Leica D-LUX Typ 109 versus Panasonic LX15
The Leica D-LUX (Typ 109) and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX15 (labelled Panasonic LX10 in some countries) are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in September 2014 and September 2016. Both the D-LUX Typ 109 and the LX15 are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on a Four Thirds (D-LUX Typ 109) and an one-inch (LX15) sensor. The Leica has a resolution of 12.7 megapixel, whereas the Panasonic provides 20 MP. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their size, their sensors, their features, and their reception by expert reviewers.
Body comparison: Leica D-LUX Typ 109 vs Panasonic LX15
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Leica D-LUX Typ 109 and the Panasonic LX15 is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three consecutive views from the front, the top, and the rear side are shown. All width, height and depth measures 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 – the D-LUX Typ 109 – represents 100 percent across all the size and weight measures).
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Panasonic LX15 is notably smaller (18 percent) than the Leica D-LUX Typ 109. Moreover, the LX15 is markedly lighter (23 percent) than the D-LUX Typ 109. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the D-LUX Typ 109 nor the LX15 are weather-sealed.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, just select a new right or left comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.
|Camera Body Specifications
|Leica D-LUX Typ 109 (⇒ rgt)||118 mm||66 mm||55 mm||405 g||300||no||2014||1,195||latest||check|
|Panasonic LX15 (⇒ lft)||106 mm||60 mm||42 mm||310 g||260||no||2016||699||latest||check|
|Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt)||109 mm||76 mm||40 mm||356 g||360||no||2013||549||latest||check|
|Fujifilm X100T (⇒ lft | rgt)||127 mm||74 mm||52 mm||440 g||330||no||2014||1,299||discont.||check|
|Fujifilm X30 (⇒ lft | rgt)||119 mm||72 mm||60 mm||423 g||470||no||2014||599||latest||check|
|Fujifilm X100S (⇒ lft | rgt)||127 mm||74 mm||54 mm||445 g||330||no||2013||1,299||discont.||check|
|Fujifilm X20 (⇒ lft | rgt)||117 mm||70 mm||57 mm||353 g||270||no||2013||599||discont.||check|
|Fujifilm X100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||126 mm||75 mm||54 mm||445 g||300||no||2010||1,199||discont.||check|
|Leica V-LUX Typ 114 (⇒ lft | rgt)||137 mm||99 mm||131 mm||830 g||360||no||2014||1,349||latest||check|
|Leica X Typ 113 (⇒ lft | rgt)||133 mm||73 mm||78 mm||486 g||350||no||2014||2,295||latest||check|
|Leica D-LUX 6 (⇒ lft | rgt)||111 mm||68 mm||46 mm||298 g||330||no||2012||699||discont.||check|
|Panasonic TZ200 (⇒ lft | rgt)||111 mm||65 mm||45 mm||340 g||370||no||2018||799||latest||check|
|Panasonic TZ90 (⇒ lft | rgt)||112 mm||67 mm||41 mm||322 g||380||no||2017||449||latest||check|
|Panasonic TZ100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||111 mm||65 mm||44 mm||312 g||300||no||2016||699||discont.||check|
|Panasonic LX100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||115 mm||66 mm||55 mm||393 g||300||no||2014||899||latest||check|
|Panasonic LX7 (⇒ lft | rgt)||111 mm||68 mm||46 mm||298 g||330||no||2012||499||discont.||check|
|Sony RX100 IV (⇒ lft | rgt)||102 mm||58 mm||41 mm||298 g||280||no||2015||999||discont.||check|
The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The LX15 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 42 percent) than the D-LUX Typ 109, 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.
Sensor comparison: Leica D-LUX Typ 109 vs Panasonic LX15
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have 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 associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Leica D-LUX Typ 109 features a Four Thirds sensor and the Panasonic LX15 an one-inch sensor. The sensor area in the LX15 is 48 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 2.0 and 2.7. The sensor in the D-LUX Typ 109 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the LX15 offers a 3:2 aspect.
