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Thread: Leica Q: First impressions.

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    Leica Q: First impressions.

    Hi guys,

    OMG so much rambling.. Don't read it if you're not interested in hearing about AF, and minor complaints. Bottom line, it's the best AF mirrorless camera I've used to date. And I've briefly to extensively tried or owned most (save for samsung and panasonic). It's definitely going to give DSLR cameras a run for their money, especially if you compare a XX + 24G or XX + 24L vs the Leica Q. You can just skip my writing and ask me anything specific you'd like. Since honestly, this is just rabbling. I donít want to work on boring client stuff, this is taking my mind off of it.

    So I went out and picked up a Leica Q. I paid for it, it wasn't given to me. So my first impressions review is going to be honest and unbiased. I'll put up pictures in a few days if I have time, and will also answer any random questions anyone has. So feel free to ask!

    I went to the Leica Q launch event. It was dark, in a chic cigar smoking Edison bulb lit hipster kinda way. The bar was dark (I covered that) but we're talking 125th of a second @ 1.7 iso12500 or 25000 kinda dark (I don't often shoot under 125th because most of my subjects are quick moving, IBIS wouldn't work in such a situation). The fact that there were Edison bulbs scattered about on the bar counter there was enough light in some cases to shoot people at 3200/6400 if the subject was in the right spot 2ft from a table bulb. This is something you could have shot with your iPhone, but probably wouldn't have liked the results very much. Or at least wouldn't have been able to use it other then to be an instagram bragger.

    Just to explain myself.. I went to the Leica event with one goal in mind. To test the cameras AF abilities. I shoot weddings with M cameras, and I use to use 35FLE / 75APO. Lately I've been needing a change, so I've decided to go 28??/50APO/90APO but it was a tossup between getting the 28Lux or buying this little Q. The primary purpose of any 28mm for me is to capture quick shots while in the thick of things. Say people laughing and clanking glasses together. Or the nagging aunty of the bride who wants a photo with every single one of her friends and relatives. Or even shots of the bride and groom while dancing (but not intimate shots, sweeping shots). Also establishing shots of the venue and tables. People clapping at speeches etc. So basically a camera I put up to my eye when I don't have time or the space to back up. This is something a 35mm can also cover, but with a less crowded venue.

    With that said, lets get onto the AF first. So for me, I find that a 1Dx / D4 (I've used them all). All seem good but not excellent with the following situations. A strongly backlit subject that's wrapped in directional light. You'll find a lot of the time, you have to focus on the chest of a person because there's less light wrapped around their wider parts, and thus more contrast in the scene. This is something that I have to do with 1/3 of the backlit shots I take (with Canon/Nikon), but I always try for the face first. Especially if the bride has big hair, that makes things easier. The second is a lowlight situation where someone is being lit on one side, but the other side isn't getting much light, though with movement it flickers back and forth between high and low contrast face. In situations like this, for some reason cameras get confused. The last, and most annoying situation is when the subject is walking towards you very fast in very dark areas with little to no light, maybe a bit of rim, accent light.

    With that said, I've used the Sony A7, A7R, A7s and A7II for dark/hazy weddings. I've also used an A6000 briefly at a semi well lit event. These cameras suffer the worst from the things I mentioned above, but the backlit situation is almost impossible for the A7 series cameras to cope with. Even at the beach on a hazy day, I have that problem.

    How did the Leica Q do?

    Well it was definitely the right environment for dark moving subjects, and while using the test camera for an hour, I didn't have problems hitting focus at all. It wasn't sharp as some people were moving faster then 125th could handle, and I was almost at MAX iso which as you know would degrade sharpness, especially on the Leica Q screen. I don't think it hunted once during that test.

    The side lit subject that keeps moving in and out of the shadows in the most annoying of ways, the Leica Q seemed quick enough to nail them without getting confused. Here the camera hunted once or twice, but I believe that was due in part to the light of an Edison bulb being directly behind the subject and the subject was getting hit with wrapped light from far away, which can confuse any Camera with a wide angle shot from 15ft away.

    The last test I am going to discuss, which was the first thing I tested for... The dreaded backlit strobe or disco light, or spot light etc.. These lights pop out of nowhere all the time, and they're GREAT to have at weddings because they add interest to the scene, and give everyone a beautiful hollywood looking rim light. BUT they're a bugger to shoot into. So how I did the test go? Fist I found a really fancy floor lamp. I stood in front of it, and I focused on the lamp then on my hand with my fingers splayed outwards. A lot of light was coming through the spaces between my fingers.. I must have looked like I was doing magic hands to the onlookers (or shadow puppets), but the camera would focus on my fingers most of the time. Out of the 20 times I did this, looking like a crazy person, I think it focus racked 4 times, and the second I jerked the camera (center focus) to the palm of my hand, instead of the fingers, it instantly grabbed the palm, which is a feat in its self, I have smooth palms with no shadows (what I moisturise).. I will add, it finds it's footing much faster then a 1Dx does with 24/35/50L primes (the 24-70II and 70-200 IS II are really snappy lenses, but I rarely use them in ballrooms). Oh and don't get me started on the 1Dx + 85L II combo, it's in a different "slow" league focus wise to anything currently on the market with known speedy AF. So yeah, the camera was quick, and quick to snap back into focus.. I dare say, as quick as a D4/1Dx with almost the speediest of AF lenses... I haven't done side by sides, and I haven't shot a 15 hour wedding with the Q, but I look forward to doing so. Keep in mind, generally **** gets bad lighting wise when I'm on my 12th hour of shooting two 1Dx cameras straight.. So you have to understand my if my technique suffers a bit by then. But I'm young and fit, so it's not like I'm the primary cause of focus issues with a 1Dx/D4.


