Leica SL2-S Firmware V2.0 Released – 4K60 10-Bit HEVC, Waveform and More

Leica SL2-S Firmware V2.0 Released –  4K60 10-Bit HEVC, Waveform and More

The new Leica SL2-S firmware v2.0 adds new internal H.265 4K 60p 10-bit mode, new Long-GOP 10-bit codec options, better AF, and new monitoring features such as a waveform monitor.

The premium camera manufacturer Leica announced the SL2-S mirrorless camera in December 2020. Back then, the 24.6MP L-Mount camera mainly caught my attention because of two things. Firstly, it can shoot up to 25fps 14-bit DNG raw continuous stills (no audio) internally without limit. Secondly, the price tag is a little bit below $5,000. I know, that is still a lot of money, but we are talking about Leica.

Other than the continuous DNG raw stills, the camera can also internally shoot DCI 4K 30fps in 4:2:2 10-bit or DCI 4K 60fps in 4:2:0 8-bit with compressed codecs. The news is that Leica just released a new firmware update for the SL2-S, bringing some useful improvements and new features. Let’s take a look at what is new.

Leica SL2-S firmware v2.0

The new firmware brings quite a lot of improvements especially when it comes to the video capabilities of the Leica SL2-S. Perhaps the most noticeable update is the new internal H.265 4K 60p 10-bit mode or the Long-GOP codecs in 10-bit. Previously, the camera could only record 8-bit 4:2:0 in 4K50 and 4K60 modes. Following is the full list of improvements from Leica:

  • New Autofocus algorithm – Improved eye/face/head/body recognition and focus tracking.
  • HEVC video compression – Internal 4K recording with 10-Bit at 60p/50p with H.265 codec.
  • Long-GOP – Recording for 10 Bit codecs with 150 – 200 MB/s means the same Image Quality as All-Intra but less than half of the data size.
  • Segmented Video – Video recording will be split into 1-minute segments to avoid data loss.
  • Individual Viewing LUT – Upload function for individual Look Up Tables.
  • Enhanced Live View – Better low light image composition control of the Live View image.
  • Image Overlay – Allows alignment of the camera position on basis of a previously taken image displayed in a transparent mode in the EVF or on the LCD.
  • Automatic Follow Focus – Definition of three focus points for automatic focus shift during video recording.
  • Waveform monitor – Professional exposure valuation of the video signal.
  • Color bar – Reference for correct color grading and sound control in postproduction.
  • Tally Mode – The camera shows a red frame on LCD during video recording.
  • Highlight weighted metering – Metering method to save highlights instead of shadows.
  • Dynamic-range control – Increase brightness in shadows.
  • Highlight-shadow control – Precise contrast adjustment controls.
Leica SL2-S Camera. Source: Leica

Price and availability

The new firmware update is available free of charge and you can download it directly from the Leica website. The Leica SL2-S camera body sells for $4,995.

Do you use the Leica SL2-S for your filmmaking work? What do you think of the new improvements in the firmware v2.0? Let us know in the comments section underneath the article.

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