Samyang releases 85mm F1.4 AF lens for Canon DSLRs

Exactly one week after dropping its 24mm F2.8 AF lens for full-frame Sony cameras, Samyang is back at it again. Today, Samyang announced the release of a new 85mm F1.4 AF lens for Canon DSLRs.

The telephoto prime is yet another addition in Samyang's growing portfolio of autofocus lenses. This lens in particular uses an upgraded dual-motor system to deliver faster, more accurate autofocus performance, according to Samyang. The minimum focusing distance is 90cm/35.43in, roughly 5cm more than Canon's 85mm F1.4 IS USM lens, which has a minimum focusing distance of 85cm/33.46in.

The Samyang AF 85mm F1.4 EF lens weighs 485g/1.07lbs and measures in at 72mm long without the lens hood or rear cap. It's constructed of nine optical elements in seven groups, including hybrid aspherical elements and an "ultra multi coating" designed to eliminate flares and ghosting. Samyang has also included weather-sealing, which should make it a little more robust in tough environments.

The Samyang AF 85mm F1.4 EF lens, which sells under the Rokinon brand name in the United States, will be available in July 2018 for £599.99 (~$800). This puts it at roughly half the price of Canon's 85mm F1.4 IS USM lens, which retails for $1,600.

Kickstarter: Pixl-latr aims to simplify film digitization

The Pixl-latr flattens film on a diffused surface so that it can easily be photographed with a conventional digital camera.

The analog revival continues unabated, and a new product - the Pixl-latr - could provide a long-awaited easy solution to the challenge of converting film to pixels.

Just launched on Kickstarter, at its core the Pixl-later is a diffusing plate which comes with a series of pins and frames that can flatten 35mm, 120mm (up to 6x12) and even 5x4 sheet film to be photographed with a digital camera - it even comes with a small stand to prop your negative up.

35mm film being loaded into the Pixl-latr.

The idea for the Pixl-latr came to creator Hamish Gill (of 33mmc fame) when he realized the lack of affordable 5x4 film scanning solutions. He decided to create something that could easily flatten his film to be photographed, rather than scanned. Anyone who's tried to photograph negatives knows what a pain getting them flat can be - the Pixl-latr seeks to solve this very annoying problem.

Through Kickstarter, the Pixl-latr can be yours for the 'Super-Early Bird - Supporter Special' price of £25 / ~$33, assuming that the funding goal is met.

Personally, considering the time and effort I’ve spent scanning film over the years, £25 seems like a real bargain and I truly hope it gets fully backed. If it has piqued your interest, you can read more about the Pixl-latr and and support the Kickstarter from the link below.

Read more about the Pixl-latr and support the Kickstarter

Google reveals how to simulate shallow DOF from a single mobile camera

Google has published an 18-page study fully detailing the synthetic depth-of-field technology that makes its single-camera Portrait Mode possible. Google introduced its evolved Portrait Mode feature on the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, though neither smartphone model has the dual-camera hardware typically required to produce this effect.

The in-depth paper shows a degree of openness unusual for the smartphone and camera industries. Smartphones with a single camera produce images where everything is generally in focus. Dual-camera phones paired with a stereo algorithm get around this limitation by matching points in images from both cameras to determine depth within the captured scene. Having acquired that depth data, some pixels can be selectively blurred to produce the shallow DOF effect, Google explained in a blog post last year.

Achieving this same effect using only a single camera is difficult. Some mobile camera apps attempt to simulate a shallow DOF by separating an image's pixels into two layers, isolating the foreground, and then blurring the remaining pixels; this is called semantic segmentation. The lack of depth data, however, means the software doesn't know how much blur to apply to any arbitrary object in the scene. The results can often be lackluster or unrealistic, without the gradual optical blur expected of objects receding into the distance.

That's where Google's "authentic defocus" technology comes in. The Pixel 2 smartphones utilize the semantic segmentation method for images taken with the front-facing camera, but they also use a stereo algorithm for images taken with the rear camera... despite there only being a single lens. Google provided an overview of how it achieves that on its AI blog in October.

There are advantages to Google's technology versus using a second camera, including reducing the space taken up by the imaging module, reduced power consumption, and helping keep costs down.