    Now, with all that said.. I had set out to test the cameras AF and it passed. So what I did next was I took the models and I placed them in front of the 15 Breeze Para (they had a CONTINUOUS LIGHT setup in one corner). Once the models were in front of the light, and the light was shining directly into the camera. I started shooting. Of course the camera was on auto mode at that point (as I somehow ended up with another Leica Q, my first one I gave up to some fellows as I felt bad), and they were silhouettes. But the bit of wrap light that hit there lashes or noses were sharp.. The camera locked focus PERFECTLY. I then realised the models wanted to see the images.. So being embarrassed, I switched the settings to full manual and shot (125th, iso50,000 @ 1.7) that's how dark it was on the models faces, of course the breeze at this point was practically wrapping around there hair and cheeks but their eyes and foreheads were properly exposed. The background was white washed, and yet the camera kept nailing focusÖ The models were really impressed with the photos.. My wife was laughing at me with her friends. Because geez I just canít switch off. Now I have to admit they had a diffuser on the Breeze (lame) but the light was still more directional then anything non-man made and of course the harshest of sunny evenings. As in, it was directional enough that I think if I was using a wide angle lens, it may have panicked a D4/1Dx. I've had it happen, exactly how I mentioned in my studio with a 5D3 and D800. But without a diffuser on the Para. So again, I was stunningly impressed. So much so I ran out the door towards the reception area and told them to reserve a set, as I wasn't leaving without one and I had already seen one or two chaps buying the camera and running off.


    Afterwards, satisfied with the focusing, I started playing around with the wifi settings.. They're smart, but when you have a room full of iPhones and about 20 Leica Q cameras, it's a bit difficult to lock a signal... Actually I deduced later, that it was probably due to the fact that six or seven people had been linked to the camera I was using... To many people with the app running and it fails I suppose?
    Anyway, once we reset the wifi code, I tried the app out and it worked. I feel it's a good start, but can be improved somewhat. Visually more then anything. I think it serves its purpose function wise, and it's pretty easy to setup. But could be a little prettier and sleeker in use. Their is also lag on the iPhone, kinda like youíre using an M240 and EVF-2 (hehe).

    Then at that point I just wanted to get the camera and go to dinner. So I bought the camera, and left for dinner. Once at dinner I started to use the camera.. The lighting was pretty terrible but the camera locked onto focus. The shots I took looked awful, but obviously at that point it was just not flattering light. That's when I should have put my SF24D on (BTW I brought it with me to the event so I could test it). The flash works in M and A modes only, but not in TTL mode. I suspect the SF-58 will react the same way.. The good news is Leica has a decent SF26, the bad news, the SF26 does not do TTL with M or S cameras.. Yeah so if you use both, you now need two different flashes

    Anyway, I suppose what I'm saying is. If you're shooting crappy images, the camera will lock focus but the shots will still be crappy.. If you're shooting good images, the camera will lock focus (and do it fast) and your images will be good. I bet you could shoot sports with this, the only problem is, youíd get smashed by the athlete since itís a 28mm lens.
    Playing with it for a few hours, I'm starting to regret the 28mm focal length.. But I would have felt the same way about the 28Summilux. I did sell my 28 Summicron last week (not because of the Q, because I don't like 28mm lenses, though the 28cron and 28elmarit are awesome!).

    So in all fairness I think this will get use, but it'll be limited at best. Not because it isn't a REALLY capable camera, the most capable I've tested.. A600/EM-5II included even though it was brief (whatever the name of the new Olympus one is, I was playing with it at big camera while in Japan a month back, and the predecessor my friend has and Iíve used it at a wedding).
    The only drawback now, the fixed lens, which you'll either love, or hate. I donít know yet, because I havenít had enough time with it to tell.. From the samples Iíve seen online, it doesnít have plastic bokeh for the most part.. Though I did see some of it myself tonight, which I dislike passionately.

    In the very close future, I think I would buy a 90/2 version of this Q camera.. And probably be able to shoot with it for the next 5 years along side my M + 50APO. And honestly, my S-system is big and heavy, any time I'm out shooting an editorial with it and the 70mm, the Leica Q will make a good holstered companion.



    Ok, long and not really edited as I wanted to just get my thoughts out there RAW.

    So more ramblings, so I donít have to answer basic questions:

    Now that I'm holding the camera in the comfort of my home, I've noticed that while off, if you shake the camera gently it rattles, this is probably normal as the rattling goes away when the camera is powered on.

    Also I'm pretty sure that we've all been swayed into believing that the focus is manual as in geared and mechanical. I'm fairly certain it's focus by wire.. BUT a really responsive version of.. With really dampened focusing that feels like a smooth but firmer Loxia lens. Still I feel a smidgen of FBW lag. Nothing you would complain about.. Although I met some older fellows tonight (die hard M fans) who passed on it, simply for this reason alone.

    Camera is super light.. But I just picked it up to check for that, and again, that rattling really makes me feel uneasy, especially after the price I paid.

    In the had it feels great. And that thumb wheel isn't as far back as I thought.. Pretty easy to rotate while still shooting if needed.

    Buttons are smart, but I noticed that it lags when you review an image. I don't know WHY this Leica would lag, it's got 10FPS, yet the monitor takes one second to go from a pixelated file to a sharp file.. Like something so M9 of themÖ I really dislike that, luckily I donít chimp at weddings.

    Physical shutter dial can be overwritten by hitting the thumb wheel, if you have it set that way... I think that's stupid but whatever.

    Camera isn't that grippy, but it does look sexy, and it's so light weight that you wouldn't notice the lack of grippy vulcanite. Plus who doesnít use a strap or at least a finger loop?

    The lens seems big, the camera isn't something that could go in anyones pocket, unless you could also smuggle large oranges.

    The shape of the EVF box annoys me.. It just looks stupid like a sad robot. Itís not a 16:9 EVF so WTH?

