Being the owner of a Leica Q2 Ghost edition, I felt it needed some form of protection against bumps and scrapes. The problem with this is that a case covers the very part I was so enamoured with - the finish. Looking around the internet, there was very little out there that complimented the grey finish. And those that did had a very unattractive handgrip built into them. So I parked the idea and took the camera out naked for the first few months, thinking I would eventually get used to the idea of it picking up a mark or two during use. The idea never sat well with me though, so on return from a recent holiday on which the Q2 accompanied me (and which the camera returned unscathed from), I took a deeper dive into the world of cases.
The desire for a new piece of gear reaches into the very soul of most of us from time to time. Wherever our interests take us, the cloven hoof of temptation is never far away. How well we each resist this is highly personal and I like to think that I am a fairly resilient person where this is concerned. But every now and again I fall head over heels for something that trundles onto decisions’ battlefield, where it jousts between head and heart for several days. Occasionally I become overwhelmed with a strong impulse to scratch an itch that, if looked at rationally, did not exist in the first place.
My interest in Leica Zoom lenses has taken me on an interesting journey over the last few years. The first ones I acquired were for the TL system, notably the 11-23 and 55-135 objectives. Now discontinued these lenses are superb, albeit a little slow. Both remain in my collection and continue to be used, particularly when travelling. As I slowly moved into the SL system I read countless reviews as to how good all of the dedicated zooms are, so I thought I should try a couple out for myself. I have never really cared for standard zooms, preferring fast primes when working with my favourite focal lengths - between 35mm and 100mm.
A few years ago I wrote about how Leica’s 55-135 and 11-23 zoom lenses for the APSC TL/CL cameras had changed my opinion of zoom lenses for the better. I moved away from zooms four decades ago due to being very unimpressed with the output from them. The only exception to this was a 11-22mm Zuiko zoom for my Olympus E-1 in 2005. This was a good lens but suffered from severe purple fringing in high contrast areas. So when I got into Leica’s APSC system I decided to give zooms another try and could not believe how good they were. Over the decades I had become very used to fast aperture primes and realised that by going the zoom route, I was going to have to compromise speed for something more sedentary. With this in mind I held onto the couple of primes I was already using with my TL2 so that I would have access to fast aperture glass. The combination of zooms and primes worked very well and is one I still use when travelling.
Like some other photographers, as time has progressed and digital technology matured, I have become jaded of the megapixel race. I actually grew weary of it by the time 24 megapixel was considered normal. I never print images and, apart from those that are shared on PhotoArk, view them on high resolution monitors or TV’s up to 60 inch. So when 24mp was surpassed I found myself in a situation where new camera models didn’t interest me or fulfil my requirements. I had long planned to buy into Leica’s 35mm format L system but watched the original 24mp SL Typ 601 suceeded by the fantastic 47mp SL2. As good as it was, I could not bring myself to justify the enormous increase in resolution. I would simply be using up valuable resources storing huge RAW files with no purpose to hand.
Along with the recent purchase of my SL2-S, I decided to split my L system off from the rest of my gear as the lenses and body had been acquired with specific purposes in mind. To me it made sense to have the robust, heavy and waterproof kit in one bag and my lighter, smaller CL/TL system in another, even though they share the same lens mount.
I took delivery of a Leica SL2-S a couple of weeks ago and felt that it’s austere design would benefit from some kind of case, to protect it from daily knocks and scuffs. The camera is solidly built so this was more of an aesthetic choice to protect the paintwork from damage. Leica do not offer a case for the SL camera line, so I had to look at the third party market to get an idea of what was available. There is a surprising amount, ranging from very cost effective solutions to more luxurious designs.