The Most Expensive Camera in the World
Bidders and spectators excitedly took snapshots of the 1923 Leica 0-Series No. 107, the world's most expensive camera sold for $1.9 million (1.3 million euro) at the 19th Camera and Photographica Auction in Vienna, Austria on May 28, 2011. The camera's estimated price was between 350,000 to 450,000 euro yet it rose to 1,300,000 euro (including premium) during a tough 20-minute bidding battle won by an anonymous Asian collector.
According to Artfact, the 1923 Leica 0-series was the first camera ever exported from Germany to New York, its top plate engraved with "Germany" can prove this. The camera is in mint condition and all parts are guaranteed original except for the lens, leather and folding finder, which had to be replaced by authentic Leica 0-series lens, contemporary Leitz leather & Galilean finder. It was one of the rare 25 prototype cameras of Leica 0-series two years before the commercial production of the brand and the second 0-series ever sold at a public auction.
No one predicted an old school camera would beat the ancestor of modern photography, the1839 daguerreotype camera invented by French photographer-chemist Louis Daguerre, when it was sold for 792,000 USD at Galerie Westlicht in 2007. At Weslictht, Austria's first photography museum, many mystery purchases happen so keep checking out the succeeding auctions for more surprises.