    I can see dust getting caught in the lens or dirt when shifting from Macro to regular mode... But it's a damn cool way they've hidden the macro scale. But really, I hate that, and it worries me since my Singapore home is dusty due to MRT construction and my LA home is also dusty due to it being a desert and also under construction.

    A friend of mine who also happened to be at the event, she kept hitting the movie button accidentally.. So it was all photos and movies the whole night for her. Even after I corrected her, I think the buttons are just to close, but where else would you put it?

    The two custom buttons are a must.. There are a few things you're going to not want to have to dive into the menu for.. One is EVF/LCD related and the other is AF type related.



    MY #1 BIGGEST GRIPE: And this is something I'm going to email Leica about RIGHT NOW. When you have the camera set to EVF only, two things should happen. One the EVF should be off until you put your eye to the sensor (saves battery). And the other.. You should have the option to set it, so when you click on the menu or play button, you don't have to stand there like an idiot reviewing photos or looking through the menu using the EVF.. It should automatically bring up the LCD so you can scroll naturally like you would on any M camera or S camera. I can't even get my thumb onto the buttons while looking through the EVF, so how would I switch menu items.. I wouldn't.. And that sucks. This is such an amateur SONY move.. It's unbelievable that Leica wouldn't think to just add this function... But really folks, if this is the thing that bothers me most about the Leica Q, then I think Leica did a good job.
    I actually got into a heated argument with someone from Leica about this at the event.. He couldn't see my point of view, and I felt he was overly rude about my need for this feature, so I decided to also not be polite about my dislike of this. He kept saying it was unnecessary and that itís vital to not remove your eye from the viewfinder ever. I really hope Leica can see my point of view. I know this has bothered people on the A series cameras since Sony started with this EVF technology.


    The sensor, IQ, ISO all all that other BS, I'm sure you've all seen on review sites. People have DNGs out for you to play with.. I don't really need to get into that tonight. I'd confidently use it up to 6400 ISO and just laugh it off as grain.. And honestly, the grain is WEIRD, it doesn't go all coloured and messy.. It's little fine black dots.. Almost M9 CCD-ish.. The problem, you can see those little fine dots at 100% view on most ISO speeds.. Nothing bad, again just very CCD-ish, or old tech CMOS.. Which really has me wondering who's making their sensor.. If it was Sony (even though Leica says it isn't) then they did a good job with color profiling, because I don't really get a Sony color vibe from this camera (and generally I dislike Sony sensors, even in Nikons).. I will amend that tomorrow after going out and about with the camera. If it looks suspiciously Sony to me, Iíll let you all know. BTW, I wouldnít hesitate using this thing at MAX iso, itís really very nice in black and white.

    They give you a leather strap with it.. It feels fake, but my leather straps come from either Luigi and are ďmehĒ construction wise, but soft.. Or come from the same supplier who supplies Hermes with their birkin leather... Apparently. So I'm a bit picky when it comes to leather and leather goods. But good on them for not suppling that horrid rope burn material. Charger, cables, books.. Nothing exciting. Lens hood seems weirdly not as you would expect.. Actually I'm a bit upset it's not cool like the 21SEM or 35FLE.. It doesn't have that little zigzag notch to lock into place.. It more just stops screwing.. And you have to be REALLY hard on it, or else the hood doesn't sit straight.. And even then, I have a sneaky suspicion mine is a slight bit crooked.. I'll have to check this tomorrow at the store with the display model. I wouldn't use the hood anyway.. It makes the camera look more phallic then I want. I have the thread ring on, and it's fine. I also put a filter on it, because why not.

    Aside from the rattling which again is bothering me, and FlyByWire (although again, the best implementation of), I think I like the design.

    EVF is super smooth.. Visually way better then anything I've seen before.. It's like going from SD to 4K or from home tv to IMAX. And when I spin the camera around like a banshee in decent light, I donít see jello... I wonder if the video is good?? No 24FPS though, what's up with that?? Seriously Iíll have to test the video for rolling shutter, jello ect. I have a suspecion itíll be good IQ wise.

    Again, why couldn't it have been a interchangeable system, or at least a 35mm cron? Hmmm, maybe we'll see a 75cron or 90cron Q soonÖ Please, Leica, please.

    BTW - I grumbled a lot the past couple of days about Leica (and my again, not stellar CS/Repair job). I still think their service/repairs need improving. Let's hope the Q doesn't break.. This was also something I heard mentioned by 3-5 people.. People I had just met, I asked what they thought.. Most answers were along the lines of "we're weary to buy anything fully electronic from Leica, they don't have a good track record" Also "if the camera goes bad, you also loose a lens along the way". BUT I still bought the camera, because I want to show Leica that I can be an M user, love rangefinders and mechanical lenses. But I can also be a Q or whatever interchangeable camera replaces the Q user..

    Basically, I can't complain about the "lack of technology" from Leica, and then not buy the most advanced mirrorless camera I've ever seen, heard of, or touched. It just wouldn't be fair to Leica, and would make me a hypocrite for criticising them and then not giving them a chance... Hmmm I'll raise hell if this thing breaks though, I really will.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Ummm... Here's a crappy photo since I feel bad. I took the same shot with my 35FLE a few weeks back, and I think the M-P + 35FLE gives me a better image. Though it was a weekend, and I think the lights were out in full force.. I would have to go back and check, but these images aren't usually things I keep.

    At least you can see how the lens looks from further away with lots of straight lines running all over, right.

    Straight out of camera JPG. It was wide open F/1.7 I think 125th, and at that point should have been auto ISO since I was spinning around with the EVF more then anything else.. Oh also I didn't resize it or anything. Or obviously pay attention to what I was shooting. I don't even think I looked actually.

    IMAGE
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    The shutter is so quiet that the Japanese government is going to need a separate firmware with a built in click sound for the safety of women.

