Distinguishing itself from most, the M10 Monochrom is the third-generation model of the innovative series of black & white-only digital rangefinder cameras. Based on the M10-P, the M10 Monochrom takes the coveted design elements of this camera system and adds a 40MP monochrome sensor for solely recording black and white photographs. Beyond the distinct imaging characteristics and unique image quality, the M10 Monochrom "Leitz Wetzlar" also features a monochromatic exterior design, with white and gray engravings on the body, blacked-out shutter and lens release buttons, and a "Leitz Wetzlar" engraving on the top plate.
A redeveloped full-frame, monochrome 40.89MP CMOS sensor pairs with the Maestro II image processor to deliver a wide dynamic range with notable tonal rendering, as well as enhanced sensitivity to suit working in a variety of lighting conditions. The sensor's design also omits an optical low-pass filter in order to achieve greater sharpness and resolution. Additionally, differentiating itself from typical sensor designs, the Monochrom sensor omits a color filter array (CFA), which offers the ability to solely record monochromatic imagery using only luminance values for enhanced clarity, depth, and resolution. By removing the CFA, this camera also achieves a higher sensitivity range of ISO 160-100000 than color-enabled M10 cameras, along with reduced noise to suit working in difficult lighting conditions.
The optical viewfinder is a large, bright-line 0.73x-magnification rangefinder with automatic parallax compensation and bright-line frame lines, which are set to match the image sensor size at a focusing distance of 6.6'. On the front of the camera, a viewfinder frame selector can also be used to manually change the apparent image field to help visualize the scene with varying focal lengths; options are available in 35mm/135mm, 28mm/90mm, and 50mm/75mm focal length pairs.
The rangefinder mechanism displays split or superimposed bright field images within the center of the viewfinder to benefit accurate manual focusing control. The effective rangefinder metering basis is 50.6mm (mechanical metering basis 69.31mm x viewfinder magnification of 0.73x).