Leica T Mirrorless Digital Camera

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About the Essence

Leica T Mirrorless Digital Camera The Leica T Mirrorless Digital Camera is a compact interchangeable lens camera body featuring a 16.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor housed in a solid aluminum alloy unibody design with the Leica T lens mount for attaching optional lenses. This works well with the 1.3 million pixel 3.7" TFT LCD touchscreen on the rear of the camera in order to create a simple, high-quality system with a modern aesthetic. The Leica T is also very user-friendly due to the ability to customize the menu and easily scroll through settings using the touch screen as well as adjust settings using two dials on the top of the camera. It comes in both Black and Silver.

For shooting, the camera is very capable with a contrast-based autofocus system that works well with Leica T-mount lenses. Also, it can shoot continuously at up to 5 fps for up to 12 shots. Another feature of the camera is full high definition video recording at 1920 x 1080p at 30 fps, easily done by pressing the record button located on the top of the camera.

Other built-in features include a flash unit with a guide number of 15' at ISO 100 for low-light shooting conditions as well as 16 GB of internal memory for storing your images. This memory can be added to through the use of SD/SDHC/SDXC memory cards as well. The T even has Wi-Fi connectivity and is able to directly connect to iOS devices through the use of the Leica T mobile app. The camera also includes a carrying strap with a quick connect method and comes with a download of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom for editing.

To ensure maximum functionality, be sure to download and install the latest firmware update from the Leica website.

16.3MP APS-C Image Sensor
The 16.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS image sensor is used for creating high resolution detailed images within an ISO range of 100-12,500 for use in a wide variety of lighting situations. This sensor uses this information to deliver RAW DNG image files with dimensions of 4944 x 3278 pixels as well as record JPEG images for convenience. Additionally, the sensor allows for the recording of high definition video at 1920 x 1080p or 1280 x 720p resolution at 30 frames per second.

Autofocusing is done on-sensor due to a mirrorless design through a contrast-based method. This allows for accurate focusing on your subject. The camera's touchscreen is able to assist by allowing for quick selection of subjects in the image.

Solid Aluminum Alloy Unibody Design
A simple and durable design, the solid aluminum alloy unibody and Leica T camera is made in Germany to high standards. The body showcases a minimal design with just 4 tactile controls: two dials, a record button, and the shutter button. The rear of the camera then has a 3.7" LCD touchscreen to allow for complete functionality of the camera. The body also accepts Leica T-mount lenses as well as M-mount lenses with the use of an optional adapter.

The top of the camera body features both a pop-up flash unit with a guide number of 15' at ISO 100 and a standard ISO hot shoe for using a variety of flash units as well as for using additional accessories, such as the electronic viewfinder. Additionally, straps and other carrying accessories are attached via an easy-click system that uses a stainless-steel pin to lock in the items.

Wireless Connectivity
The Leica T features built-in IEEE 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi connectivity for wirelessly connecting to your other devices, such as a phone or computer. This allows you to easily transfer your images and even control the camera for wireless shooting. The use of the Leica T mobile app for iOS greatly enhances your ability to send images to social networks or through email by allowing a direct connection to your mobile devices.

Leica M to T Adapter
Use Leica M Lenses with the Leica M to T Adapter

Full HD Video Recording
Full HD 1920 x 1080p video recording in the MP4 format is supported at a frame rate of 30 fps. Also, you can select a lower resolution 1280 x 720p at the same frame rate if desired. Movie recording can easily be activated through a record button located on the top of the camera.

Built-In Flash and Hot Shoe
A built-in flash enables usage of the camera in low-light conditions and features a guide number of 15' at ISO 100. The flash also has a variety of modes available such as red-eye reduction and slow sync. It can even sync at shutter speeds up to 1/180 second and will recharge in about 5 seconds. Exposure compensation can be set from ±3 EV in 1/3 step increments. And, for using external flash units, the T has a standard ISO hot shoe that can accept a variety of flashes as well as accessories like an electronic viewfinder.

Other Camera Features

  • 16GB of internal memory is available for storing images as well as an SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot.
  • Full manual controls as well as automatic and priority exposure modes can be selected.
  • ISO range from 100-12,500.
  • Micro USB 2.0 port for connecting to computers and transferring images as well as charging.
  • Rechargeable lithium-ion battery provides up to 400 shots on a single charge.
  • Includes Adobe Photoshop Lightroom for editing images.
  • Standard 1/4"-20 tripod thread on base of camera.
  • Self timer of either 2 or 12 seconds.
  • Touch autofocus mode is available.
  • Auto exposure bracketing for taking up to three shots.