    Umm... In case you don't know what I mean. The iPhone 6 and 6+ CLICK/Shutter sound cannot be disabled on the iPhones over in Japan, to prevent perverts from using it. And it's about 3-5 decibels (whatever those are) louder then an American or Singaporean iPhone. I know this because my friend has one.. It's funny and annoying at the same time.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Adam, I skipped the ramblings after I read that you own a Q. Congrats!


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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Adam, I skipped the ramblings after I read that you own a Q. Congrats!


    I'll get another image up in a minute.. I think there are problems with 50mm crop mode and manually set white balance. From one photo to the next, it skips in tint like crazy town. I'll go in and edit the raw files and post one or two shots of my wife. She wanted to see how much of a bobble head it would make her. She's spoiled and only likes being shot with the S-006 + 120S. But allowed me to take some shots of her, and then proceeded to steal the camera to take a bunch of selfies.

    Give me a moment.. But in the meantime please enjoy my image file posted above. It's a full size jpg of a bunch of random architectural elements.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Thanks, look forward to them. I did not notice your link to the mall picture.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    I don't think that LR recognises the sensor tech in the Q yet.. I can go from 3200K to 3800K and the sensor jumps from being cyanotype blue to damn sepia orange. The tints are also the same... I have a feeling this is an adobe problem, but I'm fully updated with latest everything.. So hopefully this gets sorted out quickly.

    Image is coming, my wife is just playing with it in LR and we're discussing the crazy wonkiness of LR with this camera.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Just one since I'm having weird color issues with LR, I'm going to explore this tomorrow, it's 3am here, so I'm off to bed.. But seriously the images are acting really wonky. I might have to make a few screen shots to show everyone if I can't figure it out.

    I actually didn't even take this image. My wife did, said she wanted to see if it was a good selfie cam.. I think she's trying to replace me

    Anyway here it is, roughly 35mm crop but obviously 4/3 ratio. And colors have been toned down as much as possible with out looking crazy. This is essentially just some reduction work on the color channels and a white balance minor adjust plus 5pt contrast.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    One word: want.
    Life is an infinite series of moments called..."now".
    My job is to capture them.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Just a comment about the SF 26 flash. I spent a brief time with one. It won't do TTL with a M9, M-E nor original monochrom BUT I did find it did work in TTL mode with the M240 and I presume with the M246.

    Not sure but does anyone know if SF 26 works in TTL with same X series cameras like the X Vario?

    Lastly, if its like some Pentax SLR's that have "in body" image stabilization, gently shaking or tuning the body revealed a noise as you described with the Q. My quess is it also may be the built in image stabilization mechanism.

    Dave (D&A)
    Last edited by D&A; 11th June 2015 at 22:08.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Here is a treat for everyone...

    http://www.reddotforum.com/content/2...#comment-16074

    Red Dot Forum's review of the Leica Q. Click on the images for larger res previews. Even at these sizes I'm completely blown away by the ISO noise, color, dynamic range and sharpness. The Leica shine and crispness I've previously seen a little bit more on their CCD cameras is here, no question.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Adam
    Hi
    What a great writeup - I must say I found it hard not to get too enthusiastic at a couple of points
    Lightroom doesn't have proper colour profiles yet - this should improve.
    I quite agree about various firmware points you make (EVF only behaviour especially) and will be hassling Leica to get these fixed (I think it should be easy).
    Several of us are also hassling for a 50mm version of the camera (oh yes!)


    I think they've hit a home run this time.

    Just this guy you know
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    A 28 and a 50 would just about be perfect as a 2 camera set to take traveling
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by D&A View Post
    Just a comment about the SF 26 flash. I spent a brief time with one. It won't do TTL with a M9, M-E nor original monochrom BUT I did find it did work in TTL mode with the M240 and I presume with the M246.

    Not sure but does anyone know if SF 26 works in TTL with same X series cameras like the X Vario?

    Lastly, if its like some Pentax SLR's that have "in body" image stabilization, gently shaking or tuning the body revealed a noise as you described with the Q. My quess is it also may be the built in image stabilization mechanism.

    Dave (D&A)
    Hi Dave,

    I think I answered your question on the other forum. But I did test the SF26 w/my M240 and I couldn't get the right exposures in TTL. Perhaps I was doing something wrong. I'd be the first to admit that, as generally I'm a manual flash kinda guy.

    And I think you're right about the stabiliser, which I think is built into the lens with this camera. So yes while off you would hear rattling noises, but still scares me a little.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by animefx View Post
    Here is a treat for everyone...

    http://www.reddotforum.com/content/2...#comment-16074

    Red Dot Forum's review of the Leica Q. Click on the images for larger res previews. Even at these sizes I'm completely blown away by the ISO noise, color, dynamic range and sharpness. The Leica shine and crispness I've previously seen a little bit more on their CCD cameras is here, no question.

    It's a really shitty day here today. Though I am working on getting some pictures together that I think reflect the Qs good and bad points.

    My worry is the color issues in LR that I mentioned. Nobody else seems to have brought it up.

    As for crispness, I'm not sure I see it yet, but I do see similarities between the grain structure that is reminiscent of old CMOS or current CCD cameras.
    Colors I haven't even gotten to yet, I haven't had enough time with it.
    But weirdly enough, it tends to share the same strange faded blacks that I see on the RX1 and film that's been pushed. Again, something I need to investigate.

    MY thoughts on ISO remain, you can use the camera on 50,000 and shoot perfectly acceptable BW files (web viewing) and in print I think most people would be ok with the quality from 6400 ISO. 3200 no question will give you a beautiful print.

