UPDATE: New Leica M 240 Estimated Release date: April 30th 2013

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B&H Photo just updated their release date of the new M 240 from Feb 28th to April 30th. From what I hear it could be the 2nd week of May. So the wait continues as Leica makes sure the new M is perfect. I’d rather them make sure it is perfect though then to release a buggy camera. What are YOUR thoughts? Who has pre-ordered the camera and WHEN did you pre-order?

44 Comments

  1. i received my m 240 about 2 weeks ago. preordered nov 4. works fine and i am amazed by the sharpness. no flaws detected so far. incredible portraits with an apo f2/90mm summicron and great landscape pics with a a summlux 1.4/35mm asph.

  2. I got a call from the Leica shop at Raffles Hotel Arcade (Singapore) that several units of the Leica M had just come in and is available in the shop on Wednesday (February 27th). So I showed up on Wednesday at lunchtime and they told me that they had already sold several “sets” that morning. They were not willing to sell just the body and each body has to be bundled with three M lenses. So no deal for me. Is this common practice in other Leica shops?

    • First batch of the Cam usually goes to Leica shop in Singapore and probably the rest of the world…. the second batch will be available to dealer with conditions, for example they must grab 10 pcs of X2 for every M they ask for. Which means, the dealer will sell them at a price higher than recommended retai price…..

    • I can also confirm the M is available in Munich. I replaced my M9P with the 240 yesterday at the Leica Store Munich.. And yes, you can just buy the body 🙂 However I was relatively high on the he waiting list – i am quite sure the first batch will be sold very soon.
      thomas

  3. The new M was going to be my first Leica and I have been eagerly anticipating its arrival. What I am about to say may be sacrilege on this forum but after pouring extensively through the early M (240) galleries, I’m going to have to wait. At this point, I haven’t seen anything that impressed me enough to retire my RX1…not even close.

  4. Thanks for letting us know the date. I’d rather wait for any problems to be sorted. Among my many boring ‘money jobs’ to keep my family and me alive while I painted and photographed, I was a draughtsman in the motor industry, photo-reproduction industry, and arms industry. At every single one of them new designs were delayed months, in some cases nearly a year, beyond the originally designated dates. Those people who want things NOW, NOW, NOW, are naïve and churlish.

  5. Ordered the leica m from B&H end of November and I believe I’m number 50 out of around 100 . I think this will be another Nikon d800 type wait. I plan to order the replacement of the Sony nex 7 (not out or well rumored) and decide on if I will continue to wait for leica

  6. Unless I have missed some press announcement by Leica, they need to be completely honest and announce the full reason(s) why the M240 is delayed. Leica are pretty unique in having an utterly dedicated (in some ways blindly dedicated) and faithful following and need to face up to the responsibilities which come with that status or risk alienating and losing that band of disciples.
    Like many others, I sold my M9 to fund the new purchase and now have a bag of 9 M lenses, including a newly 6 bit coded 135mm Apo-Telyt, (and 2 R lenses) sitting forlornly waiting for the great arrival. If the new M is to be delayed as long as some contributors to this forum fear, or the sensor quality to be as poor as they fear, Leica have a responsibility to say so and to say what they are doing about it, not, as is the norm in the industry, be silent on the subject, hide their heads in the sand, Ostrich-like, and hope the problem will go away. They made one monumental error with the original M8 and owe it to their followers and to the brand name not to repeat that error by releasing another ill-conceived product onto the market – but they need to communicate and take people with them.
    I come from Scotland’s second city – Glasgow – which, because of internet pricing, now has only 2 camera dealers, neither of which sells Leica. My nearest Leica dealer is a 3 hour drive away, is very unlikely to have a demonstrator new M available when the camera is eventually released and, even if they do have one, will not allow a buyer sufficient time with the camera to properly assess its image quality. My quandary is that the distance buying laws in the United Kingdom are not really geared in favour of the consumer (quote the Wex Photographic website terms and conditions – “You have the right to cancel your purchase at any time either before or up to seven days following the day you receive the goods….Your product must be complete and in ‘as new’ condition e.g. if you have opened the box to examine the product you must have done so without damaging or marking the product or packaging. The product must not have been used or installed” – and with no way to properly test the new M when it does appear, I have no option other than to take a leap of faith and continue with my purchase or let my head rule my heart and cancel my pre-order and wait to see what the jury’s decision is when the pack is able to get their hands on working examples.
    Come on Leica – this really isn’t good enough..!!

  7. In my opinion Leica is already late to the party and I wouldn’t be surprised if it won’t start shipping in september, a year after it was announced with a big fuss at Photokina. And from what I gather the waiting list will take more than a year to supply. By that time the digital photography world will have changed completely.
    If you want a digital M, I would advise getting a M8, M9 or a MM now. Each of those have proven to have their own character already. And obviously getting an M10 in a year (or two) means that you’re not interested in cutting edge sensor technology. If it’s not about image quality but about character get an older digital M right now.

  8. Very interesting comments guys. I would like shed some light on a few issues and to add:

    – Buying a camera sight unseen by being on a waiting list is like buying a car from a waiting list. You may love it or it could be one of the costliest mistakes in your life. Early adopters of anything always take a big chance on their purchase. it is a gamble.

