Allendale, NJ (August 2, 2011) – Leica Camera announces a new service for Leica M9 owners to incorporate the product features of the Leica M9-P into their existing M-System camera, resulting in an alternative, even more discreet and resilient design. Owners taking advantage of the service will also receive a one-year warranty extension. Through the North American Headquarters in Allendale, NJ, Leica will be offering a “Sapphire Glass” upgrade package and a “Top Cover and Sapphire Glass” upgrade package. Interested customers are encouraged to schedule appointments starting August 8, 2011 for upgrades from October 3, 2011 through Leica Camera, Inc.

The “Sapphire Glass” upgrade package offers the replacement of the M9 monitor cover with the M9-P’s scratch-resistant, sapphire crystal cover, a choice between vulcanite and smooth MP-style leatherette trim and a one-year warranty extension. The package will be available for $1,295. The second option, “Top Cover and Sapphire Glass”, includes the replacement of the monitor glass with sapphire crystal cover and the replacement of the top deck and base plate with silver chrome or black paint. The package also includes the choice of vulcanite or smooth MP-style leatherette trim and a one-year warranty extension. The package will be available for $1,995.

All upgrades will be performed by specifically trained technicians and will be a part of Leica’s regular repair service. Reservations are on a first come first serve basis and upgrade time is dependent upon demand. M9 owners can schedule upgrades beginning August 8, 2011 by calling 1-800-222-0118 x 9930.

Please visit the Leica website at shortly before the start of the upgrade program for further information about the offer and the upgrading procedure.



  1. Anyone else think that Leica is trying to imitate Apple? Why wasn’t this released when M9 came out? It reminds me of Apple releasing Ipad1 and then release an update to it and call it ipad2. Only difference is Apple innovates with their releases while Leica just tries to think really hard on how to please the well to do crowd with exotic skins, sapphires etc.

    I have a better idea why don’t they try to close up their waiting lists for their other items instead of regurgitating something that should have been released from the get go

  2. The one thing to keep in mind is that Leica is a company who needs to stay in business and, to do that, you need to make money. For a company that size and quality of product, you’re not going to stay in business and thrive by selling value product to photographers. They cater to rich amateurs and that’s the only way they can survive. Period. These are shitty times so who else would drop $10K on a camera/lens? Make a few pieces, sell them for a lot, as there always will be a few rich enough to afford it. Selling cheap to the masses is NOT what will keep them in business. I don’t like it, but I don’t care since I bought most of my film Leica gear and lenses years ago and I can still take better pictures than most flaunting the latest $10K toy. As always, it ain’t the camera, or the lens.

    As far as this $2K upgrade, it is an utter joke. The camera should have had the sapphire screen to begin with but again, the upgrade is tailored to those who also buy $400 leather half cases so that’s the way it goes.

    • No argument here Max. Just try and INNOVATE something from them would be nice. They haven’t innovated crap outside of the S2. Which is something I would purchase in a heartbeat over an M and some funny glass LCD…

      • That’s because they can’t, Richard. That’s the box they painted themselves in with the M line 50 years ago and there is nothing to innovate there. Coming up with a new camera system is certainly not the answer, as they could not compete. I mean, really, where can you innovate in photography? All it is is a box to keep the light out and a lens attached to capture an image. No innovations in sensors, and software wise is all the same crap that no one really needs. Heck, you can take a great picture with a cookie box and pinhole and a sheet of photo paper. The digital M line is another dead end and they will find out soon enough, if they don’t know already (as already proven by this latest gimmicky “upgrade” package).

  3. Reading the above criticisms, pretty much my thoughts entirely.

    Leicas are professional cameras, built to exacting, industry-leading standards. So… why sell the M9 with a plastic screen with poor resolution? If plastic is so great why not make the viewfinder window out of it?

    Come on Leica, do the decent thing and make the M9 with a saphire glass screen and better resolution. It’s the minimum you could do.

    I’ve been a Leica user for years but their attitude increasingly irritates me (witness the closure of the London centre), and now I refuse play their games.

    Still, no doubt from their point of view this bonkers upgrade for those with more money than sense, keeps the cashflow ticking over nicely.

