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Canon G1 X Mark II vs Leica X Vario

The Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II and the Leica X Vario (Typ 107) are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in February 2014 and June 2013. Both the G1X Mark II and the X Vario are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on an 1.5-inch (G1X Mark II) and an APS-C (X Vario) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 13 megapixels, whereas the Leica provides 16.1 MP. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their sensors, their features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.


Headline Specifications
Canon G1 X Mark II   Leica X Vario
Canon G1 X Mark II Leica X Vario
Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
24-120mm f/2.0-3.9 28-70mm f/3.5-6.4
13 MP, 1.5" Sensor 16.1 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/30p Video 1080/30p Video
ISO 100-12800 ISO 100-12500
Viewfinder optional Viewfinder optional
3.0" LCD, 1040k dots 3.0" LCD, 920k dots
Tilting touchscreen Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
5.2 shutter flaps per second 5 shutter flaps per second
240 shots per battery charge450 shots per battery charge
116 x 74 x 66 mm, 553 g 133 x 73 x 95 mm, 680 g

Body comparison: Canon G1 X Mark II vs Leica X Vario

The physical size and weight of the Canon G1 X Mark II and the Leica X Vario are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter. If you prefer, you can also use the toggle button to switch to a comparison in percentage terms (in this case, the camera on the left side – the G1X Mark II – represents the basis for the calculations across all the size and weight measures).

Compare Canon G1 X Mark II and Leica X Vario
Compare G1X Mark II versus X Vario top
Compare G1X Mark II or X Vario rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Leica X Vario is notably larger (13 percent) than the Canon G1 X Mark II. Moreover, the X Vario is markedly heavier (23 percent) than the G1X Mark II. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the G1X Mark II nor the X Vario are weather-sealed.

Concerning battery life, the G1X Mark II gets 240 shots out of its NB-12L battery, while the X Vario can take 450 images on a single charge of its BP-DC8 power pack.

The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Canon G1 X Mark II» 4.6 in 2.9 in 2.6 in 19.5 oz 240 n Feb 2014 799 i i Canon G1 X Mark II
Leica X Vario« 5.2 in 2.9 in 3.7 in 24.0 oz 450 n Jun 2013 2,850 i i Leica X Vario
Canon G5 X« » 4.4 in 3.0 in 1.7 in 12.5 oz 210 n Oct 2015 799 i i Canon G5 X
Canon T6i« » 5.2 in 4.0 in 3.1 in 19.6 oz 440 n Feb 2015 749- i Canon T6i
Canon T6s« » 5.2 in 4.0 in 3.1 in 19.9 oz 440 n Feb 2015 849- i Canon T6s
Canon XC10« » 4.9 in 4.0 in 4.8 in 36.7 oz .. n Apr 2015 2,499- i Canon XC10
Canon SX60« » 5.0 in 3.7 in 4.5 in 22.9 oz 340 n Sep 2014 549- i Canon SX60
Canon G16« » 4.3 in 3.0 in 1.6 in 12.6 oz 360 n Aug 2013 549 i i Canon G16
Canon G1 X« » 4.6 in 3.2 in 2.6 in 18.8 oz 250 n Jan 2012 799- i Canon G1 X
Canon T1i« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 2.4 in 18.3 oz 400 n Mar 2009 799- i Canon T1i
Canon XSi« » 5.1 in 3.9 in 2.4 in 18.5 oz 500 n Jan 2008 799- i Canon XSi
Leica Q Typ 116« » 5.1 in 3.1 in 3.7 in 22.6 oz 300 n Jun 2015 4,249 i i Leica Q Typ 116
Leica X Typ 113« » 5.2 in 2.9 in 3.1 in 17.1 oz 350 n Sep 2014 2,295 i i Leica X Typ 113
Leica X2« » 4.9 in 2.7 in 2.0 in 12.2 oz 450 n May 2012 1,995- i Leica X2
Nikon Df« » 5.7 in 4.3 in 2.6 in 26.8 oz 1400 Y Nov 2013 2,749 i i Nikon Df
Panasonic FZ1000« » 5.4 in 3.9 in 5.2 in 29.3 oz 360 n Jun 2014 899- i Panasonic FZ1000
Panasonic LX100« » 4.5 in 2.6 in 2.2 in 13.9 oz 300 n Sep 2014 899 i i Panasonic LX100

Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The G1X Mark II was launched at a markedly lower price (by 72 percent) than the X Vario, which puts it into a different market segment. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. 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.

