Everyone is raving about it, but just what makes the Leica Q so good? Richard Sibley puts the premium compact to the test
ISO Sensitivity and Noise
As with the dynamic range and resolution chart tests, the noise produced by the Leica Q is about what you would expect from a camera with a 24.2-million-pixel full-frame sensor.
Images at low sensitivities are virtually noise free, and at ISO 800 even the shadow areas of images show virtually no noise. It’s not until around ISO 6,400 that noise starts to become obtrusive, and as usual, the highest two sensitivity settings do suffer from luminance noise and should generally be used only as a last resort.
However, throughout the sensitivity range, the colour noise in JPEG images is very well controlled. This is great news for JPEG shooters who can comfortably shoot right up to ISO 6,400. Those shooting DNG raw images obviously have a little more flexibility, but we’d recommend using sensitivities below ISO 6,400 to get the best out of the Leica Q.