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ianforber

To buy a Q2 or not?

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Posted (edited)

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Hi, I’m considering getting a Q2 and have been researching whether it is right for me. Lots of useful info on here but I do have a few questions that I can’t find answers using simple searches. 

First, some context. I mainly take landscape photos (usually in UK Lake District), with about 80% as black and white. I also enjoy travel photography, but haven’t indulged much in the past few years as it tended to be while travelling on business and my job changed a while back (pre-pandemic!) so I don’t travel overseas as much these days. I hardly ever take portraits, but indulge in street photography sometimes as part of general travel photography. I’m not one to shoot huge number of photos - 30-40 a day is good going for me. I used to use Apple Aperture to process pictures but since its demise I haven’t really found a software I’m happy with. Tried LR but don’t really get on with it, so for the past 18 months or so I’ve been using Luminar. Both are usually just ways to do basic adjustments and then get the image into Silver FX Pro. 

Physically, I’m bored carrying large amounts of kit. I started off in the 1980s with a film slr (Minolta), upgraded in the 2000s to a Mamiya 7 (lovely camera) but got frustrated by lack of control over the image (I don’t have a darkroom). I bought a Leica DLux-2 as a digital notebook to go alongside the Mamiya and found I liked it, so swapped the Mamiya for a Nikon D7000 in the 2010s then got tired carrying it and the tripod up and down hills, so swapped it in turn for my current Camera, an Olympus EM5 Mark 2. For all of them, I almost always only used one lens: a 28-85 on the Minolta; 80mm on the Mamiya (ie 50mm equiv for 35mm photography, which was too tight for me so I had been planning to get the 65mm but went digital instead); 16-85mm on the Nikon (ie 24-120 equiv); and 12-40mm on the Olympus (24-80mm equiv).

The Olympus is nice but the menu system drives me to distraction - it’s too complicated - and I’ve never been entirely comfortable with the number of very small buttons on the camera. And I miss having an aperture dial on the lens sooo much! So my search for simplicity, aperture dial and a slightly bigger body but still small form factor has led me to the Q2. But it sounds like long exposures are a pain with the Q2 and I do quite like using ND filters to get different looks with water, and I also like using IR filters sometimes (just not often enough to warrant getting a converted camera and lugging that around as well), so two questions:

- how does the Q2 deal with IR photography and long exposures in general (I accept it forces me to use the noise reduction second exposure technique)?

- does it play nicely with Luminar, or am I going to have to relearn how to use LR?
 

Thank you in advance and sorry if these questions have been asked before - I looked but couldn’t find the answer!

Edited by ianforber
Typo correction

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Ian -

I've been carrying a Q with me for nearly 2 years everywhere, except if I expect wildlife.  For pleasure travel I carry the Q and a Vlux114.  I've not tried long exposure nor IR, but I'm certain you'll hear from forum members on that.  Since you're used to a moderate zoom I wonder if just a "24" will fully meet your needs.

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I would recommend you take a look at the Leica CL with a leather half grip case (like Lim's) for good heft.  It allows versatility because you can choose one lens to use for the day; I like the 23mm for a compact kit and the 35mm for city/people shooting.  The Q2 is a luxury for me; sort of like a good sports car for the weekend drives...lol...

 

 

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Thanks for pointing me at the CL. It’s certainly a sexy camera!

Am I worrying too much about it not having any kind of stabilisation? I’m coming from the Olympus which is just outstanding. Obviously, I use a tripod for long exposures, but find I can handhold at pretty low speeds (1 sec plus) if bracing myself against a tree or similar. I’m not expecting the Q2 to be as good,  it at least it has optical stabilisation. 

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, ianforber said:

Thanks for pointing me at the CL. It’s certainly a sexy camera!

Am I worrying too much about it not having any kind of stabilisation? I’m coming from the Olympus which is just outstanding. Obviously, I use a tripod for long exposures, but find I can handhold at pretty low speeds (1 sec plus) if bracing myself against a tree or similar. I’m not expecting the Q2 to be as good,  it at least it has optical stabilisation. 

Not having any OIS isn't a deal-breaker for me; I just up the ISO.  I guess I'm old school.  Isn't OIS mainly for long lenses?  The Q2 has OIS; not sure how it compares to other brands though.  The upcoming Sigma lenses for L-mount cameras have OIS, from what I hear.

😁

Edited by cj3209

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I use my Q2 as a street and travel camera. For that, I have always liked the 28mm lens, and the Q2 excels at this sort of work. It's an awesome camera and I love it.  For landscape, though, I would feel very limited with the 28mm fixed lens -- I prefer zooms for precise framing. Lucky for me I have a complete Fuji GFX system for landscapes, portraits, etc. (Also lucky for me, it's my job, so I can afford it.) 

Have you considered, say, a Fujifilm X Pro 2 or an X-T3? (The X-T3 is on sale for $999 right now, that's one heck of a value.) Manual aperture ring, you can get stabilized lenses, they do long exposures well, etc. For half the cost of a Q2, you could have a versatile Fuji setup. Not trying to steer you away from Leica, they are excellent cameras, but the Q2 may be less versatile than you need. 

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Ken - thanks for the advice. I have been thinking about Fuji. I suppose I just need to go and play with some different cameras.
 

