Leica Monochrom Hands-On Field Test

  • Published on Aug 18, 2012
  • When Leica offered a chance to test out a pre-release Leica Monochrom, we jumped at the chance. See how this very cool B&W camera performs on a late night shoot. The Camera Store's Chris Niccolls is joined by Pierre Quinn, Chris Tait and Stefan Legisa of YYC Street Photography to see if this camera can bring back the joy of shooting on black and white film.
    Read about this shoot at:
    Shot and Edited by Jordan Drake
    Filmed on the Sony FS700
  • Science & TechnologyScience & Technology

Comments • 318

  • JimmyDashJimmy
    JimmyDashJimmy 16 days ago

    0:09 Hey pal, remove the lens cap!
    0:11 Oh. Okay then.

  • ZappaBlues
    ZappaBlues Month ago


  • Jim Petosa
    Jim Petosa 6 months ago

    Finally some decent intro music😎

  • window
    window 10 months ago

    Fuji cameras have nice filters including B/W with red filter. U guys should check it out.

  • TheIkaika777
    TheIkaika777 11 months ago

    And at the end of the day it’s still an $8000 digital camera.

  • Chloe Scanlon
    Chloe Scanlon 11 months ago

    You have to say the black camera looks really lovely with the silver lens :)

  • rxn
    rxn Year ago

    5:41 - LOL :D

  • 12ozmouse
    12ozmouse Year ago

    Jesus wept

  • Alpha Film
    Alpha Film Year ago +1

    Every time there’s a Leica video, there are always people saying ‘Oh Oh, why would I pay 6000 dollars for a camera that has less function than my big badass pro DSLR. The thing I think that should be cleared first is that, when people earned their money, they have all right to spend them how they like. People buy Lamborghini, drive at the same speed as your old KIA in the city, cost? Bresson once said, you must be happy with your camera, so stop complaining about how expensive it is, if you don’t like it, use whatever camera you like as long as it makes you happy during shooting, or if you can’t afford one, maybe it’s time to get out of here and go out make some money bro!

    • Alpha Film
      Alpha Film Year ago

      Bad writing at the end, I meant if you want one but can’t afford one at the moment*

  • Frank Romero
    Frank Romero Year ago

    What camera did you use for this video? Still looks great.

  • Abigail Sockeye
    Abigail Sockeye Year ago +1

    seems racist

  • MacClellandMan
    MacClellandMan Year ago +2

    I remember nostalgia. It says things like "Ah, the good old days when we had to use filters." Those weren't the good old days. These are great days for less encumbered creativity. Creativity is what should drive gear choices. Use whatever gets you the final outflow you're seeking. This is a sentimental video that feels like a sales pitch and did not objectively show the superiority of Leica''s monochrome sensor over full spectral sensors because no comparisons were provided.

  • Sylvain Paquette
    Sylvain Paquette 2 years ago

    My darkroom is my computer and development material is rawtherapee. It's different but still fun. I can choose the film I want to use ... after I've taken the picture !
    This is the only leica I would remotely be interested in simply because of the sensor. I like rangefinder camera for film but find it ridiculous in digital camera. I see price drop quite a bit on this model so I may be tempted but I can't find picture that done with this monochrome sensor that can't easily be done on a 2-3 time less expensive camera and rawtherapee. Worst is I've seen lot of better picture taken with L.monochrome strait jpg from a lumix or olympus pen f monochrome mode.
    Maybe it's more about the joy of owning the object than anything else.

  • Timothy Roper
    Timothy Roper 2 years ago

    This camera was so popular, Leica has introduced an updated version with a CMOS sensor (2012 one had CCD). So, maybe it's time for a new review?

  • 小歪伐奏弗拉
    小歪伐奏弗拉 2 years ago +4

    So many people said they would rather buy a Fuji than this expensive shit. You are wrong. Fuji, Nikon, Canon or Sony other camera are good cameras, sometime even outperform this 6000 dollar camera. But you know what, let me tell you this, you can spend 30 bucks for a Nike TShirt, but people spend over hundreds of bucks for a Givenchy, Gucci.

  • bolderiks
    bolderiks 2 years ago

    Leica or not, to me a digital camera is like leprosy, I don't even think about touching it.

