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SL2 video troubles and rampant deficiencies

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Hate to say the SL2 video capabilities are seriously flawed at 4K recording and C4K.  See the picture below.  The main issues I ran into during a full day of video use (With the 50 APO SL and 35/1.2 Art):

1.  4K recording can only occur for 5 minutes or less on a full battery before error message “battery level too low for 4K recording”.  (Changed batteries and encountered same issue so it’s not the battery)
2.  C4K recording restricts AF usage, limited to only manual focus with the Sigma 35/1.2. 

3. All AF capabilities during recording are very slow to focus, unable to switch faces during face/body detection (in the rare case it captures a face), the AF box may at times capture 2-3 bodies and choose to “average” the focus distance.  
4.  No compressed 4K recording at 50mbps or less.  
5.  Video Focus peaking’s highlighted/colored areas do not match still focus peaking highlighted areas.  
6.  No way to magnify the video during capture to check focus.  
 

Unfortunately the error message for battery doesn’t show up until 30 seconds after you hit record video.  So it ruined a nice Xmas morning moment with the family, when I set up the tripod, hit record, then joined the wife/baby.  5 minutes later, I check the camera and only 30 seconds or less were recorded and the moment gone.  Last year my A7r3 recorded 4K full width of sensor till the battery went to 0%.  AF easily moved from eye to eye of subjects, focus peaking was accurate and easily seen, and it held tons of video in a UHS-1 SD Card.  
 

For a camera that touts it video recording, my iPhone did better (actually much better), and then I had to grab my xpro3 for the rest of the day.  
 

how did Leica release a camera with such terrible firmware?? ASIDE from video, just off the top of my head, I recall: terrible accuracy and reliability issues with AF-c tracking, complete lack of eye-AF all together, blurry EVF view in magnified mode for AF-s and manual focus, no AF-s abilities at all while in magnified live view,  terrible reliability with tethering (can’t tether to an iPad with two SD cards in the camera due to a firmware bug),  nonlinear focusing in manual focus on the Summicron SL lenses.  That’s all I encountered, im sure there’s more to report.  I haven’t encountered a small percentage of such obvious firmware issues with the xpro3, a7r3, A7r4, Nikon z7, or gfx50r.  

Edited by NRKstudio

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Also, I didn’t bring up issues using a flash.  I tried the SF40.  As mentioned in the SL2 flash thread: the camera often won’t trigger the flash in Aperture priority, with the flash in TTL is A modes.  Not sure why.  The exposures when it does trigger the flash are all over the place too.  Seems like a bug, as the camera def should trigger a Leica flash and temper the shutter speed in both modes.  

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52 minutes ago, hillavoider said:

Friend told me he’s seen an error message saying card not fast enough for 4K video or something similar, so then turn on turn off, goes away 

I see it all the time, every time I try to record video to my Sony 64GB SD XC card. So I’ve ordered a new Sandisk 128GB fast card. 

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1 hour ago, NRKstudio said:

Also, I didn’t bring up issues using a flash.  I tried the SF40.  As mentioned in the SL2 flash thread: the camera often won’t trigger the flash in Aperture priority, with the flash in TTL is A modes.  Not sure why.  The exposures when it does trigger the flash are all over the place too.  Seems like a bug, as the camera def should trigger a Leica flash and temper the shutter speed in both modes.  

Yep, the use of the Leica SF40 flash on the Leica SL or SL2 is total disaster. Nothing works consistently. I gave up long ago. I only use Profoto A1 and B10 remotely triggered / off camera studio lights. Hey anyone wants to buy my unused SF40 flash?

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1 hour ago, NRKstudio said:

Hate to say the SL2 video capabilities are seriously flawed at 4K recording and C4K.  See the picture below.  The main issues I ran into during a full day of video use (With the 50 APO SL and 35/1.2 Art):

1.  4K recording can only occur for 5 minutes or less on a full battery before error message “battery level too low for 4K recording”.  (Changed batteries and encountered same issue so it’s not the battery)
2.  C4K recording restricts AF usage, limited to only manual focus with the Sigma 35/1.2. 

