Leica TL2 vs X2
The Leica TL2 and the Leica X2 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in July 2017 and May 2012. The TL2 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera, while the X2 is a fixed lens compact. Both cameras are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The TL2 has a resolution of 24.1 megapixels, whereas the X2 provides 16.1 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Leica TL2 and the Leica X2? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
The physical size and weight of the Leica TL2 and the Leica X2 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
Both cameras are available in two different colors (black, silver).
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Leica X2 is notably smaller (7 percent) than the Leica TL2. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the TL2 nor the X2 are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the X2 has a lens built in, whereas the TL2 is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup.
The power pack in the TL2 can be charged via the USB port, so that it is not always necessary to take the battery charger along when travelling.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you would like to visualize and compare a different camera combination, you can navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from a broad list of cameras there.
|1.||Leica TL2||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||399 g||250||n||Jul 2017||1,950|
|2.||Leica X2||124 mm||69 mm||52 mm||345 g||450||n||May 2012||1,995|
|3.||Fujifilm X-T100||121 mm||83 mm||47 mm||448 g||430||n||May 2018||599|
|4.||Fujifilm X-T20||118 mm||83 mm||41 mm||383 g||350||n||Jan 2017||899|
|5.||Fujifilm X-A3||117 mm||67 mm||40 mm||339 g||410||n||Aug 2016||399|
|6.||Fujifilm X100S||127 mm||74 mm||54 mm||445 g||330||n||Jan 2013||1,299|
|7.||Fujifilm X-E2||129 mm||75 mm||37 mm||350 g||350||n||Oct 2013||999|
|8.||Leica C-LUX||113 mm||67 mm||46 mm||340 g||370||n||Jun 2018||1,049|
|9.||Leica CL||131 mm||78 mm||45 mm||403 g||220||n||Nov 2017||2,795|
|10.||Leica TL||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||384 g||400||n||Nov 2016||1,695|
|11.||Leica T||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||384 g||400||n||Apr 2014||1,850|
|12.||Leica X Typ 113||133 mm||73 mm||78 mm||486 g||350||n||Sep 2014||2,295|
|13.||Leica X1||124 mm||60 mm||32 mm||306 g||260||n||Sep 2009||1,995|
|14.||Nikon D3500||124 mm||97 mm||70 mm||415 g||1550||n||Aug 2018||429|
|15.||Nikon D5600||124 mm||97 mm||70 mm||465 g||970||n||Nov 2016||699|
|16.||Nikon D3400||124 mm||98 mm||76 mm||445 g||1200||n||Aug 2016||499|
|17.||Nikon Coolpix A||111 mm||64 mm||40 mm||299 g||230||n||Mar 2013||1,099|
|Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. They nevertheless have the same format factor of 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.
With 24.1MP, the TL2 offers a higher resolution than the X2 (16.1MP), but the TL2 has smaller individual pixels (pixel pitch of 3.92μm versus 4.79μm for the X2). However, the TL2 is a much more recent model (by 5 years and 2 months) than the X2, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the TL2 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The resolution advantage of the Leica TL2 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the TL2 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 30.1 x 20.1 inches or 76.4 x 51 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 24.1 x 16.1 inches or 61.1 x 40.8 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 20 x 13.4 inches or 50.9 x 34 cm. The corresponding values for the Leica X2 are 24.6 x 16.3 inches or 62.6 x 41.5 cm for good quality, 19.7 x 13.1 inches or 50.1 x 33.2 cm for very good quality, and 16.4 x 10.9 inches or 41.7 x 27.6 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Leica TL2 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 50000. The corresponding ISO settings for the Leica X2 are ISO 100 to ISO 12500 (no boost).
