New Black Chrome Finish Lenses from Leica

Leica has announced that the Summicron-M 35 mm/f2 ASPH and the Summilux-M 50 mm/f1.4 ASPH are now available in a black chrome finish with red focusing scales. These lenses will feature a new matte black chrome finish, promised by Leica to be both unique and very resilient.

Both lenses also include the round metal lens shades usually only found in special editions, along with metal lens caps.

Priced at $3,150. for the 35mm and $3,950. for the 50mm, order yours soon as only 500 of each lens will be produced. The lenses are expected to start shipping at the end of April.

New Firmware Update for the Leica T

Leica has released a new firmware for the Leica T (Typ 701). Firmware Version 1.310 fixes the following bugs:

  • Lens error with specific SD cards WLAN connection error (in case the SSID is too long) 
  • Image number reset after FW-Update or camera reset 
  • Unnecessary icons shown in EVF live view image while using M-adapter T

New Leica M-P Safari Edition

Leica Camera has announced the Leica M-P ‘Safari’ set. This set comprises of the Leica M-P (Typ 240) Safari edition, Leica Summicron-M 35mm/f2 ASPH with a round metal lens hood, a full grain cowhide carrying strap and matching SD & business card holder.

Leica’s safari/olive edition cameras date back to 1960 with the Leica M1 ‘Olive‘. Made initially for the military, the safari/olive cameras’ unique color stands out. Over the years, a handful of safari/olive editions were produced. Many of these limited edition cameras are highly prized collectibles.

The Leica M-P ‘Safari’ set has an olive lacquered top cover, leatherette and bottom plate. The shutter speed dial, the On/Off switch, the release button, the hot shoe and some other details have a silver finish. The engraving on the top cover is reminiscent of the first safari camera in 1960 and has the classic Leica logo inscribed on one line and the wording ‘WETZLAR GERMANY’ on the second line. The 35mm/f2 ASPH has a silver chrome finish with a matching classic round metal lens hood.

There will only be 1,500 sets worldwide. The price of the kit is $9,990 and is currently available for pre-order

A Visit to the Brewery: Shot Exclusively on the Leica D-Lux 109

The D-Lux 109

It is so easy for us photographers and filmmakers to get carried away with the tools we use rather than getting carried away with the subject matter we are pursuing. I used to regularly shoot Canon DSLRs, Sony cine type cameras and the occasionally RED camera. Sometimes I still use those tools. Are they amazing tools? ABSOLUTELY, but they can slow things down, require extensive rigging, and more times than not they can dampen the aura of a moment. In the work I typically do I am shooting on the fly and trying to capture moments that are not staged. When I point a camera at a person, and they see me I don’t want to disturb them. I also have to get shots while remaining unnoticed, which requires minimal rigging.

I have never encountered a camera that was so capable at taking amazing pictures, and filming than the Leica D-Lux 109.  Per square inch the D-lux 109 packs more power than any other camera. The D-Lux is phenomenal!

My recent visit to the Coachella Valley Brewing Company presented the perfect opportunity to get some spectacular black and whites. I recently visited there, and the only camera I had on me was the D-Lux 109. So, I immediately got to shooting some shots around the brewery and then switched to free handing some 4k shots on the fly. The ability to pull a camera out like that and start shooting some really incredible material was extremely liberating!! 

Not only is the D-Lux inconspicuous, and readily available, but it is also has a GREAT lens. I Love the f1.7 @24mm and the macro mode. The lens is sharp at all focal lengths and apertures. 

Honestly the 4k out of the camera is just outstanding. Below is a frame I pulled out of the video once I had finished grading. Again, this not a photograph, this is one frame of video! I could make a nice print of this frame if I wanted to.

4k frame

The video has low compression at 100mbps @4k 24fps, and since this is a Leica camera (yes, I know they aren’t made in Wetzlar) the color is lovely.  Now, I don’t appreciate 4k for the immense amount of resolution it gives me, but rather for increase in bit rate, grading opportunities as well as reframing capabilities. The D-Lux’s settings do require some tweaking to shoot serious video. I messed with the Gamma curves to get a in camera flat-ish profile, and there are a few other oddities that are required to get the camera from being a “stills” camera to being somewhat of a cine camera. Below is a piece I shot in about 10-15 minutes, all by hand with nothing but my D-Lux 109.

I plan to use the D-Lux 109 for a lot more than just personal projects in the near future. I plan to use it in a couple up coming documentary films I will be heading up. The D-Lux will not simply be used as a B or C camera but as my primary camera. The 4k is absolutely lovely out of this camera and so is the color. Convenience, and great color when paired with a outstanding lens, and nice 4k for 1080 or 2k downscaling makes for the right tool for the job.


About the Author: Ben Carpenter is a photographer and filmmaker originally from the Midwest. Ben now resides in the Coachella Valley where he works as a sales representative at Camera West Rancho Mirage. Ben shoots a variety of films ranging from wedding and commercial films to documentary films in the southern California region. He also enjoys leading a variety of workshops at our Rancho Mirage store.

LEICA Geovid HD-R 42mm (Type 402 & Type 403)

For more than 20 years, Leica has been renowned as the pioneer of laser range finding products. Now Leica is continuing its success story by introducing their newest member of the popular Geovid laser range finder binocular line up – the New Geovid HD-R with proven open-bridge ergonomic design and fast, simple to use inclined shooting solutions.

With the newly added EHR™ functionality the GEOVID HD-R 42, quickly provides ranging information based upon distance and angle for the hunter and shooter. At the touch of a single button and within a split second the background algorithm working with the Advanced Rifleman’s Rule geometric calculation delivers precise EHR distance information for determining the correct hold over, turret adjustment or drop down reticle aiming point. Within only 0.2 seconds, the Leica GEOVID HD-R 42 provides highly accurate and usable information for an accurate shot, especially at steep inclines and over longer distances.

The New Geovid HD-R provides line of sight laser ranging from 10 to 2000+ yards and precise EHR calculations from 10 to 600 yards.

Key Features:

  • Quick handling, comfortable open ergonomic bridge design
  • Actuation button on right-hand side
  • Quiet, non-slip rubber armoring
  • Bright, patented, advanced Perger Porro Prism system
  • Lightweight, highly durable magnesium body
  • Bright, easy-to-read display system with auto-brightness control

LEICA Geovid 8×42 HD-R (type 402) retails for $2,599 and the LEICA Geovid 10×42 HD-B (type 403) is $2,649. Available in late February.