    I will be printing something from the Q shortly at large sizes on a dye-sub printer. And I'll let everyone know my thoughts.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Adam
    Hi
    What a great writeup - I must say I found it hard not to get too enthusiastic at a couple of points
    Lightroom doesn't have proper colour profiles yet - this should improve.
    I quite agree about various firmware points you make (EVF only behaviour especially) and will be hassling Leica to get these fixed (I think it should be easy).
    Several of us are also hassling for a 50mm version of the camera (oh yes!)


    I think they've hit a home run this time.

    Yeah I don't know how you kept this camera in your pants for so long Jono... NDA or not, I think I would have jumped the gun on this one
    I think a 75 would balance out the 28 FL for my needs.. But if it weren't for my straight up strange love affair with the 50APO, I'd seriously consider a 50mm version for travel, since it's my preferred FL for travel/street.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by ashwinrao1 View Post
    A 28 and a 50 would just about be perfect as a 2 camera set to take traveling
    You know it's coming.. And then soon after of course we'll get a interchangeable system. But geez I'm kinda almost thinking that interchangeable is so overrated when I hold this little guy.. Really never thought I'd say it, but I'm proud of Leica today.

    OMG, I can just see it now, my Q is going to break down, and I'm going to fly to Germany with a long sock and a roll of quarters.

    Or a stick
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Let's call it a rolling review!
    More rablings:

    Even when you set your EVF/LCD to LOW brightness, your LCD/EVF is still roughly 1/2 a stop brighter then your actual out of camera JPG. Which sucks a little, but just something you should always remember to compensate for.
    Yes I have the proper WYSIWYG settings turned on. I'm far from an overenthusiastic newb. I just write like one

    I always set my LCD/EVF to min brightness, because your eyes will adjust to it, and that way you won't be tricking yourself into taking the wrong exposures. The Q isn't the only EVF camera that suffers from this, it's just a shame as it's only 1/2 stop away at most. Just remember to manually compensate.

    ONE more thing that bothers me about the Q, and it's just weird to me as an M user. The Aperture is in 1/3 stops, so unlike Leica. The shutter dial is in full stops (weird but quick)! And the ISO is in full stops YAY, I love full stop ISO! If they had made the aperture half stops, and shutter half stops, I'd have been happiest. Though who doesn't tweak the brightness in LR? So really I guess it doesn't matter that much, it'll just be hard to go back and forth between this and the M on the fly, since I mainly use full manual at work. I like the challenge tho!

    Also, and every EVF I've used does this. You see brilliant bright vibrant colors in the EVF and LCD. The second you take the photo the JPG is more muddy then what you saw. I don't know why there's no jpg setting that'll give you the EVF/LCD live view look without the overcooked nature of upping your saturation on the jpg files.
    It's kinda a confidence buster when you're in the zone shooting, and then ten minutes later you review images and everythings a bit more flat then it was looking through the EVF. Hey, with a little work, raw files can look better then the EVF, but again, if the EVF shows me something, my JPG should follow through. Even if that mean muting the colors on the EVF/LCD when in live view/shooting.
    (actually scratch that.. I've noticed that the M240 EVF is more true to color vibrancy with the JPGs, but the JPGS can be a bit more contrasty then the EVF lets on, and brightness is still a problem)

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Lovely to see people so enthusiastic about their new goodies!

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Leica deserves praise for coming of age.

    Based on what Jono and other reviewers', whose views I read with interest, this
    Cam is going to rock for many...and rightly so.

    But it is not for me. I hate the 28mm fl. I grudgingly use the 35mm..and really
    poorly.

    Give me a 50mm and a 90mm and I have my cc ready. Or give me an interchangeable Q with its own 50+90 and I shall jump over it.

    I want the Q2 to be able to use M mount or its native lenses, if possible. But I would prefer native Q af lenses. And I am done with gear.

    I do not want to put cameras in or under my pants...I have other things..important things there..

    I wish Leica all success with this offering. And share in the enthusiasm of those that have or shall acquire this Q.

    Kudos to Leica.
    koffee & kamera
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Same here
    I want that camera but without lenses + a new line of dedicated AF lenses
    Then I shall sell my M
    Leica M

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    unravel wrote:
    Thank you for the review, just curious, how is the blackout on the EVF? Especially since you shot Sony series, if you could use that as a comparison. This is the only thing that i dont like about mirrorless systems tbh.

    The blackout time is faster then a DSLR can bring up and bring down it's mirror. I would say almost on par with a non-1series Canon. Or on par for all intents and purposes. I actually haven't gone to my studio yet to do a comparison, it could be faster.. It's a non-issue in shooting single frame.
    BUT it slows down when shooting continuos frames.. Then it feels more sluggish then the 1Dx/5DIII for sure. Much quicker then the A7II

    Oh and focus tracking is good. I was walking backwards, my wife was walking at a decent pace, and all the shots were in focus.. Which I think is harder for a wide angle to be honest, as it has so much contrast packed into such a small space. Her head was like 10% of the frame maybe? This was of course in bright light. I think the 5D3 would have had some missed frames here, just on the erratic way two people were walking against each other.

    -------------

    I think a interchangeable Q system is what everyone wants. And I'd like to point out that Leica has done pretty well with the Q design. So hopefully an interchangeable Q will be here soon.

    A few other annoying points after a few hours of shooting. Battery life no fantastic, but not horrible.

    Having the shutter dial control 1 stop adjustments then having the thumb wheel also controlling shutter speeds but in half stops is kinda strange. They should have made the shutter dial half stops. Then used the scroll wheel to scroll through AF types or something useful like maybe exposure compensation.

    Also, I don't know if I'm doing this wrong, but I can't find the setting where you have it on WYSIWYG constantly, not just on half pressed shutter. The M240 has both options available to the user.. Maybe I'm just tired today of looking at menus. I'll check again tomorrow.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    On the 28 - years ago, loved the 35mm on an M2, never liked the 28mm (back then). Now have used a 28 on an MM and warmed up to that lens, with a margin for cropping. I never liked the 28 before but liking it now.

