The missing Leica X Vario review

Leica X Vario front

Judging from the email traffic over the last couple of days, I know there are many of you wondering why I’ve been silent on the new Leica X Vario (16MP, APS-C, similar to the X2 body, 28-70/3.5-6.4 equivalent) – the simple answer is that I wasn’t given a camera to test, so not having used one, I have no opinion on it as yet. I have requested one, and have been told it should arrive this week or next. As usual I will do my best to answer your questions if/when it arrives.

In the meantime, I think it’s safe to have a few working hypotheses:

  1. The sensor will be excellent, since it’s the same one used in the X2 and a whole host of other cameras like the Ricoh GR and Coolpix A.
  2. The lens is slow, for two reasons: it’s better to have a slow but optically excellent optic than a fast but loose one; that, and if it was fast, the price point would likely start to affect M sales.
  3. Image quality should therefore be excellent, especially if paired with a decent tripod for low light work.
  4. I suspect it will do very well as an all-in-one general purpose travel camera – for good light, at least. Similar to how I use the OM-D and 14-42 X pancake now. A stabilizer wouldn’t go amiss, especially with an f6.3 maximum aperture at the long end. At very least, the EVF is going to be a must-have for face-bracing stability.

On that basis – yes, I’d certainly like to have a play with one; I don’t know quite where it will fit into the current set of gear, but I think since most serious photographers are likely to have an M anyway, Leica probably had a different customer profile in mind for their target audience. It would appeal to the dilettantes who want a real Leica, find the M too intimidating or heavy (forget the S), and the X2 too limited; and for that reason, it will probably sell in droves.

While we wait, I’d be interested to hear your thoughts – the perfect travel companion? Too little, too late? Too close to the M or useful for filling the near-focus limit? A good compromise? Not interesting/ not serious enough? Too reminiscent of the Canon G1x? Please leave your two cents in the comments. MT

The Leica X Vario is available here to pre-order from B&H.

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Comments

  1. I have played with it last week at Leica store in Singapore. Surprisingly, there is no CA (total zero) when I shoot upward towards a tree with a bright sky. Built wise it is very solid. Very impressive little gem. But I know that with the lens speed, it is not targeted at me.

  2. This is the German form of compromise. Excellence in what counts but a short list of bells & whistles.

    Lets test first & use evidence based review. Big mouthed trolls add nothing to the discussion.

    Lens speed is only one factor in image quality. Mediocre zooms are stopped down to eliminate softness & distortion so mediocre faster lenses impress ignoramuses & those happy with 4″x6″ prints.

  3. For those who failed first year high school maths let’s compare the F6.4 at the long 70mm end of the lens to the more usual unremarkable F5.6.
    The drop in light is calculated by (6.4-5.6)**2 = 1.30.

    Poor darlings. Less than a 1/3 F stop drop in light reaching the sensors signals the end of civilization & Leica to intellectual thumbsuckers. Less than a 1/3 click in exposure compensation!

    Real photographers await real tests!

  4. Leica has to deal with the same economics as Fuji and the others.
    imho this X vario will only sell to people, of course with enough money, who want to be different from mainstream.
    However Leica made the investments, start the production (maybe in Japan somewhere?) and simply have to make money.

    Fuji, after they introduced 3 years ago the X100, launched a pretty complete family of X camera’s…. and for the large Sensor X’s
    damned good design (Hybrid viewfinder), great lenses (like the 25mmf2.0 on the X100) and lots of additional functions and last but not least Image IQ `which is a no-brainer.

    Now the pixel-peepers wil test and test and test to show that the Leica has a High level of IQ, rendering, 3D, etc..
    Yeah but 2500 Euro, no viewfinder, and 3.5-63.? ……

    I think this X-vario will, like the X1 and X2, a hard to see camera in real life…

    Mr Kobayashi (Owner of Cosina and producer of Zeiss ZM, Voigtlander M, Bessa, Epson R-D1, Contax G1/G2) please
    surprise me with a …… Contax GD3, Epson R-D3, Bessa R3D or even A Zeiss Ikon ZID ….with M-bayonet and a decent viewfinder !
    When this happen Leica will face the real competition and rules of economics.

