New Leica announcement on Thursday the 24th.


New Leica announcement on Thursday the 24th.

It is getting closer and it is official! On Thursday April 24th Leica will announce something new…and guess what? If you come here on the 24th you may just see way more than you ever expected to see. 😉 So come back Thursday morning for a treat. It has been said there is a surprise to this release as well. Guess what? I know the surprise and you will know as well, in full detail on Thursday.



  1. Just got home from the Leica event in Lisbon. T System launched with 2 lenses (23, 18-56), EVF and M Mount adaptor. Pricing (1,550€ body, 1,650€ 23mm, 500€ EVF) not extreme, which makes a change. Body feels nice, though grip is too wide for me. Rear screen is nice as is the new touch menu system. But the colour accessories make it feel like they are aiming at the consumer crowd. Also, it’s not small.

    • First Leica “system” camera not to have a built in viewfinder (M, R and S all had built in viewfinders). Battery plate is body coloured so if it’s important to you, you need to order the right coloured spare battery. First thought on seeing it was Sony Tri-Navi.

      Aluminium coloured version available 28 May and black version “in July”.

      Much made of the 45 minutes of hand finishing for each aluminium body.

        • 45 minutes was only the hand finishing. No idea how long it takes to mill the frame from a block of aluminium. The brochure actually says that the milling machine carves away everything that a machine is able and the final touches are made by hand.

          I have to apologise to Steve if I have inadvertently, in my posts, stolen his thunder. Sorry 🙁

      • Uli I just scoured the net, on which images of the T are all over. I don’t really get the secretiveness here. It really does look, a bit, like a Samsung. On Leicarumors (I don’t see any rules on verbal exchanges there, ha ha) it was even suggested the body is milled out of one block of (unobtainium?) which apparently takes 50 hours. That would explain the price.

        So, no sarcasm this time!

        Gruss Gott!

  2. Moving sensor like contax ax all leica lenses will be autofocus ,monitor on top plate ultimate street shooter.levent

  3. Based on the upbeat announcement by Steve, I predict the following (I know I am going out on a limb here.). The camera will have improved autofocus speed over the previous X cameras. I think the body will be priced at $2000-2500. It doesn’t make sense to price it much higher over the fixed lens X cameras. Then again Leica does many things that Don’t make sense. I do think that when Steve called Olympus the new Leica that this comment must have really bothered LEICA so it will interesting to see their response tomorrow.

  4. What I am expecting to happen:
    – it’s ugly as it’s gets
    – Steve will absolutely love it
    – it will turn out to be medicore comparing to its rivals and 2x the money

    Let’s wait and see.

  5. I know Leica is a niche / boutique brand, but I don’t understand all the hate. They make superb lenses, small, manual-friendly camera bodies, and are designed for a very particular type of photography. They’re like Rolls-Royces. Rolls-Royce doesn’t need to compete with other, larger brands in technology, cutting-edge screens, or the like, because that’s not their purpose. I don’t own a Leica, but I’d like to someday. I’ve tried the Fujis – and enjoy them – but their noted lack of ‘haptic’ quality (e.g., the way they feel, solidity, etc.) bothers me. Also, Fujifilm is still a very young company when it comes to high-end. Yes, I’m aware of their cinematography lenses, and their old collaboration with Hasselblad, but I still can’t help but remember Fujifilm before the X-series. Of course, I have no doubt my feelings for them will improve considerably with time. But there is definitely something about Leica’s build quality that’s reassuring. Not everyone wants a plasticky camera (e.g., the newest Nikons and Canons, and most of the Sony APS-Cs).

  6. One of the really enjoyable things about your site, Steve, is your own sense of fun! Goes a long way to make up for the – once again – almost inevitable disaleicappointment….. Am I glad I got myself a Digilux 2: there’s a Leica that’s affordable and absolutely not disappointing!

  7. The event takes place in LA, so i would not be surprised if the “surprise” is a digital cinema camera to go with Leica’s Summilux and Summicron cinema range. Probarbly a rebranded Sony F5/55.
    Not something the old Leica fans are waiting for, just as the T-model. I still would like to see a new, basic M model priced in the $4500 range: no video, very little external connectors, a basic monochrome display showing just the camera menu (well, perhaps a histogram), but with the M240 sensor and of course a rangefinder.