    On the fixed lens - One advantage is lack of dust on the sensor. Not a minor issue over time.

    The Q is a direct challenge to the RX1, both are compact AF high quality cameras, great to travel with. Tough choice, but glad to see Leica in the mix.
    www.gigi-photos.com
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    On the 28 - years ago, loved the 35mm on an M2, never liked the 28mm (back then). Now have used a 28 on an MM and warmed up to that lens, with a margin for cropping. I never liked the 28 before but liking it now.

    On the fixed lens - One advantage is lack of dust on the sensor. Not a minor issue over time.

    The Q is a direct challenge to the RX1, both are compact AF high quality cameras, great to travel with. Tough choice, but glad to see Leica in the mix.

    It's definitely a RX1 inspired camera. In that it's FF, with a high quality fixed lens.
    I'd say that save for the FL, the Leica has it beat at every corner in real world scenarios. I wish their was a better flash then the SF26, but whatever.

    I can't wait to see what Sony has cooked up for the RX2, but it would have to not only be significantly better IQ wise then the Q, but would have to also be ergonomically better then it's predecessor or I wouldn't even consider it.

    Sony should use the RX2 as a way to test if it can do minimal well. That or they should toss a medium format sensor into the RX2 to shut everyone up.

    Unless you're very smart with your compositions, and in some cases you really can't be. I think the 28mm is a great FL for black and white images. The ability to strip messy colors from a scene, and just focus on the way light and dark plays with the image.. I think that's ideal. Though I don't shoot black and white, like rarely or ever.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by aDam007 View Post
    Hi Dave,

    I think I answered your question on the other forum. But I did test the SF26 w/my M240 and I couldn't get the right exposures in TTL. Perhaps I was doing something wrong. I'd be the first to admit that, as generally I'm a manual flash kinda guy.

    And I think you're right about the stabiliser, which I think is built into the lens with this camera. So yes while off you would hear rattling noises, but still scares me a little.
    Yes, rattling noise like I first heard in Pentax IS bodies scared me too.

    As for the SF-26, I assumed the TTL protocol was the same for cameras like the M9, M-E, original monochrom as well as the M240. Apparently its not. When I used the SF 26 briefly on all the cameras mentioned, it appeared to be quite accurate (forward firing as well as bounce) with the M240 but not with any of the others. With the M-E, M9 etc, TTL was non functional. Unfortunately Leica is mum regarding use of this new flash with the M9 era of cameras.

    Dave (D&A)

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    I really want this camera and I personally LOVE fixed lens cameras. My Rolleiflex taught me the value of simplicity.

    The thing that worries me is that Leica might one day soon release a 35/2 version, which would be really better suited to my work. Plus I feel like cropping it to 35 makes it effectively APS-C.

    Seriously though, who did this for Leica? Every camera they've made like this has had some fatal flaw that was aside from preference. Now suddenly they have world class AF, latitude, and ISO performance? Maybe this is the effect of the expansion?

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Speedgraphic View Post
    I really want this camera and I personally LOVE fixed lens cameras. My Rolleiflex taught me the value of simplicity.

    The thing that worries me is that Leica might one day soon release a 35/2 version, which would be really better suited to my work. Plus I feel like cropping it to 35 makes it effectively APS-C.

    Seriously though, who did this for Leica? Every camera they've made like this has had some fatal flaw that was aside from preference. Now suddenly they have world class AF, latitude, and ISO performance? Maybe this is the effect of the expansion?
    I couldn't say. I looked at 100% crops from all my various Sony sensors I've had over the years, various Canon sensors, and various Nikon sensors and 100% crops from the M9 and M240. I came to the conclusion that I think the sensor seems very similar to old tech Canon sensors, but sharper with more resolution (obviously). Similar to the M9, but not exactly the same as under the black dot layer there is a weird texture not present in the M9. None of this is bad, it sounds bad, but it's good.. I'm pretty ok with the sensor. Now I just need LR to work properly with the Q, and some sunny days to test the thing.

    Apparently Leica built this in house with parts sourced from various places. Which is fine by me, as long as it works.

    It would be lovely to get a 75 or 90 version of this camera. Nothing will replace my 50APO, so I'm hoping the next Q comes in a tele, as that hasn't been done before, and I hope it comes soon.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by D&A View Post
    Yes, rattling noise like I first heard in Pentax IS bodies scared me too.

    As for the SF-26, I assumed the TTL protocol was the same for cameras like the M9, M-E, original monochrom as well as the M240. Apparently its not. When I used the SF 26 briefly on all the cameras mentioned, it appeared to be quite accurate (forward firing as well as bounce) with the M240 but not with any of the others. With the M-E, M9 etc, TTL was non functional. Unfortunately Leica is mum regarding use of this new flash with the M9 era of cameras.

    Dave (D&A)
    I'll have to test the SF-26 w/the M240. Last time I did, TTL didn't seem to work, or at least wasn't working accurately.

    Good news is, if you use the SF24D on A mode w/the Q116 set the proper way. It's almost more reliable then TTL is. Been walking around the house getting great results. Well as good as I can for on camera flash in a dark room with no bounce... Very Terry Richardson type work.

    More good news, I went into my bathroom turned off all the lights, so I was essentially being lit by non directional diffused moon light. Basically I couldn't really see what was what. The camera locked focus on letters on a bottle, and it did it pretty quick. ISO50,000 + 15th of a second + 1.7 so it was DARK. Image looks crappy, but a quick convert to black and white, and a few curves adjustment and it's something you'd think could be shot on film (save for the unfortunate but subtle banding that pops up once in every few 50,000 ISO images).