Put simply, Google repurposes its dual-pixel auto focus hardware utilized increasingly in mobile cameras for fast AF. Each pixel on the sensor is split into two photodiodes; the left- and right-looking (or up- and down-looking) photodiodes essentially establish two perspectives of the scene with a ~1mm stereo baseline. A burst of images are aligned and averaged to reduce noise, and a stereo algorithm computes a depth map from the two perspectives. This simulates the data that would be provided by two physical cameras next to each other, enabling Google's software to determine the depth of every point within the captured scene.

There's a lot more to Google's approach, including even advantages over traditional optics - for example in its choice to force a larger depth-of-field around the focus plane to ensure a sharp subject, something impossible to achieve optically. The study also points out that there are advantages to Google's technology versus using a second camera, including reducing the space taken up by the imaging module, reduced power consumption, and helping keep costs down.

Read the full PDF here.

Via: Cornell University Library

Rugged compact, GoPro, or smartphone: Which should I take on vacation?

My family hikes, we camp, we fish, we snowboard. As a photographer, that leaves me with some choices to make if I want to take pictures or video of our adventures.

Vacations, particularly outdoor, active ones, can provide some of the most vivid family memories, but can also be some of the most difficult to photograph. Several different types of device try to fit the bill but which is best for you?

Your mirrorless camera may be pretty compact to travel with, but can it film your kid’s first trip down a waterslide? Your DSLR may claim to be weather sealed but are you willing to risk pulling your $3000 camera+lens combo out to take a ski chairlift photo? Even if you are willing to trust it, are you willing to carry that kit with you all day?

In 2018, there’s no reason to let that keep you from being able to record those moments in your life. There are more options than ever for water, shockproof / freezeproof cameras that can survive life’s more demanding adventures. I’m talking about cameras that can survive a rainstorm or a day at the beach or sledding hill. Something compact and easy to travel with that you don’t have to worry about (and won’t cost thousands to replace) if clumsy Uncle Fred drops it into the hotel pool. Let's look at the options:

Action cameras

Small, tough and able to capture wide-angle video, Action cameras are especially good for capturing the spirit and experience of action activities.

Since the introduction of the GoPro HD in 2009, action cameras have become almost a required accessory for outdoor adventures. Once the sole domain of those who jumped off of cliffs or surfed on 20 foot waves, these days GoPros are used for everything from 'Hot Wheels' tracks in the backyard to Formula 1 races across the globe. From a child's first wobbly bike ride to mountain bikers who throw themselves down cliffs. If you are on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter, It’s highly likely that you see video from these cameras virtually every time you look at your feed.

While not expressly listed as shockproof or freezeproof, action cameras have a pretty proven track record.

It’s easy to see why action cameras have become so popular. They are tough, small, offer very good video quality, and can be mounted literally anywhere. Their super wide lenses give them a unique field-of-view that both suits, and has become de-rigueur for, recording 'cool' adventures. 4K video, image stabilization, and even Raw image shooting options are common. The newer camera designs from GoPro (Hero6, Hero5, Session) offer 10 meters / 33 feet of waterproofing while still offering clear audio out of the water and an optional external case extends this depth to 60m / 196ft.

These cameras are far better when mounted on a helmet, handlebar, or selfie stick than they are used handheld.

While not expressly listed as shockproof or freezeproof, action cameras have a pretty proven track record. Googling 'GoPro survives fall' or 'GoPro Everest' should give more than enough examples to convince most skeptics. Most offer Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connectivity and many have apps that allow for remote control via smartphone. Finally, it is hard to deny just how much kids love these cameras. The days of youngsters being thrilled by the apparent magic of a smartphone or a digital camera are probably over. But for whatever reason, when you hand a kid a GoPro, they just go nuts with it. You’ll get some of the most fascinating and genuine footage of children you’ve ever seen. It is both unique and heartwarming.

There's something unobtrusive about an action camera that can help candidly capture natural behavior.

However, it can be frustrating trying to use an action camera for still images. JPEG quality, color science, and even operational speed can feel like they lag behind dedicated still camera makers. Manual controls are near non-existent, and those that do exist are frequently hidden behind screen/button taps and menus. With no zoom or interchangeable lenses, your field-of-view is limited to super-wide or cropped 'medium' and 'narrow' options, limiting both flexibility and quality. And as cool as that super-wide view is, you probably won’t be surprised to hear how easy it is to get your fingers in the way if you are shooting handheld.