I just don’t want super-complicated menus that take forever to learn, which is what was attracting me to Leica. I’ve had my Olympus for about 4 years and the image quality is fine but I’ve used it less than any previous camera because the buttons are fiddly and I can never remember how to change something quickly. I’ve just updated the firmware and it’s erased all my settings (grrr...). Not sure I can be bothered to set it all back up!

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Posted (edited)

Just jump on it and purchase one.  Having said that, you could always rent one first and see how it works for you.

Edited by Leica28

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If not the Q2 do try out the CL, also.  Leica has a package deal at the moment with an 18 MM (abut 25MM equivalent).  You could get short zoom as well if you miss the zooence.

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I have a CL with the 11-23 and 18-56 lenses, plus a 23. It’s a great combination. But...

I regularly look at the Q/Q2 images here and on LFI and they seem to have much greater depth, detail and separation than the CL’s images. Q images are like listening to vinyl vs MP3. But...

It’s a fixed focal length with no real options other than cropping your images.

Every choice is a compromise in some direction or another: you just have to figure out which ones you can live with.

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I have the Q2 and I love it. I must add that I own an M10 plus lots of pro Canon pro-gear. For me personally landscape is mainly between 28 and 50mm. That is what the Q2 is very well capable to do just that. It does it perfectly. Everything with one single lens. The Q2 is for people who want to reduce all their gear. So actually is the M. With an M10-R you might have the same but for slower photography. The CL is something fully different: Its an APS-C system and you are expected to buy a few lenses. You'll love a Q2.

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Q2 and its crop mode is better than CL + Elmarit-TL 18mm or Super-Vario-Elmar-TL 11-23mm or Summicron-TL 23mm or Vario-Elmar-TL 18-56mm. 
Q2 is almost on par with CL + Summilux-TL 35mm or Summicron-M 50mm.

So you can only be pleased with Q2 if you are ready to fully embraced crop mode ! 

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vor 3 Minuten schrieb nicci78:

Q2 and its crop mode is better than CL + Elmarit-TL 18mm or Super-Vario-Elmar-TL 11-23mm or Summicron-TL 23mm or Vario-Elmar-TL 18-56mm. 
Q2 is almost on par with CL + Summilux-TL 35mm or Summicron-M 50mm.

So you can only be pleased with Q2 if you are ready to fully embraced crop mode ! 

Crop mode works very well of course. Still you will see that 28mm is fine for many, many situations. I say this as I presume that you want to reduce your gear and still want to have very high quality of your pics.

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Thanks for the advice - I’ll keep you posted once I’ve had a chance to play with both Q2 and the CL

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CL was on par with Q.

But Q2 totally marginalised my CL. 

I only use my CL with APO-Macro-Elmarit-R 100mm with or without APO-Extender-R 2x for long shot and for macros.

 

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On 7/24/2020 at 10:07 AM, ianforber said:

 ...I mainly take landscape photos (usually in UK Lake District), with about 80% as black and white...

...Physically, I’m bored carrying large amounts of kit...

...So my search for simplicity, aperture dial and a slightly bigger body but still small form factor has led me to the Q2...

Given the above, perhaps you should be thinking in terms of an M10 Monochrom with a 28mm Elmarit-M.

If that is not a possibility, you would be hard pressed to go wrong with a Q2.  The Q2 B&W conversions I have seen online here look really good in terms of image quality. 

The Q2 is small, light, quiet, discreet and has a truly outstanding 28mm f/1.7 lens that is also macro capable.  With  its top ISO of 50,000, hand held low light shooting is very doable and the Q2's 47 megapixel sensor is formidable. 

All that, and the Q2 is great fun to make photographs with. 

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6 hours ago, Herr Barnack said:

Given the above, perhaps you should be thinking in terms of an M10 Monochrom with a 28mm Elmarit-M.

If that is not a possibility, you would be hard pressed to go wrong with a Q2.  The Q2 B&W conversions I have seen online here look really good in terms of image quality. 

The Q2 is small, light, quiet, discreet and has a truly outstanding 28mm f/1.7 lens that is also macro capable.  With  its top ISO of 50,000, hand held low light shooting is very doable and the Q2's 47 megapixel sensor is formidable. 

All that, and the Q2 is great fun to make photographs with. 

The Monochrom is an appealing idea, but I’m not sure funds will stretch that far, especially as I’d then have the temptation to buy more lenses! My optician has just prescribed some (expensive!) variofocals so my plan is to wait until I get them and then go and play with the CL and Q2 to check that their EVF work with the new glasses. If not, then maybe reverting to optical rangefinders will be the better option.

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1 hour ago, ianforber said:

The Monochrom is an appealing idea, but I’m not sure funds will stretch that far, especially as I’d then have the temptation to buy more lenses! My optician has just prescribed some (expensive!) variofocals so my plan is to wait until I get them and then go and play with the CL and Q2 to check that their EVF work with the new glasses. If not, then maybe reverting to optical rangefinders will be the better option.

My varifocals work perfectly with the EVF of the CL and Q2. Just look through the top half of the lenses.

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Well, I decided to get a Q2. Ordered and on its way tomorrow from Leica store in uk, so may not arrive in time for the weekend, sadly). I decided not to go for the CL because I really wanted an aperture ring on the lens and some form of image stabilisation. Also, I’m thinking the CL is close to a refresh for CL2. 
 

Haven’t decided on thumbs-up, grip, half-case etc but will have a play with it first.

Ian

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