Leica M Monochrom

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Leica M Monochrom
Leica M Monochrom.jpeg
Type Digital rangefinder camera
Lens Leica M-mount
Sensor Monochrome 35.8 mm × 23.9 mm (1.41 in × 0.94 in) image sensor
Maximum resolution 18 Megapixels
ASA/ISO range 320 to 10000
Storage SD up to 2 GB and SDHC up to 32 GB
Focus modes Manual
Exposure modes Manual, aperture priority auto exposure
Exposure metering TTL, center weighted averaging
Flash Fixed hot shoe
Shutter Focal plane, metal curtains, vertical travel
Shutter speed range 32 s to 1/4000
Viewfinder Rangefinder and additional color LCD display: 2.5", 230,000 pixels
Battery Lithium ion
Dimensions 139 mm × 80 mm × 37 mm (5.5 in × 3.1 in × 1.5 in)
Weight 600 g (21 oz)
Made in Germany

The Leica M Monochrom is a digital camera in Leica Camera AG's rangefinder M series, and features a monochrome sensor.[1][2] The camera was announced on May 10, 2012. Delivery started September 2012 in black finish only. A Leica M Monochrom in Silver was announced May 22, 2014.

The nickname for the camera through design and development at Leica Camera AG was "Henri" as a tribute to Henri Cartier-Bresson but at introduction, Leica Camera AG decided on the name Leica M Monochrom.[3]

The camera is based on the same Kodak CCD sensor as the Leica M9 but without the color filter array. This makes the sensor one stop faster and the base ISO of the sensor is 320 ISO instead of the 160 ISO of the Leica M9. The body of the Leica M Monochrom is likewise based on the Leica M9 with few changes of the metals, leather and paint used.

Leica claim that the camera delivers 100% sharper images than monochrome images derived from a camera with a color sensor (of comparable megapixels).[4] The camera is able to alter the captured image to apply three toning effects (called sepia, cold, and selenium).[4]

The achieved sharpness is due to the lack of a color filter array, thus avoiding the process of demosaicing by capturing the true luminance value of each photosensor.[4] The removal of the color filter array also means that no incoming light is filtered, making the sensor more light sensitive, which explains the high native ISO of 320.


  1. ^ Horaczek, Stan (10 May 2012). "New Gear: Leica M-Monochrom Has a Full-Frame Black and White Sensor". Popular Photography. Retrieved 24 March 2017.
  2. ^ Lischka, Konrad (9 April 2013). "Leica M Monochrom: Die Schwarzweiß-Kamera im Test". Spiegel Online. Retrieved 24 March 2017.
  3. ^ "To you, Henri". Thorsten Overgaard. May 3, 2013. Retrieved Aug 23, 2014.
  4. ^ a b c "Leica M MONOCHROM". leica-camera.com. May 10, 2012. Retrieved May 17, 2012.

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