Leica M-A (Typ 127) Black

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As a purely mechanical camera, the Leica M-A is a precision instrument that has been so dramatically reduced to the essentials that it opens up entirely new creative horizons for photographers.


Leica M-A (Typ 127) Black

Pure Mechanical Excellence As a purely mechanical camera, the Leica M-A is a precision instrument that has been so dramatically reduced to the essentials that it opens up entirely new creative horizons for photographers. It may have no monitor, no exposure meter, and no battery, but what it does have is a mechanical quality that makes Leica’s 100 years of experience instantly tangible. Photographers can read the shutter speed and aperture directly from the camera and lens and so concentrate fully on their subject. The acoustic signature of the shutter release of a Leica M-A is a delight that immediately reveals the precision-engineered excellence of its origin.

Form and function in a perfect design
The exterior of the Leica M-A is as timeless as the precision engineering hidden inside. For instance, the Leica red dot has been deliberately omitted to emphasize the classic restraint of its design as an ultimate expression of understatement. Viewed from the side, the M-A is also noticeably slimmer than its digital counterparts.

The favorite film of the analogue M: Kodak Tri-X 400
The M-System is not the only photographic legend celebrating its 60th birthday in 2014. Kodak Tri-X 400 film was also brought to life in 1954. With its exceptional sharpness, fine grain, and distinctive tonal gradation, extremely broad exposure latitude, and very good shadow detail, this black and white film soon became a firm favorite and a classic for art and reportage photography. And it’s also the perfect partner for the Leica M-A – which explains why Kodak Tri-X 400 film is included in the Leica M-A package.

The essentials:

  • Easy to use -photographer concentrates on focusing, aperture and shutter speed
  • Fully mechanical body without the need to use a battery
  • ISO dial to remember which ISO is being used
  • Access to a wide range of M lenses from 16 - 135 mm
  • Discrete black chrome finish or classical silver finish
  • Enclosed all-metal body with chromed brass top & bottom covers
  • Made in Germany


Fully mechanical body

M lenses from 16 - 135 mm

The LEICA Camera Blog

  • Camera
    Leica M-A (Typ 127) compact rangea nd viewfinder system camera with mechanically controlled shutter
  • Lens Connection
    Leica M bayonet
  • Lens System
    Leica M lenses from 16-135mm
  • Exposure Control
    Manual shutter speed & aperture setting based on readings from external exposure meter or operator assessment
  • Flash unit connection
    Using accessory shoe with center contact
  • Synchronization
    With 1st shutter curtain
  • Flash sync speed
    1/5  s; slower shutter speeds can be used
  • Flash exposure control
    Computer control of flash unit or guide number calculation and manual setting of required aperture
  • Viewfinder principle
    Large, bright line frame viewfinder with automatic parallax compensation
  • Eyepiece
    Calibrated to -0.5 dpt. Corrective lenses from -3 to +3 diopter available
  • Image field limiter
    By activating two bright lines each: For 28 and 90 mm or for 35 and 135 mm, or for 50 and 75 mm; automatic activation when lens is fitted
  • Image field selector
    Allows the bright-line pairs to be manually activated at any time (e.g. to compare detail)
  • Parallax compensation
    Horizontal and vertical offset between viewfinder and lens axis is automatically compensated according to the relevant distance setting
  • Correlation between viewfinder & film images
    At the shortest possible distance setting for each focal length, the bright line frame size corresponds to an image size of approx. 23 x 35 mm. When set to infinity, depending on the focal length between 9% (28mm)  and 23% (135mm)  more is captured by the film than is shown in the corresponding bright line frame
  • Magnification
    (For all lenses) 0.72 x
  • Large basis range finder
    Split or superimposed image range finder shown as bright field in the center of the viewfinder image
  • Effective measurement basis
    '49.9 mm (mechanical measurement basis 69.25 mm x viewfinder magnification 0.72 x)
  • Shutter
    Rubber blanket slotted shutter with horizontal movement; extremely low-noise; mechanically controlled
  • Shutter speeds
    From 1 s to 1/1  s in whole increments, B for long exposures of any duration, (1/5 s) for flash synchronization
  • Shutter release
    Standard thread for cable release integrated
  • Film winding
  • Loading
    Manual film loading after opening the bottom cover and the rear panel
  • Winding forwards
    Manually with quick wind lever or Leicavit M, motorized using Leica Motor-M, Leica Winder-M, Leica Winder M4-P, or Leica Winder M4-2 (from serial no. 10350)
  • Rewind
    Manually with pull-out rewind button, after moving the R lever on the front of the camera
  • Material
    Enclosed all-metal body with hinged rear panel; chromed brass top & bottom cover
  • Tripod thread
    A 1/4  DIN 4503 (1/4”)
  • Rear panel / equipment
    Indicator for film sensitivity
  • Dimensions
    (Length x Depth x Height) 138 mm x 38 mm x 77 mm
  • Weight
    Approx. 578 g
  • Items supplied
    Housing bayonet cover, carrying strap

Camera housing, Carrying strap, Housing bayonet cover, Cover for accessory shoe.

Limited Warranty:
Leica Camera AG (‘LEICA’) provides a five-year product limited warranty for this LEICA camera valid from the date of purchase from an authorized LEICA dealer, including the accessories contained in the original packaging which are valid for two years.

The Making of a Legacy

Leica M-System by Mark Mann

2 Reviews Hide Reviews Show Reviews

  • 5
    Leica M-A

    Posted by Lance on Dec 10th 2019

    I have gone through so many cameras film and digital.. I really appreciate the back to the origin of photography with this camera. It has the same basic function of my 1963 Batnack IIIf but with it being NEW id is so much smoother and easier to work with, I have several leica lenses but the 35mm and 50mm get the most use. The camera makes me preplan my photo.. Check the light meter, then decide how I want to use the information to execute the photo. Shallow depth of fiels or whatever shutter speed.. The viewfinder/rangefinder is one of the easiest to see and use. My vision is good but I have floaters in my right eye and everything ranges perfectly.

  • 5
    Compact and simple to use

    Posted by Peter Riddell on Oct 13th 2019

    This camera is very small, light, and very discrete. I use it with a wrist strap for candid photography and more often than not people aren't even conscious of it's presence. I've married this to a 50mm Summarit lens. This combination of camera and small lens are perfect for street photography. The controls are about as simple and ergonomically perfect as they get.Also, the film transport is about the smoothest and quietest you could ever hope for in an all manual analog film camera. This tool represents the pinnacle of analog film technology today.