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Wednesday, September 17, 2014


It had to happen.  For quite a while now I have been jokingly saying that smartphones are starting to be cameras, so why not make a camera that can also make phone calls.  As of Photokina 2014, the lines are more blurred than ever.  Enter the Panasonic Lumix CM1 Smartphone.  At first glance it doesn’t look much different than most other smartphones.  But a closer look reveals a Leica 28mm (35mm equivalent) f/2.8 Leica DC Elmarit lens.  The focal length obviously hints at a much larger sensor than what is common in smartphones and yes, this smartphone/camera is equipped with an unusually large 1 inch size sensor.  Referred to as a ‘connected camera,’ the Lumix CM1 is capable of capturing 20-megapixel stills and 4K video.  More camera features are settings for aperture, ISO and shutter speed all of which are controlled trough a manual lens ring. Another camera feature is the shutter release button on top of the device and the sliding switch to activate the camera or the phone function.



As a phone, the Lumix CM1 has fairly standard features like a 4.7” full-HD screen, a 2.3GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor, 2GB of internal RAM, 16GB of internal memory and a micro SD slot that can support cards up to 128GB in size. The device operates on Android 4.4 KitKat.

Unfortunately, this “camera that also makes calls”, for now will only be available in France and Germany, with the official launch set for the holiday season.  This brings up two questions, when will this be available worldwide and could Leica possibly offer a Leica version of this?


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Tuesday, September 16, 2014


Well, the time has arrived.  No more rumors and wishful thinking.  Here is what Leica has in store for us, starting with the opening of Photokina 2014, today.

Leica M Edition 60

This is a limited edition of 600 cameras, designed by Audi.  The camera is based on the Leica M-P, but is a back to basics approach.  The biggest difference is that the camera has no display screen.  It has only the most basic settings for digital photography: shutter speed, aperture, focusing and ISO sensitivity.  The ISO sensitivity is set via a dial in back of the camera.  One could look at it as a digital camera that works just like a film camera.  The set includes a Leica M-P (Type 240) and a Leica Summilux-M 35 mm f/1.4 ASPH., both special versions created by Audi Design.  It is thought that this special edition is a trial balloon to test the acceptance of the camera.  Based on the response we might see a less elaborate, less expensive version in the future.

Right now, the camera is offered as a limited edition of just 600 cameras worldwide.  Cameras and lenses have unique matching numbers between 001/600 and 600/600. The M-Cameras also have the engravings ‘Leica 60’ and ‘Leica Camera Wetzlar’. The special edition includes a camera protector.

Leica M-A

This new film camera is based on the Leica MP, but has no lightmeter, battery or any other electronics at all.  A stainless steel version of the Leica M-A was part of the Leica M Edition 100 introduced during the inauguration of the new Leica HQ in spring.  The camera will be available on black and silver finish.  The Leica M-A is will not replace the Leica M-P or Leica M7, there are no plans to phase out other models.


New Summarit-M Lenses

New are the following Summarit-M lenses;

Leica Summarit-M 35 mm f/2.4 ASPH.
Leica Summarit-M 50 mm f/2.4
Leica Summarit-M 75 mm f/2.4
Leica Summarit-M 90 mm f/2.4

All of the summarit lenses now have a maximum aperture of f/2.4, offering a speed increase of 1/8 exposure value.  This did not necessitate a new design of the lenses, instead by implementing tighter tolerances it was possible to offer a speed increase without sacrificing performance.  The lenses will be available in black and silver finish.  The old Summarit lenses will be phased out.


 Noctilux and Summilux 35mm In Silver Finish

Leica Camera now offers the Leica Noctilux-M 50 mm f/0.95 ASPH. and the Leica Summilux-M 35 mm f/1.4 ASPH., in asilver anodised finish. The technical specifications of both lenses are identical to their black finished counterparts.

Leica S

Leica Camera introduced a new version of the LEICA S (Type 007).  The sensor resolution of 37.5 MP remains the same but the camera has a new CMOS sensor and an improved MAESTRO image processor.
The new camera now features predictive autofocus where the camera registers the motion of the subject and determines the distance to it at the moment of exposure.

