The Leica Q2 Monochrom is Leica’s latest dedicated black-and-white camera, a new addition to the much-beloved Leica Q line that joins the M Monochrom and the M10 Monochrom manual-focus rangefinders. This world’s first full-frame digital compact camera that features a newly-designed dedicated monochrome sensor, sports also a fast Leica Summilux 28 mm f/1.7 ASPH. prime lens, quick and precise autofocusing, protective weather sealing and OLED viewfinder technology, and more.
“This may sound paradoxical, but I experience the reduction to black and white as very enriching. Photography enables us to engage in a deeper exploration of our own selves, and tune into our internal reality. That’s why I initially focus on my own response to the images I create – and then I’m very pleased if they also elicit emotions from other people. But what is it that I find so fascinating about black-and-white photography? Why does this photographic style have such a calming effect on me? For me, this process has been like a journey to myself,” says Philipp Weinmann, street photographer. “Photographing with the Q2 Monochrom felt effortless and free. The camera system’s minimalism allowed me to fully concentrate on my composition and the nature of the light. I was very impressed by the camera’s low noise level. Especially the sustained richness of details at higher ISO settings is truly remarkable.”
Black and white photography is an unrivaled art form. Memorializing more than just the decisive moment – black-and-white photographs evoke the emotion and the essence of unforgettable and irreplaceable moments. The new Leica Q2 Monochrom is the newest chapter in the Leica Monochrom story, offering photographers the experience of making black and white photographs through the lens of a full-frame, compact camera dedicated to black and white photography in its purest form.
The Leica Q2 Monochrom features a newly developed 47.3-megapixel full-frame sensor based on its sibling model, though in line with its Leica Monochrom forebears the sensor has seen the purposeful omission of the color filter array to give it added light gathering potential and increased sharpness in true black and white. With a maximum ISO climbing higher – up to 100,000 – the Q2 Monochrom can see and capture immense detail and tonality in settings that have barely enough light even for the human eye. The end result is a compact camera that while expanding the Monochrom offerings from Leica, and bringing another black and white imaging stalwart to the family, also yields the most accessibility to this acclaimed formula of black and white perfection – for use in any and all situations the user may want to create monochromatic wonder.
The built-in Summilux 28 f/1.7 ASPH. prime lens is distinguished by both the razor-sharp details and exceptionally soft bokeh it renders. As the fastest lens in its segment, it is perfectly suited to the sensor of the Leica Q2 Monochrom, and delivers outstanding results even in the darkest and most difficult light.
Eleven lens elements, including three elaborately constructed aspherical elements, ensure the highest image quality possible so textures and details can be seen like never before in tones and shades of crisp and contrasty black-and-white.
The autofocus system locks on in less than 0.15 seconds and makes it one of the fastest cameras in its class. Ongoing improvements to the processor from the Maestro family have enabled an impressive 10 frames per second burst shooting rate at even full resolution that ensures the truly wonderful moments in life will never be missed. The range of creative options has also been expanded by the new video capabilities with 4K resolution. Brilliant, black-and-white video recordings can be made in 3840 x 2160 resolution and frame rates of 30 or 24 fps or, alternatively, in the familiar full-HD 1080p format with 120, 60, 30, or 24 fps – all with manual creative control at the fingertips of the user.
Here some sample pictures taken by Philipp Weinmann:
The Leica Q2 Monochrom’s ‘Made in Germany’ seal of quality guarantees that only the finest and most resilient materials are used in its construction. The camera’s classically textured leatherette ensures an optimal interplay of form and functionality – with matte black paint, grey and white engravings, elegant ”MONOCHROM” lettering on the top, and the omission of the red Leica logo for unobtrusive shooting. The unique, intuitive operating concept of the Leica Q2 has been maintained, helping newcomers and existing owners alike feel at home right away through its ease-of-use. The menu has been streamlined and adapted even further to the special features of a monochrome camera. All color settings have been omitted and the menu has only been supplemented with settings for toning black-and-white images (blue, sepia, selenium).
A range of premium leather accessories are also available for the Leica Q2 Monochrom, including camera protector cases, carrying straps, bags, and wrist straps in a variety of different colors. Additional technical equipment accessories pair perfectly with the new camera such as the Leica SF 40, SF 60 flash units, the SF C1 remote flash control unit, additional thumb rest, and a new handgrip that perfectly matches the body. Three new E49 color filters in yellow, green, and orange, for direct contrast control right from the lens of the camera, are available for purchase as well. And when on the go, the Leica FOTOS app keeps the photographer connected to the Q2 Monochrom for mobile sharing and uploading their black and white creations.