  8. What I think we know,
    Body Made in Germany, Prime lenses made in Germany, Zoom’s probably outsourced to Panasonic.
    Sensor by Belgium company CMOSIS. Processor by Leica, Leica believe the processor gives the look. At least that was their defence regarding the replacement of CCD with CMOS (as a personal diversion the M240 3D pop is amazing and I love it, the colours have great dynamic range and true to life rendition, however and its a big one for me, I prefer the M9 inaccurate colours, they look “Prettier” to me. M9 “Impressionist”, M240 “Realist”
    And the surprise. Well they did talk about another Monochrome, but as has already been pointed out the mirror picture is in colour. So perhaps the surprise is FFafter all. Not long to go before we find out.

  9. Leica is coming with a REVOLUTION! … a m4/3 camera!, LOL.

    Whatever they have done will be no advanced enough to compete with other brands (Leica is way behind) and as usual in Leica products, expensive as hell.

    Btw, did anyone notice that Steve is holding a camera with an attached electronic viewfinder? … seriously Leica, on top of the camera $300-400 more for a viewfinder???

  10. The camera seems to have been influenced by Jony Ive, the Apple design genius. Remember he partnered with Leica for that Project Red M that auctioned off for over one million dollars.

    There’s the metal unibody design…and then the invitation reads that it’s “engineered to be touched.” That sounds like another Ive influence…perhaps a touch screen, perhaps even another part of the camera body involving some measure of touch control.

    Either way, this is shaping up to be a fun launch…

  11. It’s a camera that distorts space and time. That’s the actual photo of the camera. And the product launch was yesterday.

  12. Everyone knows Leica builds superlative lenses. That’s not in question. But they fell well behind the Japanese during the electronics revolution of the 1970s and haven’t caught up since. It’s why they partnered with Minolta back then, and now, years later, with Panasonic.

    Today’s digital cameras are now more electronics-dependent than ever before.

    Unfortunately, building cameras out of unobtanium, or vibranium, or some other rare Earth element is of little value or interest to serious photographers in the 21st century…especially working photographers who switch out their gear every 4 years or so.

    Personally, I think the real threat to this new Leica mirrorless will be from Fujifilm, who are showing very clear intent with the X-Series.

    By the time the X-Pro 2 arrives the Leica mirrorless camera will appear even further behind.

    The X-Pro 2 will continue to be APS-C, but will use a further iterated version of the X-Trans sensor. It will have a more evolved version of the hybrid OVF/EVF viewfinder (think improved OVF coupled with an even better version of the EVF currently in the X-T1). It will also have greatly improved autofocus; proper weather sealing; the likelihood of a tilty-flippy screen (possibly with touch) and several other updated/new features.

    • Indeed. If a company is sensible then the materials used will be recyclable, or they just become expensive landfill, or dusty ornaments after their short digital usefulness comes to an end. 3-5 years on average, I believe, is the case whether cameras or laptops.
      Some of the strongest, most durable products are increasingly being made with ever more sophisticated ,and recyclable, plastics. Good enough for planes, good enough for cameras, IMHO.

    • So, Robert, do you really think the APS-C format has a future for serious photography? I know Fujifilm is making a committed effort, but is that sufficient?

  13. It is an X2 with interchangeable lens. If it is $3K. The EVF will be $800, maybe $600 and a lens is going to be about $800 to $1k. A simple outfit would be close to $5K. In these days of mirror less, very high.

  14. Steve, I see that you’ve updated your gear page for a mystery new backup camera for the M240- you must likethis new one a lot. Have you parted with your E-M1 and Df, then?

    • Yeah and where is your beloved RX1? You love the RX1 for the lens AND it’s low light capability so if it’s gone then Thursday’s review will most assuredly be the a7s 🙂

  15. You know you are getting screwed by any company saying their product is about “The Essence.” Symbolism over substance.

    • Yeah, maybe the secret symbolic ingredient will be Fahrvergnügen – to borrow from another German marketing campaign. 🙂

      • It wasn’t, the unfortunately common hyperbole. I was enticed, and then disappointed. But it turns out to be a really nice camera. With its quirks.

  16. At least Leica has learned not to raise false expectations then causing deep disappointments by dropping the wrong acronyms.

    I see a chunky handgrip, a chunky lens, a viewfinder placed on some kind of extension way above the lens. Or Steve frames without any kind of finder, with the image and all data directly projected into his brain. And mind control.

  17. it will be fun to see what leica will launch. but 3000 buks for a rebranded panasonic toy even if it is full of titanium is a joke. hope that leica is not going the hasselblad way

  18. It has a retro look and various retro modes… Tintype, Daguerreotype, etc. When you select one, and click the shutter, you are transported back in time to the appropriate era.

