vibe, but probably not the full effect! I wouldn't say that I'm seeing a major drop in prices here in the UK, and I've been leafing through some old photo mags I've been throwing out and I'd say some of the prices have even gone up in the past couple of years for a decent M6 classic.

On the auction site I've seen some strange pricing and some shrewd bidding, particularly on an M6 TTL where the guy said a dealer valued it at 850. His stated logic was that he could sell through the dealer at 20% commission or sell on the site at 699 with a BIN price of 850, so hopefully he would get more than the 699. The sole bidder put in 3 bids which (at 20 increments) meant that any other bidder would have to go a minimum of 759 and possibly more, but without any kind of guarantee/warranty on the camera. No-one else bid and the sole bidder got a bargain at 699. I also watched an R6.2 go from 460 (with 2 minutes to go) up to 875 which would get a good dealer copy with a warranty, yet this one was from mainland Europe with high postage and the possibility of 17.5% VAT on top!

Peter Black
06-03-2007, 09:09 AM
And as if to back up my point about collectors still being around, this is just plain silly!:confused:

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Leica-box_W0QQitemZ280119267562QQihZ018QQcategoryZ15234Q QrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

bdial
06-03-2007, 09:19 AM
Not truly silly for the collector's realm, but we're all agreed that the collector's isn't exactly sane.
In collectable books, sometimes the dustjacket is worth as much as the book.

Leica_girl58
06-03-2007, 09:23 AM
This is the story of my Leica Collection.
My Uncle is a true Leica collector, which means that I don't even think he ever put more than a couple rolls of film in any of his cameras. He just enjoys holding them in his hands and pressing the shutter button.
He shared with me all their was to know about the history of leica and what it means to own and use one. It didn't take me long to learn and appreciate the quality of leica. My uncle actually gave me his m2 as a first gift and with the second gift of his r3 to follow a short time later.
I enjoyed using the m2 but mainly use the r3 for all of my photography. I have put that camera thru many years of use and it has stayed loyal to me with right-on exposure. I have had a few mishaps with the shutter button and advance lever being ripped off during one of my adventures. It just now returned to me after spending a few months at dags camera repair in wisconsin for a cla.
My Uncle is slowly letting go of his lecia collection and decided to give me his m4-2 this past year. I haven't had a chance to try her out yet, but do enjoy holding it in my hands and pressing the shutter button. :)
Just a couple months ago, my Uncle also decided that I shouldn't have to wait for his will to go in effect before I received his r6 and all the goodies that go with it. I was quite excited to receive that leica as I have used it a few times with beautiful results. I went to pick up the r6 and he told me that I might as well take his m3 while I was at it. I haven't used this one yet either but plan to try it out with the m4-2.
I believe that he is now left with a couple of older lecias which I wasn't really attracted to anyhow. I am happy with my new collection and will hopefully get to know the m's a little better this summer.
I plan on using all of my cameras so that I keep them in good shape, but I also love to hold them and feel that "oh so smooth" film advancer and quiet click! :)
darlene