Leica rumored to announce a M-E camera replacement

Leica M-E front

The current Leica M-E model

Leica is rumored to refresh the current M-E model ($5,450.00) in the next few months (most likely at Photokina in September). The new camera will be called M-S or M-E2 and will have the same 18MP CCD sensor with updated LCD screen and new battery (probably from the M 240).

If this rumor is correct, this would be a clever move from Leica since many people prefer the specific look of the photos taken with the 18MP CCD sensor.

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  • sk

    I’d love to see that also for the MM.

  • vastseawy

    I am waiting for the Leica M11.

    • vastseawy

      or M10-P

  • Say What?

    sounds good. Are we likely to see an M240-P at Photokina? It seems about right in the timeline.

  • big al

    Leica better not increase the price of the M-E replacement.

    • vulkanitwit

      I. Love. Your. Optimism.

  • Bleep

    As an M240 owner – I’m interested in this! Sell the M240 to get back into a CCD rangefinder..

    • This would really be a good move from Leica – I am also interested in this camera.

      • Bleep

        Hopefully it will be an M240 body with the CCD sensor. The new viewfinder, battery life and quiet shutter are great.

      • Bill

        I dont really get this….why would you want to go back to CCD ?

        • To some the images from the CCD look more 3D than the CMOS sensor.

    • Say What?

      Me too! I wish they would develop a CCD range and a CMOS range. 36MP CCD would be superb.

      Make it chrome too please, not that god awful colour.

      • Mikko Moilanen

        Grey is fine. I could buy the old M-E just because it is grey. Grey is military colour and I am military man.

  • SiO

    I’m waiting for the M12.

    • SiO

      No, no M13.

      • Lei

        M14 will be the best.

        • Bill

          I think I might considering to place my order on M15 if they make it right. Generous, no ? grin

          • Guest

            Bodies are irrelevant if you can’t afford the lenses, the 50 Apo will be back ordered 4-5 years and cost $89,000.00 but put your order in now, it has a price increase coming, the first Leica lens to surpass $100,000.00 except for the special edition 125 year 35mm Noctilux that had a limited production of 125 units with a cost of $125,000.
            Of course the summarits for the M are more affordable at $25,000 to celebrate their 25th year.

          • Taylor

            Speaking of APO Summicron. Leica made a mistake. They thought there was no competition and can keep the price raising. The Zeiss 50 Otus f1.4 is 4 times better corrected than the APO Summicron yet, its faster and at lower price albeit it has a lot more weight. I could pick up both APO Otus from Zeiss and a very decent full frame DSLR from Nikon or Canon and still cost less than the APO Summicron if weight is not a concern. And I don’t think I have a problem with the weight if I want the ultimate image quality. Leica needs to be more realistic and more cautious on their pricing. I do not want to see a long history photographic company go sink. Their management needs to review their strategy and pricing

          • Anto de Chav

            “The Zeiss 50 Otus f1.4 is 4 times better corrected than the APO Summicron yet” Can you explain this??The APO summicron is a lot smaller and more useable,the Otus is exceptional too but huge and very heavy,its like a medium format lens… even you don’t carry it you don’t shoot it and the Leica APO would be more useful to most people!

          • DM

            Comparing a Zeiss Otus and a DSLR to a Cron and a Leica M is comparing apples to oranges.

            If you’re using a Leica it’s probably because you don’t want to shoot a DSLR.

  • I wish Leica wouldn’t call it M-E S W, or whatever, be more consistent with naming.

  • Ron Pop

    I’d love to see a stripped down rangefinder at a more affordable price point. No need for live view, no need for movie mode, and so on. They could make me an MP with a digital back and a SD card slot and call it a day and I’d be happy. Here’s hoping they push the M-E in the right direction for those of us interested in rangefinder still photography.

    • MJr

      Is it me or does the M-E already not have video or LV, a digital back and SD card slot!? Sure it isn’t as compact as a MP, but if they could manage that it centainly wouldn’t be the Economy camera like a M-E (is supposed to be), it’d be a game changer!

  • Roelv1

    The same high ISO capabilities as with the M240 and it would be perfect. Unfortunately that’s not possible.

  • vulkanitwit

    I want chrome. I want black paint. I want no video. I want M11. I want more pixels. I want…

    This sounds like a rehash of the Nikon Df threads. Think back some years to when Apple offered about nine different Performas. The first thing Jobs did when he came back was to kill almost all of them. It was unhealthy. Leica isn’t GM, a lot of people are not going to get what they want and will just have to suck it up and either buy anyway or sit tight.

    But what if Leica did a re-engineer of the chassis so as to offer a digital a-la-carte that included choice of sensor? Two broad product lines: M7/MP and New World M, as an a la carte, (with a bog standard “option” with CMOS). You want your Perfect? Pay for it.

