Leica Officially Announces New M Monochrom Type 246 Camera

Leica Officially Announces New M Monochrom Type 246 Camera

The legendary photography company Leica has announced the new M Monochom (type 246) camera, a follow up to the M Monochrome black-and-white shooting rangefinder. The new digital camera boasts a faster Maestro image processor, 2 GB buffer memory, 24-megapixel black-and-white full-frame sensor, live-view zoom, focus peaking, and 1080p Full-HD video.

The M Monochroms claim to fame is being the first and only digital camera that produces only black and white images without any processing. Leica claims that their camera, without the hindrance of color, provides better images. According to Leica, "The result is 100 percent sharper images with brilliance and detail contrast that far exceeds what color photography can do."

The improvements to the processor allow for up to 3 times faster shooting and viewing on its beautiful 3-inch 921k-dot LCD screen. They've also added full-HD filming, 10x live-view zoom, and focus peaking, which reveals sharply focused edges with color highlights. Other improvements over the predecessor include a new CMOS sensor, a departure from the previous generations CCD sensor. The new sensor allows for a substantial bump in ISO range, which is capped at 25,000. 

As always with Leica, the price tag is going to be high, coming in at $7,450. However, the release of the new camera will certainly drive down the price of its predecessor. The M Monochrom (type 246) will be available in May as can be pre-ordered now.

View of the back of the new Leica M Monochrom (type 246)

View of the top of the new Leica M Monochrom (type 246)

View of the front of the new Leica M Monochrom (type 246)

A few sample photos via Ragnar Axelsson/Leica for POP photos:

[via Leica]

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Sean Shimmel's picture

Would love to see a "blind taste test" comprised of several professionals to look over a series of prints both from this and from a "consumer-grade" camera. I'm sure that even in my fussiest fine-art mood, It'd be hard to appreciate the difference.

No thanks.

Ryan Bartels's picture

Yep. It amazes me that anyone even cares about these offerings given the absurd pricing. Leica makes great gear - no doubt, but not 7x the price good for BW isolation. But, folks will buy it, because of the red dot...

Spy Black's picture

This is the forthcoming replacement for the now heavily discounted Hassleblad Lunar...

As these cameras are far out of my price range, I have never really looked into them. I am genuinely curious to know what it is that allows them to demand such a hefty price tag especially one that only shoots in B&W.

J Bedford's picture

I think the folks at Leica are just a 'little' high with their pricing for a b/w-only camera. If you told me the samples were from an iPhone, I'd believe it.