  4. Dear Leica. When you decided to upgrade M9 with sapphire cristal glass for 2K, why on the earth didn`t you go all the way and add a bayonet release button crowned with pink diamond for another insignificant 2K. Really, you have a style or you don`t. Stanis Ice-is-Nice

  5. 2 grand? I’ll maybe think about it if its 1…

    A photographic tool is becoming a high end fashion accessory, or collectors toy… and every time I went out with my camera I tend to look around my shoulders and make sure I won’t get mugged…

    Maybe it’s just me, but I’d like to see some down to earth Leica innovations, not high street gadgets for the wealthy.

      • I do buy other company’s camera, I can easily afford another m9-p or whatever Leica come out next, I just don’t want to see the Leica becoming a company that only tailors to the well off. Where there are Market for them (at least when we talk about camera bodies) in the lower price tier.

        Some people make purchase based on value, some make theirs based on emotion or whatever, if I had to pay 2k for this upgrade, i’d rather just buy a M9-P simply because a screen cover + base plate and cover shouldn’t be almost 30% of the M9 price. I simply don’t see the value of this upgrade regardless the balance of my bank account or what camera I shoot with.

        Are you saying if you buy Leica, you shouldn’t buy other company’s camera? or vice versa? or what the heck is the point of your post?

  6. My kids, 2 and 5 years old, have been watching Charles Shultz’s old Peanuts videos recently (over and over again actually). This reminds me of the backgrounds the scenes are filled with in embarrassing moments: “HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!”

    Seriously — could they just stop being cute and try to get more 50mm ASPH glass (or any other…) out? I have mine, so I don’t have a stake in the game and while I like to be holding appreciating assets, the prices on the used market these days have made Leica lenses a Veblen and/or Giffen good, which isn’t so cool to walk the street with. Nice that almost no one notices (at least compared to trying to walk around with a 500C/M…)

    • I’m with you on this one. Enough of the useless ‘upgrades’ and start producing lenses already.

  7. Come on Rich, in the fashion world, this is called “accessorize” 🙂 All very much important to the undertaking of delivering a successful image. Frankly, a $5,000, five days workshop with Jay Maisel would be the more sensible thing to do for most M9 owners.

    • Someone else mentioned “Value” down there as well. I can buy 2 M9-P’s a month should rent not come into play (or food). But that isn’t the point. It is what is innovation and what is separating the west – in the drivers seat for now – from the cut throat up and coming economies of the world.

      Leica – I do like what you do. I don’t lust enough to see the value in anything yet – but I would love to give them my cash. I just don’t see anything that justifies it yet……….

  8. Complete waste of money in my opinion. Sell the M9 for $6000+, and you can buy a brand new M9-P with a two year warranty. I don’t see the big picture here.

  9. Another money making bit of nonsense from leica. What is the point the screen resolution presumably stays the same……. It is rubbish except for a composition check. My m9 won’t be getting this treatment. Better to spend the money on a trip and take pictures with the camera. Mind you guess people will be queueing up to hand the money over

    • Hi Francesco
      I call the Leica store in PARIS/FRANCE and they told me this upgrade is also available in FRANCE. It will cost 1290 € and you should sign in at your Leica store

  10. great service but
    If you are just looking for a way to protect that very scrath prone standard M9 screen a cheap and quite effective solotion is the mineral glass screen from Giotto only 24 bucks I have them on all my cameras,even transfered them from a p&s to another(tip :if it comes loose or you need to change it don’t glue it,just put some silicon sealant on both points of contact and press..that way when you clean out the silicon no trace remains)

  11. I can’t imagine this to be very appealing for M9 owners. A used M9 is worth about $6,000, so instead of sending in your M9 to Leica and spending $2,000 to upgrade it, why not just sell it, and buy a new one for $8,000? You’re spending the same amount (more or less) and you will get a brand new M9-P, not an upgraded M9.

    That is, if you can find an M9-P at MRSP.

  12. Lovely Leica is so service oriented, but would be better if they would integrate a device so one could adjust the focus.
    Or at least spent time on the adjustment, instead of changing the “Top Cover and Sapphire Glass” on camera houses there is nothing wrong with.

    But a really cool service, but save my money for a new Leica M10 (with or without the “Sapphire Glass” and Leica logo)

  13. I’m personally fine with my M9 with a plastic screen protector and it’s look. I’ll keep the money for a lens and/or the next really improved M.

    • Interesting idea but not fond of those vinyl stickers for a leica. I got some icarbons for my macbook air but wouldn’t spoil something classic like a leica with a sticker.

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