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Leica M10-D Review

The Leica M10-D is the most up-to-date model of the digital rangefinder camera that Leica considers to be its flagship product.

The M10-P served as the model for this new camera, which explains why it has the same “silent” shutter as the M10-P and a full-frame sensor with 24 megapixels. The Maestro II processor also remains the same.

The Leica M10-D, while being a digital camera, has the look and appearance of an analog or film camera since it does not have a back screen. This is the primary distinction between the two types of cameras. In its stead sits a sizable exposure compensation dial, which can be located exactly as an ISO dial did on earlier generations of the M series.

Leica M10-D Build Quality

The Leica M10-D is identical to the Leica M10-P and the ordinary M10 in terms of its physical appearance and dimensions. It is similar to the M10-P in that it does not have the recognizable “red dot” on the front of the camera but instead has “Leica” printed in bold letters on the top of the body. This brings it closer to the M10-P. This feature was added to the M10-P to make the camera less conspicuous and, as a result, more suited to street photography.

The fact that the M10-D does not have a screen is, of course, the most notable distinction between the two versions. Instead, you will discover a massive dial on the back of the camera that can change the exposure compensation. This dial will allow you to pick between -3 and +3, with 1/3rd of stops between each option.

Because you can’t see a preview of your picture, the dial is of a flat kind that is a little difficult to turn, but it should at least avoid unintentional modifications. This is much more crucial when you can’t see your image.

Additionally, the on/off switch for the Leica M10-D is located on the camera’s rear. Again, it’s a dial with three distinct settings: off, which is denoted by a tiny red dot; on, which is denoted by a white dot; and on, with Wi-Fi connection, which is marked by a standard symbol for Wi-Fi. A different color dot signifies each setting.

Leica M10-D Image Quality

The Fine JPEG option at 24 megapixels was used to capture each sample photograph included in this study. This setting results in an image that is around 9 megabytes in size on average.

Once you get the hang of using a rangefinder, the Leica M10-D is capable of creating some very remarkable photographs, and this is true of all of the cameras in the Leica M series. Because the image sensor and processor in this model are identical to those found in the M10-P and the M10, we may anticipate receiving photographs of equally high quality from all three models.

The images show an impressive level of clarity and sharpness. As is typical for photographs produced by Leica cameras, a particular “filmic” characteristic that is difficult to articulate is present in the final product. To put it another way, they “appear” to have been taken using a Leica camera.

The noise is kept under control quite well between ISO 100 and 1600; however, it begins to become more noticeable at ISO 3200.

Images can still be used at ISO 6400 and above unless the user intends to print them at huge sizes; in this case, ISO rates of 12500 and 25600 should be avoided if possible. The maximum speed of ISO 50000 produces very poor-quality photographs; thus, using that setting should also be avoided.

Leica M10-D Specs

Body typeRangefinder-style mirrorless
Max resolution5952 x 3992
Other resolutions5952 x 3968 (JPEG, 24MP), 4256 x 2932 (12MP), 2976 x 1984 (6MP)
Image ratio w:h3:2
Effective pixels24 megapixels
Sensor sizeFull frame (35.8 x 23.9 mm)
Sensor typeCMOS
ProcessorMaestro II
ISOAuto, 100-50000
White balance presets8
Custom white balanceYes
Image stabilizationNo
Uncompressed formatRAW
Manual focusYes
Lens mountLeica M
Focal length multiplier
Articulated LCDNo
Viewfinder typeOptical (rangefinder)
Viewfinder coverage100%
Viewfinder magnification0.73×
Minimum shutter speed8 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/4000 sec
Aperture priorityYes
Shutter priorityYes
Manual exposure modeYes
Subject / scene modesNo
Built-in flashNo
External flashYes
Continuous drive5.0 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 12 secs)
Metering modesMultiCenter-weightedSpot
Exposure compensation±3 (at 1/3 EV steps)
AE Bracketing±3 (3, 5 frames at 1/3 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV, 2 EV steps)
MicrophoneNone
SpeakerNone
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC
HDMINo
Microphone portNo
Headphone portNo
WirelessBuilt-In
Remote controlYes (via cable trigger)
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionBP-SCL5 lithium-ion battery & charger
Weight (inc. batteries)660 g (1.46 lb / 23.28 oz)
Dimensions139 x 38 x 80 mm (5.47 x 1.5 x 3.15″)
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingYes
GPSOptional
GPS notesvia optional Visoflex EVF

Leica M10-D Conclusion

As we have seen in the past with the Leica M and the M10-P, the M10-D is a gorgeous camera that is sure to appeal to those who are enthusiastic about Leica. It will be fascinating to watch how well the M10-D succeeds in sales because very costly digital rangefinders are already a niche proposition. Removing the back screen makes it even more of a niche product, so it’s worth keeping an eye on.

The Leica M10-D may be an exceedingly frustrating camera to use occasionally due to its poor usability. Use it in the same manner you would use a film camera, and look at the photographs when you get the opportunity to come to a computer or anything similar. It would almost be preferable to pretend that Wi-Fi access is not feasible and use it in the same way that you would use it.

Aside from that, the high frequency with which the M10-D was unable to connect with the phone made the process of taking pictures with the camera quite frustrating and time-consuming.

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