Canon G1 X vs Leica TL
The Canon PowerShot G1 X and the Leica TL are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in January 2012 and November 2016. The G1X is a fixed lens compact, while the TL is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. The cameras are based on an 1.5-inch (G1X) and an APS-C (TL) sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 14.2 megapixels, whereas the Leica 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 Canon PowerShot G1 X and the Leica TL? 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 Canon G1 X and the Leica TL are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The TL can be obtained in three different colors (black, silver, titanium), while the G1X is only available in black.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Leica TL is somewhat smaller (2 percent) than the Canon G1 X. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the G1X nor the TL are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the G1X has a lens built in, whereas the TL 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 TL can be charged via the USB port, which can be very convenient 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.||Canon G1 X||117 mm||81 mm||65 mm||534 g||250||n||Jan 2012||799||ebay.com|
|2.||Leica TL||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||384 g||400||n||Nov 2016||1,695||ebay.com|
|3.||Canon G1 X Mark II||116 mm||74 mm||66 mm||553 g||240||n||Feb 2014||799||ebay.com|
|4.||Canon G16||109 mm||76 mm||40 mm||356 g||360||n||Aug 2013||549||ebay.com|
|5.||Canon S120||100 mm||59 mm||29 mm||217 g||230||n||Aug 2013||449||ebay.com|
|6.||Canon 650D||133 mm||100 mm||79 mm||575 g||440||n||Jun 2012||849||ebay.com|
|7.||Canon SX50||123 mm||87 mm||106 mm||595 g||315||n||Sep 2012||429||ebay.com|
|8.||Canon 1100D||130 mm||100 mm||78 mm||495 g||700||n||Feb 2011||449||ebay.com|
|9.||Canon 500D||129 mm||98 mm||62 mm||520 g||400||n||Mar 2009||799||ebay.com|
|10.||Canon 450D||129 mm||98 mm||62 mm||524 g||500||n||Jan 2008||799||ebay.com|
|11.||Fujifilm X70||113 mm||64 mm||44 mm||340 g||330||n||Jan 2016||799||ebay.com|
|12.||Leica CL||131 mm||78 mm||45 mm||403 g||220||n||Nov 2017||2,795||ebay.com|
|13.||Leica TL2||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||399 g||250||n||Jul 2017||1,950||ebay.com|
|14.||Leica T||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||384 g||400||n||Apr 2014||1,850||ebay.com|
|15.||Leica V-LUX 4||125 mm||87 mm||110 mm||588 g||540||n||Sep 2012||949||ebay.com|
|16.||Leica X2||124 mm||69 mm||52 mm||345 g||450||n||May 2012||1,995||ebay.com|
|17.||Leica V-LUX 3||124 mm||81 mm||95 mm||540 g||410||n||Dec 2011||949||ebay.com|
|Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. 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. The G1X was launched at a lower price than the TL, despite having a lens built in. 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.
The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Canon G1 X features an 1.5-inch sensor and the Leica TL an APS-C sensor. The sensor area in the TL 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 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the TL offers a 3:2 aspect.
With 16.1MP, the TL offers a higher resolution than the G1X (14.2MP), but the TL nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.80μm versus 4.30μm for the G1X) due to its larger sensor. Moreover, the TL is a much more recent model (by 4 years and 10 months) than the G1X, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the TL has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The resolution advantage of the Leica TL implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the TL for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 24.6 x 16.3 inches or 62.6 x 41.5 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 19.7 x 13.1 inches or 50.1 x 33.2 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 16.4 x 10.9 inches or 41.7 x 27.6 cm. The corresponding values for the Canon G1 X are 21.8 x 16.3 inches or 55.3 x 41.5 cm for good quality, 17.4 x 13.1 inches or 44.2 x 33.2 cm for very good quality, and 14.5 x 10.9 inches or 36.8 x 27.6 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Canon PowerShot G1 X has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Leica TL are ISO 100 to ISO 12500 (no boost).
Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors. Both cameras use a Bayer filter for capturing RGB colors on a square grid of photosensors. This arrangement is found in most digital cameras.
Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|1.||Canon G1 X||1.5-inch||14.2||4352||3264||1080/24p||21.7||10.8||644||60|
|3.||Canon G1 X Mark II||1.5-inch||13.0||4160||3120||1080/30p||21.5||10.8||581||58|
|15.||Leica V-LUX 4||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||19.8||11.1||501||43|
|17.||Leica V-LUX 3||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||19.7||11.0||430||42|
|Note: DXO values in italics represent estimates based on sensor size and age.|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, but the TL provides a faster frame rate than the G1X. It can shoot movie footage at 1080/30p, while the Canon is limited to 1080/24p.