Despite having a smaller sensor, the LX15 offers a higher resolution of 20 megapixel, compared with 12.7 MP of the D-LUX Typ 109. This megapixel advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 2.41μm versus 4.21μm for the D-LUX Typ 109). However, it should be noted that the LX15 is much more recent (by 2 years) than the D-LUX Typ 109, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that make it possible to gather light more efficiently.
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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 table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
|Leica D-LUX Typ 109 (⇒ rgt)||Four Thirds||12.7||4112||3088||4K/30p||-||-||-||-|
|Panasonic LX15 (⇒ lft)||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1/1.7||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||21.0||11.7||230||54|
|Fujifilm X100T (⇒ lft | rgt)||APS-C||16.0||4896||3264||1080/60p||-||-||-||-|
|Fujifilm X30 (⇒ lft | rgt)||2/3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||-||-||-||-|
|Fujifilm X100S (⇒ lft | rgt)||APS-C||16.0||4896||3264||1080/60p||-||-||-||-|
|Fujifilm X20 (⇒ lft | rgt)||2/3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||-||-||-||-|
|Fujifilm X100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||APS-C||12.2||4288||2848||720/30p||22.9||12.4||1001||73|
|Leica V-LUX Typ 114 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||-||-||-||-|
|Leica X Typ 113 (⇒ lft | rgt)||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||1080/30p||-||-||-||-|
|Leica D-LUX 6 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1/1.7||10.0||3648||2736||1080/60p||-||-||-||-|
|Panasonic TZ200 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|Panasonic TZ90 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1/2.3||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||19.1||10.6||106||36|
|Panasonic TZ100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.5||559||70|
|Panasonic LX100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||Four Thirds||12.7||4112||3088||4K/30p||22.3||12.5||553||67|
|Panasonic LX7 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1/1.7||10.0||3648||2736||1080/60p||20.7||11.7||147||50|
|Sony RX100 IV (⇒ lft | rgt)||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.6||591||70|
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (4K/30p).
Feature comparison: Leica D-LUX Typ 109 vs Panasonic LX15
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the D-LUX Typ 109 has an electronic viewfinder (2764k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the LX15 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Leica D-LUX Typ 109, the Panasonic LX15, and comparable cameras. The full specs-sheets can be found in the camera manual or, for example, in the dpreview camera hub.
|Leica D-LUX Typ 109 (⇒ rgt)||2764||no||3.0||921||fixed||no||4000||11.0||no||YES|
|Panasonic LX15 (⇒ lft)||no||no||3.0||1040||tilting||YES||4000||10.0||12.1||YES|
|Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt)||optical||no||3.0||922||fixed||no||4000||2.2||7||YES|
|Fujifilm X100T (⇒ lft | rgt)||2360||no||3.0||1040||fixed||no||4000||6.0||9||no|
|Fujifilm X30 (⇒ lft | rgt)||2360||no||3.0||920||tilting||no||4000||12.0||7||YES|
|Fujifilm X100S (⇒ lft | rgt)||2360||no||2.8||460||fixed||no||4000||6.0||9||no|
|Fujifilm X20 (⇒ lft | rgt)||optical||no||2.8||460||fixed||no||4000||12.0||7||YES|
|Fujifilm X100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1440||no||2.8||460||fixed||no||4000||5.0||9||no|
|Leica V-LUX Typ 114 (⇒ lft | rgt)||2359||no||3.0||921||swivel||no||4000||12.0||13.5||YES|
|Leica X Typ 113 (⇒ lft | rgt)||no||no||3.0||920||fixed||no||2000||5.0||YES||no|
|Leica D-LUX 6 (⇒ lft | rgt)||no||no||3.0||920||fixed||no||4000||11.0||8.5||YES|
|Panasonic TZ200 (⇒ lft | rgt)||2330||no||3.0||1240||fixed||YES||2000||10.0||6.8||YES|
|Panasonic TZ90 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1166||no||3.0||1040||tilting||YES||2000||10.0||5.6||YES|
|Panasonic TZ100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1166||no||3.0||1040||fixed||YES||2000||10.0||YES||YES|
|Panasonic LX100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||2764||no||3.0||921||fixed||no||4000||11.0||no||YES|
|Panasonic LX7 (⇒ lft | rgt)||no||no||3.0||920||fixed||no||4000||11.0||8.5||YES|
|Sony RX100 IV (⇒ lft | rgt)||2359||no||3.0||1228||tilting||no||2000||16.0||10.2||YES|
Both the D-LUX Typ 109 and the LX15 have zoom lenses build in. The D-LUX Typ 109 has a 24-75mm f/1.7-2.8 optic and the LX15 offers a 24-72mm f/1.4-2.8 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Leica and Panasonic provide the same view at the wide-angle end, but the Panasonic has less tele-photo reach at the long end. The LX15 offers the faster maximum aperture.
