World's most expensive camera fetches $22m at auction

A new record has recently been set for the world's most expensive camera ever sold. Eclipsing auction estimates by almost five times, the Leica O-Series No. 105, owned by Oskar Barnack sold for €14.4m (approx. A$22m). The camera remained in Barnack's family until 1960, before it was sold to an American collector.

Image: Leitz Photographica Auction

The camera sold at the recent Leitz Photographica Auction and smashed the previous record of the world's most expensive camera, an O-Series No. 122, which sold at the 32nd Leitz Photographica Auction in 2018 for €2.4m (approx. A$3.7m). 

The O-Series, created in 1923, two years before Barnack launched Lecia, saw only 23 of the cameras produced, of which very few still exist.

Image: Leitz Photographica Auction

Oskar Barnack is quoted in on the Leica Facebook page stating: 'I spent years working on this first model, and I still have many photographs from that time. Today, we can safely say that the legitimacy of a high-quality 35mm camera has been proven.' 

The video below, produced by DPReview TV, provides some interesting background information about the Leica O-Series No. 105 and the auction, which took place at Leica HQ in Wetzlar, Germany. 


Check out all the auction results at the Leitz website.

Get more stories like this delivered
free to your inbox. Sign up here.