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Thread: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

  1. #81

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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    Whether a Technica is worth $8k or $10k is one matter. But the use of tools is another. Two small stories:

    - in 1990 I went to work in a political office, and my mentor had a Montblanc fountain pen. So I bought one too. Still used today, its been back once for service. Sure it cost a lot, but all its done since then is use ink. Luxury one might say or is this perhaps long-term sustainability? Lot better than throwing away a bunch of plastic ones.

    - about a year ago I bought some Snap-on screw drivers for some ridiculous amount of money. They are known to have very good tools, and I'm generally too cheap to buy any of them. However, one year later, its the screwdriver I'm always looking to use. Just feels right.
    Last edited by GG12; 1-Aug-2020 at 09:34.

  2. #82

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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    Quote Originally Posted by GG12 View Post
    Whether a Technica is worth $8k or $10k is one matter. But the use of tools is another. Two small stories:

    - in 1990 I went to work in a political office, and my mentor had a Montblanc fountain pen. So I bought one too. Still used today, its bee back once for service. Sure it cost a lot, but all its done since then is use ink. Luxury one might say or is this perhaps long-term sustainability? Lot better than throwing away a bunch of plastic ones.
    I have always written my excerpts, books and articles with Pelikan fountain pens and Waterman ink (Serenity Blue). Then I normally read the text with Dragon Naturally Speaking to get it into my Computer, where I use LaTeX to produce my manuscripts. This all happens very quickly and intuitively. But now I have noticed that the water-soluble Waterman ink fades out. If I had written everything with a Montblanc, I could have used the document-proof carbon or iron gallus black inks and nothing would have faded.The Montblanc is the only fountain pen that can work with these inks. The fact that I would have paid a few hundred Dollars more would not matter now, after 30 years.

  3. #83

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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    Let's open our eyes a bit. The median salaries in Munich range from $20k for a cashier to $70k for an attorney (https://teleport.org/cities/munich/s...alary-rankings).
    The salaries across most of Germany are going to be somewhat similar to that for the larger cities, and definitely lower for smaller cities/countryside. Since I don't think most people can dispose of 10% to 50% of their gross income to buy a camera, then this is probably a product made for the top 1% german earners (*). Btw, those salaries are not that far off compared to similar professions in many US cities either. Do you still think that it is not a luxury product? To be a luxury product btw is not in conflict with that product being of high quality (which by all means it is).

    (*) The average income in Germany is $47,450. To be in the top 1% in Germany you need to make $277,000 (https://www.businessinsider.com/how-...percent-2020-2), so a $10k item would consume $3.6% of the gross income.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Casper Lohenstein View Post
    Hello,

    I don't think a Technika is a luxury product. On the contrary. It is the expression of a solid company policy that focuses on sustainability and availability.

    Here you can find a book: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B50...RRQjVFVlk/view

    This book is worth reading. You will find something about the history of Linhof. When the Technika was sold as one of a few serious technical cameras, Linhof had over 800 employees. One learns about the expansion and the transition to CAD and CAM, about the factory canteen and housing construction.

    At Laflex you can also find brochures from that time: http://www.laflexcamera.com/brochures You can see the variety of Linhof developments, which were always tailored to the needs of professionals.

    In order to transfer important knowledge, Linhof has been emphasizing training since the sixties. Back then: https://drive.google.com/file/d/16_H...RnV9MDbDw/view Today: http://linhof.com/linhof-workshops-und-seminare-2/

    Here you can see that Linhof actually still repairs all cameras from 1959 on: http://linhof.com/en/service-2/ 1959 is the cut-off date because there are no older spare parts available. It concerns mainly the Linhof Technika IV MK1, which was then replaced by an improved MK2 model. Buy a Technika V, and you will probably be able to get it repaired completely.

    The real estate prices in Munich are high. A friend paid the equivalent of monthly 1500 USD for 25 square meters, that was in 1995. Linhof stores all the spare parts, runs the complete workshop, takes care of the support from all over the world. Linhof still exists. One could have founded successor companies. The repair of old cameras would then be in the hands of subcontractors. How long they would still be around is not known.

    To me, all this doesn't sound like "luxury article", but like solid work for people who value sustainability and availability. Like Bosch or Dewalt gear. Especially when I have to earn my money hard, I will be disappointed with many cheaper solutions. Bourgeoisie is a different concept.

    I spent the first 36 years of my life in Germany, so I know that the price for a Linhof Technika is a normal commercial price for the offer mentioned. Whether the demand is still there today is another story. But those who do not want to afford a Technika do not have to grumble.

    Or, if one grumbles about the Technika, perhaps one cannot afford one. It's like Alberich in Richard Wagner's "Rheingold": he completely renounces love because he cannot manage to seduce one of the three Rhine daughters.

    Of course most men in the world are poor. For them, a Linhof is a luxury, sure. But they don't shoot in 4x5 inch anyway.

    Greeting

  4. #84

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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwi7475 View Post
    Let's open our eyes a bit. The median salaries in Munich range from $20k for a cashier to $70k for an attorney (https://teleport.org/cities/munich/s...alary-rankings).
    The salaries across most of Germany are going to be somewhat similar to that for the larger cities, and definitely lower for smaller cities/countryside. Since I don't think most people can dispose of 10% to 50% of their gross income to buy a camera, then this is probably a product made for the top 1% german earners (*). Btw, those salaries are not that far off compared to similar professions in many US cities either. Do you still think that it is not a luxury product? To be a luxury product btw is not in conflict with that product being of high quality (which by all means it is).