These cameras are far better when mounted on a helmet, handlebar, or selfie stick than they are used handheld, particularly given their size and lack of physical controls.

Waterproof P&S cameras

There are times when those 'freezeproof' ratings start to seem pertinent.

The waterproof point-and-shoot camera has been around for many years, as 1994’s film-based Canon Sure Shot A1 can attest. But as with most P&S cameras, the digital revolution brought a whole new level of usefulness to these tough little cameras. However, unlike most P&S cameras, the waterproof segment continues to thrive and evolve even in the age of smartphones.

Many of these cameras are not only waterproof, but are rated to be freeze, dust and shockproof. For example, typical specs might be waterproof to 15-30 meters / 50-100 ft, dustproof, crushproof to 100 kgf / 220 lbf, shockproof from 2.1 meters / 7 ft, and freezeproof to -10° / +14° F. While lenses in these cameras are the typical variable aperture midrange zoom that most P&S cameras have, the waterproof versions tend to be a bit faster on the wide end, apertures of F2 or F2.8 aren’t uncommon. And unlike action cameras or smartphones with their fixed lenses and digital zooms, these are true optical zooms that typically offer a 4x-6x range. RAW shooting, 4K video, optical image stabilization and Wi-Fi/bluetooth connectivity are showing up on recent models.

Even if you're not shooting underwater, there are times it's nice to know your camera will withstand a drop.

But perhaps most importantly, these cameras blow the other options out of the water in terms of ergonomics. While their physical controls, shutter buttons, and handgrips won’t win any awards when compared to DSLR or mirrorless cameras, they are miles ahead of a GoPro or iPhone. You can successfully use these cameras with gloves on, with wet hands, or in a location where a fumble would mean losing the camera. Along similar lines, these cameras all have one small feature that is difficult or impossible to find on action cameras or smartphones: a strap loop. While a full neckstrap may be a bit much for a camera like this, a small wrist strap is a worthwhile and compact safety measure. Buoyancy floats can even be attached if you do find yourself out on the water.

These cameras blow the other options out of the water in terms of ergonomics

While these cameras often have more physical controls than other options on this list, they still don’t tend to have very many of them compared to more serious cameras. Camera and shooting settings are still commonly accessed via pressing buttons to scroll through menus. On the other hand, this may not matter because there just aren’t that many manual control options on most point-and-shoot cameras, waterproof or otherwise. Shooting and 'art' modes of limited usefulness are far more likely than shutter or aperture priority options.

Autofocus is improved from the cheap P&S your parents might have had at one point, but it still is going to lag behind any DSLR or mirrorless you are used to. They are also absolutely an additional device to carry with you. Unlike a tiny GoPro or the smartphone that you probably ready have with you, a waterproof compact can feel bulky/heavy enough that you know you are having to carry it around.

Smartphones

But a dedicated camera isn't necessarily your only option. What if there was a surprisingly powerful camera that you probably already owned and it was almost always in your pocket or purse? What if this camera also had powerful photo and video editing capabilities and could instantly upload the finished product to the internet and social media? As you’ve probably already guessed, this camera already exists and you probably already own one, a smartphone.

It is becoming more and more common for higher end smartphones to have some level of Ingress Protection rating

It is becoming more and more common for higher end smartphones to have at least some level of IP (Ingress Protection) rating. Typically, they are dustproof and water resistant for up to 30 minutes in water around 1 m / 3.3 ft deep. This means you shouldn’t go snorkeling with any of them, but they will survive dunkings and splashes easily, even without one of the great many 'protector' cases that are available for the flagship handsets. High-resolution 4k video, dual (or even triple) lens options, optical image stabilization, and front/back cameras are all regularly seen on expensive and budget smartphones alike.

Default camera apps are decent, but the real power is using some of the 3rd party apps that give you additional shooting modes, full manual control and the ability to shoot in Raw. Not only can you capture images, but editing programs give you the ability to crop, sharpen, adjust and enhance your photos/video right on your phone. Cellular and Wi-Fi connectivity allow instant uploading to social media or text / email to friends and family.