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by aDam007 View Post
    I couldn't say. I looked at 100% crops from all my various Sony sensors I've had over the years, various Canon sensors, and various Nikon sensors and 100% crops from the M9 and M240. I came to the conclusion that I think the sensor seems very similar to old tech Canon sensors, but sharper with more resolution (obviously). Similar to the M9, but not exactly the same as under the black dot layer there is a weird texture not present in the M9. None of this is bad, it sounds bad, but it's good.. I'm pretty ok with the sensor. Now I just need LR to work properly with the Q, and some sunny days to test the thing.

    Apparently Leica built this in house with parts sourced from various places. Which is fine by me, as long as it works.

    It would be lovely to get a 75 or 90 version of this camera. Nothing will replace my 50APO, so I'm hoping the next Q comes in a tele, as that hasn't been done before, and I hope it comes soon.
    Oh ok! I just read that they got Panasonic to do the AF. What a DUH move, seriously. Companies but out better products when they work together IMO. Just like the iPhone and Google maps. Now to discover who made the sensor...there aren't THAT many manufacturers out there....

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    LOL, so my wife just emailed me this link to her blog: http://www.emilyloke.com/life/photog...f-the-leica-q/

    I told her about my rolling review.. And she wrote one to show me how it's done. Also so the rest of you can use it to convince your wives that you need a Leica Q also.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    I like her perspective and writing style

    About the bathroom test, it did have the AF-assist light, didn't it? It can't be as magical as Sony A7s, I would think :P
    David Young
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by aDam007 View Post
    I'll have to test the SF-26 w/the M240. Last time I did, TTL didn't seem to work, or at least wasn't working accurately.

    Good news is, if you use the SF24D on A mode w/the Q116 set the proper way. It's almost more reliable then TTL is. Been walking around the house getting great results. Well as good as I can for on camera flash in a dark room with
    Unless it was a fluke, the SF 26 seemed to work guite accurately om the M240 in TTL mode.I'll be interested to hear of your observations with that combination.

    As for the SF 24, I always found it to work well in A mode but surprisingly fair to poor in TTL. Problem is the Sf24 doesn't so on camera bounce. Asditionally why the SF 24 works woth TTL on both the M9 as well as the M240 in TTL (although only fair in terms of exposure accuracy), the Sf26 only works on the.M240.. Strange indeed.

    Dave (D&A)

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by rayyan View Post
    Leica deserves praise for coming of age.

    Based on what Jono and other reviewers', whose views I read with interest, this
    Cam is going to rock for many...and rightly so.

    But it is not for me. I hate the 28mm fl. I grudgingly use the 35mm..and really
    poorly.

    Give me a 50mm and a 90mm and I have my cc ready. Or give me an interchangeable Q with its own 50+90 and I shall jump over it.

    I want the Q2 to be able to use M mount or its native lenses, if possible. But I would prefer native Q af lenses. And I am done with gear.

    I do not want to put cameras in or under my pants...I have other things..important things there..

    I wish Leica all success with this offering. And share in the enthusiasm of those that have or shall acquire this Q.

    Kudos to Leica.
    Leica indeed deserves a big KUDOS for the Q. Albeit it is not for me because I never ever would spend as much money on a fixed lens camera - simply no way.

    I would spend my money on a new line of Q-moumt cameras and AF lenses. Based on what we see from the current Q. If there would be a modern Q2 with interchangeable lenses including a 21, 35, 50 and 75 I would jump on it immediately. And maybe even start selling my big M lens collection.

    Just my 5c
    Life is an ever changing journey
    http://photography.tomsu.eu/
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by D&A View Post
    Unless it was a fluke, the SF 26 seemed to work guite accurately om the M240 in TTL mode.I'll be interested to hear of your observations with that combination.

    As for the SF 24, I always found it to work well in A mode but surprisingly fair to poor in TTL. Problem is the Sf24 doesn't so on camera bounce. Asditionally why the SF 24 works woth TTL on both the M9 as well as the M240 in TTL (although only fair in terms of exposure accuracy), the Sf26 only works on the.M240.. Strange indeed.

    Dave (D&A)
    I'll spend more time trying to figure all of this out before my wedding on the 4th of July. I'll bring the Q with me, but can't promise I'll have time to use it between all the M shots I'll need to take. I have some other jobs before the 4th, but nothing that'll require flash the Q or the M.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hosermage View Post
    I like her perspective and writing style

    About the bathroom test, it did have the AF-assist light, didn't it? It can't be as magical as Sony A7s, I would think :P

    No, I turn it off straight away. I think it annoys people, and 99% of the time I'm shooting people.

    I'm pretty sure the camera just has the best AF in the industry. I really found it hard to believe.. I'll update you guys as I go.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by ptomsu View Post
    Leica indeed deserves a big KUDOS for the Q. Albeit it is not for me because I never ever would spend as much money on a fixed lens camera - simply no way.

    I would spend my money on a new line of Q-moumt cameras and AF lenses. Based on what we see from the current Q. If there would be a modern Q2 with interchangeable lenses including a 21, 35, 50 and 75 I would jump on it immediately. And maybe even start selling my big M lens collection.

    Just my 5c

    Hmmmm... Interesting. I don't actually think I'd sell off my M gear. I'd likely pair down to my favourites (or work lenses). But I'm in the process of doing that now anyway (to focus on the S-system). Though I do wish there was an interchangeable Q.

    But if Leica puts a 75 or 90 fixed lens Q in my hand, I might be able to scrape by at a wedding with just the Qs and a backup M

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    One word: want.
    I think he means the Q....

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    I had a nice walk around with the Q today.. Very refreshing to use it leisurely. I just can't cope with the 28mm lens. Will post a few SOOC JPG files soon.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Thanks for keeping this thread alive, aDam....

    My thoughts, which were shared recently through an email:

    I actually quite like the "crop" feature. It works well in terms of using the Q as a 35 mm cropped sensor if one desires, as the files are still quite large and field of view isn't dramatically changed. 50 doesn't work all that well, due to the smaller sizes and distortions still in play.

