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Leica Q / CL/ T / X Series For the Leica Q, CL, T, X series digital cameras

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Leica Q vs CL IQ
Old 01-27-2019   #1
Gid
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Leica Q vs CL IQ

Hi,

I want to get a relatively modern small form factor camera / lens combination that delivers good IQ. Pondering either the Q or CL. Anyone used (using) both? Is there much difference in IQ between the two? How are the operational differences? Is one more straightforward than the other? For information, I have recently tried an M9 and M240 (actually two of each but all went back to the sellers for a variety of problems) but find the manual focusing a bit of a struggle. I've tried the X-Pro2 and the X 100F but just can't get on with the Fuji files especially how long they take to render. I'm used to shooting with an X100 so a single FOV isn't a real problem. The price of the Q and CL with the 23 F2 are very similar so price is a wash unless I add the M adapter. If there are other options that you think I could consider then please add your comments.

Thanks
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Old 01-27-2019   #2
MCTuomey
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I have been using the Q and CL together for travel and some music venue shooting. The CL is fitted with either a 50 or 75 (my mid-tele), while the Q is my wide. I can get the files pretty well matched, here's an example:

Q:

20180323-150-web by Mike Tuomey, on Flickr

CL:

20180324-206-web by Mike Tuomey, on Flickr

Q (for street portraits):

20180323-012-web by Mike Tuomey, on Flickr

Image quality is comparable, although if I look hard the Q is probably a stop or so better at high iso. Maybe. The CL surprised me with its high iso performance, as good or better than the X-trans III I'm familiar with.

They both shoot well for me in hand. I have them gripped and wrist-strapped. I use the CL MF only (only own a few M lenses), while the Q is usually AF, both face detect and straight focus point. The Q's AF is very well implemented. They complement each other for my needs.

Hope this helps.
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Old 01-27-2019   #3
Bingley
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You probably already knew this but... the Q has a full frame sensor whereas the CL has an APS-C sensor with a crop factor like the Fujis you used. I don’t know whether the difference in sensor size has much meaningful consequence for image quality. Having handled a friend’s Q, I can say that it is not a small camera, much closer to a Leica M in size.
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Old 01-28-2019   #4
Gid
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Thanks for the responses.
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Old 01-28-2019   #5
Godfrey
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A friend has the Q, I have the CL (and had the SL, and have the M-D too). Between the four of them, image performance differences are barely noticeable except by the pickiest of pixel peeping at 1:1 and ISO settings over 6400. The CL body makes noticeably the lightest package using the same lenses as the SL or M-D; the CL, Q, and M-D are quite similar in size, overall; the SL fitted with R or M lenses is the next step up in bulk and weight. EVF performance wise, the SL is the best, the CL is quite similar, the Q is a bit behind.

The CL's controls are pretty simple to setup and use. I have mine set up in such a way that switching between it and the M-D is very transparent. I don't have any native AF lenses for the CL, because I have plenty of M and R lenses that work beautifully on it and am not much of an AF user anyway. The native lenses, by all reports, are as excellent as the M lenses are.

You can't really go wrong with any of them. I prefer the ability to use different lenses and bought the CL in particular (after I'd sold the SL) for its ability to use my M or R lenses and macro accessories. It does a terrific job, so good that I tend to use it more than the M-D now.

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Old 01-28-2019   #6
Gid
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Thanks Godfrey. Interesting that you put the CL's VF ahead of the Q's. All the web stuff I have read say that the Q VF is larger than the CL's and very close to the SL.
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Old 01-28-2019   #7
Calzone
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I bought the CL primarily to convert normal fast lenses into short telephotos: 50 Lux-R "E60;" 50 Lux-SL; and 58/1.2 Noct-Nikkor AIS.

The two Leica Lenses on the CL became 75mm F1.4's. These lenses are pretty close to perfect, and even thought the 50 Lux "E60" is a lens designed for film and is not ASPH it is mucho sharp with about the prettiest bokeh and OOF. It pretty much renders like a Noctilux and being only F1.4 does not have the light fall off in the corners.

The Noct-Nikkor has a very different rendering than the 50 Lux-R "E60" and especially a Noctilux: the Noctilux has sharper corners than a Noct-Nikkor, but there is light fall-off, and the corners are darkened wide open; the Noct-Nikkor is just the reverse, the corners don't darken like on a Noctilux wide open, but the focus is soft in the corners.

Using the Noct-Nikkor on the CL provides an 87mm FOV and F1.2. The imperfect corners are cropped out by the 1.5 crop sensor, and the result is a perfect lens that only utilizes the center "sweet-spot."

I find the controls to be straight forward, ergonomic, and practical in use. I tend to use Auto exposure and use the left dial's exposure compensation to adjust exposure if required. I also tend to use the right dial for zooming in to focus. I not a fan of focus peaking, especially when using longer lenses shot wide open.

Buying a CL and using it with glass I already own and love gives me short Tele options that are kinda wonderful. With the Noct-Nikkor I don't need to buy a 75 Noctilux to get F1.2 and mucho shallow DOF. I have a few portraits I took of Bob at a NYC Meet-Up that have this wonderful balance and blending of sharp and OOF.

The 28 Cron (one of my favorite lenses) creates a 42mm FOV and pretty much is in the same vein as the original film CL with a 40 Cron.

My gal "liberated my CL from me and bought the 23 Cron (35mm FOV). Pretty much a pancake lens with AF. A fast shooter.

Cal
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Old 01-28-2019   #8
MCTuomey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gid View Post
Thanks Godfrey. Interesting that you put the CL's VF ahead of the Q's. All the web stuff I have read say that the Q VF is larger than the CL's and very close to the SL.
CL VF 2.36 mpx ( the same as the Fuji X-T2)
Q VF 3.68 mpx

In use, I find them both very good.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Calzone View Post
I bought the CL primarily to convert normal fast lenses into short telephotos: 50 Lux-R "E60;" 50 Lux-SL; and 58/1.2 Noct-Nikkor AIS .... Buying a CL and using it with glass I already own and love gives me short Tele options that are kinda wonderful.
+1 The VF of the CL is so good that I find I can manually focus a 50/1.4 or 75/2 quite well , using magnification or not, or with peaking, and my eyesight is well past its prime. I could not do the same when I tried to adapt my M lenses to a Fuji X-T2, despite the fact its VF has the same mpx count as the CL.
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