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Struggling with Decision About SL2-S


lencap
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I did the same thing.  I was struggling with whether to get an sl to pair with my m10r.  At $2000 for a mint sl I felt there was little risk.  I've been very surprised in a good way.  The colors and low light performance are wonderful.  The evf and build quality are still much better than anything on the market.  I bought some cheaper sigma and r glass to get me started.  If you read reid reviews comparing the sl, sl2 and sl2s, you'll see the low light performance of the almost probably 2-3 stops (or more) better than the sl2.  The sl2s is only about a stop or stop and a half better than the sl.  Pretty good for an old camera 

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beewee

I think you’ve basically summed up what differentiates the M from other camera systems. At its core, the M is all about being in control and making conscious decisions on manipulating the camera in such a way to make the image that you envision. It’s not easy and it requires practise where you develop an intuitive connection to a lens and camera combination in relation to its haptics and the look of the image. M photography in the context of imaging making is like calligraphy in the context of t

lencap

Thanks to everyone.  You've all inspired me.  Just for laughs I took out the Q and took a few shots.  No real photography, just snapshots.  I didn't plan anything, just walking around and snapping whenever I felt like it.  I did several shots in "Auto mode", letting the camera decide aperture and other settings.  Then I shifted to manual everything, selecting all parameters myself.  The camera did a better job than I did, but the camera also defaulted to making the most useful picture given the

Stuart Richardson

I am curious, when you used the Q2, did you try to set up the cropping in camera? Because that should make the viewfinder match the longer lens, so it should not be like working at 28mm. Even at 35mm, it is still higher resolution than the M or SL2S, so unless you shoot a lot at 50mm or longer, the resolution difference should not be noticeable. Given that you said that you are a bit older and more of a hobbiest, I would strongly encourage you to just choose the camera that you find the mos

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I don't find the SL2 big at all, but hey I used to use 2 x 1DX2's and think nothing of it :)

Honestly I think if you bought a SL2 or SL2-s with a 35/2 or a 50/2 (I prefer the 1.4 but it's huge, so get the f2 in your case) I think you'll be hooked.

But that said. I don't know how old you are. Maybe you are at the stage in your life where you really do need a light system - in which case get the M. 

If you think you would find the SL2 too big, then get the camera you are most likely to carry with you. I don't find it big at all but everyone has their own idea what big is.

But just on pure IQ, the SL2 with the appropriate lenses is really at the pointy end of IQ. I look back at my old Sony/Canon files and I'm very glad I'm on the SL2 now. I wish I did it earlier.

 

 

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Thanks to everyone for the comments and advice, both are most appreciated.

I arrived at a decision today, one that surprised me.  I went to my local Leica dealer and the owner graciously spent time with me exploring choices.  Among the options was a SL in very nice condition (9) that was produced in late 2018.  He paired several lenses on it (Sigma, no Leica or Panasonic glass in stock). After trying out many combinations I found that despite my desire for a light weight system, the combination of the SL with the Sigma 50mm F/1.4 ART lens was hard to ignore.  

He also had a new SL2 and SL2-S, and while the grip on the newer cameras is a bit better, the difference in price was pretty steep.  He also agreed to take my Nikon D5500 two kit lens camera in trade at a fair price.  With my trade-in, and after sales tax, the SL and Sigma combo was well under half of the new SL2-S camera alone, pre sales tax.  I found that a hard deal to pass up.

I may grow to find the new Leica/Sigma weight to be an issue, but for now the image quality and color rendition on high quality monitors is excellent.  I look forward to making actual prints.  

So, the stable now includes the original Leica Titanium Q, the SL and Sigma 50mm ART lens, and the Z6 with the 24-70 kit lens.  One "all in one" camera great for travel and lightweight (Q), one "beast" camera and lens (SL/Sigma) , and one IBIS zoom kit with good video and flexibility (Z6). 

I'll try out the new toy soon, and will consider further culling, but for now I think I scratched a lot of itches.  I have a quasi rangefinder feel with the Q, the autofocus of the SL with the ability to mount all Leica lenses with adapters.  Yes, the camera isn't the latest and greatest, but seems well built and in very good condition, along with a very stout EVF.  