  5. When the Leica X Vario was announced about two weeks ago, there were a lot of negative comments about the camera saying:

    It is has a slow fixed zoom lens,

    It does not have an image stabiliser,

    It does not have a touch screen,

    …….and more.

    After having the opportunity to lay my hands on one today, most of the negative comments seems to be not so important.

    The camera is very well made, holds and balance well, weighty without being heavy, simple to use and give great image quality.

    So, over to you to give it a full test.

    Hopefully, you can find more surprises under its skin.

  6. Based on the few photos I have seen from this camera it definitely delivers excellent IQ. While I do not consider myself to be part of the targeted audience I can understand the appeal to others (who may or may not be ready to pay the price). To me a faster lens and IS would make a lot of sense as that would expand the usability of the camera, though I do realise that faster aperture would make the lens bigger and possible not performing that well wide open. The zoom range is not particularly impressive either – reminds me of the Minilux-zoom and the like cameras – although those were considerably smaller and, well, full frame.

    I personally do not expect Leica to sell too many of these (along the lines of X1 and X2) – there are many cameras on the market in either m4/3 or APS-C format that deliver excellent IQ for (much) less. But I did not have the chance to handle the camera – maybe it has more hidden charms.

  7. Usain St. Leo Bolt OJ CD runs the 100m about 5% faster than the top US HIGH SCHOOL record. Has he only done 5% more training than the school boy?
    That level of consistently won gold medals & world records has cost a lot more training effort than the school record!
    The slightly higher optical & superb build quality of Leica lenses at all apertures also does not come at a mere 5% cost premium over the almost as good.
    People who are blind to the law of diminishing returns in delivering the extra quality are shocked at the Leica X Vario!

    Some people will pay for such marginal quality improvements.

    • An interesting analysis indeed Sanyi. I would agree that the last bit of incremental quality that differentiates one product from another in the same space might well need to be purchased at a higher price than suspected. Moreover, we would likely agree that such higher quality must be reasonably easily perceived by those who compare the products-in this case cameras.

      At this point the issue becomes just a bit more murky, for one needs to have reliable and agreed upon criteria upon upon which to base one’s analysis. Better ergonomics? Demonstrably better results? Easier to use? Longer useful life? All of the preceding, and many other criteria as well?

      Simply consider how difficult it is to define “better ergonomics” without supplying yet more qualifiers: A person with large hands, or a person with smaller hands? Women or man? Larger nose, or smaller nose? Right handed or left handed? Wears glasses, and if so, what kind and with what correction? On and on with various qualifiers for each aspect being compared.

      Please know that I am not disagreeing with you but merely emphasizing how difficult it is to label one item better than another when the final result, i.e., in this case a photograph, might be reasonably close between the two cameras used for “a test”.

      I agree with those who believe that there is something about Leica lenses that is unique, and “better”. Is it lines per inch resolution, or a general “look to an image” that some feel is obvious, and others feel is non- existent.?

      And yet almost all can look at a Rembrandt painting of a subject and say such is better than the same subject depicted by a lesser artist….unless, of course, the Rembrandt is an artful fake that has been sold to a well known museum for millions of dollars….:}..which one is indeed the “real Rembrandt” and which is the better painting?

      Elliot

      • That is a very inciiteful analysis Elliot! Comparisons are only useful when the criteria are relevant to the buyer!
        I agree! Totally!

        My comments are more focused on design & manufacturing quality
        Not so much on whether a yobbo needs to consider a Porche when his hot holden ute does 5 sec to 100km/hr.
        Panasonic covers the portable fast lens zoom with “good enough” IQ with the LZ7.

