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SL System v. (All) — LONG READ


LD_50
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On 3/10/2021 at 6:41 PM, Tom1234 said:

Many thanks for your input.  You get A+ obviously. Four out of four.  I am looking into a new SL2-S.

Thank you. This is the one question I have. I have the A9 for action, and the A7r IV falls short when it comes to AF tracking, so I only use it for the higher resolution.

 

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LD_50

With all the threads on various forums, including this one, comparing camera bodies and systems I thought I would share my thoughts on the SL system. It seems that every time a new camera body from any maker is introduced, threads pop up not only asking for advice on whether to upgrade within a system (Canon to Canon, Leica to Leica, etc), but also whether to completely switch systems (Nikon to Canon, Leica to Sony, etc). On top of these threads, we also tend to see a lot of threads and com

Steven

Debatable. And vague. What do you include in the IQ? The colour science too?  As many of us, I have many cameras and many camera systems. I am probably the first and only person on this forum to own the Leica SL2-S and the Sony A1. Besides build quality and joy of use, my A1 is far superior to my SL2-S in every single aspect, except ONE. The A1 can do everything that my SL2S can do, better, and faster. And it can do MANY things that my SL2S cannot even dream of considering to do. But there

Tom1234

Hansvons: Myself, as someone who went to film school years ago, I am one of Leica's potential markets.  Their approach to issue new lenses that have something different from their old lenses is an artist's approach and I love that.   From what you are saying and I am saying together, Leica is a strange bird, iconoclastic brand, a mix of market approaches, well pick you favorite name, yet always high end in some way and always delivering a unique user experience in some way. The hi

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2 hours ago, billh said:

What is the image quality difference? I have a variety of M cameras, but the most recent digital is the M9P. I also have a Q2M which I love. I've been hearing the SL primes are better than the M lenses, and despite the size and weight I'm temped to try the SL2 instead of the M10R. However, I do have a Sony A7R IV, and I'd really like to know if the SL2 image quality is better than I get from the A7r IV. Thanks.

That is very subjective. I liked the SL2 images more than the A7rIV images, but the Sony is better at higher iso and shadow recovery and of course has better AF. In the end I sold both. I think I'll skip this SL generation, the AF seems a lost cause and that is a very important factor for me. I may get a S5 instead. 

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1 minute ago, Simone_DF said:

That is very subjective. I liked the SL2 images more than the A7rIV images, but the Sony is better at higher iso and shadow recovery and of course has better AF. In the end I sold both. I think I'll skip this SL generation, the AF seems a lost cause and that is a very important factor for me. I may get a S5 instead. 

If you get it, please tell us about the S5 verses the SL and A7rIV.

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13 minutes ago, Simone_DF said:

That is very subjective. I liked the SL2 images more than the A7rIV images, but the Sony is better at higher iso and shadow recovery and of course has better AF. In the end I sold both. I think I'll skip this SL generation, the AF seems a lost cause and that is a very important factor for me. I may get a S5 instead. 

I posted on another thread about the S5’s AF improvements. Have you tested it? 

I am wondering if the SL2-S firmware update will include those same updates.

 

S5 upgrades as described by DPReview:

“AF improvements on the S5 fall into two general categories: better and faster recognition of subjects (using deep learning technology) and improvements to the way DFD calculations are made.

To start, the S5 includes a head-detection algorithm in addition to face, eye and body recognition, so that the camera is less likely to struggle when a subject turns away from the camera. Additionally, it can now detect a face that takes up as little as 2.5% of the frame, versus 5% on other S-series cameras. Other tweaks allow the S5 to make autofocus calculations 60 times a second for bodies and faces, whereas the company's othermodels do so at 12 and 30 calculations a second, respectively.”

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3 minutes ago, LD_50 said:

I posted on another thread about the S5’s AF improvements. Have you tested it? 

I am wondering if the SL2-S firmware update will include those same updates.

 

 

S5 upgrades as described by DPReview:

“AF improvements on the S5 fall into two general categories: better and faster recognition of subjects (using deep learning technology) and improvements to the way DFD calculations are made.

To start, the S5 includes a head-detection algorithm in addition to face, eye and body recognition, so that the camera is less likely to struggle when a subject turns away from the camera. Additionally, it can now detect a face that takes up as little as 2.5% of the frame, versus 5% on other S-series cameras. Other tweaks allow the S5 to make autofocus calculations 60 times a second for bodies and faces, whereas the company's othermodels do so at 12 and 30 calculations a second, respectively.”

