20 years later, Leica relaunches M6 film camera

Jahabar Sadiq

Guests trying out the reissued Leica M6 at the launch ceremony in the company's Wetzlar headquarters. – The Malaysian Insight pic, October 20, 2022.

LEICA’s M6, among the German cameramaker’s most popular rangefinder cameras with sales of up to 175,000 units, was reissued today on top of a revival in film photography across the globe.

Also relaunched was the 35mm f1.4 steel rim lens that paired with the M6 when it was first launched in 1984. 

The brass camera and lens will go on worldwide sale from November 3.

The new M6, which now comes with coated glass surfaces and battery level warning, will join two other Leica film rangefinders available for purchase – the MP and MA. 

“Conscious analog photography as an antithesis to the flood of digital images is enjoying great popularity.

“Therefore it was only logical for us to produce the Leica M6 again as one of the most popular representatives of this camera type,” said Stefan Daniel, Leica Camera AG executive vice-president of technology and operations, at the camera’s launch during Leica’s annual Celebration of Photography event.

Stefan Daniel (R), Leica Camera AG executive vice-president of technology and operations, says the company is hopeful the reissued Leica M6 will be in demand. – The Malaysian Insight pic, October 20, 2022.

Leica still has a backlog of orders for the Leica MP and MA cameras – much desired among camera collectors and those who still shoot 35mm film. 

Leica ended its M6 production run 20 years ago, replacing it with the M7 that came with an electronic shutter. It then went into digital camera production with the M8 digital rangefinder. 

The company, based in Wetzlar where it made the first 35mm camera in 1913, also makes full-frame, mirrorless, medium-format cameras and lenses. 

The reissued Leica M6 comes with a top cap and bottom plate made of solid brass with a scratch-resistant, matte-black paint finish. 

Instead of of the classic Leica red dot, this film camera sports the red Leitz logo on the front, similar to the original. 

The reissued Leica M6, which will go on sale worldwide from November 3. – The Malaysian Insight pic, October 20, 2022.

It also has a new ISO dial in style of the original Leica M6 – newly developed due to new electronic components inside, and leather straps with embossed “LEICA” lettering from the original camera. 

The 35mm lens is a classic lens with steel rim, exactly like the first version’s, with the same optical and product design but with slight adjustments to fit modern production processes. 

The ultra-compact, fast wide-angle lens is said to be a true “king of bokeh”, or the out-of-focus zone, much prized by certain photographers. 

Both camera and lens are made in Germany. – October 20, 2022.

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