Leica don't release cameras often but when they do you'll usually expect stunning design and ridiculously high prices. But with the new Leica T one thing is very different, the price. Instead of a crazy price tag above the $5000 mark, the Leica T is $1850.
This new camera has been designed in conjunction with Audi and offers a very minimalist and absolutely beautiful design.
Each camera is carved out of an aluminium block giving it a true unibody frame, something Apple is known for in its products. This unibody design makes the camera much tougher and rigid.
Once it is carved out from the aluminum, it is polished for 45 minutes by hand. Leica has always been known for its hand-built tradition when it comes to making cameras.
Something that is odd though is the removal of many manual controls we'd see on traditional DLSR's, showing that Leica is going for a more mainstream casual photographer rather than a professional. On top there are only two dials, shutter button and a quick video record button. On the back there are no buttons at all. Instead there is a large 3.7-inch 854x480 touchscreen panel where you'll find all the controls. The UI has been designed to be super finger friendly with large icons and buttons.
Inside you'll find a 16-megapixel APS-C size CMOS sensor. Not as large as the full frame from Sony A7 but it should provide sharp pictures nevertheless. The sensor is capable of ISOs up to 12,800 and you can shoot 1080p video at 30fps.
You'll also find WiFi built-in so you can control the camera from a smartphone and quickly transfer images.
Leica says the battery is capable of 400 pictures on one charge, very impressive compared to other mirrorless cameras.
At launch Leica is only offering two lenses for its new lens mount. Being offered is a 18-56mm (28-85mm equivalent 35mm) f/3.6-5.6 zoom lens ($1,800), and a 23mm (35mm equivalent 35mm) f/2 prime lens ($1.900).
The new Leica T seems to be the company's attempt at a more affordable mainstream camera, but by no means is it cheap compared to other mirrorless cameras from Panasonic, Olympus and Sony. However Leica offers high quality craftsmanship and it's more about buying a very high quality product than getting value for money.