With an IP-rated smartphone, the selfies don't have to stop when the conditions get more challenging.

Perhaps most importantly, you are almost assuredly going to have a smartphone with you anyway. Whether for communication, navigation, entertainment, and even emergencies, you’ll want your smartphone for all of them while traveling. There is a reason that these days, hardcore outdoor folks often call a mobile phone the 'eleventh essential' on the classic 'ten essentials' survival item list.

The convenience factor of using a smartphone as your vacation/adventure camera is high, but the drawbacks may be even higher. There is simply no getting around the fact that the ergonomics of these devices as cameras are simply awful. They are thin, slippery, and without any sort of handgrip or strap options. A shattered screen from a two foot drop on the pool deck or a tumble down a thousand foot cliff is just one small stumble away. Almost everyone you know has dropped their phone with dry hands, so how much worse is that likely to be with wet hands or gloves? And, as most of us know, using a touchscreen with gloves or wet hands can be impossible, which just exacerbates the ergonomics issue.

A lack of zoom may be a drawback but chances are you'll have a smartphone with you at key moments.

Battery life is frequently a problem with phones, and constantly filming and photographing will only make this worse, which may leave you without communication or data capabilities at a crucial moment. Most important of all is the fact that if something happens to your phone, you are likely losing a lot more personal data than just a few images. Dropping and breaking your GoPro is a good way to have a bad day, but dropping and breaking your iPhone X could leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere if you were relying on its GPS to get you home. Not to mention the fact that you’d be out over $1000: that’s going to hurt no matter who you are.

If you are going the smartphone route, it might be worth looking into some of the extreme protection cases form companies such as LifeProof or OtterBox.

Conclusion

So, which to choose? That depends on what sort of vacation/adventure you see yourself taking.

If you are looking for still image capability, a waterproof point and shoot camera will probably prove the most versatile. With their optical zooms and physical controls, they easily best the other options for still images. 4k video and image stabilization means that they're not slouches in the video department as well. Equally at home capturing everything from a flower in a tropical rainstorm to rock climbing in a national park, they really are a jack of all trades. I take mine anytime I want to shoot still images, might want the option for video, and require protection from water/drops/freezing/etc.

Rugged, waterproof cameras aren't only useful for underwater shooting.

More action-orientated adventures are probably better suited to the video and perspective that action cams offer. Will you be skiing, sailing, paragliding, mountain biking or anything like that? For me, I’m mostly likely to pull out the GoPro when I’m snowboarding. A video with that wide field-of-view just does the best job of capturing that memory for me. Additionally, any trip that includes children is a strong point for these cameras as well. As you can see from the waterslide video above, even a day poolside with a GoPro can capture some pretty fun kid moments.

Finally, let’s face it, you’ll likely have your cell phone in your pocket no matter where you go. In 2018, most of us are so addicted to the connectivity that these devices offer, we’re unlikely to leave them home. But can they be a vacation camera for you? If you are going to be somewhere with good cell coverage and with a low level of risk, then yes. Seeing the Smithsonian, visiting the beach, taking a train across Europe or dropping into an oyster shack for lunch? The still and video options of today’s smartphones will serve you well. Pick up a model with a decent IP rating and you can even enjoy some protection from splashes and sand. Just make sure you don’t drop it and leave yourself stranded somewhere!

The Olympus Tough TG-5 is one of the few rugged cameras that lets you shoot Raw, which is useful for making the most of those images shot in difficult conditions.

But if I was only going to carry one on a vacation or adventure, I would still choose the waterproof P&S option (probably the Olympus Tough TG-5 in my case). It is the best of the bunch as far ease/quality of still photos, has the ability to shoot Raw, does a great job with video, offers a few physical controls, has a usable and reasonably fast zoom lens, is freeze/drop/waterproof, includes Wi-Fi connectivity, and can be found for under $400.

I’ve gone fishing, snowboarding, snorkeling, camping, traveling, and splashing at the local pool with mine. It’s survived, kids, grandfathers, drops, kicks, falls, bouncing across river rocks, careening down waterslides and generally being ridden hard and put away (literally) wet. It’s yet to let me down.

The Olympus Tough TG-5 is the camera we recommend as best camera in our Waterproof Camera buying guide.

