Leica T vs V-LUX 1
The Leica T (Typ 701) and the Leica V-LUX 1 are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in April 2014 and September 2006. The T Typ 701 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera, while the V-LUX 1 is a fixed lens compact. The cameras are based on an APS-C (T Typ 701) and a 1/1.8-inch (V-LUX 1) sensor. The T Typ 701 has a resolution of 16.2 megapixels, whereas the V-LUX 1 provides 10 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 Leica T (Typ 701) and the Leica V-LUX 1? 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.
An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Leica T and the Leica V-LUX 1 is provided 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 measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The T Typ 701 can be obtained in two different colors (black, silver), while the V-LUX 1 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 V-LUX 1 is notably larger (31 percent) than the Leica T. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the T Typ 701 nor the V-LUX 1 are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the V-LUX 1 has a lens built in, whereas the T Typ 701 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 T Typ 701 can be charged via the USB port, so that it is not always necessary to take the battery charger along 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.||Leica T||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||384 g||400||n||Apr 2014||1,850|
|2.||Leica V-LUX 1||141 mm||86 mm||142 mm||734 g||360||n||Sep 2006||849|
|3.||Canon SL1||117 mm||91 mm||69 mm||407 g||380||n||Mar 2013||549|
|4.||Fujifilm X-A2||117 mm||67 mm||40 mm||350 g||410||n||Jan 2015||399|
|5.||Fujifilm X-T10||118 mm||83 mm||41 mm||381 g||350||n||May 2015||799|
|6.||Leica CL||131 mm||78 mm||45 mm||403 g||220||n||Nov 2017||2,795|
|7.||Leica TL2||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||399 g||250||n||Jul 2017||1,950|
|8.||Leica TL||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||384 g||400||n||Nov 2016||1,695|
|9.||Leica X Vario||133 mm||73 mm||95 mm||680 g||450||n||Jun 2013||2,850|
|10.||Leica D-LUX 6||111 mm||68 mm||46 mm||298 g||330||n||Sep 2012||699|
|11.||Leica V-LUX 4||125 mm||87 mm||110 mm||588 g||540||n||Sep 2012||949|
|12.||Leica X2||124 mm||69 mm||52 mm||345 g||450||n||May 2012||1,995|
|13.||Leica D-LUX 5||110 mm||65 mm||43 mm||271 g||400||n||Sep 2010||699|
|14.||Leica V-LUX 2||124 mm||80 mm||95 mm||520 g||410||n||Sep 2010||849|
|15.||Nikon D80||132 mm||103 mm||77 mm||668 g||600||n||Aug 2006||999|
|16.||Ricoh GR II||117 mm||63 mm||35 mm||251 g||320||n||Jun 2015||699|
|17.||Sony A6000||120 mm||67 mm||45 mm||344 g||360||n||Feb 2014||599|
|Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The V-LUX 1 was launched at a lower price than the T Typ 701, despite having a lens built in. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. 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. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better 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 T features an APS-C sensor and the Leica V-LUX 1 a 1/1.8-inch sensor. The sensor area in the V-LUX 1 is 90 percent smaller. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.5 and 4.8. The sensor in the T Typ 701 has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the V-LUX 1 offers a 4:3 aspect.
With 16.2MP, the T Typ 701 offers a higher resolution than the V-LUX 1 (10MP), but the T Typ 701 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.79μm versus 1.95μm for the V-LUX 1) due to its larger sensor. Moreover, the T Typ 701 is a much more recent model (by 7 years and 7 months) than the V-LUX 1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixels. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that neither of the two cameras has an anti-alias filter installed, so they are able to capture all the detail the sensor resolves.
