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Canon T6i vs Leica X1

The Canon EOS Rebel T6i (called Canon 750D in some regions) and the Leica X1 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in February 2015 and September 2009. The T6i is a DSLR, while the X1 is a fixed lens compact. Both cameras are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The Canon has a resolution of 24 megapixels, whereas the Leica provides 12.2 MP.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Canon T6i versus Leica X1
Canon T6i Leica X1
Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
Canon EF mount lenses 36mm f/2.8
24 MP, APS-C Sensor 12.2 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/30p Video no Video
ISO 100-12,800 (100 - 25,600) ISO 100-3,200
Optical viewfinder No viewfinder, LCD framing
3.0 LCD, 1040k dots 2.7 LCD, 230k dots
Swivel touchscreen Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive)
5 shutter flaps per second 3 shutter flaps per second
440 shots per battery charge260 shots per battery charge
132 x 101 x 78 mm, 555 g 124 x 60 x 32 mm, 306 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Canon EOS Rebel T6i and the Leica X1? 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.

Body comparison

The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Canon T6i and the Leica X1. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The X1 can be obtained in two different colors (black, silver), while the T6i is only available in black.

Size Canon T6i vs Leica X1
Compare T6i versus X1 top
Comparison T6i or X1 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Leica X1 is considerably smaller (44 percent) than the Canon T6i. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the T6i nor the X1 are weather-sealed.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the X1 has a lens built in, whereas the T6i is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup. You can compare the optics available for the T6i and their specifications in the Canon EF Lens Catalog.

Concerning battery life, the T6i gets 440 shots out of its LP-E17 battery, while the X1 can take 260 images on a single charge of its BP-DC8 power pack.

The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. 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.

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Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life 1
Weather
Sealing
Camera
Launch 2
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Canon T6i 132 mm 101 mm 78 mm 555 g 440 n Feb 2015 749i
 
Leica X1 124 mm 60 mm 32 mm 306 g 260 n Sep 2009 1,995i
 
Canon 77D 131 mm 100 mm 76 mm 540 g 600 n Feb 2017 899 i
 
Canon T7i 131 mm 100 mm 76 mm 532 g 600 n Feb 2017 749i
 
Canon T6s 132 mm 101 mm 78 mm 565 g 440 n Feb 2015 649i
 
Canon T5 130 mm 100 mm 78 mm 480 g 500 n Feb 2014 449i
 
Canon T5i 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 580 g 440 n Mar 2013 649i
 
Canon T4i 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 575 g 440 n Jun 2012 849i
 
Canon T1i 129 mm 98 mm 62 mm 520 g 400 n Mar 2009 799i
 
Canon XSi 129 mm 98 mm 62 mm 524 g 500 n Jan 2008 799i
 
Canon XTi 127 mm 84 mm 65 mm 556 g 370 n Aug 2006 799i
 
Canon XT 127 mm 94 mm 64 mm 540 g 400 n Feb 2005 899i
 
Leica D-LUX 6 111 mm 68 mm 46 mm 298 g 330 n Sep 2012 699i
 
Leica X2 124 mm 69 mm 52 mm 345 g 450 n May 2012 1,995i
 
Leica D-LUX 5 110 mm 65 mm 43 mm 271 g 400 n Sep 2010 699i
 
Leica V-LUX 2 124 mm 80 mm 95 mm 520 g 410 n Sep 2010 849i
 
Panasonic LX5 110 mm 65 mm 43 mm 271 g 400 n Jul 2010 499i
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.
(1) Number of images that can be taken on a full battery charge according to the CIPA-standard; (2) Official announcement.

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. 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

The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors 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. 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 more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the X1 is 11 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have format factors, respectively, of 1.6 (T6i) and 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

In terms of underlying technology, both cameras are build around CMOS sensors.

Canon T6i and Leica X1 sensor measures

Despite having a smaller sensor, the Canon T6i offers a higher resolution of 24 megapixels, compared with 12.2 MP of the Leica X1. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 3.72μm versus 5.51μm for the X1). However, it should be noted that the T6i is much more recent (by 5 years and 4 months) than the X1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently.

The resolution advantage of the Canon T6i implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the T6i for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 30 x 20 inches or 76.2 x 50.8 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 24 x 16 inches or 61 x 40.6 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 20 x 13.3 inches or 50.8 x 33.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Leica X1 are 21.4 x 14.3 inches or 54.3 x 36.3 cm for good quality, 17.1 x 11.4 inches or 43.4 x 29 cm for very good quality, and 14.2 x 9.5 inches or 36.2 x 24.2 cm for excellent quality prints.