Look inside the factory where Kodak Ektachrome is (re)born

Kodak has restarted production of one of its most famous film emulsions - Ektachrome. Popular Science editor Stan Horaczek recently go to take a look inside.

Launched in 1946 and discontinued in 2012, Ektachrome owes its rebirth to a relatively recent resurgence of interest in film. Easier to develop than its more famous cousin Kodachrome, Ektachrome should be back in the hands of today's film photographers before the end of this year.

You can scroll through the images above to take a brief look into Kodak's factory in Rochester New York, and for more information, we recommend reading the full article, linked below.

'Inside the facility where Kodak brings film back to life' (popsci.com)

DPReview TV: Tamron 28-75mm F2.8 Di III RXD hands-on field test

The Tamron 28-75mm F2.8 Di III RXD is an affordable F2.8 standard zoom for full frame Sony E-mount cameras. It's one of the first third-party zooms designed to take full advantage of the short Sony mount, resulting in a small, light carry-everywhere lens. What are the trade-offs, compared with the alternatives? Chris and Jordan take a closer look...

Make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel to get new episodes of DPReview TV every week.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Nikon D850 sensor confirmed as Sony-made

It can be interesting, for the more tech-inclined photographer, to speculate about where camera makers are getting their sensors from. However, to be truly certain, you'd need to tear the camera apart and see what's printed around the edge of the chip.

ChipMod - a camera modification company - has done just that, and has posted its findings on the AstroCN forum, showing that the D850's sensor has a Sony product code stamped on the back of it.

This will come as no surprise to anyone who's been curious about the issue: DPReview forum user Bobn2 (a computer science professor whose areas of expertise include imaging) pointed out immediately that all the published images of the chip showed a wiring pattern consistent with previous Sony designs. The sensor's performance then revealed it to have a dual-gain design that's been a feature of recent Sony chips (something we believe was licensed from Aptina, making Sony one of the only companies able to offer it).

Nikon's D850 is one of the most capable DSLRs on the market, boasting class-leading image quality from its 46MP full-frame sensor.

However, claims by Israeli chipmaker TowerJazz that it supplies to "a DSLR manufacturer" were taken by some to be evidence that it was the source of this chip. We still don't know which company TowerJazz was referring to, nor how precisely it were using the term 'DSLR.'

What's interesting, though, is that this news confirms what Sony told us about the way its semiconductor company deals with external clients: other companies can commission Sony Semiconductor to make them a sensor and can include their own intellectual property in the design, without that information (or the rights to use it) being available to Sony's camera division. Hence the D850 features the BSI and dual gain designs that Sony uses in many of its own cameras but is also able to provide an ISO 64 mode that allows the Nikon to rival some of the latest medium format cameras, but that Sony cameras don't offer.

This would also help explain how Nikon justifies its statements that the sensor is "designed by Nikon."

Leica launches 15x zoom C-Lux compact with 20MP 1″ sensor

Leica Camera has announced a new compact camera that features a 24-360mm F3.3-6.4 zoom lens and a 20MP 1” MOS sensor. Essentially a re-badged Panasonic Lumix ZS/TZ200, the Leica C-Lux will save Raw and JPEG files, will offer 4K video and has a viewfinder with a 2.33 million-dot resolution.

Video users will be able to extract 8MP JPEGs from the camera’s 4K video feature, which will have a fastest frame rate 30fps and a best bit-rate of 100mbps. Focus and the shutter can be activated via the 3in touch-screen and the camera will have a Wi-Fi function to allow images to be sent to a smartphone or the camera to be controlled remotely.

Using a combination of electronic and mechanical shutter mechanisms a maximum exposure time of 120 seconds can be achieved via the camera’s T setting, and a longest timed shutter opening of 60 seconds will be available via mechanical operation. The electronic shutter will run from 1 second to 1/16,000sec.

The Leica C-Lux will go on sale from mid-July priced £875, and a range of accessories, including straps, jackets and pouches will follow. For more information see the Leica Camera website.

