Leica C-LUX vs Panasonic GX9
The Leica C-LUX and the Panasonic Lumix DC-GX9 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in June 2018 and February 2018. The C-LUX is a fixed lens compact, while the GX9 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. The cameras are based on an one-inch (C-LUX) and a Four Thirds (GX9) sensor. The Leica has a resolution of 20 megapixels, whereas the Panasonic provides 20.2 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
|Leica C-LUX||Panasonic GX9|
|Fixed lens compact camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|24-360mm f/3.3-6.4||Micro Four Thirds lenses|
|20 MP, 1" Sensor||20.2 MP, Four Thirds Sensor|
|4K/30p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO 125-12800 (80-25600)||ISO 200-25600|
|Electronic viewfinder (2330k dots)||Electronic viewfinder (2760k dots)|
|3.0" LCD, 1240k dots||3.0" LCD, 1240k dots|
|Fixed touchscreen||Tilting touchscreen|
|10 shutter flaps per second||9 shutter flaps per second|
|Lens-based stabilization||In-body stabilization|
|370 shots per battery charge||260 shots per battery charge|
|113 x 67 x 46 mm, 340 g||124 x 72 x 47 mm, 407 g|
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Leica C-LUX and the Panasonic Lumix DC-GX9? 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 Leica C-LUX and the Panasonic GX9 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 size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The C-LUX can be obtained in two different colors (gold, blue), while the GX9 is also available in two color-versions, but different ones (black, silver).
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Panasonic GX9 is notably larger (18 percent) than the Leica C-LUX. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the C-LUX nor the GX9 are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the C-LUX has a lens built in, whereas the GX9 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 GX9 and their specifications in the Micro Four Thirds Lens Catalog.
The battery packs of both cameras can be charged via USB, which can be very convenient when travelling.
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.
|Leica C-LUX»||113 mm||67 mm||46 mm||340 g||370||n||Jun 2018||1,049||Leica C-LUX|
|Panasonic GX9«||124 mm||72 mm||47 mm||407 g||260||n||Feb 2018||849||Panasonic GX9|
|Canon G5 X Mark II« »||111 mm||61 mm||46 mm||340 g||230||n||Jul 2019||899||Canon G5 X Mark II|
|Fujifilm X-E3« »||121 mm||74 mm||43 mm||337 g||350||n||Sep 2017||899||Fujifilm X-E3|
|Fujifilm X-T20« »||118 mm||83 mm||41 mm||383 g||350||n||Jan 2017||899||Fujifilm X-T20|
|Leica V-LUX 5« »||136 mm||97 mm||131 mm||812 g||350||n||Jul 2019||1,249||Leica V-LUX 5|
|Leica D-LUX 7« »||115 mm||66 mm||65 mm||392 g||300||n||Nov 2018||1,195||Leica D-LUX 7|
|Leica CL« »||131 mm||78 mm||45 mm||403 g||220||n||Nov 2017||2,795||Leica CL|
|Leica TL2« »||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||399 g||250||n||Jul 2017||1,950||Leica TL2|
|Panasonic LX100 II« »||115 mm||66 mm||65 mm||392 g||300||n||Aug 2018||999||Panasonic LX100 II|
|Panasonic TZ200« »||111 mm||65 mm||45 mm||340 g||370||n||Feb 2018||799||Panasonic TZ200|
|Panasonic GX80« »||122 mm||71 mm||44 mm||426 g||290||n||Apr 2016||799||Panasonic GX80|
|Panasonic GX8« »||133 mm||78 mm||63 mm||487 g||330||Y||Jul 2015||1,199||Panasonic GX8|
|Panasonic GX7« »||123 mm||71 mm||55 mm||402 g||350||n||Aug 2013||999||Panasonic GX7|
|Sony RX100 VII« »||102 mm||58 mm||43 mm||302 g||260||n||Jul 2019||1,199||Sony RX100 VII|
|Sony RX100 VI« »||102 mm||58 mm||43 mm||301 g||240||n||Jun 2018||1,199||Sony RX100 VI|
|Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. 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. 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. 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 are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Leica C-LUX features an one-inch sensor and the Panasonic GX9 a Four Thirds sensor. The sensor area in the GX9 is 94 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 2.7 and 2.0. The sensor in the C-LUX has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the GX9 offers a 4:3 aspect.
With 20.2MP, the GX9 offers a higher resolution than the C-LUX (20MP), but the GX9 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 3.34μm versus 2.41μm for the C-LUX) due to its larger sensor. However, the C-LUX is a somewhat more recent model (by 4 months) than the GX9, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the GX9 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The Leica C-LUX has a native sensitivity range from ISO 125 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 80-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Panasonic Lumix DC-GX9 are ISO 200 to ISO 25600, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-25600.