We need an S5 for Leica-M lenses thread.

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2 hours ago, LD_50 said:

I posted on another thread about the S5’s AF improvements. Have you tested it? 

I am wondering if the SL2-S firmware update will include those same updates.

 

 

S5 upgrades as described by DPReview:

“AF improvements on the S5 fall into two general categories: better and faster recognition of subjects (using deep learning technology) and improvements to the way DFD calculations are made.

To start, the S5 includes a head-detection algorithm in addition to face, eye and body recognition, so that the camera is less likely to struggle when a subject turns away from the camera. Additionally, it can now detect a face that takes up as little as 2.5% of the frame, versus 5% on other S-series cameras. Other tweaks allow the S5 to make autofocus calculations 60 times a second for bodies and faces, whereas the company's othermodels do so at 12 and 30 calculations a second, respectively.”

Well I had a few minutes to try a Panasonic S5 and a Sony A7RIV. I didn’t have a card with me so this was just quick testing with each in store and reviewing on the back screens. I was able to set up each to my liking. The Sony menus are as bad as I remember. The whole GUI is terrible for me. 

The S5 is too small for me with too many buttons too close together. I set up face tracking and it was very quick and did a great job holding onto the face as I moved the camera around. It highlights the selected eye with a sort of cross hair. I was really surprised by the speed of face tracking and regular AFc tracking. Flutter looked much better in the EVF than my SL2-S, though the EVF feels small and dim.

The A7RIV surprisingly seemed to have much more trouble grabbing an eye to focus on and holding it. It gave up much more quickly than the S5. I prefer the S5’s method of highlighting an eye to the Sony’s small box over the eye. Tracking also seemed less sticky. This EVF was better but still not as good as the SL2-S. 

I expected the Sony to outperform the Panasonic but it didn’t in this very limited test. Actual results might prove the Sony more accurate or consistent but I didn’t see it through the EVF. The S5 was very quick to focus and very capable in tracking so I hope the firmware update to the SL2-S brings these same improvements. 

Obviously the A9II and A1 would be much better than the model I was able to quickly test. 

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Thank you for the hands on review.  Good to know about the size issue with the hands.  The same happened in the 1970's as Nikon went to FM and EM downsized bodies in response to Olympus downsizing... I found them all too small for my hands and the controls too much of a pain to use.  My older bigger heavier EL2 from Nikon was much better.  The SL2-S form factor is looking better all the time. 

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10 hours ago, LD_50 said:

I posted on another thread about the S5’s AF improvements. Have you tested it? 

I am wondering if the SL2-S firmware update will include those same updates.

Yes I did, it looks very promising. But who knows how does it translate to the SL line, especially the SL2?

Anyway, it's a good update that fixes the most obvious issues especially with AF-C and face/eye AF reliability, but I think we'll really start to see big improvements in the next generation. Panasonic is aware poor AF is one of the major reasons of their slow sales and I'd expect Pana to give it a big boost in whatever they release next. There's only that much that can be done via software.

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8 hours ago, LD_50 said:

Well I had a few minutes to try a Panasonic S5 and a Sony A7RIV. I didn’t have a card with me so this was just quick testing with each in store and reviewing on the back screens. I was able to set up each to my liking. The Sony menus are as bad as I remember. The whole GUI is terrible for me. 

The S5 is too small for me with too many buttons too close together. I set up face tracking and it was very quick and did a great job holding onto the face as I moved the camera around. It highlights the selected eye with a sort of cross hair. I was really surprised by the speed of face tracking and regular AFc tracking. Flutter looked much better in the EVF than my SL2-S, though the EVF feels small and dim.

The A7RIV surprisingly seemed to have much more trouble grabbing an eye to focus on and holding it. It gave up much more quickly than the S5. I prefer the S5’s method of highlighting an eye to the Sony’s small box over the eye. Tracking also seemed less sticky. This EVF was better but still not as good as the SL2-S. 

I expected the Sony to outperform the Panasonic but it didn’t in this very limited test. Actual results might prove the Sony more accurate or consistent but I didn’t see it through the EVF. The S5 was very quick to focus and very capable in tracking so I hope the firmware update to the SL2-S brings these same improvements. 

Obviously the A9II and A1 would be much better than the model I was able to quickly test. 

The Sony GUI is horrible, but once you set up your Favorite menu items, you can forget about everything else. It took me 10 minutes then it was as simple as anything else. 