  • The only problem with the CCD is that it doesn’t handle harsh lighting very well. Interestingly enough, some modern CMOS DSLRs can’t either. However, the M240 handles harsh light very well, based on what I have seen.

  • 078Adam

    I’m in the camp that prefers the look of the CCD sensor and so happy that Leica will continue with it. Rather the more pixels, maybe less is the way to go. CCD’s seem to lack the high ISO abilities of CMOS, fewer larger pixels will be able to collect more light, hense why Sony’s new Low light machine A7s only has 12M and the Nikon DF has 16M. Plus 12 or 16MP take up less space on the computer and give a larger more film like grain. Unless of course you are blowing up big in which case the 240 is a better bet.

    • 078Adam

      Forgot to add Chrome and Black please not Grey.

      • Bill

        If M-E doesnt sell, it definitely because of the grey. Leica meant to make it ugly.

        • John Paul

          I will say though, if you have seen one in person (I was just at the DC store 2 days ago) the ME is pretty as hell. I actually liked it better than any of the M240’s.

  • Carlos

    New Leica? Well there’s the T!
    Passionate about an old Leica with new Batterie at nearly the cost of an M? No. You can buy many of the new M-E, M9P, MM that are around still.
    An M-Version of the M240? really? MM is perfect already, so what for?
    A APS-C M? For RF lovers? RF? Really, now that Leica is “going away” to EVF? I doubt there’ll be a M8.3 cmos either with the T on the market.
    New Leica? What for?

    Give us the right accessories, Leica, please!
    – a M-grip with Mic/Headphone jack, for video, with a slot to exchange Battery and SD-card

    A new M Generation is not needed, only some evolutionary adjustments:
    – get rid of the olympus crap interface through the hot-shoe
    – add mic/headphone jack as Grip feature
    – add Wi-Fi and Flash-sync into the same Grip
    – add T-Model EVF with GPS
    – keep buttons interface on M Back
    – same sensor

    a Dream M of mine would be:
    – M (240) with hybrid RF/EVF
    – no back screen
    – back-side button interface simplified
    – mic/headphone, hdmi out with L grip

  • delmontepineappletornado

    Yes, CCD could be nice, but it they use the SAME CCD as before, the camera should be named Leica MEH.

  • Bryan Campbell

    I’m a current M-E owner and would be interested in this. Hopefully the processor is improved so its quicker as well. A more quiet shutter would be nice as well.

  • Nick

    Does this new M-E not fit in with the recent rumour of a new Monochrom Typ 230? Is it possible Leica will refresh both the M-E and the Monochrom with a bigger battery, a better LCD and Wi-Fi from the Leica T?

    • I do believe that both models will be refreshed.

  • David Knoble

    What we really want is the shutter from the M240. I love my Monochrom, but I’d really love it with the M Shutter….

    • Noir et Blanc

      I’ve considered a Monochrom since release but stuck with the M9 for now, waiting for ‘what comes next’. I too would love the M shutter on Monochrom. Don’t want CMOS, don’t need LV, or video, not bothered too much about other software enhancements. I would just like to have a digital M3 – nice an quiet 🙂

  • Bryan Campbell

    I hope they don’t call it the M-S because that is close to MS as in Multiple Sclerosis.
    Knowing Leica they probably will though…

  • Bill

    Just give wifi and gps….connectivity means a lot more, are you listening Leica? And oh, please dont make odd color. I want the Chrome or at least black paint with vulcanite……no Leica dots, and not sand paper or missing this and that again please. if you want to boost your sales, please do not forget put the engraving on the top plate, that will just make me click on “order” button without hesitation

  • John Doe

    I don’t need a moldy CCD censor.
    I hope the low-cost version of the M240.

  • Daryl

    The Leica M9 used prices have increased. The Leica stores are getting calls daily asking to purchase an M9(p) new. The ccd in the M9 is very compelling but a large reason is the M240 with all the new bells and whistles has left the simplicity of the M9 behind. I believe Leica is looking at this closely, Leica is the best and only company that values a traditional camera rather than a computer. The T will be developed further as a computer interface but the M will remain true to it’s roots. Look for simplicity with not much in the way of changes except where faster processors and longer life batteries improve the product. Also, Leica’s new factory placed an emphasis on tighter tolerances of manufacturer, this goes a long way toward further increasing the quality product currently available and distancing Leica from the many manufacturers that use more plastic, more technology, more complexity to sell cameras that require 200+ pages of instructions.

  • imadedend

    You guys aren’t getting that the M-E is the exact same M9 with a couple of feature removals and a docked price. Frankly I find mine to be a perfect camera, and these so called improvements wouldn’t sway me to upgrade any time soon.

