What’s black and white and has lust all over it? This guy. Meet the Leica M Monochrom Camera ($7,950). Built off the M9 full-frame rangefinder, the M Monochrom will shoot as many colors as your heart desires, so long as they’re between the ranges of black and white.
And of course, carrying the lofty burden as the world’s first black-and-white camera and the Leica name isn’t just an exercise in “turn color off”. Leica has engineered the M Monochrome specifically to take advantage of its ability to capture images with fewer components. First, the sensor is totally absent of a color filter array — meaning more light capture — therefore the M Monochrom doesn’t “capture color”, but rather records luminance values along with more levels of detail. That may not mean much for your over-compressed Facebook photos, but for hard-core (or traditional film) shooters, who still prefer the richness of black & white, the M Monochrom takes one giant step closer to capturing unadulterated photos. A bumped ISO range up to 10,000 (from 2,500 in the M9), 230k-dot 2.5 inch LCD screen, and 36 MB DNG files processed from 14-bit uncompressed RAW are part of the Monochrom package.
Otherwise, much of the hardware is similar to the M9 right down to the lens mount. Leica is also kind enough to include three built-in toning filters and a full version of the excellent Silver Efex 2 processing software for optimal workflow. Oh, and in case you don’t think your local printer is up to snuff — or exclusive enough — Leica has also launched a black and white printing service for Monochrom users only. The world just got a lot less colorful and we love it.
Buy Now: $7,950