The T6i has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during live view operation.

The Canon EOS Rebel T6i has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 100-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Leica X1 are ISO 100 to ISO 3200 (no boost).

T6i versus X1 MP

For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. 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.

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Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
 
Canon T6i APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.712.091971
 
Leica X1 APS-C 12.2 4272 2856none........
 
Canon 77D APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.613.397178
 
Canon T7i APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p........
 
Canon T6s APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/30p22.612.091570
 
Canon T5 APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.911.372463
 
Canon T5i APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.268161
 
Canon T4i APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.272262
 
Canon T1i APS-C 15.1 4752 31681080/20p21.711.566363
 
Canon XSi APS-C 12.2 4272 2848none21.910.869261
 
Canon XTi APS-C 10.1 3888 2592none22.111.066462
 
Canon XT APS-C 8.0 3456 2304none21.810.863760
 
Leica D-LUX 6 1/1.7 10.0 3648 27361080/60p........
 
Leica X2 APS-C 16.1 4928 3264none........
 
Leica D-LUX 5 1/1.7 10.0 3648 2736720/60p........
 
Leica V-LUX 2 1/2.3 14.0 4320 32401080/60i........
 
Panasonic LX5 1/1.7 10.0 3648 2736720/60p19.610.813241

Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The T6i indeed provides movie recording capabilities, while the X1 does not. The highest resolution format that the T6i can use is 1080/30p.

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the T6i has an optical viewfinder, which can be very useful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the X1 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Canon T6i and Leica X1 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.

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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)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
 
Canon T6ioptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Leica X1none n 2.7 230 fixed n 1/2000s 3.0 Y n
 
Canon 77Doptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n
 
Canon T7ioptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n
 
Canon T6soptical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Canon T5optical n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Canon T5ioptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Canon T4ioptical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n
 
Canon T1ioptical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.4 Y n
 
Canon XSioptical n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.5 Y n
 
Canon XTioptical n 2.5 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Canon XToptical n 1.8 115 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n
 
Leica D-LUX 6optional n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 11.0 Y Y
 
Leica X2optional n 2.7 230 fixed n 1/2000s 5.0 Y n
 
Leica D-LUX 5optional n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y Y
 
Leica V-LUX 2202 n 3.0 460 swivel n 1/2000s 11.0 Y Y
 
Panasonic LX5optional n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y Y

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The T6i has a touchscreen, while the X1 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

The T6i 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 X1 does not have a selfie-screen.

The T6i writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the X1 uses SDHC cards. The T6i supports UHS-I cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s), while the X1 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.

Connectivity comparison

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 EOS Rebel T6i and Leica X1 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

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Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Port
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
 
Canon T6iYstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
 
Leica X1Y----mini2.0---
 
Canon 77DYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
 
Canon T7iYstereomonoY-mini2.0YYY
 
Canon T6sYstereomonoY-mini2.0YY-
 
Canon T5Ymonomono--mini2.0---
 
Canon T5iYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
 
Canon T4iYstereomonoY-mini2.0---
 
Canon T1iYmonomono--mini2.0---
 
Canon XSiY----mini2.0---
 
Canon XTiY-----2.0---
 
Canon XTY-----2.0---
 
Leica D-LUX 6Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Leica X2Y----mini2.0---
 
Leica D-LUX 5Ymonomono--mini2.0---
 
Leica V-LUX 2Ystereomono--mini2.0---
 
Panasonic LX5Ymonomono--mini2.0---

It is notable that the T6i offers wifi support, while the X1 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.

Both the T6i and the X1 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The X1 was replaced by the Leica X2, while the T6i was followed by the Canon T7i. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Canon and Leica websites.

Review summary

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is the Canon T6i better than the Leica X1 or vice versa? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.

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Advantages of the Canon EOS Rebel T6i:

  • More detail: Offers more megapixels (24 vs 12.2MP) with a 40% higher linear resolution.
  • Broader imaging potential: Can record not only still images but also 1080/30p movies.
  • Better live-view autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for more confident autofocus.
  • Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image composition and settings control.
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 2.7") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1040k vs 230k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or 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 (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (5 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • More flexible: Can take a variety of interchangeable lenses, including specialty optics.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (440 versus 260) on a single battery charge.
  • 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.
  • Faster buffer clearing: Has an SD card interface that supports the UHS-I standard.
  • More modern: Reflects 5 years and 4 months of technical progress since the X1 launch.

