Press Release: December 10, 2020 – Introducing the new Leica SL2-S, the perfect solution for anyone seeking outstanding imaging performance in both photography and video production from Leica. With its new 24 megapixel CMOS-BSI sensor and two separate recording modes for photos and videos, the Leica SL2-S offers the best of both mediums in one all-metal, state-of-the-art body built for long-term durability.
The Leica SL2-S expands the multi-faceted SL-System with a versatile full-frame camera that serves as the ideal option for creatives who seek the Leica Look in both still and motion pictures. With its high-speed shooting at continuous burst rates up to 25 frames per second at full resolution and its pro-level cinema capabilities encompassing 10-bit 4K and Cine4K video with no recording length limits, the SL2-S is the ideal choice to capture brilliant photographs and cinematic videos through an intuitive camera that is built to last.
The core element of the Leica SL2-S is the newly developed backside-illuminated CMOS full-frame image sensor with a resolution of 24 megapixels. The data collected by the sensor is quickly processed by the camera’s Maestro-III processor in conjunction with the generous, 4-gigabyte buffer memory. This, for the first time, enables endless continuous shooting at up to 9 frames per second, where the burst length in JPEG format is only limited by the capacity the memory cards in the camera’s dual UHS-II card slots.
The Leica SL2-S features a stabilized image sensor, which provides a highly efficient, multi-axis image stabilization to be used with any Leica lens mounted to the body for a steadier shot yielding sharper results choosing slower shutter speeds. This sensor-shift technology also enables multi-shot capturing, automatically combining eight shots into one image with a fourfold resolution of 96 megapixels. The high sensitivity of up to ISO 100,000 – combined with the fast autofocus and in-body image stabilization – enables photographers to capture excellent images in all kinds of environments and even the dimmest of light.
The Leica SL2-S is the first SL model to enable direct tethered shooting with Capture One 21. This gives users the option of full remote control of the camera via the computer through the chosen software of many professional photographers and digital techs. In addition, the SL2-S can also be tethered to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Classic for seamless integration to Adobe’s widely popular photographic workflow application. An extended 90-day trial of the Adobe Creative Cloud Photography plan is included when purchasing the camera. The Leica SL2-S shares many core attributes as its sibling model, the Leica SL2, such as the unique operating concept and high-resolution Leica EyeRes® viewfinder and utilizes the SL2’s full accessory range. The equally robust, all-metal SL2-S also features weather sealing with a certified IP54 rating against dust and spray water, endless shooting and video recording without overheating and is produced in Germany to the highest quality standards.
Perfect For Creative Videographers
The Leica SL2-S provides not just photographers but also videographers and cinematographers with outstanding possibilities which are continuously optimized via the firmware updates released for SL-System cameras on an ongoing basis. The Leica SL2-S captures 10-bit 4:2:2 videos with Leica’s L-LOG gamma profile, at frame rates of up to 60 fps, ensuring the best quality color reproduction and sharpest results. Thanks to the integrated viewing LUTs (lookup tables), the user will have full control for optimal color quality and post-processing grading throughout the recording. Another pro-level trait is the camera’s unlimited video recording time, meaning the video length is only limited by the SD card or external storage capacity.
Through future firmware developments, the camera will also support the highly efficient HEVC video compression standard for internal 10-bit recordings up to 4K/60p directly to the SD card. This will also allow videos to be split into one-minute segments to minimize the risk of data loss. Other enhanced features, such as an integrated waveform monitor and automatic Follow Focus, will be added with the next firmware update further enhancing the camera’s suitability for professional applications and long-term use.
Being equipped with the L-Mount makes the Leica SL2-S fully compatible with not just the SL-System’s extensive lens portfolio but also with APS-C TL-Lenses and via adapter, lenses from the Leica M, R, and S-System. The L-Mount Alliance provides SL2-S owners with access to over 40 autofocus lenses from Leica and alliance partners. In addition, Leitz Cine lenses – which are highly coveted among filmmakers around the world – can also be adapted to the Leica SL2-S.
The Complete Dual-Purpose Package
All the new features of the Leica SL2-S along with its established and well-regarded inherited qualities stemming from the Leica SL2 make this camera the perfect all-rounder for still photography and cinematic videography. The latest developments and technical innovations combine seamlessly with the unique build, design, and user interface making the SL2-S the fastest and most widely capable camera from Leica.
The Leica SL2-S is on sale starting today at authorized Leica dealers for $4,895.
It's a problem with most review sites now, if you don't say nice things... you don't get called back, if they ignore you, people lash out. Steve Huff did the same.
I'm not suggesting the R5 doesn't offer more bells and whistles (8k for example) as well as 45mp of course, compared to 'just' 24, so it is not exactly like-for-like, of course.
But if making 'photographic art' is your thing, and subject to specific use scenarios, it doesn't feel like such a stretch away, given what you're getting into. (And if you need more MP, then there is always the SL2 at 47pm - and an extra £500/$500).
Just a discussion thought... ;)
The R6 is more in line with the SL2-S yes, there are some cost savings regarding the EVF or screen but they offer very similar photo/video features and once again, that AF system on the Canon is just amazingly good.
Same with the lenses, Leica lenses are insanely expensive, yes RF glass is very expensive as well, but they are often faster for less money take a look at the Canon RF 50mm f/1.2L USM against the Leica APO-Summicron-SL 50mm f/2
So yeah, nice cameras and it is nice to see Leica starting to come out with more serious hybrid cameras, but apart from the overheating problems (which are probably going to appear in other hybrid cameras offering 8k or full sensor 4k60p, 4k120p etc.) Canon really has nothing to worry about especially having that full backwards compatiblity with EF lenses.
I did, not long back, order the M10 Monochrom. Now, that has proven to be a VERY interesting camera and a lot of fun to shoot with.
It has some aspects I really like...in addition to having me shooting and thinking and seeing in B&W, it has some amazing low light capabilities.
And sharpness and imagery it produces....well, some shots seem almost medium format like, at least to my eye. It has a nice large sensor and I think will be useful for me for a long number of years.
But that has scratched my Leica itch....
I figure any tool for the job. I don't get religious over any camera brand. I have Canon, Leica (now) and Fuji as my digital cameras.
Heck I also enjoy shooting medium format film....again, a different tool or the job.
I enjoy Canon for my every day 35mm type digital stuff, action, concerts, etc.
I like my Fuji for digital medium format
I like my Leica...well, it's niche, but it is turning into my daily carry camera due to size and my infatuation with B&W.
And film is for well.....just when I wanna have fun and do something different....and those are all different formats...6x6, 9x9 and 6x17 (very wide pano)....
So, every tool for a job. This new Leica? Hard pass even if I had the money for it.
I don't see what scratch this is an itch for.
R5 seemingly crushes this camera in every respect but I have never shot with it.
If I had one then I would take a bunch of pictures of it with my R5.
I am for whatever motivates you. It doesn't have to be the best bang for the buck, or the cheapest thing you can get by with.
Using Panasonic and Sigma lenses would be a bit odd and some of them may not work very well.
Are people going to just adapt everything and focus manually?
By the way, the Panasonic S5 shows how small a camera can be with most of these same features retained, if they did something like that it would have been amazing, it was something many people wanted for years - but it might have been too close for comfort regarding their M line of cameras, I can see them pushing more towards the newer L-mount, but only slowly and progressively, like Canon did.
Anyway, didn't want to come across too defensive on Leica - I'm a Canon-guy since the 1970's, I just also happen to like using Leica's away from work.