And for the S5, I have the opposite problem, I have small hands and the SL is too big for me. Especially the two front buttons near the lens mount, I find them uncomfortable. I know I'm the minority, but the Sony size is pretty much perfect for me, and same for the S5.

From my experience with both cameras, I found the A7rIV AF to be inferior to the A7III, but not by a significant margin. I think the camera was released too soon and it needs more horsepower to operate at 61mp, and this has an impact on both the AF and, for example, image review on the back screen that was too sluggish at times.

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  • 10 months later...
Am 3.3.2021 um 21:09 schrieb BernardC:

The battery level issue was fixed with firmware updates. The only people who still report issues are using non-supported Canon lenses via Sigma's adapter. To be clear: Sigma explicitly doesn't support Canon lenses with their mount adapter.

Given that, I'm not sure that reluctance is the right term. The issue occurred with lenses that they didn't have access-to while developing the SL2. They acknowledged the problem when it was reported, and they released firmware updates.

Issue occurs with the Sigma 135/1.8 Art lens on the SL bodies if I want to shoot C-AF, sucks.

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I find this thread quite interesting so I bring it up again.

I am kind of a long time Leica user. I generally do have some reasons for this:

1) quality of lenses

2) IQ - Overall I like that the DNGs come out pretty much to my taste - and same for the colors, so I do not have to do tons of post, just adjust shaddows, exposure, and mayb WB sometimes. I like the "Leica" colors

3) simple and intuitive user interface (menues as well as button layout)

4) solid feel and built

Now, even if the SL-system is my most used system besides M and S, I really wish for better C-AF.

I mean, if I want to shoot slow pace with manual focus, I have the M

If I want max IQ can use the S

So I really think the SL should offer up to date C-AF. Its been improved, but its still ot there for action and sports IMO. I have tried again and again, and if you know what a D500 can do, then its just frustrating. I keep the D500 with 3 lenses just for this reason. 

Edited by tom0511
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3 hours ago, tom0511 said:

I find this thread quite interesting so I bring it up again.

I am kind of a long time Leica user. I generally do have some reasons for this:

1) quality of lenses

2) IQ - Overall I like that the DNGs come out pretty much to my taste - and same for the colors, so I do not have to do tons of post, just adjust shaddows, exposure, and mayb WB sometimes. I like the "Leica" colors

3) simple and intuitive user interface (menues as well as button layout)

4) solid feel and built

Now, even if the SL-system is my most used system besides M and S, I really wish for better C-AF.

I mean, if I want to shoot slow pace with manual focus, I have the M

If I want max IQ can use the S

So I really think the SL should offer up to date C-AF. Its been improved, but its still ot there for action and sports IMO. I have tried again and again, and if you know what a D500 can do, then its just frustrating. I keep the D500 with 3 lenses just for this reason. 

FWIW, I found once I pushed through the disorienting AF-C pulsing (DFD rapid focus confirmation in action), I see in the SL2 EVF when shooting burst photography and using tracking mode, I actually found a very high hit rate in post editing. 

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vor 2 Minuten schrieb LBJ2:

FWIW, I found once I pushed through the disorienting AF-C pulsing (DFD rapid focus confirmation in action), I see in the SL2 EVF when shooting burst photography and using tracking mode, I actually found a very high hit rate in post editing. 

What do you mean with "push through"? Did you change any settings or do you say, the EVF looks strange but the result is ok?

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2 minutes ago, tom0511 said:

What do you mean with "push through"? Did you change any settings or do you say, the EVF looks strange but the result is ok?

Push through or ignore the pulsing. That EVF pulsing causes loss of AF confidence for me anyway, but now that I know I can get the results, I just try to ignore it when I need to use AF-C. 

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Yes, the pulsing is another confusing "feature" if one is used to DSLR C-AF.

For me its more the results - CAF has improved with the last FW but its still not there IMO. (Maybe I also need to experiment more with the setttings)  I hope they will have phase AF included in the next body. S-AF works pretty well, its just when I shoot sports images with fast action where I dont get the results I want.

 

Edited by tom0511
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I have an M262 and also an old olympus pen ep-5  with a add on VF-4 EVF which to my surprise was better than the leica Q [1] when i tried them out together a few years ago.

Anyway today i was selling a couple of lenses at the london camera exchange bristol branch i got to play with a SL 2.

The EVF is massive and has amazing clarity like some big screen TV!!   must admit its very impressive and a real eye opener for me.

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