It was perhaps, only a matter of time. As the popularity of black and white photography continues to grow, it was inevitable that someone might try and explore the niche market.
Leica has done just that — introducing what it claims is the world’s first full-frame digital black-and-white camera . The Leica M Monochrom is unique in only offering a black and white mode. It will doubtless appeal to black and white purists and Leica fans. But the makers say its unrivalled quality mean it will appeal to anyone passionate about the genre.
The Leica M Monochrom offers the benefits of an incredibly sharpened image due to the 18-megapixel full frame sensor, as well as an extraordinary low-light performance with a top ISO setting of 10,000 (compared to the 2,500 of the Leica M9). The high-end camera also boasts a 2.5-inch 230k-dot color LCD, a rangefinder-type optical viewfinder and a 14-bit uncompressed RAW mode that yields 36MB DNGs.
“Black-and-white photography is more popular than ever before. Even today, it has lost none of its fascination as an expressive medium, not even for younger generations of photographers,” said Jesko von Oeynhausen, Product Manager for the M-System at Leica Camera AG.
“For the first time ever, we are offering an opportunity to consistently and authentically explore black-and-white photography with the M Monochrom, a tool that is unique in the digital world. The camera’s exclusively black-and-white sensor brings an enormous technical benefit that is reflected in the amazing imaging quality it delivers,” says von Oeynhausen.
The Leica M Monochrom has the looks of a classic and will likely become another sought-after addition to Leica’s line-up of premium cameras. More info available here.