The TL series is revolutionary for a firm known for producing rangefinders in the M-series that adhere to conventional design principles nearly to the point of being anachronistic. To be honest, though, the TL might seem very revolutionary in the product portfolio of practically any firm.
I say this because my initial reaction to using the TL2 was that it is the camera that is the furthest thing from a conventional camera that I have used since, well, the very first iteration of the Leica T. This is why I say it.
The fact that it is not like a typical camera does not, however, imply that it does not place the same emphasis on the foundations of photography as an M or a well-honed DSLR. Rather than that, it is a solution to the same problem that is first new.
As was the case with the T and TL models that came before it, the TL2 is a camera that is mostly controlled by its touchscreen and has an interface that is virtually identical to that of a smartphone and is based on icons rather than menu lists.
However, in addition to the upgrade to a sensor with 24 megapixels for this most recent iteration, Leica has made several other minor but significant adjustments to virtually every camera component.
The edges of the machined aluminum body have been chamfered, which means that it will not dig into your fingers as much as the former models did. This is a significant improvement over the previous generations.
The strap mounting plugs that come out of the camera and are easily lost are still there, but if you decide to use your strap, Leica will now sell you a socket-to-strap-lug converter for a modest price of $65 if you want to use your strap. Meanwhile, the pop-up flash has been removed because users have indicated that they do not require it, which allows for an even more simplified design.
Leica TL2 Build Quality
The Summilux-TL 35mm f/1.4 ASPH lens that was provided for our test and is the most popular lens that comes packed with this camera makes the body of the camera, which is compact and beautiful, appear to be out of proportion.
It is quick and accurate, but it is even more expensive than the TL2, and it generates a front-heavy combination that does not feel comfortable in your hands. The TL2 is in desperate need of a lens that is less optically ambitious but more compact and designed in a pancake manner.
The controls have a basic design that is aesthetically pleasing but requires a little work; some common settings are tougher to get at than you may imagine. The touchscreen display is 3.7 inches, making it significantly larger than most other displays.
Leica TL2 Performance
The camera above and the 35mm f/1.4 lens have the potential to produce results that are extremely crisp when all other conditions are met. However, there is no picture stabilization and the autofocus is not very quick. The autofocus also threw us a few curveballs by focusing on the wrong item a few times, despite what was displayed on the screen.
Although the auto white balance system performs an excellent job, most users of the TL2 will likely shoot in Raw format and tweak colors in post-production. The metering mechanism of the TL2, on the other hand, provided us with consistent exposures throughout our tests and did an excellent job judging the situations that are displayed on this page.
We are concerned about the camera’s body/lens weight distribution, its quirky controls, and its occasionally slow reflexes. Still, owners of the TL2 are likely to be completely satisfied with the image quality.
Leica TL2 Video
Regarding video recording, the TL2 has received significant enhancements, the most notable of which is the inclusion of support for UHD 4K at 30 frames per second. You can shoot clear video with this option that boasts an extremely high quality, and the resulting footage will look great on monitors both now and in the future.
In addition to UHD 4K, there is enhanced Full HD with a maximum frame rate of sixty frames per second (fps), and HD, capable of slow motion at a rate of one hundred twenty frames per second. Focus peaking is also included to ensure that your films are in focus, and there is a micro-HDMI connector for output to an external display or monitor. Focus peaking is offered.
Leica TL2 Sensor
Every camera system must have a remarkable sensor at its core, and the TL2 is extremely lucky to have a fantastic 24.2MP APS-C CMOS at its center. This sensor, when combined with the Maestro II processor from Leica, delivers exceptional resolution and clarity, as well as native sensitivities that range from ISO 100 to ISO 50000.
When you combine this with the TL2’s understated yet practical design, you end up with a streamlined and user-friendly system capable of producing outstanding photographs. Additionally, this sensor features an electronic shutter option, which enables high-speed shooting of up to 20 frames per second and higher shutter speeds.