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Reasons to prefer the Leica X1:

  • Ready to shoot: Comes with an integrated lens, while the T6i requires a separate lens.
  • More compact: Is smaller (124x60mm vs 132x101mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight even though it has a lens built in (unlike the T6i).
  • More prestigious: Has the Leica luxury appeal, which ensures a high resale value.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in September 2009).

If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the T6i is the clear winner of the match-up (17 : 5 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 wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.

T6i 17:05 X1

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Canon T6i and the Leica X1 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera and Best Prime Lens Compact Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the T6i or the X1 perform in practice. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.

Expert reviews

This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). 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.

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Review Scores
  Camera
Model
camera
  labs  
dp
review  
ephoto
  zine  
imaging
resource
photography
  blog  
Camera
Launch
Launch
Price (USD)
Street
Price
 
Canon T6i..75/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 749i
 
Leica X1..+....4/5 Sep 2009 1,995i
 
Canon 77D..82/1004.5/54.5/54/5 Feb 2017 899 i
 
Canon T7i..80/1004.5/54/54/5 Feb 2017 749i
 
Canon T6s+77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2015 649i
 
Canon T5+..4/54/54.5/5 Feb 2014 449i
 
Canon T5i..76/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Mar 2013 649i
 
Canon T4i+ +77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2012 849i
 
Canon T1i+ +74/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Mar 2009 799i
 
Canon XSi+ ++ +4/55/54.5/5 Jan 2008 799i
 
Canon XTi+ ++ +o4.5/54/5 Aug 2006 799i
 
Canon XT80/100+ +oo.. Feb 2005 899i
 
Leica D-LUX 6....4/5..4/5 Sep 2012 699i
 
Leica X2....3/5..4/5 May 2012 1,995i
 
Leica D-LUX 5....4.5/5..4/5 Sep 2010 699i
 
Leica V-LUX 2.......... Sep 2010 849i
 
Panasonic LX5+73/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Jul 2010 499i
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.

The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, 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.

Canon T6i:
Check Ebay offers
Leica X1:
Check Ebay offers

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just use the search menu below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.

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    Specifications: Canon T6i vs Leica X1

    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 Specifications
    Camera Model Canon T6i Leica X1
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens Canon EF mount lenses 36mm f/2.8
    Launch Date February 2015 September 2009
    Launch Price USD 749 USD 1,995
    Sensor Specs Canon T6i Leica X1
    Sensor Technology CMOS CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 22.3 x 14.9 mm 23.7 x 15.6 mm
    Sensor Area 332.27 mm2 369.72 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 26.8 mm 28.4 mm
    Crop Factor 1.6x 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 24 Megapixels 12.2 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 6000 x 4000 pixels 4272 x 2856 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 3.72 μm 5.51 μm
    Pixel Density 7.22 MP/cm2 3.30 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video no Video
    ISO Setting 100 - 12,800 ISO 100 - 3,200 ISO
    ISO Boost 100 - 25,600 ISO no Enhancement
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 71 ..
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 22.7 ..
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 12.0 ..
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 919 ..
    Screen Specs Canon T6i Leica X1
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder no viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.51x
    LCD Framing Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0inch 2.7inch
    LCD Resolution 1040k dots 230k dots
    LCD Attachment Swivel screen Fixed screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen no Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Canon T6i Leica X1
    Focus System Phase-detect AF Contrast-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 5 shutter flaps/s 3 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards SDHC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Single card slot
    UHS card support UHS-I no
    Connectivity Specs Canon T6i Leica X1
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI mini HDMI
    Microphone Port External MIC port no MIC socket
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in no Wifi
    Near-Field Communication NFC built-in no NFC
    Body Specs Canon T6i Leica X1
    Battery Type LP-E17 BP-DC8
    Battery Life (CIPA)440 shots per charge260 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 132 x 101 x 78 mm
    (5.2 x 4.0 x 3.1 in)
    124 x 60 x 32 mm
    (4.9 x 2.4 x 1.3 in)
    Camera Weight 555 g (19.6 oz) 306 g (10.8 oz)

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