    • Could Leica be releasing a D-Film Hybrid (Simular with Ric) with Leica film brand.
      How about a Leica Full frame with M-T adapters with other MF Panasonic.
      I’m wihing here folks but with a module camera upgrade various improvements without breaking the bank account. At say…under 2 grand USD.
      Well how about it Leica R and D. With a little help from Panasonic.

  19. This is BIG! Leica have developed a stealth mode that will make the camera almost invisiable! The street photographer’s dream! Steve in the photo show how it works when activated! :o)

    That said photographers on a budget can just as well buy the 24MP Sony A6000 that has been documented to work well with adapted rangefinder lenses like the Cosina Voigtländer 15/4.5 Super Wide-Heliar.

  20. Steve is playing with us. He’s holding a box. A box full of film. Leica will introduce a range of their own films… somehow optimised for MP and M7 users. 🙂

    (we can but dream)

  21. Looks like Leica have done it again: stupid branding of a products that, technologically, has been passed by. What are we supposed to make of “701-T”? Why 701? The only thing that does for me is draw my attention to the fact that the button layout is very similar, if not exactly the same as, the Sony Nex7.

    Leica is just failing on all fronts: when they try to innovate, they come out with a dud like the X-Vario. When they re-badge, they come out with a product that Sony and Fuji have been selling for over two years.

    What would be truly innovative would be a slimmer full-framed M with a hybrid viewfinder. This M would return to Leica’s roots: simplicity. No extra thumb wheel, simplification of menu rather than proliferation of options. Just you, the lens, and a finely crafted, minimalist 35mm camera with the option to use a range-finder, which has the beauty of letting you notice what you’re keeping out of the picture as well as what you’re including.

    • Leica are terrified of making anything halfway decent that would mean competition to the M. They can only think of moving into other ‘untapped’ markets. The problem here is that the likes of Sony and Fuji are just so much more innovative, competent, receptive and creative here and stodgy old Leica will always be into a fringe boutique market here of people who fuss about ‘fine machining’ on a digital camera.

      Moving on with the M design – making a hybrid viewfinder with state-of-the-art EVF (one that actually works), which is the obvious route for so many who admire the M camera, is both a challenge too far for Leica and risks losing their conservative clientele who have only just adjusted to having an up-to-date screen on the back of the new M.

  22. Can’t even imagine what the surprise might be. Leica, after all, haven’t surprised us in a long time. I hope it will be photography related not some unique finish which quite frankly isn’t that needed on digital bodies with limited life span. If they go with external VF, and they will, I hope it will be large and high refresh rate one.

    • From what I’ve seen over on LR, I like it 🙂 New concept, breath of fresh air, although LCD seems to be fixed (a bit shame considering it’s touch sensitive) but I could imagine myself having one as a walk around camera to compliment my daylight MF system. Will come back to see what your impressions are so far and how you like it as a new system complimenting M range.

  23. Hallo,
    as an old time Leica user (film) I would like to see an affordable Leica body which could work with M lenses (even cropped) in a proper way and be modern in a positive sense (AF, integrated EVF, video mode and so on). But the digital world is moving fast and other manufacturers are already producing cameras like that (Sony, Fuji, Samsung, Canon…). So I am curious to see how Leica can still make a statement in a crowded arena.
    Obviously they could make a cheap full format M and be happy. But we know this T camera is APSC and it wil not have an M-bajonett.

  24. It depends on who built the guts of this thing (not talking about the monocoque body). I suppose it could use some form of the built-in image stabilizer used in the GX7 … but I seriously doubt the T type will offer image stabilization.

    As for an organic sensor, I don’t think that tech is far enough along yet, and I doubt it would debut in a Leica. If it had reached production maturation, we’d have heard about that before the tech ever got allocated to a camera.

  25. All I care is how it works with my M mount lenses.

    Sony A7 series – swing and a miss (but maybe not the upcoming A7s..)
    Fuji Xt-1 – swing and a miss

    Leica T-Type?….

  26. Oo pretty plz R10. Same design as R9 but digital and with organic sensor. And R lens line will be revived. All lenses from 19 to 90 mm will be priced symbolically 2014 €

    • That will never happen sadly, very very sadly IMO.

      I Really feel Leica missed a trick by discontinuing the R range. A manual focus DSLR that uses some of the best primes ever made, in clouding M mint lenses, would have sold and sold well but Leica disagree.

