Quote Originally Posted by Tom1956 View Post
Pardon me, Leica fans. But NOTHING on this world is that good. The prices of Leica stuff is totally absurd. And I'm the first to say that generally speaking, German-made machinery out-classes anything else made on this 24,000 mile round rock. But nothing is THAT good.
Tom,

Does a Harley Davidson motorcycle go any faster because it has that fifth coat of clear? Of course not, but people have no problem accepting an additional cost because they're there. People are the problem. Car companies brag about the precision assembly of their robotic assembly lines; a vehicle every ten minutes and not a one touched by a fallible human being. Even as those humans wonder where the hell their job went. Leica does a ton of hand assembly by expensive human labor. Leica pays for their country's expensive social support network. Leica operates in a carefully crafted pinnacle in a niche market. Absolutely part of that is feeding the value of the brand by manipulating the price of joining the club. They're not the only ones to do that. That's very expensive; ask anybody who buys hip fashion crap like D&G sunglasses; summer's hot style pass by July. But Leica doesn't get to extrude new styles of Summicrons in a factory in China, that's Canon's and Nikon's gig these days.

Personally, I think the APO Summi is too expensive, but not by that much. It has reached a point where, if you don't use a tripod and cable release for all your shots you've wasted the performance potential of that lens and with it your money. That refutes the singular core belief of Leica that you can get "a lifetime of great photography" in a small quick handling camera. This is being driven, not by Leica, but by the Asian technology locomotive that's looking for ever more reasons to buy that next bit of disposable electronic future-trash. However they couch it, Leica is in reactive mode to that locomotive, and their answer will always be to do the best they possibly can and, as much as possible, cost-be-damned. I'm OK with that. It's why my M3 doesn't have plastic kit lenses but lenses my grand-children (I have not doubt) will fight over when I'm dead.

But, yeah, seven large might be a bit much.

s-APO-less-a

PS - I'm inclined to believe the value of my greenbacks is totally absurd.