        LEICA is targeting an older wealthy “less technical” female or even male “kids grown up” picnic snapper, casual day tourist who wants to use auto & occasionally do manual focus “just like my son with his M 240″ on the travel or picnic party posing in front of scenary. TRIPOD is in the boot. Don’t need an M 240 with 28, 50 & 75 or 90mm lens pack & the know how to use it!
        Just grab one camera & tripod.
        Hit the road. Take snaps. Project on an overhead projector for friends over brunch.
        Enlarge a few to 8×12″ or larger.
        1 Older fair weather wealthy market.
        2 Less technical
        3 Projects big so wants “in focus” IQ when big
        4 Pays for MADE IN GERMANY quality & expects durability
        5 Thinks out of focus bits are an embarrassmemt

        Leica delivers a quality product for that market.
        Judge accordingly!

        • I’m enjoying our discussion immensely Sanyi. Your comments are interesting and worthy of comment.

          Simply reading the learned and rather technical and in depth reviews of the Leica M240 makes me suspect that many users of that particular Leica camera are very advanced amateur or professional photographers who respect a tool that supplies total control and which uses Leica glass. However, it is certain that some of such users are more interested in carrying their M 240 in a Hermes bag!

          Such considerations aside, one must admit that the price of Leica cameras and lenses perforce limits those who can purchase such equipment. No doubt you are correct in your supposition that many Leica users are in the same cohort that buys Rolex Watches: Interested mainly in the brand name without admitting that most quartz watches keep much better time! I believe that we would agree that for the casual photographer who has their images printed at the nearest drug store and who shares such images over the internet that almost ALL digital images will be entirely satisfactory.

          However, there will be those who want and can appreciate the very best in optics, and who appreciate AND CAN USE a camera such as a Leica. There is a tactile quality to a Leica RF camera that is simply ineffable and that must be experienced. When combined with Leica optics one can be certain that one is holding and using the very best quality, i.e.,.a precision machine that is dedicated to a single task: Capturing an image with fidelity. Certainly such a “machine” costs more and will always be valued.

          You are correct so state that such a machine should be judged accordingly.

      • Ultimately, it all boils down to the individual end buyer – it satisfies enough to break out your wallet, or it doesn’t.

        • Ming. We await your review.

          You are totally spot on of course. People who want invisible quality will pay!
          Near enough (1600 ISO when 3200 is claimed) is good enough for many people.
          Bragging rights without substance is the specialty of many mass consumers!

          I do want to see the Leica X Vario review.
          My need is a camera on my belt all day every day. As an amateur I never want miss those special moments.

          Currently the G12 sits on my belt. What will be next?
          I am also waiting to put my stunning Nikon 25-50 f4 & my Leica R 19 f2.8, 28 f2.8, 50 f2, 90 f2, 180 Apo f3.4 on a less expensive FF body for my photo drives. I want superlative jpegs. I have zero spare time for playing with RAW in a digital darkroom. The Leica S2 achieves that at a price. :0)

          I am still waiting to have my 2 needs met in compact bodies. My days of carrying SLR bodies are over!

          Will Fuji, Sony, Samsung, Nikon, Canon

        • Ming. We await your review.

          You are totally spot on of course. People who want invisible quality will pay!

          Near enough (1600 ISO when 3200 is claimed) is good enough for many people.
          Bragging rights without substance is the specialty of many mass consumers!

          I do want to see your Leica X Vario review. It probably does not match the 1st of my 2 goals.

          My need #1 is a better camera on my belt all day every day & evening, rIn or shine. As an amateur I never want miss those special moments.

          Currently the G12 sits on my belt. What will be next?

          #2 need. I am also waiting to put my stunning AIS Nikon 25-50 f4 & my Leica R 19 f2.8, 28 f2.8, 50 f2, 90 f2, 180 Apo f3.4 on a less expensive FF body for my scenic day or night photo drives, with a monopod & tripod in the boot.

          I want superlative jpegs. I have zero spare time for playing with RAW in a digital darkroom. The Leica S2 achieves that at a price.