    The Q vs RX1R is a very interesting comparison. I can say for sure that the Q feels more polished and complete, but it is bulkier (feels about M9 sized, but slightly lighter, less so with the grip attached), and thus slightly less portable. Battery life is much better (600+ shots, vs 300 for the RX1R), and the camera focuses much quicker, something that the early reviews have not emphasized. It's about as good at focusing as nearly any camera I have owned, even in poor light, unless the scene has no contrast, at which point I'd go with manual focus.

    Speaking of which, the AF/MF implementation is superior to the RX1R, and it can be used very joyfully as a manual focus camera. The built in EVF is very nice, notably better than the attachable EVF RX1R, which makes sense given the 2 year interval. Image quality, I would say, is comparable. The RX1R still holds up fine here, and honestly, if you preferred the 35 mm field of view over 28, or should cost factor in, or if you were not enjoying an M sized camera, all would push someone towards a used RX1(R) at around $1500 to $2000.

    At this time, I would see taking the Q over an M if I wanted to keep it simple on a social outing (28, as you know is perfect for family outings or street work), working a street photography shoot, or using the macro for taking photos particularly of food on an outing (the M does not offer this), or further if ISO performance is valued.

    All in all, I think the Q does many, many things right. It's a really refined product from the get go, and Leica clearly had a strong design and implementation team behind this. If it is successful, which I think it will, it'll be a great sign of things to come.
    Ashwin Rao
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Hi Ashwin, my pleasure.

    It's difficult for me to shoot with a 28mm FL. If the Q has taught me anything about myself, it's that I don't like 28mm. I knew this going in, considering my track record with my M-system.

    I'll be putting up a proper review tomorrow night. With pictures.. But for now here are some more images:

    These are SOOC JPG files made small in LR. Chalk with my typical resizing problems:
    (They're all almost 1 stop to dark, there's a reason for this, I will mention it in my proper review. BTW weather was overcast and crappy. Not a good day for photos.)


    f/5.6


    f/1.7


    f/11


    f/5.6


    f/5.6


    f/5.6


    f/5.6


    f/5.6


    f/5.6


    f/5.6


    f/5.6


    I should also add, they were all sharp until I resized them
    I really need to learn how to get the best out of web jpg files.

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Two quick questions for those with the camera.

    1. Is there is any face based AF mode?
    2. I downloaded a bunch of the DNGs at photographyblog.com and noticed that even a bit minor lifting of shadows resulted in visible pattern banding. Are you guys seeing this on your production cameras at all?

    Thanks!
    Aravind
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by thedigitalbean View Post
    Two quick questions for those with the camera.

    1. Is there is any face based AF mode?
    2. I downloaded a bunch of the DNGs at photographyblog.com and noticed that even a bit minor lifting of shadows resulted in visible pattern banding. Are you guys seeing this on your production cameras at all?

    Thanks!

    1) Yes, and it works well. As in subjects are sharp. The only problem, it always focuses on the wrong face

    2) Yes and no.. It depends on how badly you screw up. I haven't noticed this as much as I have on the M246.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by aDam007 View Post
    1) Yes, and it works well. As in subjects are sharp. The only problem, it always focuses on the wrong face

    2) Yes and no.. It depends on how badly you screw up. I haven't noticed this as much as I have on the M246.
    That sounds like a typical CDAF focus.

    "how badly you screw up". Haha. May be too much to ask from a "premium" camera?

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Ashwin wrote ---> " If it is successful, which I think it will, it'll be a great sign of things to come."

    I couldn't agree more and not just with future varients of the Q model but with many of its feature and performance characteristics finding their way into a future M based rangefinder body (maybe with a hybrid viewfinder).

    One outstanding thing that immediately impressed me about the Q imagery ia its color profile, resembling more of the M9 color signature than that of the M240. Something tells me Leica was.listening.

    Dave (D&a)

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Some Random Day 3 shots

    Flower Power (Macro, heavy crop)


    Pirate latte :


    Flower sale!
    Ashwin Rao
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Dave, totally agreed, the color signature seems...how should I say...familiar...in a good way...I am once again getting tones that I enjoy...

    aDam, I totally agree that 28 is a challenge and not my favorite FL. That being said, I am all about taking on new challenges and seeing in ways that force me to get better....the Q also does a nice job seeing in 35 with a slight crop (plus frame lines) so it may be a fun way to use the camera...I am not a fan of the distortions and smaller file sizes introduced by the crop down to 50, however....
    Ashwin Rao
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Ashwin - Nice images, love the latte art
    Yeah the concept and execution of the crop is neat. I just don't like the idea of buying a camera and then making cropping a habit. I'll either have to get use to 28mm or get rid of the camera

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    I have to ask: why would you buy this camera if you know you don't like 28mm? I had assumed it would only appeal to people who are darned sure they love 28mm!

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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by turtle View Post
    I have to ask: why would you buy this camera if you know you don't like 28mm? I had assumed it would only appeal to people who are darned sure they love 28mm!
    Partly to support the brands decision to go FF/AF and to maintain similar body styling. Partly because I wanted to see where Leica is headed. Considering I'm heavily invested in the brand, and use their products to make a living.
    And lastly because it's a challenge.. It forces me to use the 28FL, which makes a lot of sense if you consider how much I use 50mm lenses.
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    Re: Leica Q: First impressions.

    Quote Originally Posted by aDam007 View Post
    Partly to support the brands decision to go FF/AF and to maintain similar body styling. Partly because I wanted to see where Leica is headed. Considering I'm heavily invested in the brand, and use their products to make a living.
    Adam, I appreciate that honesty. I somehow thought that is exactly what you are doing with the Q.

    However, how many people would that take to shore up a brand?

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