3. All AF capabilities during recording are very slow to focus, unable to switch faces during face/body detection (in the rare case it captures a face), the AF box may at times capture 2-3 bodies and choose to “average” the focus distance.  
4.  No compressed 4K recording at 50mbps or less.  
5.  Video Focus peaking’s highlighted/colored areas do not match still focus peaking highlighted areas.  
6.  No way to magnify the video during capture to check focus.  
 

Unfortunately the error message for battery doesn’t show up until 30 seconds after you hit record video.  So it ruined a nice Xmas morning moment with the family, when I set up the tripod, hit record, then joined the wife/baby.  5 minutes later, I check the camera and only 30 seconds or less were recorded and the moment gone.  Last year my A7r3 recorded 4K full width of sensor till the battery went to 0%.  AF easily moved from eye to eye of subjects, focus peaking was accurate and easily seen, and it held tons of video in a UHS-1 SD Card.  
 

For a camera that touts it video recording, my iPhone did better (actually much better), and then I had to grab my xpro3 for the rest of the day.  
 

how did Leica release a camera with such terrible firmware?? ASIDE from video, just off the top of my head, I recall: terrible accuracy and reliability issues with AF-c tracking, complete lack of eye-AF all together, blurry EVF view in magnified mode for AF-s and manual focus, no AF-s abilities at all while in magnified live view,  terrible reliability with tethering (can’t tether to an iPad with two SD cards in the camera due to a firmware bug),  nonlinear focusing in manual focus on the Summicron SL lenses.  That’s all I encountered, im sure there’s more to report.  I haven’t encountered a small percentage of such obvious firmware issues with the xpro3, a7r3, A7r4, Nikon z7, or gfx50r.  

Meh!! Seems I will be buying the Sigma fp for video work .........

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Obviously the TO has  a lot of troubles with the SL2 and is fully unsatisfied with the SL 2. Under these  circumstances I would sell the camera - a lot of people are eager to get one - because it is hard to to receive one still now and still for a while. So he might get the price he had paid for it. Better to come back to the Sonys he had before and with which he was satisfied, than to wait for   coming updates, which might not solve the problems for sure. I personally cannot complain about the SL 2 - but I do no filming, only photos and for m photo work I do need an extremly quick AF in c mode.  For me it is - even with the existing software - an improvement over the SL. Nevertheless the firmware should be improved in some respects.

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vor 21 Minuten schrieb hillavoider:

The battery is a worry, probably why the lumix has a better battery 

The camera consumes very much energy - perhaps more than the Lumix. The battery  is  - up to my knowledge - produced by the same chinese company. If there is a difference between the energy of the battery or rather in the energy management I do not know. But for sure everyone is well advised to have 2 or even better 3  full batteries with him - including the one in the camera.

Edited by HeinzX

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I'm certainly surprised by the battery consumption in 4k video; with the SL I've had considerably longer. It is specced at 1860mAh, compared to the S1 at 3050mAh - quite a difference. At least one can run the SL2 with an external power supply, which is OK for static video.

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Two days ago I made a dozen videos (4k) and took a few hundred pictures on a single battery without any issues. 

I was very happy with the results, especially the videos. I have to admit though that in video recording I am a bloody beginner. I agree that Eye AF is not very reliable. I would also say that the SL-Crons are not ideal for serious video recordings with AF enabled as AF is definitely not silent (interestingly, my 90 Cron is quite a bit louder than my 35 and 75 Crons).

I just tested: 3 videos, each 5 minutes, each C4K with different settings and lenses (35 Cron, 75 Cron and 90 Cron) with constant CAF. It emptied the battery by about 30 percent. No error message.