Overall, not what I expected, but the lack of M cameras for sale, combined with the very much fully depreciated SL camera makes me happy that I got something that will work at a reasonable price.  If I decide to upgrade to a higher resolution sensor, or the SL-2S or M, the resale risk of what I bought shouldn't be overly steep.  More importantly, the ART lens gives me lots of options for creativity with what appears to be a very pleasing bokeh and sharp focus if needed at a very reasonable price.  The weight is the concern, and I'll have to work through that, but oddly the heavy weight of the SL itself provided more stability than I expected with the Sigma lens.  I also have the choice of exploring L Leica lenses if the SL proves to be as good as I expect it is. 

Thanks again for all the help.  We'll see where this takes me, but I'm pleased with the decision.  An M camera setup would have been nice, and maybe that will happen in the future, but for now the Q is my M proxy.  It still delivers great images, and frankly I've been lazy in learning how to maximize composition with the 28mm focal length.   A bit more work may solve more of my "problems".

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2 hours ago, lencap said:

Thanks to everyone for the comments and advice, both are most appreciated.

I arrived at a decision today, one that surprised me.  I went to my local Leica dealer and the owner graciously spent time with me exploring choices.  Among the options was a SL in very nice condition (9) that was produced in late 2018.  He paired several lenses on it (Sigma, no Leica or Panasonic glass in stock). After trying out many combinations I found that despite my desire for a light weight system, the combination of the SL with the Sigma 50mm F/1.4 ART lens was hard to ignore.  

He also had a new SL2 and SL2-S, and while the grip on the newer cameras is a bit better, the difference in price was pretty steep.  He also agreed to take my Nikon D5500 two kit lens camera in trade at a fair price.  With my trade-in, and after sales tax, the SL and Sigma combo was well under half of the new SL2-S camera alone, pre sales tax.  I found that a hard deal to pass up.

I may grow to find the new Leica/Sigma weight to be an issue, but for now the image quality and color rendition on high quality monitors is excellent.  I look forward to making actual prints.  

So, the stable now includes the original Leica Titanium Q, the SL and Sigma 50mm ART lens, and the Z6 with the 24-70 kit lens.  One "all in one" camera great for travel and lightweight (Q), one "beast" camera and lens (SL/Sigma) , and one IBIS zoom kit with good video and flexibility (Z6). 

I'll try out the new toy soon, and will consider further culling, but for now I think I scratched a lot of itches.  I have a quasi rangefinder feel with the Q, the autofocus of the SL with the ability to mount all Leica lenses with adapters.  Yes, the camera isn't the latest and greatest, but seems well built and in very good condition, along with a very stout EVF.  

Overall, not what I expected, but the lack of M cameras for sale, combined with the very much fully depreciated SL camera makes me happy that I got something that will work at a reasonable price.  If I decide to upgrade to a higher resolution sensor, or the SL-2S or M, the resale risk of what I bought shouldn't be overly steep.  More importantly, the ART lens gives me lots of options for creativity with what appears to be a very pleasing bokeh and sharp focus if needed at a very reasonable price.  The weight is the concern, and I'll have to work through that, but oddly the heavy weight of the SL itself provided more stability than I expected with the Sigma lens.  I also have the choice of exploring L Leica lenses if the SL proves to be as good as I expect it is. 

Thanks again for all the help.  We'll see where this takes me, but I'm pleased with the decision.  An M camera setup would have been nice, and maybe that will happen in the future, but for now the Q is my M proxy.  It still delivers great images, and frankly I've been lazy in learning how to maximize composition with the 28mm focal length.   A bit more work may solve more of my "problems".

Congrats on your choice. If it makes you feel inspired to make photos, then it was 100% the correct choice! 

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On 12/27/2021 at 5:01 AM, lencap said:

overly complex menu system

 

On 12/27/2021 at 5:01 AM, lencap said:

M10, but it's hard to justify that purchase when the SL2-S has lots of features

 

On 12/27/2021 at 5:01 AM, lencap said:

added weight

It’s either/or. I sold my SL in favor of an M10R precisely because I got irritated about the menu, which is the consequence of lots of features. The other reason which weighed heavy on this decision is the weight and volume of the SL system. I do not see anything of value in SL lenses above the 4 or 5 excellent classic R lenses on my M10R. The use of these on an M10R is much less ado than I had expected, even without the Visoflex2. 