Here are the other advantages advantages over the older model:

Better image quality with all ISO settings
Higher ISO values up to  6,400
Continuous shooting with 3.5 fps
Full HD Video in full medium format
4k video
Faster Live View

Leica S-E

The Leica S (Type 006) will be offered as the model S-E at a lower price, the only difference to the old model being a top in anthracite grey paint and a silver anodized shutter speed dial.

Two New Leica T Lenses

Even though these two lenses were announced already at the launch of the Leica T in April, they are becoming available now as of January 2015.

Wide angle zoom lens Leica Super-Vario-Elmar-T 11–23 mm f/3.5–4.5 ASPH. (equals 17-35 mm in 35mm)
Tele zoom lens Leica APO Vario-Elmar-T 55–135 mm f/3.5-4.5 ASPH. (equals 80-200 mm  in 35mm)

Leica X with new Summilux Lens

A new Summilux 23mm f/1.7 ASPH lens is now available on the Leica X.  That equals a 35 mm lens in full frame format.  This is a 1 ½ stop increase in speed over the old f/2.6 Elmarit.

In addition, the New Leica X now has a 3” display and it offers a video option with a resolution of 1920 × 1080 pixels and 30 full frames per second, saved in MP4 format.

A new accessory is the Digiscoping Adapter.  It allows the use of the X camera on the Leica APO-Televid 82 and APO-Televid 65 spotting scopes.

Leica D-LUX

The new Leica D-Lux offers several new features: Fourthirds sensor, high-resolution electronic viewfinder and 4k video, all with a fast Vario-Summilux lens.

All the new features are:

FourThirds CMOS sensor with 16 MP
Leica DC Vario-Summilux 10,9–34mm f/1.7–2.8/ (24–75mm eq.)
Shutter speeds up to 1/16,000 s
Burst shooting 11 fps in full resolution
Integrated electronic viewfinder with 2.8 MP resolution
Fast hybrid contrast AF
4K and Full-HD video


Leica also introduced a new version of the V-LUX with a Leica DC Vario-Elmarit 9.1–146 mm f/2.8–4 ASPH. Lens.

The new features are:

Large 1″ sensor
20 MP resolution
Zoom range 25 to 400 mm (35 mm eq.)
Closest focusing distance: 3 cm
Shutter speed 1/16,000 sec
Burst shooting 12 fps
2.4 MP OLED viewfinder
WiFi and NFC capability
4k Video

Leica Photo Bags

Finally, Leica introduced a new line of photo bags.  They include the Artisan & Artist Edition for Leica, the Aneas Edition for Leica, and the Photo And Business Bag By Schedoni.

Artisan and Artist Edition

Aneas Edition

Photo and Business Bag by Schedoni


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Monday, September 15, 2014


Today I have the pleasure to introduce French Leica Photographer Solenn Hervouet to the readers of the Leica Barnack Berek Blog.  He recently submitted a variety of photographs to be published.  Besides Leica equipment he also uses a variety of other camera makes and lenses.  Many of lenses by other manufacturers have been adapted for use on his Leica equipment.  For today’s gallery I have selected images that were mostly shot with Leica lenses, but I have included two excellent images that were taken with a Zeiss Sonnar 50mm f/1.5.

Solenn Hervouet writes about himself:

Some background info (not that much, I'm still a young man):

I'm 32, I live in France and I'm an engineer in scientific computing. I'm currently moving from Paris to Bordeaux, I was born in St Nazaire
(see I worked for the automotive industry (Renault) and currently in the aerospace industry. I discovered photography at 25, with my dad's old Nikon F. Mostly by accident: I gave it for repairs as my father had problems with it, and when it came back working I tried it with an old Kodak Gold film. It was in May in Paris, the weather was nice, and I was instantly hooked. Sometime after, it ceased working again.

From there, I began with Nikon gear, and quickly went to Leica as I like its design, feeling and simplicity. I also began to love old classic German cameras : Contax, Exakta, Rolleiflex, ... I like the feeling of the chrome, engraved metal and leather. I'm not really a collector as I like to use my cameras (even if, the more I have, the less I can find time to use them all). I like typical cameras of the 30s/40s/50s : rangefinders, TLRs, SLRs. Their workmanship is impressive, and cannot be matched today. I even have a pair of Speed/Crown Graphic that I should use more. I'm always surprised of the quality of the pictures, as I often do not like the "clinical" sharpness of the more modern cameras.