 

Sensor comparison: Canon G1 X Mark II vs Leica X Vario

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. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon G1 X Mark II features an 1.5-inch sensor and the Leica X Vario an APS-C sensor. The sensor area in the X Vario is 42 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.85 and 1.5. The sensor in the G1X Mark II has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the X Vario offers a 3:2 aspect.

Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors.

Canon G1 X Mark II and Leica X Vario sensor measures

With 16.1MP, the X Vario offers a higher resolution than the G1X Mark II (13MP), but the X Vario nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.80μm versus 4.49μm for the G1X Mark II) due to its larger sensor. However, the G1X Mark II is a somewhat more recent model (by 8 months) than the X Vario, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units.

The Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800 The corresponding ISO settings for the Leica X Vario (Typ 107) are ISO 100 to ISO 12500 (no boost).

G1X Mark II versus X Vario MP

Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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"). Of the two cameras under consideration, the X Vario offers substantially better image quality than the G1X Mark II (overall score 20 points higher). The advantage is based on 1.9 bits higher color depth, 1.9 EV in additional dynamic range, and 1.2 stops in additional low light sensitivity. The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
Canon G1 X Mark II» 1.5-inch 13.0 4160 31201080/30p21.510.858158Canon G1 X Mark II
Leica X Vario« APS-C 16.1 4928 32721080/30p23.412.7132078Leica X Vario
Canon G5 X« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p----Canon G5 X
Canon T6i« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p22.712.091971Canon T6i
Canon T6s« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.612.091570Canon T6s
Canon XC10« » 1-inch 12.0 4000 30004K/30p----Canon XC10
Canon SX60« » 1/2.3 14.2 4608 30721080/60p19.210.812739Canon SX60
Canon G16« » 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/60p21.011.723054Canon G16
Canon G1 X« » 1.5-inch 14.2 4352 32641080/24p21.710.864460Canon G1 X
Canon T1i« » APS-C 15.1 4752 31681080/20p21.711.566363Canon T1i
Canon XSi« » APS-C 12.2 4272 2848-21.910.869261Canon XSi
Leica Q Typ 116« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.312.7222185Leica Q Typ 116
Leica X Typ 113« » APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p----Leica X Typ 113
Leica X2« » APS-C 16.1 4928 3264-----Leica X2
Nikon Df« » Full Frame 16.2 4928 3280-24.613.1327989Nikon Df
Panasonic FZ1000« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36484K/30p22.111.751764Panasonic FZ1000
Panasonic LX100« » Four Thirds 12.7 4112 30884K/30p22.312.555367Panasonic LX100

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/30p).

 

