If Leica's TL2 APS-C compact looks just a bit too modern for you, the company has dipped into the retro design cabinet and launched a modern snapper with a traditional feel that shares the same moniker as its pocket-friendly 35 mm film rangefinder from the 1970s. The undeniably stylish CL is technically identical to the TL2, but stands apart in terms of handling and aesthetics.
The new L-mount camera is wrapped in a stylish magnesium alloy/aluminum body, which is home to a 24 megapixel APS-C (23.6 x 15.7 mm) CMOS sensor and Maestro II image processor. This pairing gives the camera 10 frames per second continuous shooting capabilities, ISO 100 to 50,000 sensitivity and fast 49-point contrast autofocus.
It has similar twin function dials up top for adjusting aperture, shutter speed, ISO and exposure values, but gains a 2.36 million dot electronic viewfinder that's said to have latency so small it can't be perceived.
The 3-inch, 1.04 million dot touch-enabled LCD panel supports gestures, and is joined by physical menu buttons and a joystick controller. And there's a second display plate between the function dials to the top for a quick settings check.
The CL can record 4K video at 30 fps and has built-in Wi-Fi for wireless transfer of photos and videos. As you might expect of a modern camera system, there's a dedicated CL app for iOS/Android that offers wireless remote shooting.
That traditional compact camera look does come at a price though. Where its TL2 stablemate has a lensless price of under US$2,000, the Leica CL is due for release at the end of November for a body-only price of US$2,795.
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