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the G1X has an optical viewfinder, which can be very useful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the TL relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. That said, the TL can be equipped with an optional viewfinder – the Visoflex (Typ 020). The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Canon G1 X, the Leica TL, and comparable cameras.
|1.||Canon G1 X||optical||n||3.0 / 922||swivel||n||1/4000s||1.9/s||Y||Y|
|2.||Leica TL||optional||n||3.7 / 1230||fixed||Y||1/4000s||5.0/s||Y||n|
|3.||Canon G1 X Mark II||optional||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||5.2/s||Y||Y|
|4.||Canon G16||optical||n||3.0 / 922||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.2/s||Y||Y|
|5.||Canon S120||none||n||3.0 / 922||fixed||Y||1/2000s||12.1/s||Y||Y|
|6.||Canon 650D||optical||n||3.0 / 1040||swivel||Y||1/4000s||5.0/s||Y||n|
|7.||Canon SX50||202||n||3.0 / 461||swivel||n||1/2000s||2.2/s||Y||Y|
|8.||Canon 1100D||optical||n||2.7 / 230||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|9.||Canon 500D||optical||n||3.0 / 920||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.4/s||Y||n|
|10.||Canon 450D||optical||n||3.0 / 230||fixed||n||1/4000s||3.5/s||Y||n|
|11.||Fujifilm X70||optional||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0/s||Y||n|
|12.||Leica CL||2360||Y||3.0 / 1040||fixed||Y||1/8000s||10.0/s||n||n|
|13.||Leica TL2||optional||n||3.7 / 1230||fixed||Y||1/4000s||7.0/s||n||n|
|14.||Leica T||optional||n||3.7 / 1230||fixed||Y||1/4000s||5.0/s||Y||n|
|15.||Leica V-LUX 4||1312||n||3.0 / 460||swivel||n||1/4000s||12.0/s||Y||Y|
|16.||Leica X2||optional||n||2.7 / 230||fixed||n||1/2000s||5.0/s||Y||n|
|17.||Leica V-LUX 3||202||n||3.0 / 460||swivel||n||1/2000s||12.0/s||Y||Y|
|Notes: *) Information refers to the mechanical shutter, unless the camera only has an electronic one.|
One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The TL has a touchscreen, while the G1X has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.The G1X 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 TL does not have a selfie-screen.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the G1X and the TL write their files to SDXC 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 Canon PowerShot G1 X and Leica TL and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
Mic / Speaker
|1.||Canon G1 X||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|2.||Leica TL||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|3.||Canon G1 X Mark II||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|4.||Canon G16||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-|
|5.||Canon S120||-||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-|
|6.||Canon 650D||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|7.||Canon SX50||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|8.||Canon 1100D||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|9.||Canon 500D||Y||mono / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|10.||Canon 450D||Y||- / -||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|11.||Fujifilm X70||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|12.||Leica CL||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||-||-||Y||-||-|
|13.||Leica TL2||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||3.0||Y||-||-|
|14.||Leica T||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||-||2.0||Y||-||-|
|15.||Leica V-LUX 4||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|16.||Leica X2||Y||- / -||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|17.||Leica V-LUX 3||Y||stereo / -||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
It is notable that the TL offers wifi support, which can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location. In contrast, the G1X does not provide wifi capability.
Both the G1X and the TL have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on ebay. The G1X was replaced by the Canon G1X Mark II, while the TL was followed by the Leica TL2. Further information on the features and operation of the G1X and TL can be found, respectively, in the Canon G1 X Manual (free pdf) or the online Leica TL Manual.
So what conclusions can be drawn? Which of the two cameras – the Canon G1 X or the Leica TL – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.
Reasons to prefer the Canon PowerShot G1 X:
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image composition and settings control.
- More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
- More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
- Ready to shoot: Has a lens built-in, whereas the TL requires a separate lens.
- Sharper images: Has hand-shake reducing image stabilization built-in.
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
- More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in January 2012).
Arguments in favor of the Leica TL:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (16.1 vs 14.2MP), which boosts linear resolution by 9%.
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Better image quality: Is equipped with a larger and more technologically advanced sensor.