For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
|12.||Leica X Typ 113||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||1080/30p||..||..||..||..|
|17.||Nikon Coolpix A||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||1080/30p||23.4||13.8||1164||80|
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The TL2 indeed provides movie recording capabilities, while the X2 does not. The highest resolution format that the TL2 can use is 4K/30p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The TL2 and the X2 are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. However, optional viewfinders – the Visoflex (Typ 020) for the TL2 and the EVF 2 for the X2 – are available as accessories. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Leica TL2, the Leica X2, and comparable cameras.
|1.||Leica TL2||optional||n||3.7 / 1230||fixed||Y||1/4000s||7.0||n||n|
|2.||Leica X2||optional||n||2.7 / 230||fixed||n||1/2000s||5.0||Y||n|
|3.||Fujifilm X-T100||2360||n||3.0 / 1040||swivel||Y||1/4000s||6.0||Y||n|
|4.||Fujifilm X-T20||2360||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0||Y||n|
|5.||Fujifilm X-A3||none||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||6.0||Y||n|
|6.||Fujifilm X100S||2360||n||2.8 / 460||fixed||n||1/4000s||6.0||Y||n|
|7.||Fujifilm X-E2||2360||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||n||1/4000s||7.0||Y||n|
|8.||Leica C-LUX||2330||n||3.0 / 1240||fixed||Y||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y|
|9.||Leica CL||2360||Y||3.0 / 1040||fixed||Y||1/8000s||10.0||n||n|
|10.||Leica TL||optional||n||3.7 / 1230||fixed||Y||1/4000s||5.0||Y||n|
|11.||Leica T||optional||n||3.7 / 1230||fixed||Y||1/4000s||5.0||Y||n|
|12.||Leica X Typ 113||optional||n||3.0 / 920||fixed||n||1/2000s||5.0||Y||n|
|13.||Leica X1||none||n||2.7 / 230||fixed||n||1/2000s||3.0||Y||n|
|14.||Nikon D3500||optical||n||3.0 / 921||fixed||n||1/4000s||5.0||Y||n|
|15.||Nikon D5600||optical||n||3.2 / 1037||swivel||Y||1/4000s||5.0||Y||n|
|16.||Nikon D3400||optical||n||3.0 / 921||fixed||n||1/4000s||5.0||Y||n|
|17.||Nikon Coolpix A||optional||n||3.0 / 921||fixed||n||1/2000s||4.0||Y||n|
One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The TL2 has a touchscreen, while the X2 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.
The TL2 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the X2 uses SDHC cards. The TL2 supports UHS-II cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 312 MB/s), while the X2 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Leica TL2 and Leica X2 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
Mic / Speaker
|1.||Leica TL2||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||3.0||Y||-||-|
|2.||Leica X2||Y||- / -||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|3.||Fujifilm X-T100||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|4.||Fujifilm X-T20||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|5.||Fujifilm X-A3||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|6.||Fujifilm X100S||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||-||-||-|
|7.||Fujifilm X-E2||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|8.||Leica C-LUX||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|9.||Leica CL||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||-||-||Y||-||-|
|10.||Leica TL||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|11.||Leica T||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||-||2.0||Y||-||-|
|12.||Leica X Typ 113||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|13.||Leica X1||Y||- / -||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|14.||Nikon D3500||Y||mono / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||Y|
|15.||Nikon D5600||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||Y|
|16.||Nikon D3400||Y||mono / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||Y|
|17.||Nikon Coolpix A||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
It is notable that the TL2 offers wifi support, while the X2 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
The TL2 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Leica. In contrast, the X2 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). There has not been a direct replacement model for the X2 from Leica. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Leica website.
So how do things add up? Which of the two cameras – the Leica TL2 or the Leica X2 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Reasons to prefer the Leica TL2:
- More detail: Offers more megapixels (24.1 vs 16.1MP) with a 22% higher linear resolution.
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Broader imaging potential: Can record not only still images but also 4K/30p movies.
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.7" vs 2.7") for image review and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1230k vs 230k dots).
- Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (7 vs 5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More flexible: Accepts interchangeable lenses, so that lens characteristics can be altered.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- Faster data transfer: Supports a more advanced USB protocol (3.0 vs 2.0).
- Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
- Faster buffer clearing: Supports Ultra High Speed (UHS-II) SDXC cards.
- More modern: Reflects 5 years and 2 months of technical progress since the X2 launch.
Arguments in favor of the Leica X2:
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Ready to shoot: Has an integrated lens, whereas the TL2 necessitates an extra lens.
- Less heavy: Has a lower weight even though it has a lens built in (unlike the TL2).
