Elia Locardi is Back

Leica Finally Releases the Long-Awaited S3: A 64-Megapixel Medium Format DSLR Camera

It was all the way back in 2018 when Leica first announced the development of the S3. I had a brief chance to take a look at the camera during my visit to Photokina, and I was quite impressed. And now, it's finally here.

The latest camera from Leica offers a great deal of resolution with its 64-megapixel sensor. This sensor is unique to the market, because no other camera manufacturer is currently offering it. Leica also states that this sensor has 15 stops worth of dynamic range at the base ISO 100. For those of us that want high quality results, this camera does offer a lot in that regard, although the price tag may put off a lot of prospective buyers. At almost $19,000, this camera is sits well above the price point of the incredible Fujifilm GFX 100. Considering the ridiculous specs in the GFX, some may find it difficult to justify the cost of the Leica. 

Key Specifications

  • 64 mp medium format sensor
  • 30 x 45 mm sensor size
  • 3:2 aspect ratio
  • 15 stops dynamic range
  • 4:2:2 8-bit DCI 4K at 24p (full width of the sensor)
  • Internal flash sync speed 1/125s 
  • CS lens sync speed 1/1000s

There are a couple of things you may notice about the Leica camera and system overall. The aspect ratio is different from every other medium format camera currently on the market. If I'm not mistaken, Leica is the only company that produces a medium format camera with a 3:2 aspect ratio. This is great for people that like that wider aspect ratio, however, it does mean that the sensor is slightly smaller in terms of surface area when compared to most other medium format cameras on the market. 

The other thing worth noting about this camera system is that it offers both the focal plane shutter system and leaf shutter features. Standard lenses will work with the internal focal plane shutter; however, you can purchase CS lenses, which house the shutter within the lens itself. 

For people that love Leica or are invested in the S camera ecosystem, this could be the upgrade you've been waiting for. The camera does offer a great deal more resolution over the previous model, which is very useful, especially considering just how good the lenses are.

If you're a lover of Leica products or have lots of disposable income, then you can preorder yours for $18,995 using this link here

Usman Dawood's picture

Usman Dawood is a professional architectural photographer based in the UK.

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a Niche within a niche

One of the best things about medium format is the squarer aspect ratio (typically), and this doesn't even have that.

A couple of years too late...

I want one J/K

Too late - Too expensive ... Even a Phase 100 MP is the same price range these days. And PhaseOne is better :)
Maybe just one unit for each rental house.

I know...