Leica TL2 Verdict
With most Leica cameras, you can at least understand how they may appeal to a certain sort of user and style of photography; however, the TL2 is distinct in that it can be used for various photographic applications. The body of the camera is sleek, uncluttered, and appealing in its way; nevertheless, the controls are idiosyncratic, and the handling is front-heavy when a lens is attached, which makes it a very challenging instrument for photography.
Leica TL2 Specs
|Lens Mount||Leica L|
|Sensor Resolution||Actual: 24.96 Megapixel|
Effective: 24.6 Megapixel (6072 x 4056)
|Sensor Type||23.6 x 15.7 mm (APS-C) CMOS|
|Built-In ND Filter||None|
|Capture Type||Stills & Video|
|Shutter Speed||Mechanical Shutter|
1/8000 to 500 Seconds
1/16000 to 60 Seconds
|Bulb/Time Mode||Bulb Mode|
|ISO Sensitivity||50 to 100,000 in Auto Mode (Extended: 50 to 50,000)|
|Metering Method||Center-Weighted Average, Multi-Zone, Spot|
|Exposure Modes||Aperture Priority, Manual, Program, Shutter Priority|
|Exposure Compensation||-3 to +3 EV (1/3 EV Steps)|
|White Balance||Presets: Auto, Cloudy, Color Temperature, Daylight, Flash, Fluorescent (Cool White), Fluorescent (Warm White), Halogen, Shade, Tungsten, White Balance Adjustment|
|Continuous Shooting||Mechanical Shutter|
Up to 9 fps at 24.6 MP for up to Unlimited 78 Frames (Raw) / Unlimited 100 Frames (JPEG)
Up to 5 fps at 24.6 MP for up to Unlimited 29 Frames (Raw) / Unlimited Frames (JPEG)
Up to 2 fps at 24.6 MP for Unlimited Frames (Raw) / Unlimited Frames (JPEG)
Up to 25 fps at 24.6 MP for Unlimited Frames (Raw) / Unlimited Frames (JPEG)
Still Image Capture
|Image Sizes||3:2 DNG|
6016 x 4014
6000 x 4000
4272 x 2856
3024 x 2016
|Image File Format||DNG, JPEG|
|External Recording Modes||4:2:2 10-Bit via HDMI|
DCI 4K (4096 x 2160) at 23.98/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps
UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) at 23.98/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps
4:2:0 8-Bit via HDMI
UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) at 23.98/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/25/29.97/50/59.94/100/119.88/179.82 fps
|Built-In Microphone Type||Stereo|
|Audio Recording||AAC Audio|
|Media/Memory Card Slot||Dual Slot: SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-II)|
|Internal Memory||32 GB|
|Video I/O||1 x Micro-HDMI Output|
|Power I/O||1 x USB-C Input/Output|
|Other I/O||1 x USB-C (USB 3.2 / 3.1 Gen 1) Data Input/Output (Shared with Power Input)|
|Global Positioning (GPS, GLONASS, etc.)||None|
|Display Type||Fixed Touchscreen LCD|
|Focus Type||Auto and Manual Focus|
|Focus Mode||Continuous-Servo AF, Manual Focus, Single-Servo AF|
|Autofocus Points||Contrast Detection: 225|
|Maximum Sync Speed||1/250 Second|
|Flash Compensation||-2 to +2 EV (1/3 EV Steps)|
|Dedicated Flash System||TTL|
|External Flash Connection||Hot Shoe|
|Operating Temperature||14 to 104°F / -10 to 40°C|
|Battery Type||1 x BP-SCL4 Rechargeable Lithium-Ion, 7.2 VDC, 1860 mAh (Approx. 510 Shots)|
|Tripod Mounting Thread||1 x 1/4″-20 Female (Bottom)|
|Accessory Mount||1 x Hot Shoe Mount|
|Material of Construction||Aluminum, Magnesium Alloy|
|Dimensions (W x H x D)||5.3 x 2.7 x 1.3″ / 134 x 69 x 33 mm|
|Weight||14.1 oz / 399 g (With Battery)|
12.5 oz / 355 g (Body Only)
|Package Weight||4.85 lb|
|Box Dimensions (LxWxH)||8.7 x 8.5 x 6.6″|