Press release

New: Leica C-Lux

The versatile compact camera with a 15x zoom, a practical touchscreen and exceptional design

Wetzlar, 15 June 2018. With the launch of the Leica C-Lux, Leica Camera AG expands its product portfolio with a versatile compact camera that unites speed, an intuitive handling concept and stylish design. Featuring a Leica DC Vario-Elmar 8.8–132 mm f/3.3–6.4 ASPH. lens and a high-performance, 20-megapixel sensor for continuous shooting at a rate of up to 10 frames per second, the Leica C-Lux adapts quickly and flexibly to every situation and effortlessly delivers high-quality pictures of subjects at any distance. Its 15-fold optical zoom with focal lengths from 24 to 360mm (35mm equivalent) offers enormous creative scope that is further expanded by 4K video recording capability. Thanks to an integrated connectivity concept, still pictures and videos can be quickly and easily shared with family and friends by a simple tap of a finger on the touchscreen display. Available in the two colours, Light Gold and Midnight Blue, the Leica C-Lux impresses not only with its precision, but also with its exceptional design and range of stylish accessories.

From the lens to the 1-inch image sensor, all components of the Leica C-Lux are precisely matched to one another and deliver brilliant pictures in RAW or JPEG format in a quality that remains equally impressive in large-format prints. With an impressive maximum ISO sensitivity of 25600, the C-Lux guarantees pictures with natural colours

and exceptional quality, especially when used for available-light photography. Thanks to its versatile zoom lens, fast autofocus and face detection, the camera also offers enormous flexibility in almost all areas of photography, and especially in spontaneous situations. The C-Lux’s fast autofocus with 49 metering points, ensures that subjects are sharply focused on in an instant, and a continuous shooting rate of 10 frames per second ensures that even the most fleeting moments will never be missed. Intuitively selectable scene modes provide valuable assistance when shooting landscapes, portraits or at night and enable users to concentrate exclusively on their subjects.

Thanks to the viewfinder’s high resolution of 2.33 megapixels, the clarity and contrast of the viewing image is outstanding at all times – even in particularly bright, ambient light. As the viewfinder covers 100% of the image field, framing of subjects is extremely precise and users have complete control of composition. The camera also offers dioptre compensation settings that allow spectacle wearers to use the viewfinder without any problems.

The 3-inch touchscreen display ensures particularly easy handling in all shooting situations. As with a smartphone, many of the camera’s functions can be controlled by simply touching the monitor screen, for instance the transfer of still pictures and videos via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. The ‘Leica C-Lux’ app that supports this function can be downloaded free of charge and installed on iOS or Android devices. The display screen features a special repellent coating that prevents annoying marks and protects it against fingerprints.

The high-definition, 4K-resolution, digital video recording function expands the spectrum of features offered by the Leica C-Lux. Thanks to exceptional resolution – four-times higher than full-HD – and up to 30p & 100 Mbit in MP4 format, the C-Lux

delivers all the technical prerequisites for shooting your own, personal short film. What’s more, still pictures can be extracted and saved from video footage at a resolution of up to 8 megapixels.

The compact Leica C-Lux impresses not only with its technical features, but also with elegant design and a portfolio of stylish accessories. An extensive range of accessories in matching and complimentary colours is available for both versions of the camera. These include, for example, carrying straps and wrist straps for the camera in the colours taupe, blue and red. The portfolio also offers an extensive collection of premium quality camera cases, protectors and soft pouches that make the C-Lux an elegant companion for every occasion. Particularly eye-catching are the two vintage models in finely polished brown leather: a cleverly designed wrap- around vintage pouch and a vintage case with a concealed snap fastener. Also available is an outdoor bag in hardwearing, water-repellent fabric. A range of elegant cases in various styles, colours and types of cowhide completes the portfolio. Thanks to a detachable, adjustable carrying strap, two of these models can be used not only as a shoulder bag, but also as a handbag or for stowing things away in a day bag.

The Leica C-Lux will be on sale in the colour options Light Gold and Midnight Blue from mid-July 2018 at RRP £875 including VAT. The range of accessories will also be available when sales of the camera begin.

Leica introduces limited edition re-designed M10 – and two Leica watches

A 250-piece limited edition Leica M10 kit has been announced by Leica that has been designed by custom luxury car manufacturer Zagato. The M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ will come with a special Summilux-M 35mm f/1.4 lens that will feature a new integrated lens hood and the body will feature a new design to incorporate a handgrip on the right side.