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I think hands down the SL2-S is easily the best feeling camera in the hands. The only real achilles heal of the SL line of cameras are the eye watering expensive native glass and the below standard autofocus. If you don't need snappy autofocus in video or if you don't shoot fast moving subject matter then this won't be an issue. But for less than half the price the z6II, a7R IV, a7 IV, R6, all do a better job with access to great affordable glass and lighter in that camera bag. But will those cameras inspire you to shoot? Personally the standard cameras for sure get the job done, all built well enough to do the job, work seamlessly with modern raw processing programs, have a vast selection of glass to purchase or rent. But they are all ugly as sin, feel like a cactus in the hands and are about as inspiring as a Monday morning. 

If you have the money the SL2-S is well worth the price of admission and while it might not have 9 million auto focus points and 16K RAW video at 900fps, what it does have is stunning image quality, tank like build and a menu system that just cannot be matched. Wish I had one myself but sadly the demands of professional work means I had to go with the Canon System. I still use my Leica CL for all my personal work and walk about photography. The SL2 was the closest camera I owned that could be used in a professional environment but it's overheating issues when shooting 4k Video and it's poor iso performance at 800 iso made it impossible to use as a mulitpurpose camera. Great for portraits, great for still life/landscape, but sadly as a hybrid camera it fell short of getting the job done. Also the limited access to rental glass or getting a hold of a rental backup body for important shoots is just non-existent. 

 

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Still exploring the SL, the learning curve takes some study.  Initial thoughts are: (1) The Nikon 6 may be ranked higher on an objective basis, but it didn't inspire me to shoot.  It was more of an appliance than an artistic tool - the SL confirms that; (2) 24MP seems more than fine for what I shoot - don't print larger than A4 size (9x12) typically; (3) weight is noticeable, but the quality of the camera makes it feel better in hand, and the resulting images are wonderful; (4) colors may be a bit muted SOOC vs the SL2/SL2S, but they are natural and easy to adjust in post, if desired.  As a bonus my Q sensor seems to be a very close color match to the SL making editing a lot easier with a similar color map.

The bigger question is whether or not I need autofocus.  For now I'm reluctant to move to an M platform, invest in M lenses and later find out that nailing consistent focus in all conditions (night, poor light, etc) isn't something that I can achieve on a regular basis.  That's the reason for the Z6 and the SL - to see if that's a real issue or not.  I will say that the EVF of the SL is superb - clear/bright easy to work with in any condition.  I know others have had successful cataract surgery, but I've been warned by eye doctors that I am not an ideal candidate and complications are likely - that's another reason for the SL - great EVF and the best camera I've ever used while wearing my eyeglasses! 

Frankly, I'm surprised that the SL used market price is so attractive - it's a lot of camera for $2,000 or so. Combined with the Q I have lots of choices, and my entry price was very reasonable.  And if I tire of the SL as a camera I can use it as a hammer  (;->).

I've tried to find online tutorials for the SL without any luck.  Things like menu setups, user profiles, etc.  If anyone has a link to this info I'd appreciate it.

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Ergonomics, system UI, and color is subjective. I primarily shoot Nikon (D5 for wildlife and a Z6 for everything else) and my M240 is my daily companion.

I prefer Nikon's UI but that is because I am accustomed to the layout and Nikon is remarkably consistent with its implementation across its camera range (very few deviations between the D5 and Z6 for photography).

Colors...without question or hesitation, I prefer Leica. Nikon seems to always have more yellows and magentas. Of course, shooting raw...you can knock those back, but I have found that my Leica files require far less adjustment in post and I seldom, if at all, adjust WB in Lightroom. The Z6 does render noticeably warmer than my D5 (even in near-identical WB settings), the latter being more true to scene than the former. 

I've been tempted by the SL2-S, but plan on holding off until I determine if I intend to buy L mount glass. As it stands now, my Summicron remains glued to my M240. No sense in buying an SL2-S just to adapt one M lens when the M240 still keeps me happy. 

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34 minutes ago, kriskunisch said:

Colors...without question or hesitation, I prefer Leica. Nikon seems to always have more yellows and magentas. Of course, shooting raw...you can knock those back, but I have found that my Leica files require far less adjustment in post and I seldom, if at all, adjust WB in Lightroom. The Z6 does render noticeably warmer than my D5 (even in near-identical WB settings), the latter being more true to scene than the former. 

Absolutely agree on every word.

 

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