          I am still waiting to have my 2 needs met in compact bodies. My days of carrying SLR bodies are over!

          Will Fuji, Sony, Samsung, Nikon, Canon

    • The problem is, I’m not seeing the 5% here.

      • Elliot
        Just visible to reviewers already is in the lack of distortion & chromatic abberation when the dears ooh & ahhh over life sized projections of their pics on a wall in the lounge. Nerds looking at 16Mp pics on a 1 Mp monitor or printing 6×4 will never care.
        Even more is in the longevity & precision of the internal lens positioning & travel over a lifetime of use.

        Let me give you 2 examples:
        Both my Canon G10 & G12 had to have total lens assemblies replaced because the flimsy fabrication wears.

        Secondly a recent fawning review of a hot new Japanese camera noted in passing that all the ISOs had been exaggerated BY ONE STOP. ISO 25, 600 was 12, 800 & 12,800 was 6400 down to 200 was 100.
        That is one was to deliver a better low light camera. Fakd the specs. Lie!

        Leica tends to be conservative in its specs. German precision.
        I see zero screams of rage about the lies built into that camera’s dials.
        Imagine the vitriol if Leica blatantly lied about their specs! People can sneer at the specs BECAUSE THEY ARE LOWER & LEICA DID NOT FAKE THE PERFORMANCE of the X Vario in the menus & dials!

        That is where 5 or 10% costs a lot to produce. No light plastic barrel. No misalignment of lenses. No miscejtred lenses. 100% testing of every sensor & lens assembly & camera instead of random sampling.

        One Leica dealer told me Leica rejects 30% of sensors sent as QA’d product for the M 240.
        Such quality is invisible but costs a lot more because it does not lend itself to assembly lines but requires craftsman intervention at every step!

        Only those with an understanding of manufacturing compromises can see that 5%.
        For the mass consumer who will spend the same amount replacing cheaper cameras while chasing mirages of new “features”.

        • For the mass consumer who will spend the same amount replacing cheaper cameras while chasing mirages of new “features” this whole discussion is academic!

          A 1 or 2 Mp screen is all they will ever view!

          • Hi Sanyi:

            I guess we pretty much agree on the important points. Shocking about the faking of the specs on the camera you referred to…I wish I knew which one!

            And yes, people LOVE to bash Leica.

            Incidentally, I am considering moving away from an 8×10 view camera that I use regularly….contact prints with fidelity that is unmatched, etc., etc.. However, age is a factor not to be denied, and it is becoming increasingly difficult to lug all of the gear into the field. Thankfully,developing and printing are still little problem and film IS easily available, I venture to say that sitting before the computer will probably take an equal amount of time as I spend in the darkroom. Moreover, I suspect that the cost of inks and paper for the digital printer will probably not be very much less money then developer and the materials needed in the darkroom.

            My major interest remains landscape photography in all of its iterations, with candid photos not an interest. I was thinking about the Monochrome until I read the reviews of the new features on the 240. Moreover, if I recall correctly, Ming saw little difference in black and white photos taken with the 240 vs. the Monochrome.

            I wonder if one can approach the look of film with landscapes etc., taken with a digital camera. If so, will any compact camera OTHER than the Leica Monochrome or 240 give results that are likely to please? Certainly both the Sony NEX series and the Fuji mirror less can take our M glass….yet I am hesitant…..great savings in money of course, but the results?

            Another option are my M and R cameras with film, then scanning, the digital negatives or printing…however, the future for me seems to be digital….but which camera? I guess there is always one of the massive digital SLR cameras, but I would hate to get involved with such a system.

            MIng…could the new Vario possibly fill the need for one who wants to approach the look of black and white landscape prints? I would likely not go larger than 11×14. Hopefully you might address the black and white options for those using the Vario….I know that one can always use color and in RAW change the input to black and white…an acceptable option? How about one of the other mirror-less cameras….

