M9 CCD or M 240 CMOS?

I no longer have the amazing Leica M9. I sent it for remapping but apparently had more serious issues and was in the shop for more about 4 months. Finally I was given the opportunity to get a Leica M Typ 240, M-E or  another Leica M9. I prefer the look of the M9 and I can spot it 85% of the time from the rest of CMOS cameras. I am afraid of buying a used M9 and I simply don’t like the darker gray paint color of the M-E. So either I embrace the CMOS sensor or try to find an M9 from a Leica store with confirmation of sensor replacement. One positive note is that I have played win DNG files from a Leica M 240 and were able to CLOSELY match the color, sharpness and rendition of the M9 and saved it as a preset that can be used on all imports into Lightroom. I will update this post with some sample images later in the week.

If you are or were an M9 owner, what is your opinion on this M9 Sensor issue?


It’s been a few days with the Leica M. I am testing the JPEG and DNG at high ISO.


The bottom image at ISO 400. Beautiful colors.



The longer I play with the colors on the M Typ 240, the closer I can get personal satisfaction on color rendition. The following image is from the CMOS sensor and to me looks like a CCD. 



5 Comments Add yours

  1. Just today I was reading a few posts discussing (and asking to Leica) the possibility of a brand new M with CCD sensor. I am also among those who prefer the cinematic feel of the CCD; even though the CMOS is way more capable to deliver in low light. In fact I just sold all my Fuji gear -I prefer the CMOS to the X-Trans- and this month I went back to basics; got myself a beautiful Leica M8, a Digilux 2 and the original 12.8mp Canon 5D, which has a CMOS but for some reason that old sensor has a very analogue “CCD” look which I love. The only thing that would make me take an M240 over an M-E is the EVF and the chance to use other lenses than the M-mount ones. Thanks for sharing the post! Ricardo

    1. Erick Photo says:

      I have a theory where a good colorist should be able to replicate the look of a CCD or anything else available with almost no difference. I am trying to achieve it but I am far from being a professional colorist. I created some import settings to make the M Typ 240 look closer to the M9 and so far it’s looking good. But you have to shoot RAW.

    2. Erick Photo says:

      And congratulations on your new gear.

      1. Thank you! I got a nice charger too 🙂 The thing with CCDs IMHO is more about texture rather than color or maybe I am wrong, but for example I have a few shots I took with my now sold X-E1+35mm 1.4 set with its X-Trans sensor which look super sharp, lots of narrow DoF, but at the same time they look “soul-less”; too clean, too perfect, too digital (?) each one has their own personal preferences, but given that basically any good modern camera can deliver sharp results, I prefer the coarse-gritty look of the old CCDs, or from a few CMOS like the Canon 5D, the Epson R-D1 or the original Fuji X100. Would be nice to buy a Leica and decide which sensor you prefer, like the small Fuji´s which are identical and you can pick either the X-T or the CMOS model…

      2. Erick Photo says:

        You sound like you would like to shoot film. By the way the charger is on its way to you. Should be there this week.

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