Leica Camera releases a firmware update for its most recent system camera, the Leica SL2-S. As a result, the camera will now offer a number of new features – as well as a noticeably improved performance, especially in the field of video recording. These enhancements, which were first announced at the camera’s market launch, are now available to every owner of a Leica SL2-S. They include a new autofocus algorithm that significantly improves focus tracking along with the camera’s eye, face, head and body detection. An Image Overlay function (selectable in the camera menu) allows the camera position to be aligned on the basis of a previously recorded image, which is displayed as a transparent overlay in the EVF or on the LCD. Composing images in extremely low light will also be made easier by the update’s new Enhanced Live View feature.
However, the (already highly advanced) video functions of the SL2-S are where this firmware update truly comes into its own: in addition to the camera’s existing recording modes and ability to capture 4K 30p/25p 4:2:2 10-bit (internal and external) videos, the Leica SL2-S will now also capture 10-bit recordings in the HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding) video compression standard (h.265) at 4:2:0 and frames rates of up to 59.94p. There will also be the option of recording Long GOP 150Mbps footage onto an SD card (as opposed to the previous 400Mbps 10bit 4:2:2). The upload of individual Look Up Tables (LUTs) to the camera via the SD card expands the creative possibilities in video mode. Furthermore, the new automatic Follow Focus allows the user to define a maximum of three focus points for automatic focus shift during video recording.
In order to ensure a pro-level exposure evaluation, the SL2-S will now offer the option of displaying a waveform monitor. In addition, a colour bar with audio signal will be available as a reference for correct colour grading and sound editing in post-production. To minimise the risk of data loss in the event of power failure, the Segmented Video function allows you to record footage in one-minute sub-sequences that are stored as individual files within the camera.
These are just some of the enhancements now available to owners of a Leica SL2-S. The full list of added features can be found in the firmware installation guide, available here – which is also where the new firmware update 2.0 for the Leica SL2-S can be downloaded free of charge.