Leica Pure and Simple
Some people are gifted with the ability to say clearly what they mean. Every sentence they speak or write carries an unambiguous message - everyone can understand it.
I think the Leica company has realized that this is the case with some photographers as well. They looked at their primary rangefinder camera - the M9 - and decided to manufacture a variant of it that deals with the world ONLY in monochrome - a true black and white camera. It is the Leica M Monochrom.
To do it they designed a new full-frame sensor. It doesn't need to deal with colours and so has no filters to separate these out. It does not need a great deal of the electronic processing that other sensors use - as a result the files are crisper, sharper, and more contrasty. They approach medium format quality.
The camera can run from ISO 320 to 10,000. The shutter is a simple focal-plane type and there is no crashing mirror each time you trigger it. You can fire it in a quiet mode that allows you to melt into the background.
Of course it takes all the M-series lenses. Leica are famous for forward and backward compatibility. The Leica lenses are universally recognized as the best small format glass in the business. They are lenses you buy once and keep forever.
One of the philosophical points that this new approach to black and white digital photography raises is that of white balance and colour temperature. When other photographers flinch and fuss to cope with or modify this, the Leica M Monochrom shooter simple focuses ansd shoots. For him or her..light just is.
Will this camera make a better photograph? Will it make a better photographer? Will it see the world in a purer light?