Both the D-LUX Typ 109 and the LX15 are current models that good online retailers will have in stock. You can check the latest prices, for example, at amazon. The D-LUX Typ 109 replaced the earlier Leica D-LUX 6, while the LX15 followed on from the Panasonic LX7.
Review summary: Leica D-LUX Typ 109 vs Panasonic LX15
So what is the bottom line? Is the Leica D-LUX Typ 109 better than the Panasonic LX15 or vice versa? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Reasons to prefer the Leica D-LUX (Typ 109):
- Better low-light imaging: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for better high-ISO images.
- Easier framing: Has an electronic viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
- More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
- Longer lasting: Can take more shots (300 versus 260) on a single battery charge.
- More prestigious: Has the Leica luxury appeal, which ensures a high resale price.
- More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in September 2014).
Arguments in favor of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX15:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (20 vs 12.7MP), which boosts linear resolution by 28%.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1040k vs 921k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
- Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/1.4 vs f/1.7).
- More compact: Is smaller (106x60mm vs 118x66mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 95g or 23 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
- Easier fill-in: Has a small integrated flash to brighten shadows of backlit subjects.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (42 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Reflects 2 years of technical progress since the D-LUX Typ 109 launch.
If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the LX15 is the clear winner of the contest (10 : 6 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.
In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it says nothing about, for example, the handling, responsiveness, and overall imaging quality of the D-LUX Typ 109 and the LX15 in practical situations. 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 why expert reviews are important. The table below summarizes the assessments of some of the best known camera review sites. The detailed reviews can be accessed, respectively, on the websites of cameralabs.com, dpreview.com, ephotozine.com, imaging-resource.com, and photographyblog.com.
|Leica D-LUX Typ 109 (⇒ rgt)||-||-||4.5/5||-||4.5/5||2014||1,195||latest||check|
|Panasonic LX15 (⇒ lft)||HiRec||81/100 Silver||4/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||2016||699||latest||check|
|Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt)||Rec||-||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||2013||549||latest||check|
|Fujifilm X100T (⇒ lft | rgt)||Rec||81/100 Silver||4.5/5||4.5/5||5/5||2014||1,299||discont.||check|
|Fujifilm X30 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||76/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||2014||599||latest||check|
|Fujifilm X100S (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||81/100 Gold||4.5/5||4/5||5/5||2013||1,299||discont.||check|
|Fujifilm X20 (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||77/100 Silver||4.5/5||-||5/5||2013||599||discont.||check|
|Fujifilm X100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||75/100 Silver||4/5||4/5||5/5||2010||1,199||discont.||check|
|Leica V-LUX Typ 114 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||-||-||-||5/5||2014||1,349||latest||check|
|Leica X Typ 113 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||-||3.5/5||-||4/5||2014||2,295||latest||check|
|Leica D-LUX 6 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||-||4/5||-||4/5||2012||699||discont.||check|
|Panasonic TZ200 (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||81/100 Silver||4.5/5||..||4.5/5||2018||799||latest||check|
|Panasonic TZ90 (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||-||4/5||-||4/5||2017||449||latest||check|
|Panasonic TZ100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||82/100 Gold||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||2016||699||discont.||check|
|Panasonic LX100 (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||85/100 Gold||5/5||4/5||5/5||2014||899||latest||check|
|Panasonic LX7 (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||75/100 Silver||4/5||5/5||4.5/5||2012||499||discont.||check|
|Sony RX100 IV (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||85/100 Gold||4/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||2015||999||discont.||check|
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings are only valid when refering 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.
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