    (*) The average income in Germany is $47,450. To be in the top 1% in Germany you need to make $277,000 (https://www.businessinsider.com/how-...percent-2020-2), so a $10k item would consume $3.6% of the gross income.
    They also have free medical among other services that we have to pay for here, like higher education. Their incomes are not directly comparable to the U.S.
    But a German driver’s license is awfully expensive compared to the U.S.. here in GA mine is free!

  5. #85

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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwi7475 View Post
    Let's open our eyes a bit. The median salaries in Munich range from $20k for a cashier to $70k for an attorney (https://teleport.org/cities/munich/s...alary-rankings).
    The salaries across most of Germany are going to be somewhat similar to that for the larger cities, and definitely lower for smaller cities/countryside. Since I don't think most people can dispose of 10% to 50% of their gross income to buy a camera, then this is probably a product made for the top 1% german earners (*). Btw, those salaries are not that far off compared to similar professions in many US cities either. Do you still think that it is not a luxury product? To be a luxury product btw is not in conflict with that product being of high quality (which by all means it is).

    (*) The average income in Germany is $47,450. To be in the top 1% in Germany you need to make $277,000 (https://www.businessinsider.com/how-...percent-2020-2), so a $10k item would consume $3.6% of the gross income.
    Former Technika buyers were mostly professional photographers. Perhaps today's Technika buyers are mostly amateurs.For professionals a Technika was worth a more serious thought, I think, a tool that became profitable at a certain point in time. Perhaps a Technika will never "pay off" in amateur photography. Certainly we are talking about the desires of amateurs.

    However, I do not know many people who are interested in 4x5 or even analog. Most of them have affordable digital devices. If a cashier wants to own a Linhof, he will find a way: either rent a camera, buy a used one, save money to get a new one, or leave it and keep dreaming. But if he really considers to buy a new one with support and sustainability: there will be somebody in Munich picking up the phone.

  6. #86

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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    Linhof are not luxury products. They are utilitarian, professional products like forklifts, nothing like a Ferrari. If someone needs a forklift, they will buy one. They don't even look cool on your Steinway Grand to brag at parties, vintage wooden cameras with a brass lens would fit that bill much better.

  7. #87

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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    Quote Originally Posted by giganova View Post
    Linhof are not luxury products. They are utilitarian, professional products like forklifts, nothing like a Ferrari. If someone needs a forklift, they will buy one. They don't even look cool on your Steinway Grand to brag at parties, vintage wooden cameras with a brass lens would fit that bill much better.
    But the Wista forklift has a nearly identical set of features, and costs 30% less (new).

    And most people would get more use out of an Intrepid or Chamonix pallet jack, because it's more portable and easier to use.

    The Chamonix even looks good on a Steinway.

    ... I think I may have overstretched the metaphor a bit.

  8. #88
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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    A (new) Technika (made for film) is definitely a luxury product. It's no surprise that used Master Technikas sell for $600-$1000 despite selling "new" at B&H for $13,000 now. I don't really care what the thing is made of or who made it, that's obscene, just like the rest of Linhof's catalog. The fact that it depreciates to less than 10% of its value kinda shows that, whilst other common 4x5 cameras sell used at 80% of their new price (Chamonix comes to mind).

    Maybe someone can justify its use as a "tool" but film photography is 99% now the domain of amateurs, hobbyists, and artists, none of whom are likely to "need" an MT. I have two, that I bought used for roughly $1,000 and the other for $400. I like the camera but I'm also much more likely to grab my Intrepid 4x5 that cost $350 new for shooting most of what I shoot. For architecture I grab my Toyo GII which has more ability to use ultrawide lenses and only cost me $250. Sure, some of this is because film photography is now not the professional standard but regardless it is what it is.

    I like the MT for shooting handheld, which is admittedly one of the only ways one can do that with multiple lenses.

    They are very fine machines and that's great but just like Leica film cameras that are still sold new, they are a luxury item. Perhaps not as stereotypical as a Rolex or other mostly cosmetic luxury good but nevertheless, they don't really do anything that the average film user needs that some other camera can't do for drastically less money.
    Last edited by Corran; 2-Aug-2020 at 10:58.
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  9. #89

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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    Having owned-used both 4x5 and 5x7 versions of Linhof Technika, nice but no thanks. There are better cameras available at lower cost in many ways.

    Keep in mind these began as press cameras, evolved into field cameras.. and their inherent design limitations remain.


    Bernice

  10. #90

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    Re: Justify the acquiring of a new Linhof Technika?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernice Loui View Post
    Having owned-used both 4x5 and 5x7 versions of Linhof Technika, nice but no thanks. There are better cameras available at lower cost in many ways.

    Keep in mind these began as press cameras, evolved into field cameras.. and their inherent design limitations remain.


    Bernice
    LInhof only made one press camera in 45 and that was the Standard Press that Berkey wanted to compete against the Graphics in the USA. Since it was made to be a press camera it did not have back movements.
    The Technika was always made to be a technical camera. That was what Karla received the patent for. An all metal camera with full back movement; tilt, swing, rise - not much, fall - not much, and shifts - not much. As well as full front movements.
    Something no press camera had.
    In other words it is an all metal folding camera with full movements and the ability to use lenses from extreme wide to 400mm with no change of bellows or needing more rail. Plus, most models can be used handheld as a rangefinder camera with lenses from 72 to 360mm.
    Hardly a “press camera”.

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