Leica Q: What's next for Leica's biggest success story?
Sometimes Leica is predicable. For instances, the well-worn path of new models based on whatever M is current. First comes the M-P, then, nearer to the end of the product cycle, the M Monochrom. With the last M, the 240, we were treated to further variations on the theme, the screenless M-D and the stripped-down M262. There is a logical progression.
You can also read much into discontinuation of particular finishes, too. The titanium TL was withdrawn some months before the TL2 arrived. Now the titanium-finish Leica Q has been dropped for no apparent reason. While it was more expensive than the standard finishes, I understood that it had been popular and it isn't obvious why Leica would simply drop it.
Could this change presage an update to the Q itself? It was introduced in early 2015 and it is perhaps too soon to expect a major overhaul. On the other hand, this has been one of the most successful (perhaps the most successful) camera to come from Wetzlar in many a year and an update might be on the cards.
There isn't much not to like about the Q. The camera already has the 24MP sensor that features in the SL and the M10, a very fast Maestro II? Processor and a superb viewfinder. Next to the finder in the SL, this is the best I have used. Perhaps a few tweaks on autofocus speed would help but there is really nothing major that I can think of that would make the Q very significantly better than it is. Direct access to exposure compensation might be worth having and, possibly, an M10-style ISO dial would attract new customers. But the form factor and superb performance of the Q was obviously right from day one. It will be interesting to see if the discontinuation of the Titanium Gray Q presages any further excitement.