PROS and CONS of the Leica T

PROS
  • Beautiful Design
  • Beautiful Build, best of the mirror less APS-C lot
  • Made in the new Leica factory in Germany by Leica!
  • New line of lenses with AF, more to come
  • Superb Leica IQ – sharpness, detail micro contrast and color
  • Can shoot M lenses using the new Leica adapter!
  • No AA filter!
  • Left thumb dial is easily configurable by touch
  • EVF has GPS inside and is a good EVF for Leica
  • WiFi inside for use with new Leica App
  • New touchscreen interface is super slick and works EXTREMELY WELL
  • LCD is large and gorgeous
  • Best HD movie of any Leica to date (Still doesn’t compete with Sony/Panny)
  • Best AF speed of any German made Leica to date. (Doesn’t compete with Oly E-M1/E-M10)
  • Good JPEG quality out of camera
  • Files have the Leica look in color and look/feel (follows the X IQ tradition)
  • Never an AF miss, always lockes on even if it hunts a little to do so
  • $1900 for the body is a good price for what you are getting a REAL Leica
  • 16 GB of built in memory in case you forget or lose your SD card!
  • Cost is high but value and pride of ownership is high
  • Cool pop up flash activated by the power dial
  • Clever accessories to make this a true “system” camera
CONS
  • NO built-in EVF!!
  • NO stabilizer in the camera or lenses!
  • Camera does do software corrections for lenses as all cameras do these days.
  • Fastest shutter speed is 1/4000th
  • Can not use studio lights and EVF at the same time
  • No articulating LCD
  • ISO 3200 and up could be more
  • No real image stabilization
  • Camera is not a fast action shooter!
  • Very Slight lag in single shot mode between shots, could be firmware/pre-prod camera issue
  • AF with Zoom can hunt a little in low light!
  • Lenses are overpriced
  • Some may not like proprietary strap and battery
  • Cost of EVF is $600 and smaller than competing EVF’s from Fuji/Olympus
  • Slower (around one second) startup, LCD does not tilt (although EVF does)

Leica T Lenses, Masterpieces of optical design

For photographers around the world, Leica lenses are synonymous with exceptional imaging quality. A seal of excellence that is also earned by the lenses of the Leica T Camera System. That’s because they benefit from 150 years of experience in the development of precision optical instruments, are masterpieces of optical design and the best lenses in their class. They are constructed with perfectly harmonized glass types, inner mechanisms planned out down to the tiniest details and constitute our fastest and quietest autofocus system. Two of these lenses are available to you today , The Leica Leica Summicron-T 23mm f/2 ASPH and the Vario-Elmar-T 18-56mm f/3.5-5.6 ASPH Lens.  To ensure the best equipment for the best pictures, they will be followed by others at the beginning of 2015.
Specifications
Body type Rangefinder-style mirrorless  
Sensor
Max resolution 4944 x 3278  
Other resolutions 4928 x 3264 (max JPEG), 4272 x 2856, 3264 x 2160, 2144 x 1424, 1632 x 1080  
Image ratio w:h 3:2  
Effective pixels 16 megapixels  
Sensor photo detectors 17 megapixels  
Sensor size APS-C (23.6 x 15.7 mm)  
Sensor type CMOS  
Image
ISO Auto, 125-12500  
White balance presets 5  
Custom white balance Yes (2 slots)  
Image stabilization No  
Uncompressed format RAW  
JPEG quality levels Superfine, fine  
Optics & Focus
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Selective single-point
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Touch
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
 
Manual focus Yes  
Lens mount Leica T  
Focal length multiplier 1.5×  
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Fixed  
Screen size 3.7  
Screen dots 1,300,000  
Touch screen Yes  
Screen type TFT  
Live view Yes  
Viewfinder type Electronic (optional)  
Viewfinder coverage 100%  
Viewfinder magnification 0.7×  
Viewfinder resolution 2,360,000  
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed 30 sec  
Maximum shutter speed 1/4000 sec  
Aperture priority Yes  
Shutter priority Yes  
Manual exposure mode Yes  
Subject / scene modes Yes  
Built-in flash Yes  
Flash range 4.50 m (at ISO 100)  
External flash Yes  
Flash modes Auto, auto w/redeye reduction, flash on, flash on w/redeye reduction, slow sync, slow sync w/redeye reduction  
Continuous drive 5 fps  
Self-timer Yes  
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
 
Exposure compensation ±3 (at 1/3 EV steps)  
AE Bracketing ±3 (3 frames at 1/3 EV steps)  
Videography features
Resolutions 1920 x 1080 (30p), 1280 x 720 (30p)  
Format MPEG-4  
Microphone Stereo  
Speaker Mono  
Storage
Storage types SD/SDHC/SDXC card  
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)  
HDMI No  
Microphone port No  
Headphone port No  
Wireless Built-In  
Wireless notes 802.11b/g/n with smartphone control  
Remote control Yes (via smartphone)  
Physical
Environmentally sealed No  
Battery Battery Pack  
Battery description BP-DC13 lithium-ion battery and USB charger  
Battery Life (CIPA) 400  
Weight (inc. batteries) 384 g (0.85 lb / 13.55 oz)  
Dimensions 134 x 69 x 33 mm (5.28 x 2.72 x 1.3)  
Other features
Orientation sensor Yes  
GPS Optional  
GPS notes Built into optional EVF

Accessories

Images
Leica T Mirrorless Digital Camera

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  • Suggested Reading

    Leica: Witness to a Century

    The Leica is both a product of the twentieth century's inventive spirit and the means by which that spirit could be documented for posterity. As the first handheld camera, the Leica made possible a new kind of documentary photography, and included among its devoted fans are many of the century's greatest photographers. Its combined qualities of precision and compactness made it an essential tool for photographers everywhere, and today more than ever the Leica is prized by collectors.

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