Leica has announced the 2nd edition of its SL full-frame mirrorless camera. The company is pretty much overhauling the original SL to bring us a snapper with a tougher, redesigned body, a higher resolution sensor, a shiny new rear touch-screen, and an upgraded electronic viewfinder (EVF). The new camera was built around the same 47MP full-frame CMOS sensor presented in the Leica Q2. It is a major step up from the 24 million effective pixels in the SL. The SL2 boasts a magnesium chassis with aluminum for the top and bottom plates. The earlier entire cameras were made from 2 blocks of aluminum. The newly redesigned camera comes with an IP54 dust- and water-resistance rating. It also features an updated button layout that resembles the control setup on the Leica Q2 and the CL compacts.
The sensor of the new camera has an ISO range of 50 to 50000 with the promise of an enormous dynamic range. Leica has indicated that the company will deliver an unparalleled level of detail rendition and image quality. We have found various similarities between the Leica SL2 and the Panasonic Lumix S1R. The SL2 arrives with 5-axis image stabilization built-in, sharing the same 5.5EV shake compensation, like the S1R. The EVF on both cameras has the same 5.76 million dot resolution. There’s a 225-area contrast autofocus system with depth mapping available onboard the SL2. It sounds rather similar to the 225-area depth from the Defocus AF system in the Panasonic.
There’s even an eight-image multishot mode on the SL2 that produces 187MP composites, just like the High-Resolution Mode on the Lumix S1R. The SL2 uses Leica’s very own Maestro III processor that gives the new camera a maximum burst speed of 10fps with a mechanical shutter and 20fps with an electronic shutter. The buffer depth is also very impressive with over a hundred JPEGs or 78 DNGs being saved to a card. The video specs will be familiar to Panasonic Lumix S users. The Leica is capable of 4K recording at up 60fps and 1080p at up to 180fps. The Leica SL2 is already available for pre-order and will start shipping on November 21 with a price tag of 5,995 U.S dollars for the body alone.