            • Incidentally, Ming replied to a previous message and noted that I would likely be disappointed with the digital options for black and white landscape work. However, I am posing the question again to him and others…in view of both the Monochrome and the 240.

            • Short answer, no. The B&W tonality for converted DNGs is good, but requires a lot of work and doesn’t approach film. I’d consider the GR Digital, but that probably won’t give you the range of focal lengths you require. Short of that…Medium format digital.

              • “The Sony RX100′s actual ISO range is about half a stop lower than the claimed 80-6400 except at ISO 80 and 100, where it is accurate.”

                Elliot, I will search for the other review where one stop lower is noted.
                Seems this is a habit of “poetic licence” with the facts.

              • Impossible to justify the price Ming….thanks for being honest.

                Elliot

                • Compare the weight of the ideal lens for the Leica X Vario.
                  28mm–90mm f/2.8–4.5 ASPH Vario-Elmarit-R… Leica Order No. – 11 365 Weight - 740 g / 26.1 oz.
                  Sells for > $5000 second hand on ebay!
                  The Leica X Vario weighs 680gms including battery & built in lens while costing a fractoon over half of the ideal lens.
                  People need to be realistic about expecting fast longer range Leica lenses on such cameras.

                  • I’m not sure that’s a good metric for ideal….

                    • What is your vision of ideal for an APS-C walkaround fixed lens Ming? 24-90mm?
                      Would be great to get your vision!

                    • It’s not the focal length but the aperture; I don’t think paying $5,000 for that kind of lens makes sense. If you run a Nikon 24-70/2.8 at comparable apertures, it’s likely going to be the same or better. And at least you have the option of going faster if you need to; more important at the long end.

                    • Ok Ming. What is your vision of lens speed?

                      A 16Mp APS-C sensor has a pixel pitch of ~4.8 microns whereas the Nikon 36Mp full frame has 4.9 microns.
                      My Canon G12 has a pixel pitch of 2 microns.
                      A 6 micron FF can trap electrons from ~40, 000 photons.
                      The 2 micron can trap ~1/10th of that = 4000.
                      The APS-C should trap a max of about 16, 000 per pixel.

                      Noise is roughly the square root of the electrons trapped.
                      An APS-C has low enough signal to noise to allow winding up the ISO for slower lenses.
                      Rich dad’s can give their kids a Leica X Vario so they can be just like daddy without risking ~$25, 000 worth of M 240 + 28, 35, 50 & 75mm lenses.

                    • If I’m spending $5k, then I’d at least expect f2.8 throughout. That’s cinema lens territory, and they’re constructed to a much higher standard than regular photographic lenses.

                      It’s unrealistic to expect faster in that physical size. But not for that price, even with the ‘Leica premium’ added.

                      Not sure how the other facts you added are relevant.

                  • Gosh….I hadn’t known that the R lenses had increased in value so much Sanyi! I’ll have to go to Ebay and take a look….thanks.

                    So, all of my R lenses will be usable on the 240 ( with the adapter )? The heft of these lenses are such that I wonder about the handling of the 240 with the R lenses attached….sorry to have an off topic post here.

                    Elliot

                    • Hi Elliot
                      The Sony NEX-6 or -7 can use R lenses with a good quality Novoflex or other EVF focus peaking aids manual focus NEX is able to use all R lenses including wide angles & is APS-The NEX-6 has the APS-C sensor with 16Mp & also works wth wide angled R lenses like 24mm or wider.
                      The 7 is 24Mp APS-C but goes badly purple fringed with wide angles.

                      A full frame interchangeable lens NEX is rumoured for 2014. I am waiting.
                      APS-C has x1.5 focal length multiplier so my 19 becomes 28, 28 becomes 42, 50 becomes75, 90 becomes 135 & 180 becomes 270mm angle of view.

                      Because of larger pixel pitch the NEX-6 is far better in low light allowing higher iSO without being drowned in electronic noise.

                      Samsung are runoured to be bringing out a full frame interchangeable as well.
                      The Leica R lenses will ride again aided by FOCUS PEAKING for manual focus.