Technically the same as the production M10 bodies, the Zagato will use aluminum for its top deck, base plate, body shell and the control dials and knobs as this is the material Zagato uses for its cars. The switch of material will make the camera 70g lighter than usual, according to the company. A series of ribbed grooves will replace the usual leather around the body and the new handgrip will make the body easier to hold.

The Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ will retail for £18,000 from selected Leica stores.

At the same time Leica has introduced a pair of mechanical watches made in a new part of the company’s factory in Wetzlar. The Leica L1 and L2 watches will be manufactured in the Ernst Leitz Werkst?tten next to the camera plant, and have been designed with glass that resembles the front of a lens. The watches use a stainless steel case, but in true Leica style a limited edition L2 will be available in rose gold.

No price has been announced yet, but the watches are expected to go on sale this autumn. For more information see the Leica website.

Press releases

The fine arts of German craftsmanship meet Italian Design: Leica Camera AG presents the new, strictly limited Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’.

Wetzlar, 15 June 2018. With the Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’, Leica Camera AG presents a timelessly beautiful special edition that unites the best of German craftsmanship and Italian design. Comprising a camera and a Leica Summilux-M 35mm f/1.4 ASPH. lens, the set takes its name from Dr Andrea Zagato, owner of the design house and automotive styling specialists of the same name, who personally designed the limited edition, restricted to 250 pieces worldwide. This collaboration is now the second special edition created between the two long-established companies - 2015 saw the launch of a limited series of binoculars with a strikingly elegant design, the Leica Ultravid 8x32 ‘Edition Zagato’.

Founded a century ago, Zagato has been the creator of the most beautiful coachbuilt bodies in the history of automobile construction. The quintessential Italian brand is particularly well known for its innovative use of aluminium in automobile design and construction. Today, the company continues to create special, and traditionally strictly limited, editions of cars with unique styling in Milan, where the story of success began with the brand’s founder Ugo Zagato in 1919.

Both Leica and Zagato uphold a strong passion for aesthetics and precision in many respects. Both have intrinsic links, as well, to photography: “Photography plays an

essential role in our work. Without the possibilities offered by photography, we would never have had the invaluable pictures to be able to reconstruct vehicle models, and would not be able to present our work from the last decades in such an impressive way” emphasises owner Dr Andrea Zagato, who, together with his wife and Art Director, Marella Rivolta-Zagato, now heads the family company in its third generation.

The ‘Edition Zagato’ is the first special edition of the Leica M10 camera and offers extraordinary visual and tactile highlights. The top deck, the baseplate, the outer casing and the control elements of the camera are all manufactured from aluminium. This makes it 70g lighter than its serial production counterpart. Instead of the usual leather trim, the bodyshell of the camera is finished with fine grooves, which, together with details like the red shutter release button, lend the camera its unique look and feel. The integrated handgrip at the left of the body visually distinguishes the special edition from the serial production model of the M10 and makes it a delight to hold and handle. The M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ is the first Leica camera to have its own special serial number engraved on an aluminium badge on the base of the camera that is revealed only when the baseplate is opened.

The Leica Summilux-M 35mm f/1.4 ASPH. lens in the special edition set has an integrated lens hood that can be pulled out and locked in place in a single motion – a new feature for a 35mm lens that simplifies its handling. The design of the focusing aid on the lens pays homage to a typical styling signature of Zagato automobile design, the double-bubble roofline of many Zagato models. The unmistakeable ‘Zagato’ logotype on the lens ring also indicates the role of the prominent design partner in this collaboration. In all other aspects, the technical specifications of the camera and lens in the Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ set are identical to those of its serial production counterpart.

In addition to the camera and lens, the set also includes a carrying strap in red full- grain leather embossed with the Zagato logotype. This M-Camera is the first to feature rectangular strap lugs in the same design as those of the Zagato binoculars. The certificate of authenticity graces the packaging of the set in the form of an aluminium plate with an engraved serial number.

The Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’ is available from 15th June 2018 in selected Leica Stores at RRP £18,000 including VAT. Additionally, a few pieces of the Leica Ultravid 8x32 ‘Edition Zagato’ limited edition binoculars are still available. In addition to the binoculars and a case in Zagato design, the set includes a matching carrying strap and a leather wrist strap.

