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Old Oct 1, 2006, 8:30 AM   #1
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I came across this pic on the Leica forum taken with an E330 + Leitz R lens (ISO200 f5.6) although I'm not sure which R lens was used.

I like the detail that I get with the 14-54 but that shot got me thinking about the Leica D 14-50 and how good it could be with any of the E series cam's.

Pic taken by Johann W. Meier.

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Old Oct 2, 2006, 12:55 PM   #2
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The only thing you need to realize when you see anything shot with a Leica R or M lens is, they aren't the same thing as this "Leica" 14-50 lens on the Panasonic. If you need an eye-opening experience as to what real Leica lenses cost, just take a gander here:


Even a plain, ordinary 50mm f2 costs $1,300 and it only goes up from there. The closest Leica equivalent, the 28-90 R zoom, costs $3,900! Do ya think this "Leica" 14-50 is the same thing, or even a close equivalent? There is a huge amount of disconnect/disbelief going on with a lot of Olympus/Panasonic users about Leica lenses and who makes what. The reality is, real Leica lenses cost more thanthe combined total of all digicams/DSLR's most around here have bought- maybe even times 2 or 3 or more.

The 14-50 "Leica" lens is a Panasonic product that has the Leica name on it onlybecause Panasonic paid Leica a lot of money to do so. Yes, there has been input by Leica engineers, but let's not kid ourselves here. This is a Panasonic lens. If it were Leica-made, or probably even perhapstouched by someone at the Leica factory, we'd not all be talking about this outfit because few of us could actually afford it.

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Old Oct 2, 2006, 1:09 PM   #3
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i think the big difference with the pana model is this
they wont involve themselves in slow/low production techniques
they need high speed output because they are a batch manufacturer with quick change lines

hence all the brass bits go, and lots more plastic is introduced
injection moulding is quicker/ cheaper than machining metal stock

that aside, its clear that they have a good deal of assistance designing these lenses
just compare the image quality with say, the canon s3 is
on steves review there is a red brick building i always check out
the electric pylons are good for looking for chromations and sharpness
toward the left of the frame there is a pole with insulators, its about middle background
you cant really see the detail at all at 100% on the canon
yet it is reasonably clear on the pana FZ

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Old Oct 2, 2006, 1:25 PM   #4
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I am sure there are standards of constructionPanasonic have to meet and, like Zeiss with Sony, I'm sure Leica have personnel/engineers at the Panasonic factory to be sure the quality is what they would want, but I'm sure in the end this lens will have stamped on it somewhere, "Made in Japan"(never a bad thing), not "Made in Germany", which is good enough, definitely more assuring than "made in China" (sorry to those offended, but that's just how many in the world view it), but I think there is a fallacy in comparing images made with the real German product and, in some places, trying to draw conclusions about the lens compared to the real German deal, such as here:


True, Leica today in Germany make no lenses using the techniques that are being employed by Panasonic to make the 14-50, but if Leica ever did....I imagine you wouldn't be able to pay the same price this lens is going to cost. Leica also does not make their equivalent of the L1 that was just introduced either. Basically the same body with internal tweeks to give a different result. It'll be interesting to see how much more it winds upcosting because of the name stamped on it.

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