                    • R lenses will likely work much better than M lenses, especially in the corners due to better telecentricity. You won’t see as much CA or vignetting.

                    • Ming. I mention pixel pitch & noise because larger pixel pitch guarantees far better signal to noise allowing high ISO to compensate for slower lenses. Lens speed is no longer an independent factor in digital.
                      You talk about cinematic lenses as if the higher grade can be had on a $2800 camera.

                      My reading has given me the impression that such lenses start at $25000 ++.

                    • Larger pixels means larger sensors to maintain resolution which means having to stop down for equivalent DOF, or being able to achieve shallower DOF. You don’t have this control with smaller sensors and slow lenses, so lens speed definitely still does matter for creative control.

                      You can get Zeiss ZF/ZE lenses – same optics as the CP.2 cine primes – for under $1500 new.

                    • Apologies Elliot. My editing on my mobile phone has left a mess of the first few sentences in my last post. The words are enlarged for editing but this hides the mess not shown on the widow.

                    • http://www.cinemashot.com/canoncinemalenses.html
                      Ming
                      Canon zooms for cinematic are constant f2.8.
                      The prices range from $24000 to $44000.
                      You expect that for $5000 or even on a $2800 Leca X Vario?

                    • No, and you’ll see that when we talked about photographic lenses, I referred to the Nikon 24-70/2.8, which is $1900. Not $5000.

                      The XV isn’t relevant in this part of the conversation. Relativity there is to its competition, which are all significantly cheaper with similarly specced glass. I don’t see an appreciable difference in lens quality – certainly not justifying the 2x price premium.

                      At this stage, I’m not sure what your point is. I find the XV to be a decent camera with some unique features and a good but not outstanding lens. It’s expensive relative to the competition. Nothing more, nothing less. The end user can make up their mind if it’s worth buying or not.

                    • They’ll work with the adaptor, but you’ll either have to use live view or the EVF for focusing. It’s usable, but handling isn’t great.

                    • As I explained above Ming, cost is inherent in the manufactured quality control to achive longevity & reduced sample variation.

                      Pro SLR quote cycle lives of 100, 000 or 200, 000 longevity. The Leica SL is reputed to achieve > 1 million.

                      You cannot “see” quality nor do you have a statistically significant sample from which to deduce anything about sample consistency or longevity.
                      Mathematics is a cruel constraint & none of us is free of its limits!
                      It might be possible that with reduced longevity Cosina Zeiss have achived automation with low sample variation.
                      You cannot “see” any of this nor how the moving parts will wear nor the designed obsolescence use by date!
                      I take a blunt physicist approach to this. Leica has a reputation for heirloom quality manufacture that is only obvious if the stuff lasts to be inherited.
                      Most people won’t ever utilize more than 16Mp as amateurs making prints. Perhaps time will tell.

                      The minimum sized statistically significant sample is 32. Below that all comments are meaningless.

                    • “Reputed” “Reputation for” – none of this is scientific either.

                      Of my experience with hundreds of lenses, the only lenses that have had repeated QC issues were LEICA lenses – four 50/1.4 Summilux ASPH; one Noctilux 50/0.95, one Summilux 24/1.4, one Summiulux 35/1.4 ASPH FLE – out of the nine Leica lenses I’ve owned, seven have been defective. One of these lenses suffered from a mechanical failure of the aperture diaphragm on the second day of use. That’s definitely not a million cycles. Seven out of nine is definitely not ‘heirloom build quality’.

                      I can certainly ‘see’ the optical difference between lenses because I do have the experience and depend on these tools to make a living.