I do use in parallel digital and classic cameras, as I have not learned the wet print process. I scan my films; it does not bother me as I'm used to work with computers. I don't oppose digital/film, they can work nicely together.

I still have a lot to learn in the technical part of the photography process. And I do not have a good photographic culture either. I just do what I like, walking around with some nice cameras. I'm still wondering what I can do with a camera, what "style" really means...

I would say he is well on the way to being an excellent photographer.

Leica M4, Summilux 35mm f/1.4

Leica M4, Summilux 35mm f/1.4

Leica M8, 135mm Elmarit f/2.8

Leica M8, Summilux 35mm f/1.4

Leica M8. Summilux 35mm f/1.4

Leica M8, Summilux 50mm f/1.4

Leica M8, Summilux 50mm f/1.4

Leica M8, Zeiss Sonnar 50mm f/1.5


Leica M8, Zeiss Sonnar 50mm f/1.5


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Saturday, September 13, 2014


[m] berichtet:

PHOTOKINA: Nächste Woche steht Köln im Zeichen der Fotografie

Wetzlar/Köln (red/dpa). Licht und Schatten in der Fotobranche: Der Verkauf von klassischen Kameras geht deutlich zurück, stark betroffen sind vor allem günstige Kompaktmodelle. Im hochwertigen Kamerabereich hingegen gibt es 2014 bei Absatz und Umsatz aller Voraussicht nach ein leichtes Plus, wie der Photoindustrie-Verband in Köln vor der weltgrößten Fotomesse "photokina" berichtete.

Unter den Firmen ist natürlich auch die Leica Camera Ag präsentiert.  In einem Interview mit "Die Welt" hat Alfred Schopf, Vorstandsvorsitzender der Leica Camera AG, berichtet dass die Firma diese Jahr mit einer verhältnismäßig großen Steigerung des Umsatzes rechnet. 

Neben neuen Produkten, die am 16. September vorgestellt warden, bietet Leica auch dieses Jahr einen großen Veranstaltungskalender.  Die Leica-Galerie in wird am Dienstag, 16. September, um 9.30 Uhr eröffnet. Das diesjährige Ausstellungskonzept konzentriert sich hauptsächlich auf Fotokunst rund um das Thema Musik.  Dies beinhaltet Fotografien von Konzertaufnahmen über persönliche Künstlerporträts bis hin zu Reportagen mit Einblicken hinter die Konzert-Kulissen.

Dazu kommen Fotoprojekte von Musikern, für die Fotografie zu einer zweiten Leidenschaft geworden ist. Abgerundet wird das diesjährige Ausstellungsprogramm durch die prämierten Fotografien aus den Leica-Kulturprojekten.

An dem ersten Messetag ist ab 15 Uhr ein Gesräch mit den diesjährigen Preisträgern des Leica Hall of Fame Award, Thomas Hoepker, und Michael Koetzle geplant, dass von einer Signierstunde gefolgt wird. Fotograf Hoepker zeigt in der Leica-Galerie seine Retrospektive "Wanderlust", die sein Lebenswerk über die letzten sechs Jahrzehnte zeigt. Ein Buch mit dem gleichen Namen ist in  teNeues Verlag erschienen.

Am Mittwoch um 11 Uhr bietet Leica den Vortrag "Von Paradiesen und Apokalypsen" von Lois Hechenblaikner. Der österreichische Fotograf widmet sich dem alpinen Fremdenverkehr und der volkstümlichen Musik. Seine Fotografien polarisieren oft und zeigen die Schattenseiten von Massentourismus, Wintersport und Großveranstaltungen und ihre Auswirkungen auf die Bergwelt und ihre Bewohner.

Am Nachmittag um 15 Uhr ist die exklusive Weltpremiere von "The Haight: Love Rock and Revolution". Amelia Davis stellt ein neues Buch über den im Jahr 2010 verstorbenen Grammy Trustee Award Gewinner und Musikfotografen Jim Marshall vor, der mit drei Ausstellungen in der Leica-Galerie vertreten ist.  Die beinhalten auch eine Sammlung von Fotografien aus dem legendären Haight-Ashbury Viertel in San Francisco zur Zeit des  "Summer of love".  Jim Marshall hat erstklassige Porträts von Musikern seiner Zeit hinterlassen, wie zum Beispiel Bilder von Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jefferson Airplane, The Grateful Dead, Donovan, den Beatles, von Konzertveranstalter Bill Graham, dem Dichter der Beat-Generation Allen Ginsberg und dem Psychologen und "Guru" der Hippie-Bewegung, Timothy Leary.

