LEICA SL2-S Lab Take a look at: Rolling Shutter, Dynamic Vary and Latitude



The Leica SL2-S hit the market in 2021 and we lastly received the possibility to run it by means of our lab take a look at procedures. Inquisitive about the way it fares? Then carry on studying!

With its 24 megapixel CMOS – BSI full-frame sensor, the Leica SL2-S is one other contender among the many many mirrorless digital camera choices available in the market (utilizing an L-mount).

What makes the LEICA stand out is certainly its particular, very clear and lean manner how the physique but in addition the menu are laid out. In case you are within the specs and photographs, ensure to take the time to look at Johnnie’s overview and mini-documentary right here. For the Leica SL2-S lab take a look at, let’s concentrate on what the sensor and picture engine can supply us filmmakers in video mode.

The Leica SL2-S within the CineD lab. Picture supply: CineD

Rolling Shutter of the Leica SL2-S

The Leica SL2-S permits taking pictures inside 4K 10bit 4:2:2 and C4k 10bit 4:2:2 utilizing L-Log in each full-frame or APS – C mode. In full-frame 4K mode, the rolling shutter measurement reveals 22.5ms (much less is best):

Rolling shutter measurement of the Leica SL2-S. Picture supply: CineD

22.5ms in full-frame mode is on the upper finish, similar to the Panasonic S5, S1 and SH1 – in the mean time a number of different mirrorless full-frame cameras present considerably much less – the Sony A1, Canon R5, Nikon Z9 are all between 16 -14ms. The chief of the pack is at present the Sony a7S III with 8.7ms.

In APS – C mode, the rolling shutter of the Leica SL2-S drops to 14.7ms in 4K (UHD) 25fps.

Dynamic Vary of the Leica SL2-S at ISO400

In case you are not conversant in how we take a look at the dynamic vary of cameras, please head over right here for an in depth clarification.

Taking pictures our Xyla 21 chart utilizing the 4K 4:2:2 all-I mode with the brand new L-Log profile in full-frame mode, we get the next waveform plot:

Xyla 21 waveform plot of the Leica SL2-S. Picture: CineD

About 12 stops will be seen above the noise flooring, and a faint thirteenth contained in the noise flooring. The noise flooring seems very clear.

IMATEST confirms this, giving a studying of 12.2 stops at a sign to noise ratio of two (SNR) and 13.3 stops at SNR = 1:

IMATEST consequence for the Leica SL2-S at ISO400 utilizing L-Log. Picture: CineD

These are robust outcomes, nonetheless, needless to say above the 13.3 stops consequence at SNR = 1 (take a look on the center graph, above the blue 13.3 line) there aren’t any further stops left that might doubtlessly be utilized in post-production.

Evaluating that to different full-frame cameras, it is vitally just like what the Sony a7S III has to supply. The Sony A1, and Panasonic’s S5, S1, and S1H present about another cease, albeit buried within the noise flooring. Simply to your reference, the present dynamic vary benchmark digital camera ARRI ALEXA LF has about 3 stops greater than the Leica SL2-S.

The excellent news is – as you will note under within the latitude take a look at – it’s positively doable with the LEICA to make use of all of the stops till SNR = 1, as a result of low noise and good codec. Placing it on par once more with the Panasonic’s and Sony A1.

Latitude is the aptitude of a digital camera to retain colours and element when over- or underexposed and pushed again (in submit) to a base reference scene.

Our base reference scene in our CineD lab is uncovered in order that the brow of our expertise (on this case my pricey colleague Johnnie) sits at 60% luma worth on the waveform diagram. Shadows within the scene register 5 stops under that. All photographs had been graded utilizing an official L-Log LUT from LEICA, the “Natural_Rec709”:

CineD studio base reference scene. Picture supply: CineD

Now we overexpose till Johnnie’s brow begins to clip the purple channel. This occurs at 3 stops overexposure from this base publicity scene:

Leica SL2-S 3 stops above the bottom reference scene, pushed again in submit. Picture supply: CineD
Waveform plot of the ungraded 3 stops over shot – the purple channel on Johnnie’s brow is on the cusp of clipping.

Now let’s cease down the iris of our lens till we hit 4 stops underexposure. Pushed again in submit, we discover the primary traces of luma and chroma noise, moistly on the shadow aspect of Johnnie’s face:

4 stops underexposed from base and pushed again in submit. Picture supply: CineD

Up to now so good, no noise discount wanted for my part. The noise is finely dispersed, rendering a really organic-looking picture. With 5 stops underexposure, pushed again, abruptly quite a bit begins to occur:

5 stops underexposed from base and pushed again in submit. Picture supply: CineD

All of a sudden, pinkish chroma noise is everywhere in the picture and horizontal traces begin to seem. Keep in mind, at base publicity, the shadows had been 5 stops under Johnnie’s brow. We had been capable of overexpose by 3 stops with out clipping. Therefore, at 5 stops below now we have reached the noise flooring with our shadows, 13 stops under clipping (3+5+5).

As a result of the noise is finely dispersed, noise discount helps to properly clear up the picture. Nevertheless, robust horizontal line(s) do seem which can’t be eradicated with noise discount:

5 stops underexposed from base and pushed again in submit, including noise discount. Picture supply: CineD
DaVinci Resolve 17.4.2 noise discount settings for five stops underexposure and pushed again. Picture supply: CineD

On your reference, the noise discount settings are depicted above for five stops underexposure.

I discover it fairly fascinating that the 5 stops below the picture will be cleaned up that properly – if it weren’t for the robust horizontal line. With a transferring digital camera, this might be very distracting. Additionally, shadows on the darkish aspect of Johnnie’s face change into pinkish.

Therefore, general I’ve to say recreation over.

Simply to your reference, the 6 stops below picture present atrocious noise:

6 stops underexposed from base and pushed again in submit. Picture supply: CineD
6 stops underexposed from base and pushed again in submit, including noise discount. Picture supply: CineD

As you possibly can see from the 6 stops underexposed picture, the noise remains to be slightly finely dispersed, therefore it cleans up surprisingly properly when utilizing noise discount – it reveals how properly L-Log together with the All-I codec protect the picture. In fact, pinkish shadows and powerful horizontal static traces usually are not acceptable for a transferring picture.

In abstract, the LEICA SL2-S reveals 7 stops of publicity latitude – just like the Sony a7S III. If it weren’t for the robust horizontal line(s), really 8 stops can be doable.

Our present benchmark, the ARRI ALEXA LF (take a look at right here) reveals 10 stops of publicity latitude (5 over, 5 below).


The Leica SL2-S lab take a look at outcomes present a little bit of a combined bag within the CineD lab. Rolling shutter values are on the upper finish (much less is best) taking a look at its peer group (Sony A1 & a7S III, Canon R5, Nikon Z9). Dynamic vary out of the field is absolutely good coming in at 12.2 stops at SNR = 2 and 13.3 stops at SNR = 1. Nevertheless, that’s it – nothing greater than that’s obtainable. Accordingly, the latitude outcomes present 7 stops of publicity latitude, with the potential for extra if it weren’t for the robust horizontal traces.

Guys, what do you consider this lab take a look at of the Leica SL2-S? Have you ever used the digital camera but? What are your experiences utilizing it? Tell us within the feedback under.