                      I don’t know where you’re getting your statistics from, but 32 is clearly nonsense if your total pool is smaller, and insufficient if in the millions. Trouble is, by your own logic, your comments are also meaningless. Believe whatever makes you happy…

                    • I understand the professional photographer’s mentality. If the lens is sharp enough when new & it has great versatility then it will pay for itself & the next great gizmo that comes along to replace it.
                      Early adopters take a parallel path selling the old & buying the latest.
                      I guess I grew up in a different era & I expect my lenses & camera to work more than the 2 or 3 year failure date that I got out of my Canon G10 & G12.
                      Cars might give equal performance straight from the showroom but my 2002 530i still drinks far less petrol on the highway than the book claims & still drives like new after 156, 000km.
                      Cost > x8 of an entry level Hyundai when new. I drive 40-50 thousand highway km/ year.
                      I guess I am waiting for a real test of the L X V.
                      Something aimed at the amateur wealthy audience for which it is targeted.

                      “I can buy as good for a third of the price & throw it away in 1/3 of the time” is no recommendation nor does it target the wealthy amateur who do not like being ripped off by shonky short lifespan products!

                    • No, that’s not true. Half of my equipment is older than me. We actually don’t like replacing equipment frequently because it means you have to relearn its characteristics again. This is extremely counterproductive to being able to intuitively deliver great images without having to worry about your equipment. You’ll actually find most pros using very old gear because it still does the job, myself included. Your comments show that you really don’t understand at all.

                      I think perhaps you should write your own review…

                    • “I don’t know where you’re getting your statistics from, but 32 is clearly nonsense ”
                      Ming, you ridicule my physics degree & display a lack of education in statistics.
                      Let me quote directly from a textbook.
                      At sample size 30 there is a miniscule chance of finding a false patter.
                      At sample size 10 there is a 6% chance of finding a false pattern.
                      At sample size 6 there is a ~ 50% chance of finding a false pattern.
                      I will now go to cut & paster directly from the textbook so you can begin your non existent education in stats.
                      You are a sample of 1 so I cannot assume all photographrrs are as uneducated as you!

                    • Just think about this from a purely common sense point of view:

                      1. If you have a population of 15, how can have a sample of 32?
                      2. If you have a population of five billion, how can 32 be significant?

                      You’re right, I’m a sample size of 1, so I’m not statistically significant. However, your sample here also happens to hold a masters degree from Oxford University in theoretical physics/ cosmology, and has spent several years working with nonlinear fractal statistics to do with financial markets.

                    • http://www.vassarstats.net/textbook/ch4pt1.html
                      For large populations a random sample of 30 gives a 0.25% chance of a false pattern.
                      For small population of <30 you can do 100% sampling.
                      That is not statistics!
                      With geniuses like you workingvin finance I can understand where the global economic crisis came from :0)
                      Stick to photography. It is safer for the world!

                    • “Just think about this from a purely common sense point of view:”
                      The problem with mathematical stats is that it defies your reliance on “common sense” & is totally counter intuitive.

                      Oxford Uni gives out degrees with the Cornflakes packets if a sample of 1 is any indication :0)
                      Luckily for Oxford Uni you are not statistically significant!

                    • In an intrrview you state “As for cameras…I go to YL Camera in Pudu Plaza; they’re used to me trading in my (barely) used equipment when something else takes my fancy. ”

                      Yet above you claim my statement that photographers change equipment when it suits them is false?

                      Which version of your claims is the truth Ming? You can’t have it both ways!

                      You have problems with undrrgrad stats & pronlems with the truth when you ridicule my claims!

                    • You are taking that comment out of context. I was asked where I buy/ sell equipment.

                      Not everything you read on the internet is true. Your posts are an example of that.

                      I have wasted enough time entertaining your trolling. This is your final warning. You are a guest on this site and are acting like a petulant child. If you don’t become civil any further posts from you will be deleted, your IP address will be blocked and you can take your rudeness elsewhere.

                    • I mistyped the sample of 5 stats as 50% instead of 20%.
                      From a site called vassarstats the chance of being wrong with a sample of 30 is 0.25%.
                      I suggest you desist from ridiculing others whose profession are totally outside your comprehension!

                      Stick to your day job of taking pics!

