By plasticmanMike Johnston at TheOnlinePhotographer blog has been musing about the perfect 'simple' digital camera again, and I can't help thinking that a Leica T(L/2) fits his description perfectly - if only he (and his readers) knew it.
He acknowledges that Leica is the only camera company embracing photographic simplicity, but the spectre of Leica prices keeps coming back - both in the blog posts and the comments - and the only cameras they seem to acknowledge are the M-series.
To me, the menu system in the Leica T is the most intuitive and minimal interface that's possible in an advanced digital camera - especially the way that each user can choose their own subset of visible menu items: I have only 4 items in that menu, and regularly only use one of them (the metering type).
Nowadays the T can be bought for less than a Fuji XE3. You can even pair it with an adapter for non-Leica manual lenses (ie: Olympus OM). Couldn't be simpler or cheaper.
Incidentally, one of the points being missed in a lot of the comments on TOP's site is the scenario where the user changes a setting on a camera unintentionally. A lot of the commenters say it's easy to just ignore menus and settings they don't understand. But this was one of the problems I persistently had with my X100 - I'd pick it up after a long hiatus and somehow an exposure or other setting had been inadvertently changed, and it would first take me a while to notice, and then usually a long time to fix (hunting through tens of menus). And I'm an app developer, so used to device complexity.
The T has solved all those problems perfectly.
anyone get a chance to play around with one of these yet?
By nicci78Yes I proudly bought a T in 2019. This is why.
What's good :
IQ 16MP without AA is very very sharp. Ultra fast startup time, faster than Q or CL. Crazy. Full USB camera ! No need to remove SD card and battery. Everything through any USB cable : charging and downloading files. So nice to be able to use any external battery on the go. AF is fast in good light. OK in dim situations. But nothing like Q or CL. Face detect AF works well, do not hesitate to use it. The digital distance scale is genius. Therefore only T, TL and TL2 can use TL lenses in hyperfocal ! So no AF problem at, because no focusing is faster than any AF. Yeah ! CL has to use adapted M lenses to do so. APO-Macro-Elmarit-TL 60mm is now usable in MF mode. Good pop up flash (as good as such tiny flash can be) Totally usable, nice flash metering, no red eye (no need to activate red eye mode, nice) and no washout face. So high ISO problem mostly solved. I even like its results better than my SF-40, because T's flash is more consistent. Better handhold ability, thanks to 16MP sensor. Therefore you can choose confidently to shoot at 2x speed against focal length. Q 2x is possible but not reliable so I stick to 1/125sec. CL needs 3x Extremely good looking and wonderful build quality. Nothing is nicer. On par with Leica M10. Way better than already superb Q and CL. Best ergonomics : easy flash access, touch screen menus are excellent, double scroll wheel are very efficient. And excellent grip design. Way better than Ms, Q, CL or SL. Within dry hands it is not slippery at all. I love it. No need for stupid optional SD+battery blocking handgrip. Removable strap lugs. I can use it confidently without any strap. I also remove strap lugs for better design and ergonomics Awesome battery life for a mirrorless. No need for second battery. Double battery life than CL. Even when using flash third of the time. And battery latch is genius. Battery charger with integrated plugs is the best of all Leica external charger. Huge touch screen is nice, I didn't thought I would like it better than CL, Q or M10 menus. It is different and I love it. Easiest menus in industry. Thinner and sleeker than CL. Slips more easily in jacket pocket. Life saving internal memory. Though quite slow
What's not so good :
High ISO is not Q or CL level. Nice until 6400. Use flash for dimmer places. Operationally it's a mixed bag. Very fast startup and wake up time. No shutter lag. But half sec blackout. Touch operations should be faster. T is very usable, but not as fast as Q or CL. Can get quite cold when used in minus 0°C weather. Yes it is a pure block of aluminium. Video quality is very bad in low light. Video AF hunts too much. Almost useless when light is lacking. SD card is hard to remove Buffer is too small Stupid no DNG mode only Firmware bug : impossible to deactivate auto review No exposure preview. So you have to rely on auto preview to check exposure. Left it at 1 sec.
T is so good, that I should have considering a TL2 instead of a CL.
So far I happy to have the T as a backup for my CL. If you find one cheap, do not hesitate, it worths it.
This is a rolling review in progress. So more to come.
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