Am Donnerstag bietet Leica zwei Signierstunden. Till Brönner, Trompeter, Sänger und Komponist wird ab 11 Uhr am Leica Messestand sein.  Jürgen Schadeberg, südafrikanischer Fotograf deutscher Herkunft, wird am Nachmittag um 14 Uhr da sein.

Am Freitag folgt um 11 Uhr eine Signierstunde mit dem Geiger und Fotografen Georges Yammine aus Katar.  Ab 17 Uhr halt Thomas Wiegold den Vortrag "Aus dem Leben von Anja Niedringhaus" die im April 2014 einem Attentat in Afghanistan zum Opfer gefallen ist.

Die Leica-Galerie auf der photokina in Halle 1 ist während der Messetage täglich von 10 bis 18 Uhr geöffnet. Der Eintritt ist kostenlos.


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Wednesday, September 10, 2014


 Leica Camera AG released more news about the upcoming Photokina:

High End Professional Photography for the Leica S-System

Sinar p MF-L 
With a tradition dating back over 60 years, Sinar is a premium brand in the world of professional photography. The company's professional equipment meets the highest standards in terms of resolution and color reproduction in the static studio as well as for landscape and architectural photography.

The Sinar p MF-L was developed especially for photographers who wish to avail themselves of the unique quality characteristics of a Sinar view camera while using their Leica S high-end medium format camera body. Exact control of perspective and selective sharpness, the most important creative tools in photography, are set and evaluated precisely on a view camera – all these advantages are now available for Leica S users. In addition, this solution offers the benefit of a distinct increase in quality by using high-resolution Sinaron lenses designed specifically for digital imaging.

In combination with the Sinar p system the Leica S users gain access to professional high-end photography. A wide range of the accessories from the modular Sinar System can be used for the professional work in the studio or outdoor applications. The Sinar p-MF-L solution corresponds to the Sinar philosophy to provide modular systems that always accommodate with the latest trends of the market.

Experience the complete digital solution for professional photographers by visiting the Leica stand at Photokina.

For more information go to:


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Tuesday, September 9, 2014



It is common knowledge that the Leica has been copied more often than any other camera and many of these copies are relatively well known.  One of the rather rare and little known copies is the Shanghai 582.

The camera was made for less than two years, from 1958 to 1959, at the beginning of the Cultural Revolution when the Chinese government decided to do everything better than the Russians, the Americans and the Germans.  The seven digit serial number was quite misleading since very few of the cameras were made, most of them for government use.

It really wasn’t a bad copy.  It showed an extraordinary amount of hand work.  The f/3.5 collapsible lens was of acceptable quality, and the cloth focal plane shutter still worked smoothly and was reasonably accurate, even years later.

The pictures of the camera were obtained from a member of the Leica Historical Society of America (LHSA) who had the good fortune to see and inspect the camera and to photograph it on a trip to China.

Interesting, to say the least.  But I think I will stick with my Wetzlar and Solms made Leica equipment.


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With about 30 individual exhibitions in the halls and a high-profile mix of art works at the Leica Gallery, the image as a creative end product of the photographic and imaging industry is again the focus of the Photokina this year.

Besides photographs by a large variety of photographers, highlights of the exhibition include again the Leica Gallery in Hall 1 This year it is under the heading of "Music". The selected photographers include among others the American music photographer Jim Marshall (1936-2010). The exhibition will include his photographs of the last Beatles concert and the Rolling Stones tour of 1972 and a collection of photographs of the legendary Ashbury district in San Francisco during the so-called "Summer of love". In addition, the the Leica Gallery exhibition program will be enriched by  photographers such as Glen Craig with "A Day in the Life of Miles Davis", Jürgen Schadeberg with "Jazz in South Africa" as well as Anton Corbijn with a series of self-portraits,.

National Geographic Germany will present a selection of the best photographs from the 125-year history of the magazine in Passage 5.4. The exhibition, consisting of 55 images, reflects the most important expeditions and articles of the magazine.

Leica Camera AG put photography at the forefront again at the last Photokina after a virtual absence of many years, we can look foreward to another great success of the photographic exhibitions.


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