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@anickpick Please notice on the picture the settings which caused the issue (regular 4K, I believe MOV, etc.). In the picture, the battery level is about 90% though the error message says the battery levels are insufficient.
 

@HeinzX I am mainly a still photo user, so these video deficiencies were a huge issue for me during Xmas, but the issues were not enough to force me to change systems.  Especially as I recently sold quite a bit of Sony gear to fund my Leica purchase before even trying the camera out.  I relied on the Leica brand’s credibility unfortunately.   I also have a thorough M lens collection, and the SL2 shines with many of them.  
 

I am very frustrated though with Leica’s obvious lack of attention to detail as of late.  Many of these problems were mentioned in the SL2’s pre-release media blitz.  It seems Leica knew of the outstanding issues, but did not delay release of the camera to fix them, or at least admit of the deficiencies.  They should take a lesson from Tamron; who, when found issue with the 28-75 FE lens during its release, admitted the fault and provided a date to buyers in which they would release a firmware update.  Very classy of them. 

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vor 11 Minuten schrieb NRKstudio:

@anickpick Please notice on the picture the settings which caused the issue (regular 4K, I believe MOV, etc.). In the picture, the battery level is about 90% though the error message says the battery levels are insufficient.
 

@HeinzX I am mainly a still photo user, so these video deficiencies were a huge issue for me during Xmas, but the issues were not enough to force me to change systems.  Especially as I recently sold quite a bit of Sony gear to fund my Leica purchase before even trying the camera out.  I relied on the Leica brand’s credibility unfortunately.   I also have a thorough M lens collection, and the SL2 shines with many of them.  
 

I am very frustrated though with Leica’s obvious lack of attention to detail as of late.  Many of these problems were mentioned in the SL2’s pre-release media blitz.  It seems Leica knew of the outstanding issues, but did not delay release of the camera to fix them, or at least admit of the deficiencies.  They should take a lesson from Tamron; who, when found issue with the 28-75 FE lens during its release, admitted the fault and provided a date to buyers in which they would release a firmware update.  Very classy of them. 

 

I do notice your issue. I understand your frustration. I would be pisxxd too.

Based on my findings I would say that my SL2's video is working as it should, while I think that something is wrong with your SL2.

However, I am too not among the lucky ones who have received a perfectly working SL2: My SL2 gives me a dreadly horizontal stripe in about 1 photo out of 300 and I am still waiting for Leica's response.

 

 

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Have you contacted Leica customer service? If not, I would do so and see if your camera is faulty.

Just checked with my SL2 and 35/2.0 Leica lens.

No problem to shoot 4k mov for longer than 5 minutes without getting an error message.

No problem to focus my 35mm lens during 4kcine. You can also move the focusfield around during filming by using the joystick.

Can other users reproduce your problem?

 

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I suspect most of these issues will turn out to be firmware glitches that only occur with a certain combination of menu settings ..... and probably some that are not even connected with video use. I doubt that Leica has the time, staff and large enough group of beta trialers to test the firmware to destruction ..... particularly the video aspects in a company that is mainly 'still photography' orientated. 

The S1R ..... despite a shorter development period seems remarkably free of firmware problems ..... but Panasonic has a legacy of excellent smaller format mirrorless cameras with superb video capabilities. 

Edited by thighslapper

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1 hour ago, thighslapper said:

I suspect most of these issues will turn out to be firmware glitches that only occur with a certain combination of menu settings ..... and probably some that are not even connected with video use. I doubt that Leica has the time, staff and large enough group of beta trialers to test the firmware to destruction ..... particularly the video aspects in a company that is mainly 'still photography' orientated. 

The S1R ..... despite a shorter development period seems remarkably free of firmware problems ..... but Panasonic has a legacy of excellent smaller format mirrorless cameras with superb video capabilities. 