For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.
|Leica C-LUX||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Leica C-LUX|
|Panasonic GX9||Four Thirds||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Panasonic GX9|
|Canon G5 X Mark II||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Canon G5 X Mark II|
|Fujifilm X-E3||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Fujifilm X-E3|
|Fujifilm X-T20||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Fujifilm X-T20|
|Leica V-LUX 5||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Leica V-LUX 5|
|Leica D-LUX 7||Four Thirds||16.8||4736||3552||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Leica D-LUX 7|
|Leica CL||APS-C||24.1||6014||4014||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Leica CL|
|Leica TL2||APS-C||24.1||6014||4014||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Leica TL2|
|Panasonic LX100 II||Four Thirds||16.8||4736||3552||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Panasonic LX100 II|
|Panasonic TZ200||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Panasonic TZ200|
|Panasonic GX80||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||4K/30p||22.9||12.6||662||71||Panasonic GX80|
|Panasonic GX8||Four Thirds||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||23.5||12.6||806||75||Panasonic GX8|
|Panasonic GX7||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60p||22.6||12.2||718||70||Panasonic GX7|
|Sony RX100 VII||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||21.8||12.4||418||63||Sony RX100 VII|
|Sony RX100 VI||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..||Sony RX100 VI|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (4K/30p).
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The two cameras under review are similar with respect to both having an electronic viewfinder. However, the one in the GX9 offers a higher resolution than the one in the C-LUX (2760k vs 2330k dots). The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Leica C-LUX and Panasonic GX9 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|Leica C-LUX||2330||n||3.0||1240||fixed||Y||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y||Leica C-LUX|
|Panasonic GX9||2760||n||3.0||1240||tilting||Y||1/4000s||9.0||Y||Y||Panasonic GX9|
|Canon G5 X Mark II||2360||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||30||Y||Y||Canon G5 X Mark II|
|Fujifilm X-E3||2360||n||3.0||1040||fixed||Y||1/4000s||8.0||n||n||Fujifilm X-E3|
|Fujifilm X-T20||2360||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0||Y||n||Fujifilm X-T20|
|Leica V-LUX 5||2360||n||3.0||1240||swivel||Y||1/4000s||12.0||Y||Y||Leica V-LUX 5|
|Leica D-LUX 7||2764||n||3.0||1240||fixed||Y||1/4000s||11.0||n||Y||Leica D-LUX 7|
|Leica CL||2360||Y||3.0||1040||fixed||Y||1/8000s||10.0||n||n||Leica CL|
|Leica TL2||optional||n||3.7||1230||fixed||Y||1/4000s||7.0||n||n||Leica TL2|
|Panasonic LX100 II||2764||n||3.0||1240||fixed||Y||1/4000s||11.0||n||Y||Panasonic LX100 II|
|Panasonic TZ200||2330||n||3.0||1240||fixed||Y||1/2000s||10.0||Y||Y||Panasonic TZ200|
|Panasonic GX80||2765||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0||Y||Y||Panasonic GX80|
|Panasonic GX8||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||1/8000s||10.0||n||Y||Panasonic GX8|
|Panasonic GX7||2760||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/8000s||5.0||Y||Y||Panasonic GX7|
|Sony RX100 VII||2359||n||3.0||921||tilting||Y||1/2000s||90.0||Y||Y||Sony RX100 VII|
|Sony RX100 VI||2359||n||3.0||1229||tilting||Y||1/2000s||24.0||Y||Y||Sony RX100 VI|
The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, both cameras under consideration feature an electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
The Leica C-LUX and the Panasonic GX9 both have an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the C-LUX and the GX9 write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.
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 Leica C-LUX and Panasonic Lumix DC-GX9 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Leica C-LUX||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Leica C-LUX|
|Panasonic GX9||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y||Panasonic GX9|
|Canon G5 X Mark II||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||3.1||Y||-||Y||Canon G5 X Mark II|
|Fujifilm X-E3||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y||Fujifilm X-E3|
|Fujifilm X-T20||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Fujifilm X-T20|
|Leica V-LUX 5||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y||Leica V-LUX 5|
|Leica D-LUX 7||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y||Leica D-LUX 7|
|Leica CL||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||none||none||Y||-||-||Leica CL|
|Leica TL2||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||3.0||Y||-||-||Leica TL2|
|Panasonic LX100 II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y||Panasonic LX100 II|
|Panasonic TZ200||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y||Panasonic TZ200|
|Panasonic GX80||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic GX80|
|Panasonic GX8||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Panasonic GX8|
|Panasonic GX7||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Panasonic GX7|
|Sony RX100 VII||-||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y||Sony RX100 VII|
|Sony RX100 VI||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y||Sony RX100 VI|
It is notable that the GX9 has a hotshoe, which makes it possible to easily attach optional accessories, such as an external flash gun. The C-LUX does not feature such an accessory-socket.