    – All Leica products seem to be priced the same. I know of only one store who gives a 1% reduction on MSRP for Leica M bodies or lenses. There is no price advantage from buying from a big US retailer versus a local large retailer. I would not buy from a small local shop for the reasons Steve outlines above.

    – In Canada, we all pay the same tax, regardless of where the item is purchased. For foreign purchases coming by post or courier, the courier must collect the tax and remit it to the government before you get your parcel. If your MM costs the same, the tax is the same regardless of where it is bought. The final cost just increases due to shipping and tax collection charges.

    – Returning any item shipped from abroad is a nightmare due to getting your customs and VAT taxes back is terrible paperwork. Shipping charges are lost and double if you need to ship back a return. Returning an item to a retailer in a different country sucks.

    – I still get a kick out of people who compare Leica to other brands of camera. They fail to see the innate character that any Leica product has. All serous Leica users usually see the rendering of the Leica lenses, and now the sensors. If you don’t see this characteristic rendering, then buying Leica is a waste of $$. A Leica will never have the best high ISO performance or fastest autofocus (S line), but a photo with a Noctilux sure has a fabulous rendering. It is possible we may not like the rendering of the new M 240.

    The strategy I follow when I really want to buy some Leica product is to call all the big suppliers in Canada first (local), and if this lens or camera is not available, then call around in the second or third country of your choice. Usually someone has it somewhere. The north east US and Canada represents such a large portion of Leica consumers that even a Noctilux is available somewhere. I have never had a bad experience with any of the people Steve recommends.

  9. Mmm, typical Leica, expensive and not without problems. Never been a fan, never will, but each to their own! I do think that anyone who sold all their kit off to buy this camera have acted very rashly, why not wait until released and stable and then sell-off and buy?

  10. I have never understood why people pre-order products. Although it will likely turn out to be a good camera, you will never know until it is released…

    • Pre-ordering is a WIN/WIN no matter how you look at it.

      It’s simple and smart to pre-order if you are really interested or want the camera. Worst case..you hate it or it is awful and you return it for a full refund. Amazon is amazing in this regard and is their policy to refund you if you are not 100% happy with your product. They would then sell at a discount to someone who wants a like new product while saving some money.

      So if there is a camera that will be hard to get at launch, and in the case of the M it may take many months before someone who did not pre-order to get a hold of one.

      When you pre-order you are not charged until the item ships so you are not out money at all, but have a place in line. No harm at all. It is also easy to cancel at any time before the item ships and again, you are out nothing.

      So if all goes well, and you pre-order for something you really want you get it when it ships, earlier than anyone else and if it rocks you are out shooting it while everyone waits. If it is a POS you return it for a refund. It is a win/win.

        • True, but this only applies in the US. In Europe you cannot return the camera for a full refund. People living in the US should remember how lucky they are in this regard.

          • Why can’t we get a full refund? If you buy something in the UK, you have a “cooling off period” usually 2 weeks, if you don’t like what you’ve bought, orit doesn’t suit it’s intended purpose you can take it back and get a full refund, and spending £4-5k on a camera, well, you might just regret it if the wife finds out! I’d love to own a Lieca, but, I could never justify the out lay, for a fractional improvement in images compared to a Fuji Ex-pro or a DSLR, if I was a pro photographer, then I can understand, but an rank amateur like myself, not…. I’ll carry on with my Zork 4i and Yashica Electro, I’d be too worried about getting mugged with a Leica!!

      • I agree with that – although as the D800 shows, you can often get one first in your local store (which I believe you should support, even if they don’t give Steve cash from links) as the manufacturers distribute according to their own schedule, not according to pre-order build ups.

        The other thing I don’t get is selling your cameras before you have a new one in your hands. Why? The thought of being camerless makes me break out in a cold sweat, and I can only imagine those who do this must be more interested in cameras than photography.

        • Local stores will not do any deals 99% of the time. Then you have the almost 10% tax. WHY oh WHY would you support a local store and pay hundreds more for the same item? So that store can stay in business a few months longer? If stores today have not created a web presence by now and invested in this presence then they really do deserve to go under as they are not being run very wisely. It is 2013 and only going to get worse for the few remaining mom and pop shops. If I owned a camera shop I would have done everything in my power to make an online statement…10 years ago.

          Buying online gives you MANY benefits. Usually no tax, easy return if needed (Amazon, BH) fast shipping (Amazon prime), usually in stock (B&H), and many times MUCH better prices. There is no downside to buying online yet there are some if buying in a local shop that is already fearing closure. High taxes, usually no stock, return policies are awful, they do not like to deal at all and are usually grouchy. Ive seen 6 stores go under and I called it a year before each on did. Why? Because they were managed horribly and refused to create any kind of online presence to compete in todays online shipping world.

          Also, mom and pop stores will get one or two new cameras where B&H or Amazon will get a couple hundred. Camera manufacturers DO indeed ship more to those who have pre-sold and sell more. That is a fact.

