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SLR Magic to Discontinue Development of M-Mount Lenses

by Felix L. Esser on 11/06/2012

Andrew Chan from SLR Magic at photokina 2012, holding a Fuji X-Pro 1 equipped with their new 35mm T0.95 cine lens.

With much regret, we recently learned of the news that SLR Magic, the company that brought us the 12mm f1.6 HyperPrime for Micro Four Thirds and the 50mm T0.95 HyperPrime for Leica M, will discontinue all development of M-mount lenses. In an official press release, the company states that this decision has been made due to a lot of negative feedback on the 50mm T0.95 HypePrime for Leica M.

 

When SLR Magic announced the 50mm T0.95 HyperPrime for Leica M, we reckoned that this small company from Hong Kong might turn out as a serious contender on the Leica M lens market, and even to Leica themselves. As soon as the first batches of these lenses were delivered to customers, however, people began to complain about the mechanics of the lens and about problems with achieving proper focus. This ultimately lead to SLR Magic receiving a bad reputation among Leica M users, despite all their efforts at answering to their customers’ complaints.

Meanwhile, in various fora dealing with rangefinder photography and Leica M cameras and lenses in particular, the discussions are going on, and there are clearly two types of posters: those who continue to bash SLR Magic for their allegedly flawed products and bad customer care, and those who try to defend the company. You can make your own picture by perusing the numerous threads on GetDPI, Rangefinder Forum, L-Camera Forum and others.

We here at The Phoblographer are sad to hear that SLR Magic will no longer develop M-mount (read: rangefinder coupled) lenses, especially since apparently they’ve just been working on a 24mm f1.4 and a 35mm f0.95 lens for Leica M. We would’ve loved to see these lenses become reality, as we are convinced that the 50mm T0.95 was and still is a fantastic product, especially if you take into account that it was designed and produced by a small team and developed entirely from scratch.

But the company is now, even more than before, focusing on their line of cine lenses which are aimed at users of Micro Four Thirds, Sony NEX and Fuji X cameras — and as we reported from photokina 2012, there are some exciting new products to be expected.

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