Leica is planning to drop the latest rangefinder camera in its M series soon, but some of the design choices might piss off some of the red dot purists. Leaks coming from Leica Rumors (via HMeye) show that the M11 will not have the traditional baseplate design that you have to twist open to get to the battery and SD card. The design harkens back to Leica’s film cameras, but it looks like the M11 does away with the baseplate and gives you direct access to the battery and SD card.
In another blow to diehard old-school Leica fans everywhere, the M11 will also be built with an electronic shutter function, internal storage of up to 64GB, and a USB-C port. Leica’s digital cameras always operated in this weird space of a digital camera that’s trying so hard to be a film camera. But with the M11 leaks, the German camera manufacturer may be leaning more towards modern functionality instead of holding on to its heritage-based designs.
60 megapixels — One probably more welcome upgrade with the M11 is its 60.3-megapixel full-frame sensor. The M11’s sensor would be a pretty big jump up from its predecessor, the M10-R and its 40-megapixel sensor. According to the leaked spec sheet, you’ll also be able to bump down your shots to around 36 or 18 megapixels if you’re worried about being short on space after accumulating all those huge DNG files.
The leaks also show that the M11 will have its native ISO bumped down to 64, while keeping the same max ISO of 50,000. Also, the M11 will be built with an electronic shutter option that can shoot up to 1/16000s. It looks like the M11 will still have a mechanical shutter that hits 1/4000s, but its electronic shutter will no doubt be even quieter than the “super quiet” mechanical shutter of the M-10R. Leica Rumors also reported that the M11 will have a built-in image stabilization system into its LCD screen and electronic viewfinder, instead of doing in-body image stabilization. And a leaked Leica video with American photographer Ralph Gibson also showed a sneak peek at Leica’s new external Visoflex viewfinder.
Just how expensive? — Leica Rumors compiled several M11 price rumors from European retailers who leaked the pricing, but they range anywhere from 7,000 to 8,350 euros. The latest listing showed a price of 7,500 pounds from a retailer in the U.K., which would be roughly $10,000. The pricing is by no means confirmed yet, but Leica has a well-earned reputation for expensive cameras, including its recently-released kevlar-wrapped camera that retails for $5,995. For the moment, we just have to wait for Leica’s expected announcement on January 13. The company shared the below teaser on Instagram to drum up hype.
You know what they say about there being fire where there’s smoke...