"Less is more."
Before the days of color photography and the rise of the digital image, photographers expressed themselves in black and white. Today, even though we live in a digital generation, black and white photography still has incredible capability, but unfortunately, never makes it out the introductory class to photography, where people are often taught what it takes to make a photograph. The idea, is to first have students learn and master the basics of photography in it's most primitive form, unfortunately many decide to discredit the power of a black and white image, and quickly move onto color photography, and inevitably digital photography. For most, creating a black and white image these days consists of nothing more than selecting the monochrome setting on their camera, or perhaps taking a color image and doing a bit of work in a post-processing program. Leica is out to make a statement and change the idea behind this with their M System MONOCROM camera ($8,000, body only), a full-frame, black and white only digital camera.
At first thought, you may think Leica is up to some simple tricks here, perhaps a slight software tweak that allows you no color settings, limiting you to black and white, and providing you with the same images as their other M System cameras. It's what we initially thought at the office, but we were wrong, Leica, as usual, takes it to the next step; they've removed the color filter array (CFA) from infront of the 18 megapixel full-frame sensor. This means the sensor is focusing on less color, and producing a clearer, more detailed, true black and white image. At $8,000 with no lens, you'll have to have deep pockets for this bit of nostalgia, but there's more ridiculous things you could spend your money on.