The Leica M10 is, to many, the epitome of what a Leica should be in the 21st century. And before you make the mistake of thinking that’s how it always is with a new Leica, I can assure you, it isn’t. The M9 and various evolutions of it (typ. 240, et cetera) were admired, but unlike the M10, never quite the same way adored.
Yes, the M10 bares the obvious family lineage, but even at first glance you notice it’s different; it’s leaner, easier to hold, has a bigger/brighter viewfinder, and it’s dropped buttons you don’t need in favor of a dial you want. And under the skin it’s a different story too, with better dynamic range, smaller battery, WLAN, better menu, and a better sensor. It is a thing of beauty, and if you appreciate craftsmanship, this little video on the making of the M10 is right up your alley.
There are no words to the video, but that doesn’t make it any less emotive. When we think of Leica, as we do any other premium brand and product, we often think ‘handmade’, but what does that actually mean? Is it like old handmade cars where ‘handmade’ was just a a nice way of saying ‘it’ll break’? Not quite.
The peek behind the German net-curtains provides a glimpse at a process that seems to reflect the very mixed nature of the M10 itself; something both mechanically and clinically meticulous, but with a human touch.
When brands allow us a look at the factories, and the processes and people behind the products, they really make them more compelling, and we get a level of appreciation and affiliation you couldn’t do otherwise.
If you loved the M10 before this, you’ll want one more after, and if you didn’t, you just may do now. It’s one of the most beautiful cameras I’ve ever seen, and you can see my initial review here, and keep an eye out for another piece about what it’s like to live with daily.