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (450 versus 250) out of a single battery charge.
- Easier fill-in: Has a small integrated flash to brighten shadows of backlit subjects.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in May 2012).
If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the TL2 is the clear winner of the match-up (14 : 6 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding on a new camera. A professional wildlife photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a family photog, and a person interested in architecture has distinct needs from a sports shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Leica TL2 and the Leica X2 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera and Best Prime Lens Compact Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the TL2 and the X2 in practical situations. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.
This is why expert reviews are important. The adjacent summary-table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], digitalcameraworld [DCW], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
|1.||Leica TL2||3.5/5||..||3/5||..||4/5||4/5||Jul 2017||1,950|
|2.||Leica X2||3/5||..||..||..||3/5||4/5||May 2012||1,995|
|3.||Fujifilm X-T100||4/5||+||4.5/5||79/100||4/5||4.5/5||May 2018||599|
|4.||Fujifilm X-T20||5/5||+ +||5/5||82/100||5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2017||899|
|5.||Fujifilm X-A3||..||..||..||74/100||4.5/5||4/5||Aug 2016||399|
|6.||Fujifilm X100S||5/5||+ +||..||81/100||4.5/5||5/5||Jan 2013||1,299|
|7.||Fujifilm X-E2||4/5||..||..||80/100||4.5/5||5/5||Oct 2013||999|
|8.||Leica C-LUX||..||..||..||..||4.5/5||4/5||Jun 2018||1,049|
|9.||Leica CL||..||..||4.2/5||..||..||4/5||Nov 2017||2,795|
|10.||Leica TL||..||..||..||..||..||4/5||Nov 2016||1,695|
|11.||Leica T||3/5||..||..||..||4/5||4/5||Apr 2014||1,850|
|12.||Leica X Typ 113||3.5/5||..||..||..||3.5/5||4/5||Sep 2014||2,295|
|13.||Leica X1||3/5||..||..||+||..||4/5||Sep 2009||1,995|
|14.||Nikon D3500||..||..||4/5||75/100||4/5||4.5/5||Aug 2018||429|
|15.||Nikon D5600||4/5||..||4/5||79/100||4.5/5||4/5||Nov 2016||699|
|16.||Nikon D3400||4/5||+||4/5||76/100||4/5||4.5/5||Aug 2016||499|
|17.||Nikon Coolpix A||4/5||+||..||75/100||4/5||4/5||Mar 2013||1,099|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.
Specifications: Leica TL2 vs Leica X2
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Leica TL2||Leica X2|
|Camera Type||Mirrorless system camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||Leica T mount lenses||36mm f/2.8|
|Launch Date||July 2017||May 2012|
|Launch Price||USD 1,950||USD 1,995|
|Sensor Specs||Leica TL2||Leica X2|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||23.6 x 15.7 mm||23.7 x 15.6 mm|
|Sensor Area||370.52 mm2||369.72 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||28.3 mm||28.4 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||24.1 Megapixels||16.1 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||6014 x 4014 pixels||4928 x 3264 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||3.92 μm||4.79 μm|
|Pixel Density||6.52 MP/cm2||4.35 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||4K/30p Video||no Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 50,000 ISO||100 - 12,500 ISO|
|Screen Specs||Leica TL2||Leica X2|
|Viewfinder Type||Viewfinder optional||Viewfinder optional|
|LCD Framing||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.7inch||2.7inch|
|LCD Resolution||1230k dots||230k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Fixed screen|
|Touch Input||Touchscreen||no Touchscreen|
|Shooting Specs||Leica TL2||Leica X2|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||7 shutter flaps/s||5 shutter flaps/s|
|Fill Flash||no On-Board Flash||Built-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDHC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-II||no|
|Connectivity Specs||Leica TL2||Leica X2|
|USB Connector||USB 3.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Leica TL2||Leica X2|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||250 shots per charge||450 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||no USB charging|
134 x 69 x 33 mm
(5.3 x 2.7 x 1.3 in)
124 x 69 x 52 mm
(4.9 x 2.7 x 2.0 in)
|Camera Weight||399 g (14.1 oz)||345 g (12.2 oz)|
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