  • Richard Belfry
    Richard Belfry 3 years ago

    This is a camera that, if I had the money to "throw away" I would definately consider buying! I love B&W photography, especially for street photography, and having no other option than B&W would really make you think about your shots.

  • Abdullah Saady
    Abdullah Saady 3 years ago

    The photos didn't look like anything that I couldn't do with a standard dslr and some editing. I don't get it o_O

  • Johno F
    Johno F 3 years ago

    Man, I miss film but I love digital. I wish I was wealthy.

  • Yirbeelt Alberto Torres García

    I actually liked more the video black and white treatment than the pics of the camera.

  • E B
    E B 3 years ago

    Definitely prefer T-Max and Fomapan 100. What's not to like about T-Max?

  • J
    J 3 years ago

    such a waste of money.

  • Bengalurean1
    Bengalurean1 3 years ago

    why not buy a (insert any non-leica brand name) mirrorless or point and shoot, and shoot in B&W mode, or edit the photo for B&W effects. You will then have a camera, a house, and still spare money left to buy food.

    • Riswin Ashraf
      Riswin Ashraf 3 years ago +6

      +Bengalurean1 But you couldnt tag all your pics with "Leica 'insert model letter' 'insert lens name' " in every Facebook upload.

  • القائد النعمان

    ( leica sl )review please.

  • Lucifer Jones
    Lucifer Jones 4 years ago

    Shot neopan before, then shot ilford 400 pushed to 1600. Never looked back :D
    Anyways, my leica m5 broke... do I really need to spend a ridiculous amount of money to shoot digital with a rangefinder???!

  • indigo Gloves Tech
    indigo Gloves Tech 4 years ago +2

    If you want to shoot in an old fashioned way, just get an old range finder and some black and white film. This camera is criminally overpriced.

  • last0exile
    last0exile 4 years ago

    good photos! congratz

  • hawg427
    hawg427 4 years ago +19

    You know your an older photographer when you use the word ASA more than ISO :-) LOL

    • Cyril Jayant
      Cyril Jayant 2 years ago

      What is the fact you get older when you use ASA than you use ISO????? when I used ISO I felt as if I am in the international Zone than an American.

  • binkyboobosh1
    binkyboobosh1 4 years ago +2

    In this 'day and age' I really can't see any point in producing a camera that shoots solely in b/w. The improvement in using one of these over the standard M9 for b/w is very, very minimal. You can still use colour filters on any digital camera. It's silly to talk about this. This is a bit of a marketing ploy. Just get an M9 if you must own a Leica. If you want nostalgia, just buy an M6 and use film. This camera is a bit silly and for the person who has everything and has lost the will to live. A bit like that Bulvgari phone with a tourbillion watch built in.

    • Cyril Jayant
      Cyril Jayant 2 years ago +1

      This was exactly my point of view before when I read about this FIRST MONOCHROME. Well.. Now I eat those words every day when I see a Monochrome and dying for my next Camera. Of course

  • Pepe Le Pew
    Pepe Le Pew 4 years ago

    Its ridiculous yet perfect lol... But i would choose a roll of traditional black and white film or my favourite ilford xp2 super over digital mono anyday

  • TM
    TM 4 years ago

    i cant breathe when im watching this b&w video

  • Steaphany
    Steaphany 4 years ago +4

    If you want retro film like result, go buy an antique film leica

  • Ken Lee
    Ken Lee 4 years ago +12

    I dont think Leica is overpriced at all they keep their values pretty good especially if you buy them second handed. Everyone who says it is marketing BS I am pretty sure you never touched Leica before. Let me ask you what are u using?? Canon or Nikon?? These garbages worth shit after using for couple of years and you would have to get new body and lenses again and again you end up spending more money In other hand Leica will hold its value pretty consistently especially their lenses so at the end of the day you will spend less money by using Leica not to mention the quality that comes with their products

    • VariTimo
      VariTimo Year ago

      r s I just bought a Leica M8 from 2006 and it still produces gorgeous images.

    • Da Ying
      Da Ying Year ago +1

      Nope. Had my canon lense for the last 12 years. Works great. Amazing quality.

