Leica is firing back over the criticism they’ve received lately about the price of their new flagship digital SLR, the S2. Internet pundits have been rather, shall we say, catty about the price based on a rough glance at the specs, and Leica’s VP of marketing says that’s just not fair.
Leica’s disturbingly happy looking marketing guy, Christian Erhardt said in a recent interview that it’s not just the Leica name you’re paying for, but in fact the sensor. Erhardt insists that the sensor is 56% larger the in the one in their competitors full size DSLR offerings, which actually pushes the S2 into the realm of a medium format camera. This means that we’ve haven’t been comparing like products, and certainly does explain the premium that the S2 demands. In fact, as Erhardt pointed out, when you look at comparable medium format digital cameras, the S2 is actually right in line on the pricing.
So while the 37.5 megapixel sensor is a quite impressive 30x45mm in size, you do take quite a performance hit for that medium format. Honestly though, the people that are going to buy this camera aren’t going to care. This is not a camera designed for shooting sports or your kid at soccer practice, rather it is aimed at the professional level landscape photographer, who was shooting medium format film in the first place to get the image quality that galleries demand. People in this market segment don’t really care about the 1.5 FPS that you’ll get with a sensor of that size, they are waiting for the light so they can get that one perfect shot.