          I will take the top online dealers any day over a local shop who never has any stock on their shelves when I walk in and have sat idly by these past 10-15 years allowing their business to go downhill. It’s only a matter of time until they do and our one sale here and there will not stop it. Many shops have created that presence though, and most of their business comes from those online sales, not walk in.

  11. I won’t be surprised that Leica took a look at some of the latest offerings, eg RX1, D800E, and realized the bar has risen. The M shots I seen so far were just ‘ok’ IMHO. I am on the waiting list but at this stage I prepared for a long wait perhaps to the second half of the year.

  12. im still witing to see shots and reviews from the finished? product
    so far not looking worth 6900 bucks im suprised leica puts photos out knowing
    its not ready for prime time lol
    for now i bought a mint m8
    and a fuji xe-1 =total 2600 bucks
    and im enjoying the small files
    and filmic look and having fun
    but im not grtting any younger
    but i can wait

  13. Considering I did not know my place in line at B&H and there was no guarantee i’d even get my hands on one, I cancelled my order and went with the local Leica dealer this evening who had nobody in line for the new M they had on order, so I put my order in with them so I know I will be one of the first to get my hands on this camera, if it ever comes out…

  14. I think in about a years time wil be a better time to consider purchase of the M240 , once the camera has been used and some opinions are in as to it’s capabilities, I’m sure it will be worth the wait.

    Why go without until then, if you have sold your M9 body thinking it will realise more money now maybe you save several thousand but think of the images your missing in the time without a camera.

    I was tempted when I read a passionate review on the Leica M-E maybe this could help out in the mean time;
    http://50lux.com/2013/02/06/finally-get-your-leica-m-e-review-here/

  15. I just read on the LUF that the MM is still running beta firmware. This does not bode well for the M240. This was my major complaint with Leica from the M8. Leica just can’t seem to get their firmware shop producing quality firmware in a timely fashion. Look how long it has taken to get the M9 to work with a range of SD cards that every other vendor was able to do years ago. As I see on the forum there are still issues with cards so not completely solved.

    Lloyd Chambers has pointed out flaws he sees in the M240 files that are a combination of firmware and maybe sensor. The large number of hot pixels and heavy banding would be of concern.

    By the cautious responses I see to questions on M240 performance speed I would guess that the Maestro processor is taxed and not providing the snappy performance one sees in the OM-D or RX1 (though it doesn’t match OM-D). I could be wrong but I haven’t seen answers like really fast start up and image review or quick to wake up etc.

    I see some hope in looking at the images but bug riddled firmware can make that less than pleasant. However, I have yet to see anything in the images that any other CMOS FF camera can’t deliver, especially at higher ISO levels.

    • Ummm…it’s a rangefinder. That’s the reason to buy one, if you want one. Don’t buy one thinking you will enter into some sort of sensor nirvana. Do you think from the early 1900s to 2006 people bought a Leica because it used some special film? No, it used the same film every other camera used.

      It’s the only FF Rangefinder that can fully utilize M-glass. That’s the reason to buy it. Otherwise, go for your OM-D and NEX

      • Agreed, Jonny. It seems that a few new features have opened the M system up to a new category of photographers, and while I’m sure that will be good for Leica’s bottom line, I think there is going to be a reality check when the new Leica shooters realize how much better the Asian makers are at electronics, in terms of live view, movies, etc. I mean, the you can’t even scroll the magnified image view of the M 240. It’s center point only!

        I shoot an M9 because of the rangefinder, and I thinks that is the true appeal of the system. If not, like you said, go shoot a m4/3 or Sony A99 or whatever. As an M9 owner, some of the new features like weather sealing, faster processing, quieter shutter, etc., are appealing to me, but not enough to really consider trading up for a while. We’ll see how the whole sensor thing shakes out.

      • Jonny….of course you buy the M for the rangefinder experience. With that said, it’s a little daft to dismiss people’s concerns about the sensor. Obviously in the film days it was the camera that mattered and you could buy whatever film you want….but when someone drops $7k for a new M they are expecting a world class sensor AND the rangefinder experience. The fact of the matter is you are stuck with the sensor in a $7k camera, you can’t ‘swap it’ for a different film if you are unhappy with it…so it better be good.

  16. I pre-ordered mine on December 30th. The wait has been killing me since I sold off ALL of my Nikon equipment to make the switch to Leica.

    I’ve been missing some good opportunities and some coming up where I could use the new M, but I may be forced to rent an M9 instead while I wait.

    It’s just a bummer.

  17. After it release the new M 240, you may find new bugs. Maybe return it with your lenses for RF calibration, RF and live view mis-match,etc.

  18. I feel for those that are on the world wide waiting lists and especially those that have recently sold their M9s in preparation. But I agree with you Steve that let’s agree to wait until Leica gets its right.

    I’m new to the Leica fold and I could have waited for the M before parting with my hard earned money. However, I didn’t wait as I knew I’d be way down the list of names on the wait lists and bought a Leica M-E to get my start.

    But I do think the Leica M will be an evolutionary change for the Leica culture for those willing to accept the change.

  19. Ordered mine on Sep 27th. Not surprised of the delay, hope Leica can get this one perfected before releasing to public.

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