The fact that the instruction manual for the SL2 defers some obvious function to "the 2020 firmware release" makes me suspect that the SL2 firmware was barely ready for the sale date in late November.  It would be hard to have a significant beta test with no firmware in anything close to final form...  Instead, Leica used the long delay between basically solid hardware and complete firmware to invite quite a tribe of celebrity photographers to Wetzlar and do an excellent promotional job on the rollout.  For Leica's bottom line, that's probably a good outcome.  We could see that final firmware and working Fotos releases appeared around Dec 1. 

So once again, in a time-honored software tradition, early users are beta-testers.  And the better the job we do in exposing the gaps in the initial product, the better that product will become.  We can use the functionality of the S1 and S1R as a standard to hold Leica to.  If a complaint is verified by other users here on the LUF, let customer support at leica know about it.  Or use the feedback app that is part of Fotos.

Edited by scott kirkpatrick

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9 hours ago, NRKstudio said:

Hate to say the SL2 video capabilities are seriously flawed at 4K recording and C4K.  See the picture below.  The main issues I ran into during a full day of video use (With the 50 APO SL and 35/1.2 Art):

1.  4K recording can only occur for 5 minutes or less on a full battery before error message “battery level too low for 4K recording”.  (Changed batteries and encountered same issue so it’s not the battery)
2.  C4K recording restricts AF usage, limited to only manual focus with the Sigma 35/1.2. 

3. All AF capabilities during recording are very slow to focus, unable to switch faces during face/body detection (in the rare case it captures a face), the AF box may at times capture 2-3 bodies and choose to “average” the focus distance.  
4.  No compressed 4K recording at 50mbps or less.  
5.  Video Focus peaking’s highlighted/colored areas do not match still focus peaking highlighted areas.  
6.  No way to magnify the video during capture to check focus.  
 

Unfortunately the error message for battery doesn’t show up until 30 seconds after you hit record video.  So it ruined a nice Xmas morning moment with the family, when I set up the tripod, hit record, then joined the wife/baby.  5 minutes later, I check the camera and only 30 seconds or less were recorded and the moment gone.  Last year my A7r3 recorded 4K full width of sensor till the battery went to 0%.  AF easily moved from eye to eye of subjects, focus peaking was accurate and easily seen, and it held tons of video in a UHS-1 SD Card.  
 

For a camera that touts it video recording, my iPhone did better (actually much better), and then I had to grab my xpro3 for the rest of the day.  
 

how did Leica release a camera with such terrible firmware?? ASIDE from video, just off the top of my head, I recall: terrible accuracy and reliability issues with AF-c tracking, complete lack of eye-AF all together, blurry EVF view in magnified mode for AF-s and manual focus, no AF-s abilities at all while in magnified live view,  terrible reliability with tethering (can’t tether to an iPad with two SD cards in the camera due to a firmware bug),  nonlinear focusing in manual focus on the Summicron SL lenses.  That’s all I encountered, im sure there’s more to report.  I haven’t encountered a small percentage of such obvious firmware issues with the xpro3, a7r3, A7r4, Nikon z7, or gfx50r.  

which SD card did you use ?

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Question: What is Burst Shooting, and how does one combine it with 4K recording?

The message implies that those two features can not be combined without resorting to "shore power," likely through the USB port. I hope that the message is more clear in German.

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3 hours ago, scott kirkpatrick said:

The fact that the instruction manual for the SL2 defers some obvious function to "the 2020 firmware release" makes me suspect that the SL2 firmware was barely ready for the sale date in late November. 

Leica is not alone in doing this.

Nikon just released a key video feature one full year after releasing the camera that supports it (and 18 months after announcing said feature).  Panasonic only waited 6 months to unlock video performance on the S1. Sony is notorious for fixing missing and broken features via firmware updates, with some features only working after the camera has been superseeded (and others never working at all).

I certainly don't like the fact that cameras ship before their software is completed, but it seems to be the only option.

In related news, VW has announced that the first 20,000 units of their new EV will sit in a field for months, waiting on firmware. Clearly even the biggest companies struggle with this.

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