    • Mattias Burling
      Mattias Burling 3 years ago +4

      +Roy Gumpel If you are upped a week later its not the camera thats the issue.
      BTW a Leica Monochrome is more like $4-5000 and will hold its value way longer than a DSLR or Mirrorless. Any given Sony drops 20% the first month in retail and 50-60% on the used market within the first year. And its down to maybe 10-20% of its original value after two years. This Leica has dropped about 30% in 4 years.

      SLIMNICS 3 years ago

      +Robert Stofa True that bro.

    • r s
      r s 4 years ago +1

      +Ken Lee personally, i don't feel any digital camera holds their value well over a few years.. with the technology advancing so fast and image quality improving pretty drastically.. just bc it looks and feels pretty don't mean shit if its behind the curve in image quality.. the film cameras however, are a completely different story. those things hold their value like gold.

  • Pinksnowbirdie
    Pinksnowbirdie 4 years ago +13

    B&W Photography has that sort of character to it that color seems to lack. (Not saying B&W is superior but it seems so underrated.)

  • Myles P
    Myles P 4 years ago +14

    It seems like everyone who reviews Leica cameras (*cough* DigitalRev *cough*) just talks vaguely about how it "takes you back to a simpler time" or something like that but can't actually give reasons why I just spend several thousand more on a camera like this with practically no features. It would be like re-releasing the original Super Mario and charging me $120 because it's nostalgic. I'm not sure who buys a Leica but I'm glad I don't think like them.

    • TheIkaika777
      TheIkaika777 11 months ago

      Exactly! And none of them actually were born during the “simpler times“.

    • Zach James
      Zach James Year ago

      It's hilarious how you posted this comment before the Nintendo Mini Classic came out....and people were spending well north of a hundred bucks for those when they came out!

    • Hoc Ly
      Hoc Ly 3 years ago +1

      @MA TE Oh, we're still talking about this? Okay, you obviously missed the memo that I was being sarcastic...I'm really over this argument

    • Hoc Ly
      Hoc Ly 3 years ago

      MA TE Nah, I dont make money from photography! Its a hobby! Im just rich and I buy things that I like in life. Oh sorry, I didnt know you were a struggling photographer who needed to worry about what they can afford as gear. Dont get upset okay? Im sure there are people who would pay to buy your lovely photos. Just dont be sad that you're a bit poor, as long as you're happy man! Remember, money can only buy pleasure, not happiness.

    • Hoc Ly
      Hoc Ly 3 years ago

      Mattias Burling He couldnt even pick up my sarcasm 😭.

  • Brian JC Osborne
    Brian JC Osborne 4 years ago

    need new shoes :-)

  • cylurian
    cylurian 4 years ago +11

    Or get the poor man's Leica, a Fujifilm X-T1 ($6000 less).

    • PedestrianRage
      PedestrianRage Year ago

      x-pro2 is the poor man's leica ;)

    • duc tri tran
      duc tri tran Year ago

      cylurian leica m8 for b&w not Fuji xt1

    • cylurian
      cylurian 4 years ago

      @***** You are right, but I can print very good prints with the x-t1 with that sensor.

  • street photo hunt
    street photo hunt 4 years ago

    i would rather go for leica 35 mm film camera than this new digital if i have money

  • Marc Meeks
    Marc Meeks 4 years ago +2

    Those days aren't gone for me, pal.

  • discuss21
    discuss21 4 years ago +1

    More exorbitant overpriced BS - £6000 body only - really good value. Can't see those smurfs rushing out to buy one with their pocket change - jajajajaja! And people wonder why Leica went bankrupt in the past. So much more in touch with their customers now ... what a joke!

  • Xperience-Media
    Xperience-Media 4 years ago +1

    love the look but in reality prefer to take the em5 or xe1 to the street at 1/20th the price.

  • Joshua K
    Joshua K 5 years ago +16

    Sure, I'll just pick one up. I have 8000 dollars just laying around in my couch cushions.

  • Tore Hansen
    Tore Hansen 5 years ago

    And still I rather use the Art Filters my Oympus cameras have...

  • Fang-Zhou Jiang
    Fang-Zhou Jiang 5 years ago +1

    best bs i heard in photography this year

    • binkyboobosh1
      binkyboobosh1 4 years ago

      @Owen Jiang I totally agree. It's a silly camera for people who have more money than sense. And, probably very little talent.