Feature comparison: Canon G1 X Mark II vs Leica X Vario

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The G1X Mark II and the X Vario 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 EVF-DC1 for the G1X Mark II and the EVF 2 for the X Vario – are available as accessories. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon G1 X Mark II, the Leica X Vario, and comparable cameras.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
Canon G1 X Mark II»- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 5.2 Y Y Canon G1 X Mark II
Leica X Vario«- n 3.0 920 fixed n 2000 5.0 Y n Leica X Vario
Canon G5 X« »2360 n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 2000 5.9 Y Y Canon G5 X
Canon T6i« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n Canon T6i
Canon T6s« »optical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 4000 5.0 Y n Canon T6s
Canon XC10« »- n 3.0 1030 tilting Y 2000 3.8 n Y Canon XC10
Canon SX60« »922 n 3.0 922 swivel n 2000 6.4 Y Y Canon SX60
Canon G16« »optical n 3.0 922 fixed n 4000 2.2 Y Y Canon G16
Canon G1 X« »optical n 3.0 922 Swivel n 4000 1.9 Y Y Canon G1 X
Canon T1i« »optical n 3.0 920 fixed n 4000 3.4 Y n Canon T1i
Canon XSi« »optical n 3.0 230 fixed n 4000 3.5 Y n Canon XSi
Leica Q Typ 116« »3680 n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 2000 10.0 n n Leica Q Typ 116
Leica X Typ 113« »- n 3.0 920 fixed n 2000 5.0 Y n Leica X Typ 113
Leica X2« »- n 2.7 230 fixed n 2000 5.0 Y n Leica X2
Nikon Df« »optical Y 3.2 921 fixed n 4000 5.5 n n Nikon Df
Panasonic FZ1000« »2359 n 3.0 921 swivel n 4000 12.0 Y Y Panasonic FZ1000
Panasonic LX100« »2764 n 3.0 921 fixed n 4000 11.0 n Y Panasonic LX100

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The G1X Mark II has a touchscreen, while the X Vario has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

The G1X Mark II has an articulated LCD that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in snapping selfies. In contrast, the X Vario does not have a selfie-screen.

Both the G1X Mark II and the X Vario have zoom lenses built in. The G1X Mark II has a 24-120mm f/2.0-3.9 optic and the X Vario offers a 28-70mm f/3.5-6.4 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Canon provides a wider angle of view at the short end, as well as more tele-photo reach at the long end than the Leica. The G1X Mark II offers the faster maximum aperture.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the G1X Mark II and the X Vario write their files to SDXC cards.

Connectivity comparison: Canon G1 X Mark II vs Leica X Vario

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 Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II and Leica X Vario (Typ 107) and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
Canon G1 X Mark II»Ystereomono--mini2.0YY-Canon G1 X Mark II
Leica X Vario«Ystereomono--mini2.0---Leica X Vario
Canon G5 X« »Ystereomono--mini2.0YY-Canon G5 X
Canon T6i« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-Canon T6i
Canon T6s« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-Canon T6s
Canon XC10« »YstereomonoYYmini2.0YY-Canon XC10
Canon SX60« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-Canon SX60
Canon G16« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Canon G16
Canon G1 X« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Canon G1 X
Canon T1i« »Ymonomono--mini2.0---Canon T1i
Canon XSi« »Y----mini2.0---Canon XSi
Leica Q Typ 116« »Ystereomono--micro2.0YY-Leica Q Typ 116
Leica X Typ 113« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Leica X Typ 113
Leica X2« »Y----mini2.0---Leica X2
Nikon Df« »Y----mini2.0---Nikon Df
Panasonic FZ1000« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0YY-Panasonic FZ1000
Panasonic LX100« »Ystereomono--micro2.0YY-Panasonic LX100

It is notable that the G1X Mark II offers wifi support, while the X Vario does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.

Both the G1X Mark II and the X Vario are recent models that feature in their makers' current product line-up. The G1X Mark II replaced the earlier Canon G1 X, while the X Vario does not have a direct predecessor.


Review summary: Canon G1 X Mark II vs Leica X Vario

So what is the bottom line? Is there a clear favorite between the Canon G1 X Mark II and the Leica X Vario? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.

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Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot G1 X Mark II:

  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1040k vs 920k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
  • Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
  • More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (4000/sec vs 2000/sec) to freeze action.
  • Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.0 vs f/3.5).
  • Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
  • More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
  • More compact: Is smaller (116x74mm vs 133x73mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 127g or 19 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (72 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Is somewhat more recent (announced 8 months after the X Vario).

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Arguments in favor of the Leica X Vario (Typ 107):

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (16.1 vs 13MP), which boosts linear resolution by 14%.
  • Better image quality: Scores substantially higher (20 points) in the DXO overall evaluation.
  • Richer colors: Generates noticeably more natural colors (1.9 bits more color depth).
  • More dynamic range: Captures a broader range of light and dark details (1.9 EV of extra DR).
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Can shoot in dim conditions (1.2 stops ISO advantage).
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (450 versus 240) out of a single battery charge.
  • More prestigious: Has the Leica luxury appeal, which ensures a high resale value.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in June 2013).