                      “If the size of the sample is N=5, then the investigators will have a 20% chance of observing a positive correlation coefficient as large as +0.50 even if the correlation within the entire population is merely rho=0. With a sample of size N=10 it drops to a 6% chance; for N=20 it falls further to a scant 1.25% chance; and for N=30 it falls even further to a minuscule one-quarter of one percent.”

                    • I mistyped the sample of 5 stats as 50% instead of 20%.
                      From a site called vassarstats the chance of being wrong with a sample of 30 is 0.25%.
                      I suggest you desist from ridiculing others whose profession are totally outside your comprehension!

                      Stick to your day job of taking pics!
                      You have a Masters Degree? “masters degree from Oxford University in theoretical physics/ cosmology”
                      That makes you an over educated incompetent!
                      “If the size of the sample is N=5, then the investigators will have a 20% chance of observing a positive correlation coefficient as large as +0.50 even if the correlation within the entire population is merely rho=0. With a sample of size N=10 it drops to a 6% chance; for N=20 it falls further to a scant 1.25% chance; and for N=30 it falls even further to a minuscule one-quarter of one percent.”

            • Elliot, you asked about the example of the exaggeration of ISO by doubling all the claimed ISO values.

              “Olympus OMD-EM5………… The camera’s only downfall—which is easily compensated for—is that its indicated ISO range is optimistically high, and the actual ISOs are a full stop lower at all speeds. So, while its claimed ISO range is 200-25,600, its measured sensitivity is closer to 100-12,800. Nevertheless, this camera sets a new standard for Four Thirds cameras.”

              You can read this at:

              http://www.adorama.com/alc/0012810/article/15-Low-Light-High-ISO-All-Stars

              As I said before. Leica would suffer massive vitriol if it had made such an exaggerated claim for the L X V.

              Sadly build quality is no longer important in a consumer electronic throw away society. People are shocked that I bought a fabulous hand made violin in Bratislava for $USD2500. It will be still going strong in 300 years if cared for.

              The same people think nothing of spending twice as much on a massive TV which can die after 2-5 years.

              • Hi Sanyi:

                Interesting about the Olympus OMD-EMS….thanks for the reference. It was honest of Adorama to post the information.

                Elliot

          • Yes. We are well past sufficiency. But I routinely print to 30″, and at that size the differences are definitely visible.

            • Ming, as I quoted from the vassarstats website I suggest anyone can read the ONLINE undergraduate stats textbook material that states that a sample of 30 has statistical significance.

              http://www.vassarstats.net/textbook/ch4pt1.html
              from which I quote:

              ““If the size of the sample is N=5, then the investigators will have a 20% chance of observing a positive correlation coefficient as large as +0.50 even if the correlation within the entire population is merely rho=0.
              With a sample of size N=10 it drops to a 6% chance;
              for N=20 it falls further to a scant 1.25% chance;
              and for N=30 it falls even further to a minuscule one-quarter of one percent.”

              If instead a simple single measure we have many subpopulations within the random sample (like many ethnicities) I believe that sampling until the smallest subpopulation reaches 30 -32 gives a statistically significant result.

              Ming I suggest you show some character and admit you were wrong & out of line ridiculing my statements about 32 being the point of statistical significance.

              Nobody respects defiance based on total ignorance and everyone respects the guts to admit you were wrong!

  8. Your rhetorical questions (about massive populations) continues to display total ignorance of mathematical stats Ming.
    Better to be silent & be thought a fool than repeatedly open your mouth to prove it publicly!
    Your layman’s understanding of stats is widespread but still in ertor.
    That’s how con artists become lawyers & politicians & repeatedly con the general population!
    The general population has been dumbed down & failed by their edication!
    I don’t hold that against you if you can learn from your error!

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  1. […] Actually, it wasn’t any of that which caused the consternation visible in the comments on this earlier post - rather, it was the modest f3.5-6.3 maximum aperture, and the stiff price. At $2,850, it’s […]

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