  • That Bean You Had For Dinner

    The video sounds a bit like an advertisement, lots of vague terms and superlatives, as if half the script was copy-pasted from the Leica website.
    The photos overall look great though, and Chris Tait is an amazing photographer (he had _by far_ the best photos of the three IMO). Going to look up more of his work.

  • Đorđe Gajanin
    Đorđe Gajanin 5 years ago

    This thing should have a 4k display hence the price .....

    • pyotr lol
      pyotr lol 4 years ago

      2012 wasnt the age of 4K

  • 電腦大爆炸
    電腦大爆炸 5 years ago

    can anyone tell me, beside that one(can't afford), which camera is good for black and white digital photography. thanks

  • Arturo Tabera
    Arturo Tabera 5 years ago +4

    7:59 Zac Arias in the wheelchair. Man, he is a wreck. That being said, really nice video.

  • millie williams
    millie williams 5 years ago +31

    I just don't get it. I guess if you have disposable income and you want your camera to do everything for you....go for it. You talk about getting grain and nice old feel to a picture. How about using an actual 35mm film camera and getting real results ...learn double exposure and the subtle nuances of bnw. Well, to each their own. I will continue using my Pentax k1000 and my 2 Canon DSLR's when I need speed. Peace!

    • C Y
      C Y Year ago

      millie williams thank you ! these guys are corny . "Back to our roots." fuck out of here. my Sony would destroy this camera .

    • VariTimo
      VariTimo Year ago

      PedestrianRage Technically the Monochrom gives you much higher resolution, better noise performance and dynamic range than a color camera because of the missing color filter array. It’s not that Leica is charging more for less features like they do with the M10-D. I don’t say the price is 100% justified but you won’t find any better image maker with a 35mm sensor than a Leica M Monochrom and a Leica APO Summicron. The only cameras that beat the Monochrom are the B&W Phase One cameras and you can google the prices for those yourself.

    • VariTimo
      VariTimo Year ago +2

      millie williams my K1000 doesn’t stand a chance against my Leica M5 in terms of time I need to focus, ergonomics and shutter noise/vibration.

    • PedestrianRage
      PedestrianRage Year ago +1

      $2000 more than color Leica to be able to only shoot in B&W. Definition of disposable income ;)

  • PQUE
    PQUE 5 years ago +3

    These hipsters have all gotten so fat since shooting this.

  • Victor del Razo
    Victor del Razo 5 years ago +4

    I really the bokeh at 8:40 ... just look at those back lights.. You should do more B&W vids...

  • ashlinwang
    ashlinwang 5 years ago +2

    Only camera that makes you feel like you're shooting film? What about the Epson rd1?

  • Geoffrey
    Geoffrey 6 years ago

    Just wondering, what's your ethnicity?

  • Joseph Barrett
    Joseph Barrett 6 years ago

    Because this is kind of a rich people camera I think. No point in mentioning the price. haha

  • beavertown2006
    beavertown2006 6 years ago

    Kai is a British with British accent.
    You are a country man with American accent. Fuck you.

  • Matteo Prezioso
    Matteo Prezioso 6 years ago +1

    Nothing will ever beat such a stupid camera. I love Leica, whether analogues or digitals.) But truly this camera beggars belief.
    Digital B/W Vs. analogue B/W? Well, anyone with a basic knowledge of analogue photography will just tell you how 35mm is SO much better than its digital counterpart.

  • Deso Fire
    Deso Fire 6 years ago

    Well, the thing is, for a compact camera, the RX-1 is overpriced for the casual photographers because:
    1.) Sony lenses aren't very stellar for photography
    2.) Sony doesn't really know how to properly make use of their own sensor... and ironically, Nikon knows how to make use of their sensors beyond its full potential
    With a Leica, it offers the most nostalgic experience in photography. Couple that with the way they build it, then no question of it being overpriced.
    But that's how I see it.

  • Alan Santizo
    Alan Santizo 6 years ago

    how can i difference the color difference if the whole video is B&W? HAHAH stupid..

    • Owanneke
      Owanneke 2 years ago

      Alan Santizo so is you Engrish

  • Sean "Super" Cooper
    Sean "Super" Cooper 6 years ago

    4:21 For badass slow motion photographer walk

  • Chris
    Chris 6 years ago

    10K??? no thanks