The publication of the second volume of the coffee-table book trilogy, ‘Leica and Zagato – Europe Collectibles’, coincides with the launch of the Leica M10 ‘Edition Zagato’. The fascinating pictures show 33 Zagato models from the entire history of the brand in evocative European settings.

Ernst Leitz Werkstätten: Opening of the manufacture and presentation of the Leica Watch

Wetzlar, 13 June 2018. With the inauguration of the third phase of the Leitz Park – Leica Camera AG’s headquarters complex in Wetzlar, Germany – the “Ernst Leitz Werkstätten” commences operation and establishes a completely new and exclusive product line in the Leica Camera AG portfolio: mechanically highly complex and sophisticated watches made in small series. The Ernst Leitz Werkstätten is housed on the latest phase of Leitz Park and offers a fascinating insight into the elaborate production of ‘Made in Germany’ watches through the manufacture’s viewing windows. The premises include an assembly workshop, a consulting studio and a store.

Two models – the LEICA L1 and the LEICA L2 – will initially be available for the launch of the Leica Watch. Both variants draw their design inspiration from the creativity and precision, the hallmarks, of the world-famous brand from Wetzlar. Both models were designed by Professor Achim Heine who has overseen the design of many Leica Camera products over the years and who has extensive knowledge of the company’s design principles. The Leica signature look can be found in the countless design elements and features of the watches: the elegance of the hands and indexes, the shape of the finely-detailed, stainless-steel case, the special fluting on the crown and the cambered shape of the glass which is reminiscent of a camera lens.

Both models are operated by a mechanical movement with manual winding which has been newly developed and can be viewed through the glass case back made of robust sapphire crystal. For Leica, the ‘Made in Germany’ aspect is particularly important, hence the collaboration with Lehmann Präzision GmbH. The development, design and a large proportion of the components come from the manufacture situated in Germanys' Black Forest and help the watches to achieve a very distinct vertical range of manufacture.

Design and technology complement each other perfectly in Leica watches: both the front glass and the back case cover are made of scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, with the front being anti-reflective on both sides, and each model has the patented push-piece crown with a corresponding status display on the dial. The combination with the zero setting of the second hand is another special feature – the crown is therefore not only aesthetically appealing, but also adds a useful function to the watches.

The design, which is reduced to the essentials and coupled with uncompromisingly high quality, make the LEICA L1 and LEICA L2 not only a functional instrument, but also a real statement piece.

Dr Andreas Kaufmann, Chairman of the Supervisory Board and majority shareholder of Leica Camera AG, on the Ernst Leitz Werkstätten: “I am very happy that this long- term project can now be finally presented. I believe that together with our partners we have succeeded in developing a ‘Made in Germany’ watch that is worthy of the name Leica and which represents the values of our premium brand extremely well!”.

Markus Lehmann, Managing Director of Lehmann Präzision GmbH, on the cooperation with Leica Camera: ‘We built precision machines for Leica years ago, independently of this project. It has of course been very interesting to work with

Leica in these two very different areas, although the watch project was and is a project very close to my heart. We knew in the run-up to this project that this cooperation will be fruitful, which helped to intensify our partnership significantly.’

The LEICA L1 and the LEICA L2 will be available in selected Leica Stores including the Leica Store Mayfair as well as at watch dealers worldwide from autumn 2018. The L2 model will also be available in a version with an 18 karat rose gold case. To mark the occasion of the Ernst Leitz Werkstätten commencing operation, limited special models of the two stainless steel versions with a red dial will be released.

About the Ernst Leitz Werkstätten
The Ernst Leitz Werkstätten, which derive their name from the founder of the Leitz Werke that opened in 1869, namely Ernst Leitz I, specialise in the design and manufacture of luxury products and are located in the newest part of the Leitz Park in Wetzlar, State of Hesse, Germany. As an independent division of Leica Camera AG, they were founded by Dr Andreas Kaufmann, Chairman of the Supervisory Board and majority shareholder of Leica Camera AG. Visitors can gain an insight into the work of the Ernst Leitz Werkstätten thanks to their large viewing windows. More information is available at www.ernst-leitz-werkstaetten.com.

1 2 3 1,107