      • Leica proved with the M240 sensor design it’s possible to achieve good edge sharpness with short flange distance. Let’s take d800 for an example or DMR, we don’t need high burst rate and huge battery and thick motor winder. Most of us don’t even need super huge tele lenses. But that 180mm f 2.8 i loved.
        Still i would wait a bit for a better dynamic range. Highlight clipping is most serious problem for me, i’d like to capture moment as i see it. My hopes are high on that fuji and Panasonics organic sensor. Maybe one day R is back when we ain’t bound by the 2 extreme choices. As it’s for now anybody can point their finger and say why should i pay Leica price just because Leica digital camera is beautiful, cos it makes same picture as cheaper camera. And film market wasn’t big enough to keep film R alive. Beautiful looking camera that also makes good photo is much more attractive product.

    • I had a R4 for a long time and I prefer the smaller body (R4-R6) over the bulky R8/R9. But either way, a digital R in the same size as the film-era bodies will remain a dream forever. (The digital R back was way too big)

      • I much preferred the R6 over the R8/9, at least on spec, until one day I deigned to hold an R9 in my hands and started to operate it. Revelation! What a superbly well-designed and ergonomically refined high-quality build. A great viewfinder too.

        One of those with a well-damped shutter, a Sony 36mp sensor, and the manually focusing R lenses would do me.

  27. My fear is that this new T-Type 701 camera will be beautifully made mechanically, but that it will still suffer from slow autofocus, poor high ISO performance, a low-res EVF, etc … and yet will still be priced way above other cameras that offer better overall performance for those interested in photography, as opposed to just a “status symbol”.

    Hope I’m wrong. A near-silent low-light monster (for APS-C) would really be something.

    • Exactly my thoughts. Outside of the M system, Leica seem to be masters of the too slow, too late camera. Premium price, poor specs. I don’t see them taking a leap forward in technology or cutting their sense of entitlement to other people’s money.

  28. I’m hoping the surprise is a built-in EVF seeing as how they went through the trouble of relocating the pop-up flash rather significantly. Perhaps this was done to make room for one.

  29. Except newest technologies, the surprise is, It will come in affordable price about $ 2000 with kit lens. I hope so..

  30. Leica T type 701 Major Specification

    Leica T type 701 will have a APS-C sensor
    Optional EVF
    Made in Germany (very solid built)
    The new T lenses coming (include primes and zooms)
    Touchscreen LCD
    Built-in Wi-Fi
    A new adapter that will let you use M lenses on the T body will also be announced
    The price is rumored to be around $3000, See all rumors related to Leica T Type 701 Camera

    • AF lens or MF? If it has AF, Fuji has now has rival in the APS-C market. Hopefully for Leica, that they well not pull a Sony and shoot themselves in the foot.

    • I realize that Leica has never been into marketing to someone as poor as me, but for $3k, I’ll keep my X-E1. I can’t imagine I will get $2500 worth of better performance (or feel) out of the Leica.

    • If it really is as you say, then what advantage would there be over the Fuji XT-1? Fuji already has an excellent set of existing primes and zooms, an excellent APS sensor and can already take M lenses with an adaptor.

      Surely, Leica needs something extra to even begin to compete.

      A touch screen is not enough on its own, though combine that with IS and it may have a draw, but only if the lenses are excellent and fast and don’t remain vapourware. AF also needs to be as good as the best of the competition. I’m curious, but given Leica’s seeming desperation not to take market share away from the M cameras and their somewhat cranky record with their obsolete before introduction electronic cameras, I’m not holding my breath. I look forward to being underwhelmed.

  31. Always interesting to see Leica’s idea of a new camera as they try to move deeper into the new digital reality. Personally I’d like to hear that it has microlenses built into its sensor designed specifically to get the best from Leica M lenses attached via adaptor. Also hoping that it takes Olympus’s current 2+ mpx add on evf (rebranded in black &2x price assumed). Sounds like its h2o resistent from its unibody design. There will of course be “Leica only” quirky compromises along the way that will fuel the forums.

  32. I don’t have any insider information, but two things I hope for in the long-anticipated type 701 are: 1) electronic shutter for silent mode as well as high-speed operation (eg, 1/8000 sec.), and 2) in-body image stabilization.

    I believe that Panasonic has included these two features in the GX7, so perhaps we can hope for these same features in the type 701, assuming that Panasonic is the 3rd party that builds the body and the electronics for Leica.

    Also, I’m keen to learn about new lenses for this system camera (some fast primes?), and of course, the lens mount they’ve chosen to use.

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