- Richer colors: The sensor size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger sensor captures a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger sensor produces good images even in poorly lit environments.
- Better video: Provides higher movie framerates (1080/30p versus 1080/24p).
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.7" vs 3.0") for image review and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1230k vs 922k dots).
- Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (5 vs 1.9 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More flexible: Takes interchangeable lenses and can thus be used with specialty optics.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (400 versus 250) out of a single battery charge.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
- More prestigious: Has the Leica luxury appeal, which ensures a high resale value.
- More modern: Reflects 4 years and 10 months of technical progress since the G1X launch.
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the TL is the clear winner of the contest (17 : 8 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision 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 Canon G1 X and the Leica TL place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera and Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the G1X or the TL. 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 table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear 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.||Canon G1 X||5/5||+||..||76/100||4/5||4.5/5||Jan 2012||799||ebay.com|
|2.||Leica TL||..||..||..||..||..||4/5||Nov 2016||1,695||ebay.com|
|3.||Canon G1 X Mark II||3/5||+||..||77/100||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2014||799||ebay.com|
|4.||Canon G16||4/5||+||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2013||549||ebay.com|
|5.||Canon S120||..||+ +||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2013||449||ebay.com|
|6.||Canon 650D||4/5||+ +||..||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2012||849||ebay.com|
|7.||Canon SX50||3/5||+ +||..||72/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||429||ebay.com|
|8.||Canon 1100D||..||80/100||..||69/100||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2011||449||ebay.com|
|9.||Canon 500D||..||+ +||..||74/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Mar 2009||799||ebay.com|
|10.||Canon 450D||..||+ +||..||+ +||4/5||4.5/5||Jan 2008||799||ebay.com|
|11.||Fujifilm X70||4.5/5||..||..||76/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2016||799||ebay.com|
|12.||Leica CL||..||..||4.2/5||..||..||4/5||Nov 2017||2,795||ebay.com|
|13.||Leica TL2||3.5/5||..||3/5||..||4/5||4/5||Jul 2017||1,950||ebay.com|
|14.||Leica T||3/5||..||..||..||4/5||4/5||Apr 2014||1,850||ebay.com|
|15.||Leica V-LUX 4||..||..||..||..||..||..||Sep 2012||949||ebay.com|
|16.||Leica X2||3/5||..||..||..||3/5||4/5||May 2012||1,995||ebay.com|
|17.||Leica V-LUX 3||..||..||..||..||..||..||Dec 2011||949||ebay.com|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
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. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, 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? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.
Specifications: Canon G1 X vs Leica TL
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||Canon G1 X||Leica TL|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||28-112mm f/2.8-5.8||Leica T mount lenses|
|Launch Date||January 2012||November 2016|
|Launch Price||USD 799||USD 1,695|
|Sensor Specs||Canon G1 X||Leica TL|
|Sensor Format||1.5" Sensor||APS-C Sensor|
|Sensor Size||18.7 x 14.0 mm||23.6 x 15.7 mm|
|Sensor Area||261.8 mm2||370.52 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||23.4 mm||28.3 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||14.2 Megapixels||16.1 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4352 x 3264 pixels||4928 x 3264 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||4.30 μm||4.80 μm|
|Pixel Density||5.43 MP/cm2||4.34 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/24p Video||1080/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 12,800 ISO||100 - 12,500 ISO|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||60||..|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||21.7||..|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||10.8||..|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||644||..|
|Screen Specs||Canon G1 X||Leica TL|
|Viewfinder Type||Optical viewfinder||Viewfinder optional|
|Viewfinder Field of View||74%|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.7inch|
|LCD Resolution||922k dots||1230k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Swivel screen||Fixed screen|
|Touch Input||no Touchscreen||Touchscreen|
|Shooting Specs||Canon G1 X||Leica TL|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||1.9 shutter flaps/s||5 shutter flaps/s|
|Fill Flash||Built-in Flash||Built-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Single or Dual Card Slots||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||no||no|
|Connectivity Specs||Canon G1 X||Leica TL|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||mini HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi||Wifi built-in|
|Body Specs||Canon G1 X||Leica TL|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||250 shots per charge||400 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||no USB charging||USB charging|
117 x 81 x 65 mm
(4.6 x 3.2 x 2.6 in)
134 x 69 x 33 mm
(5.3 x 2.7 x 1.3 in)
|Camera Weight||534 g (18.8 oz)||384 g (13.5 oz)|
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