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Question Why the heck are Leica cameras so expensive?

Nov 14, 2019
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Right, so I'm not trying to be mean about this brand because I know how popular it is, but why in the world is it so expensive?? Anyone know what it is that raises the prices on these cameras so consistently?
 

rlawton

Staff member
Nov 13, 2019
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First, Leicas are made in small numbers, which is more expensive. Second, they're made for engineering quality without any regard for price. Leica fans see this and embrace it, but value-seekers think the prices are insane. o_O
 
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Reactions: Invisibleflash
Nov 25, 2019
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www.mikegora.com
It may be interesting for readers to know what discrete manufacturing (custom manufacturing of complex products in small quantities) is really like. Unlike what you think of as a manufacturing assembly line, a discrete manufacturing shop looks more like a 1930s sweat shop factory with lots of workers each at a desk doing something different. I was the technical architect 25 years ago of a manufacturing system for aircraft instruments sold to over 400 small plane manufacturers around the world. But the "manufacturing system" was really a work instruction management and delivery system. When your product catalog features over 3000 products and your total output is only about 250 units per day, and seldom more than 3-4 of one product in one day, that's really all piecemeal handwork. I don't know the Leica numbers, but I'm sure they are more like this than like volume manufacturing. There are very high labor costs in every product sold.
 
Nov 25, 2019
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First, Leicas are made in small numbers, which is more expensive. Second, they're made for engineering quality without any regard for price. Leica fans see this and embrace it, but value-seekers think the prices are insane. o_O
Concur pretty much. But in the past Leica has always been a step behind with sensors. Maybe they are finally catching up with sensor tech with their new models.

It is sad, but in 2019 if you want a manual camera / rangefinder you pretty much have to go Leica.
 
Nov 26, 2019
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I noticed that Leica introduced a bridge camera to its range a few years ago. I was going to treat my granddaughter to one for Christmas. However, on comparing it to other bridge cameras, it became apparent that the Leica was a Leica in name only and it was in fact built by Panasonic. Panasonic's own camera came in at £150 less!
 
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Reactions: Tonysfoto
Nov 26, 2019
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I had the Leica R4s before and after a couple of years the shutter died. High labor cost in euros makes it expensive. Buying a Leica means we are contributing to Germanys economy.
 

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