Both the C-LUX and the GX9 are recent models that are part of the current product line-up. The GX9 replaced the earlier Panasonic GX8, while the C-LUX does not have a direct predecessor. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Leica and Panasonic websites.
So how do things add up? Which of the two cameras – the Leica C-LUX or the Panasonic GX9 – 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.
Advantages of the Leica C-LUX:
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Ready to shoot: Has a lens built-in, whereas the GX9 requires a separate lens.
- More compact: Is smaller (113x67mm vs 124x72mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Less heavy: Is lighter even though it comes with a built-in lens (unlike the GX9).
- Longer lasting: Can take more shots (370 versus 260) on a single battery charge.
- More prestigious: Has the Leica luxury appeal, which ensures a high resale price.
- More modern: Is somewhat more recent (announced 4 months after the GX9).
Arguments in favor of the Panasonic Lumix DC-GX9:
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Better image quality: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for higher quality imaging.
- Richer colors: The pixel size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger pixels capture a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger pixels means good image quality even under poor lighting.
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (2760k vs 2330k dots).
- Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.70x vs 0.53x).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- More flexible: Takes interchangeable lenses and can thus be used with specialty optics.
- Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
- Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in February 2018).
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the GX9 is the clear winner of the contest (13 : 7 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 sports photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a street photog, and a person interested in family portraits has distinct needs from a landscape 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 Leica C-LUX and the Panasonic GX9 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Superzoom Camera and Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the C-LUX or the GX9 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.
This is where reviews by experts come in. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear 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.
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. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.
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. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.
- Canon 30D vs Panasonic GX9
- Canon SL2 vs Panasonic GX9
- Canon SX520 vs Leica C-LUX
- Fujifilm X100T vs Leica C-LUX
- Leica C-LUX vs Olympus E-M1X
- Leica C-LUX vs Olympus E-PL1
- Leica C-LUX vs Panasonic LX15
- Leica C-LUX vs Sony ZV-1
- Leica C-LUX vs YI M1
- Olympus E-M5 II vs Panasonic GX9
- Olympus E-M5 vs Panasonic GX9
- Panasonic GX9 vs Sony RX100 VI
Specifications: Leica C-LUX vs Panasonic GX9
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||Leica C-LUX||Panasonic GX9|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||24-360mm f/3.3-6.4||Micro Four Thirds lenses|
|Launch Date||June 2018||February 2018|
|Launch Price||USD 1049||USD 849|
|Sensor Specs||Leica C-LUX||Panasonic GX9|
|Sensor Format||1" Sensor||Four Thirds Sensor|
|Sensor Size||13.2 x 8.8 mm||17.3 x 13.0 mm|
|Sensor Area||116.16 mm2||224.9 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||15.9 mm||21.6 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||20 Megapixels||20.2 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||5472 x 3648 pixels||5184 x 3888 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||2.41 μm||3.34 μm|
|Pixel Density||17.18 MP/cm2||8.96 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||4K/30p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||125-12800 ISO||200-25600 ISO|
|ISO Boost||80-25600 ISO||100-25600 ISO|
|Screen Specs||Leica C-LUX||Panasonic GX9|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||2330k dots||2760k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0 inch||3.0 inch|
|LCD Resolution||1240k dots||1240k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Leica C-LUX||Panasonic GX9|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||Focus Peaking|
|Max Shutter Speed (mechanical)||1/2000/s||1/4000/s|
|Continuous Shooting||10 shutter flaps/s||9 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||up to 1/16000s||up to 1/16000s|
|Time-Lapse Photography||Intervalometer built-in||Intervalometer built-in|
|Image Stabilization||Lens-based stabilization||In-body stabilization|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-I||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Leica C-LUX||Panasonic GX9|
|External Flash||no Hotshoe||Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Bluetooth Support||no Bluetooth||Bluetooth built-in|
|Body Specs||Leica C-LUX||Panasonic GX9|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||370 shots per charge||260 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||USB charging|
113 x 67 x 46 mm
(4.4 x 2.6 x 1.8 in)
124 x 72 x 47 mm
(4.9 x 2.8 x 1.9 in)
|Camera Weight||340 g (12.0 oz)||407 g (14.4 oz)|
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