“The Leica Q2 is at least double the camera it was. No joke.”Kristian Dowling
I got myself the Leica Q2 this week. Happy little mudlark! The previous model — Leica Q, has been a game changer for me. I got it back in September 2017. Changing from my Fujifilm X-Pro2 to the Leica Q as my everyday camera took a while. With the passing of time I realised I was sitting with the worlds most brilliant compact camera ever. Not pocketable size but for a compact camera with brilliant AF and low light capabilities the Q was a portable powerhouse. This week however, I got myself the Leica Q2. Can the acclaimed worlds best compact fixed lens camera be improved on? The answer of course is yes and Leica Q2 takes it to an unprecedented level. Here are some of my recent photos with it.
Leica Q2 quick review and why you should have one too
In honestly adoration and awe of this beautiful machine. Couple of thing that I already love are:
- The updated menu system even more than its predecessor
- Leica Q2 files have outstanding dynamic range. It is almost like medium format photo.
- Only 3 buttons on the back of the camera is a very welcome change
- Continuous shutter not on the power button. This is a big help.
- High ISO JPG in low light is remarkably beautiful. It almost makes me want to shoot pure JPG which I never do.
- The quick framing to shoot 28mm, 35mm, 50mm or 75mm focal length at the press of a button is very practical. 75mm is the new addition here.
- Longer battery life. I have shot almost two days in row without having to charge. There is a 80% charge indicator so you know how juiced up your battery is as you walk out the door.
- Weather proof! Splash proof! YES!
There is a lot more to explore. I’ll write more as I play with this little piece of art! Albeit its weight, I love the form factor. Not having to deal with the continuous shooting on the power button is a huge improvement to start with and the separation of the battery compartment from the SD card slot is another little beauty.
My MacbookPro struggles to bring up those nearly 100MB files in Lightroom or DxO PhotoLab straight up. But when they do, they are nothing but pure gold nuggets of detail, colour and dynamic range. Capture One Pro deals with these files way more gracefully of course. I’ve bought a 5TB mobile hard drive to solve the storage issue.
Leica Q2 JPGs
The JPGs taken on high ISO at night-time have life-like feel. If you were to look at the JPG and the DNG side by side you’d see every detail in the JPG minus the noise. In other words the JPG alone from the Leica Q2 are sufficient. If you were a JPG shooter this camera will wow you nonstop. Here are some of my recent images with the Q2. They are all DNG conversions. By way of edit they were mostly straightened and a tiny contrast added in a few files. You can click on them and view the details in the lightbox. I’m very impressed how accurate and painless night shooting is with this camera. It would make for such a great camera for music gigs and events if you were to travel with just the one camera. Zoom in at 75mm and shoot up close and personal. Given the razor sharp accurate AF and ISO range of 50-50,000 with the faster Maestro family processing engine you’d almost never miss a thing.
Leica Q2 Photos
The daytime photos were pretty much point and shoot. The lighting at the nighttime was tricky. It was relatively dark indoors with mood lighting. I was on AUTO ISO but it didn’t fail to focus or create worthy images even at high ISO. Just as it should. No hunting, no waiting. Snap and its there. If I didn’t get the shot its cause I don’t know how to focus well enough with this new toy. Simple as that! Pretty impressed so far.
Night time under dim lighting
My older Leica Q article is here.