  • Hey, for those looking to not over spend (if buying into anything Leica can ever not be consider overspending in any degree) on a Leica digital rangefinder camera, the M-E, or rather a new updated version, is a great option.

    Although I personally feel the M240 is the most capable M right now, I would not have mind saving $1500 or so and just going with the entry M-E just to get into Leica digital rangefinders at a more afforda- uh, less expensive route. But, I’ve held back because I did find the low grade rear lcd to be a bummer, and being the batteries don’t seem to last as long as the new one used in the M240, overall, it feels a bit dated in performance and operation.. might try to save that $1500 just to get the most updated hardware and software offered in the M240. BUT, if they are updating the M-E with some of the features suggested, I think I’d be very interested in considering whatever new M-E model that will come out.

    “The new camera will be called M-S or M-E2 and will have the same 18MP CCD sensor with updated LCD screen and new battery (probably from the M 240).”

    I like the possibility of an updated LCD & new longer lasting battery like what’s in the M240, it should really help make this camera feel less dated and up to par with the modern M line in terms of hardware technology… the old rear LCD is notoriously outdated and horrible to use, even when it was initially released, the tech for the LCD seemed primitive by comparison to it’s modern day digital camera competitions at the time and ever since.

    What might be the icing on the cake is I would also hope they also bring the camera up to date with the newer image processor like in the M240 for quicker and more streamline performance and responsiveness working with the camera. If not the same Maestro image processor, then perhaps an equivalent in M-E/M9 terms… too much wishful thinking here for a software upgrade as well?!

  • deepan

    Improved battery is a welcome change but changing the back screen i guess is ok but not a big requirement as i am sure not many leica users keep monkeying around looking at the back screen. 🙂 i love he CCD as its got a filmic rendering to the files. Guess i will still stick to ME for looong time and save for some lenses.

  • Hastings Huggins

    An improved CCD, LCD, $500 less & you got a customer.

  • emaphoto

    This is inciting 🙂

  • Origamy

    1) Please use the same Leica T milling block method to craft an ME2 body that is exactly as slim as the film Leicas. That being the case, I wouldn’t even mind if everything else remained the same. 2) Please design the LCD screen so that it could be swiveled backwards and hidden away (like the Epsod RD1?). 3) Please give us the original Leica shutter sound.

  • arbus

    Long time film M user. Gave up film at the end of 2006 for the most part and went down the DSLR path. I could not cotton to the M8. When the M9 came out the price was more than I was willing to pay. Stayed on the Leica sidelines.

    Fast forward to a few months ago and played with an M-E at a demo days. Smitten. Was able to buy a new M-E with full warranty for $4.6K. Still a large chunk of cash but in comparison to the M9/M I feel like it’s a bargain.

    Crappy LCD? Check. Does it matter? Not really. I can see the histogram and info as needed.

    Slow processor? Check? Does it matter? Not really. They way I shoot the camera is plenty fast.

    A better battery? That would be nice.

    Ugly color? Looks nice to me. YMMV. Does not effect images…

    USB and Lever PV? Don’t need it, never used the PV on film M’s.

    Leica has recouped the costs on the M9/M-E machinery as Stefan Daniel said. It makes senses to tweak the M-E within the same form factor as an entry into the M system. The M9/M-E is still the closest in heritage to the classic M. I love what I have what is essentially an M2 or M6 with a sensor instead of film. There is NO need for video in this series. My iPhone is fine for the times I want a video snapshot.

    My M-E can’t touch my Canon 6D at high ISO’s. I find the M-E useable to 1600. That still plenty fast for 95% of what I shoot.

    The bottom line in using a rangefinder is how you view the world through it. That’s what took me a few years to learn again.

    Don’t mess with success in this case. Like Apple, just keep improving the product (A new M-E might just be Type 260?) and make money.

  • Chris Noellert

    Lovely. So glad to read this.

    Having shot the M-E for the passed two years, the only thing I can really gripe on is the battery life. It sucks. You have to have two batteries. The screen isn’t the best I guess but it’s not really anything I rely on while shooting. I’ve read many complaining on the shutter. It’s not the M6 of course but there’s way worse out there.

    IMHO, by the sounds of things most people commenting either haven’t shot a M9 or M-E or have really drank the CMOS coolaid. The image rendition of the Kodak CCD in the M-E/M-9 is a *very* Leica specific look that I for one love. I have no issue with highlight recovery as some have mentioned (shooting DNG and *not* jpeg of course). It’s LOADS better than my D800, or my 5D MKII. The real issue is in the shadow tones if we want to have an honest discussion.

    I totally agree ISO performance is horrible on CCD but for the material I tend to shoot it’s considerably less of an issue and worth the look of CCD.

    Guess I’m glad Leica understands that they have something special on their hands. M-E2 is a good name if it must be changed at all 🙂

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