It has been fascinating to watch how phone camera technology has evolved over the years and the latest iterations of most manufactures models have continued to focus (no pun intended) on pushing the boundaries of their phone technology, threatening the existence (or need) of compact cameras. It is difficult not to notice the lack of ‘true’ cameras when out and about; You only have to look at what people are using when wondering around cities or on a beach holiday, to notice that the dominant photographic species is a smartphone… a paradigm shift when comparing the same locations some 25 years ago.
I stumbled upon Eddycam just a couple of months ago, driven by a web browsing session, the cause of which was some surplus cash burning a hole in my pocket. Since the purchase of my blue skinned CL I had looked on and off for a similar coloured strap, but without success. Quite why Leica didn’t produce matching straps for their awesome range of different coloured leathers beats me.
These words come very late to the party as far as the Leica CL’s lifespan is concerned. After all, it was released in November 2017, almost four years ago at the time of writing. There is certainly not much I can add to the many reviews and tests that are available on the web, so it would be very easy to let this slide into obscurity. But I am of the opinion that if you take information from the internet, you should contribute something back, however small.
ONA are a brand I have been aware of for years and often admired the luxurious finish of their products. But for some reason (probably cost related) I had never considered adding one to my ever expanding collection of camera bags for every occasion. Things changed recently when I received a Leica CL with custom deep blue leather finish, for a birthday present. This is a seriously beautiful camera that begged to be showcased in something equally individual. The original plan was to get a ubiquitous semi-hard case, something I tend to purchase with every new camera. But the CL was too nicely finished to be covered by something as functional as this. It was at this point I considered a small bag that was also suitable to be used as a permanent camera case.
Leica’s T series cameras have polarised opinions regarding camera design and interface since the original T was released in 2014 and it is the vocalisation of these opinions that help to keep the camera series in the limelight, forging love/hate relationships from users and non-users alike. There is little doubt that Leica took a very bold step when developing the system as even today, there is little else out there that looks quite like it. I must admit that when I first laid eyes on the original T, I was unimpressed – it seemed a step too far, and the innovative touch screen interface was the exact opposite to what I was used to seeing in a camera.
Towards the end of last year, Ethan and myself attended an in-store day held at the Leica Camera Store, Manchester. The purpose of the visit was to get our hands on the newly announced Leica SL2 and see how it compared to the original SL. I have always been fond of the SL after trying one out at 2016’s camera show in Birmingham. However it was the T system that I brought into, comfortable with the fact that it shared the L mount with the SL. While slowly building my T system I kept an eye on the gradual evolution of the L system.
I thought I would share a story regarding a recent trip to Halkidiki in North East Greece.
We spent 16 nights walking and cycling much of the Kassandra peninsula, with occasional forays to other areas such as Vergina and Sithonia. Typically at this time of year, the weather was hot and humid, so our walks rarely exceeded 11 miles and cycling was limited to approximately double this. It is incredible how much more difficult physical exercise is once the temperature hits 35°, particularly when unaccustomed to high temperatures. As usual my camera accompanied me on every journey we made, enduring heat and dust while getting covered in sweat, sun tan lotion and sea spray. The sensor required cleaning on more than one occasion, thanks to reluctantly changing lenses in exposed areas. At one point, the touch screen stopped working, leading me to momentarily question the camera’s durability - until I realised that it was the sheer amount of sun lotion on the screen that prevented it working! Each evening I cleared off the day’s debris while enjoying a glass of chilled Retsina.