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the G1X Mark II is the clear winner of the match-up (15 : 8 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.

G1X Mark II 15:08 X Vario

In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it says nothing about, for example, the handling, responsiveness, and overall imaging quality of the G1X Mark II and the X Vario 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.

Expert reviews: Canon G1 X Mark II vs Leica X Vario

This is where reviews by experts come in. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). You can find the full text of the reviews by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
Canon G1 X Mark II»Rec77/1004/54/54.5/5 Feb 2014 799 i i Canon G1 X Mark II
Leica X Vario«--4/54/54/5 Jun 2013 2,850 i i Leica X Vario
Canon G5 X« »HiRec78/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Oct 2015 799 i i Canon G5 X
Canon T6i« »-75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 749- i Canon T6i
Canon T6s« »Rec77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 849- i Canon T6s
Canon XC10« »-80/100--- Apr 2015 2,499- i Canon XC10
Canon SX60« »HiRec75/1004/5-4.5/5 Sep 2014 549- i Canon SX60
Canon G16« »Rec-4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2013 549 i i Canon G16
Canon G1 X« »Rec76/1004/54/54.5/5 Jan 2012 799- i Canon G1 X
Canon T1i« »HiRec74/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Mar 2009 799- i Canon T1i
Canon XSi« »HiRecHiRec4/55/54.5/5 Jan 2008 799- i Canon XSi
Leica Q Typ 116« »-80/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Jun 2015 4,249 i i Leica Q Typ 116
Leica X Typ 113« »--3.5/5-4/5 Sep 2014 2,295 i i Leica X Typ 113
Leica X2« »--3/5-4/5 May 2012 1,995- i Leica X2
Nikon Df« »-81/1004/54/54/5 Nov 2013 2,749 i i Nikon Df
Panasonic FZ1000« »HiRec82/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2014 899- i Panasonic FZ1000
Panasonic LX100« »HiRec85/1005/54/55/5 Sep 2014 899 i i Panasonic LX100

Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, 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 comparing ratings of very distinct cameras or ones that are far apart in terms of their release date have little meaning. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.

 

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just make your choice using the following search menu. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.

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    Specifications: Canon G1 X Mark II vs Leica X Vario

    Camera Specifications
    Camera Model Canon G1 X Mark II Leica X Vario
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens 24-120mm f/2.0-3.9 28-70mm f/3.5-6.4
    Launch Date February 2014 June 2013
    Launch Price USD 799 USD 2850
    Sensor Specs
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format 1.5" Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 18.7 x 14.0 mm 23.6 x 14.0 mm
    Sensor Area 261.8 mm2 370.52 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 23.4 mm 28.3 mm
    Crop Factor 1.85 1.5
    Sensor Resolution 13 Megapixels 16.1 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4160 x 3120 pixels 4928 x 3272 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.49 μm 4.80 μm
    Pixel Density 4.96 MP/cm2 4.35 MP/cm2
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video 1080/30p Video
    ISO Setting 100-12800 ISO 100-12500 ISO
    Screen Specs
    Viewfinder Type Viewfinder optional Viewfinder optional
    Rear LCD Size 3.0 inch 3.0 inch
    LCD Resolution 1040k dots 920k dots
    LCD Attachment Tilting screen Fixed screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen no Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs
    Maximum Shutter Speed 1/4000s 1/2000s
    Continuous Shooting 5.2 shutter flaps/s 5 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDXC cards
    Connectivity Specs
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI mini HDMI
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in no Wifi
    Near-Field Communication NFC built-in no NFC
    Body Specs
    Battery Type NB-12L power pack BP-DC8 power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)240 shots per charge450 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 116 x 74 x 66 mm
    (4.6 x 2.9 x 2.6 in)
    133 x 73 x 95 mm
    (5.2 x 2.9 x 3.7 in)
    Camera Weight 553 g (19.5 oz) 680 g (24.0 oz)

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