You would not be thought down on if you had forgotten about Leica’s CCD-Gate problem with their M9 family of cameras and the CCD sensors that are housed within them. It has been a long time since all of that business went down, but if you happen to be an M9 owner the issue never truly went away. Earlier this year Leica announced that after August 15th, 2017 the free CCD replacement program the company implemented to mitigate the problem would end for cameras purchased more than 5 years ago.
But now stories are coming out that do not bode well for Leica owners who may have sent their cameras in to try and get the free CCD replacement before that deadline.According to a report over on La Vida Leica, he sent in both his Leica M9 and his M Monochrom back in August ahead of the deadline. Everything seemed fine at that point, and he was given a time frame of 20 weeks to have his sensors replaced. While this seems like a long time, given the number of people wanting to send in their gear ahead of the deadline, a shortage of sensors and a backlog of people waiting for them makes sense.
However, it seems even that seemingly long timeframe was woefully inaccurate. In an update posted earlier this week the La Vida Leica report shows an email from Leica, which was a reply to an inquiry about the status of the cameras. In that email Leica admits to a back order on the sensors, but that they expect them to come in around January. But that is not all, as the email continues to state they are not expecting to replace the sensor in LVL’s Monochrom until May and the M9 until June.
In case you are keeping track, that is something like 46 weeks that Leica will have had these cameras sitting on a shelf – unable to be used by their owner. The company also failed to notify the customer until directly asked about it.
We don’t know about you, but this is pretty shoddy customer service from a company holding onto two cameras from a customer that paid over $13,000 for them. So let this be a warning to other M9 and related camera owners. Be prepared for a headache in the event that you need your sensor looked at in the future.