The resolution advantage of the Leica T implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the T Typ 701 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 24.7 x 16.4 inches or 62.8 x 41.6 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 19.8 x 13.1 inches or 50.2 x 33.3 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 16.5 x 10.9 inches or 41.9 x 27.8 cm. The corresponding values for the Leica V-LUX 1 are 18.2 x 13.7 inches or 46.3 x 34.7 cm for good quality, 14.6 x 10.9 inches or 37.1 x 27.8 cm for very good quality, and 12.2 x 9.1 inches or 30.9 x 23.2 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Leica T (Typ 701) has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12500. The corresponding ISO settings for the Leica V-LUX 1 are ISO 100 to ISO 1600, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-3200.
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.
| DXO |
|2.||Leica V-LUX 1||1/1.8||10.0||3648||2736||480/30p||..||..||..||..|
|9.||Leica X Vario||APS-C||16.1||4928||3272||1080/30p||23.4||12.7||1320||78|
|10.||Leica D-LUX 6||1/1.7||10.0||3648||2736||1080/60p||..||..||..||..|
|11.||Leica V-LUX 4||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||..||..||..||..|
|13.||Leica D-LUX 5||1/1.7||10.0||3648||2736||720/60p||..||..||..||..|
|14.||Leica V-LUX 2||1/2.3||14.0||4320||3240||1080/60i||..||..||..||..|
|16.||Ricoh GR II||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||1080/30p||23.6||13.7||1078||80|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, but the T Typ 701 provides a higher video resolution than the V-LUX 1. It can shoot video footage at 1080/30p, while the V-LUX 1 is limited to 480/30p.
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the V-LUX 1 has an electronic viewfinder (235k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the T Typ 701 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. That said, the T Typ 701 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 Leica T, the Leica V-LUX 1, and comparable cameras.
|2.||Leica V-LUX 1||235||n||2.0||207||swivel||n||1/2000s||2.0||Y||Y|
|9.||Leica X Vario||optional||n||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/2000s||5.0||Y||n|
|10.||Leica D-LUX 6||optional||n||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/4000s||11.0||Y||Y|
|11.||Leica V-LUX 4||1312||n||3.0||460||swivel||n||1/4000s||12.0||Y||Y|
|13.||Leica D-LUX 5||optional||n||3.0||460||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.5||Y||Y|
|14.||Leica V-LUX 2||202||n||3.0||460||swivel||n||1/2000s||11.0||Y||Y|
|16.||Ricoh GR II||optional||n||3.0||1230||fixed||n||1/4000s||4.0||Y||n|
One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The T Typ 701 has a touchscreen, while the V-LUX 1 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.The V-LUX 1 has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in taking selfies. In contrast, the T Typ 701 does not have a selfie-screen.
The T Typ 701 writes its imaging data to SDXC cards, while the V-LUX 1 uses SDHC 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 Leica T (Typ 701) and Leica V-LUX 1 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
| NFC |
|2.||Leica V-LUX 1||Y||mono||mono||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
|9.||Leica X Vario||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|10.||Leica D-LUX 6||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|11.||Leica V-LUX 4||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|13.||Leica D-LUX 5||Y||mono||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|14.||Leica V-LUX 2||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|16.||Ricoh GR II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
It is notable that the T Typ 701 offers wifi support, while the V-LUX 1 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
Both the T Typ 701 and the V-LUX 1 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The V-LUX 1 was replaced by the Leica V-LUX 2, while the T Typ 701 was followed by the Leica TL. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Leica website.
So how do things add up? Which of the two cameras – the Leica T or the Leica V-LUX 1 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Arguments in favor of the Leica T (Typ 701):
- More detail: Offers more megapixels (16.2 vs 10MP) with a 30% higher linear resolution.
- Better image quality: Features a larger and more technologically advanced imaging 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 definition movie capture (1080/30p vs 480/30p).
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.7" vs 2.0") for image review and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1300k vs 207k dots).
- Fewer buttons to press: Is equipped with a touch-sensitive rear screen to facilitate handling.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (5 vs 2 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More flexible: Accepts interchangeable lenses, so that lens characteristics can be altered.
- More compact: Is smaller (134x69mm vs 141x86mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Longer lasting: Can take more shots (400 versus 360) on 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 modern: Reflects 7 years and 7 months of technical progress since the V-LUX 1 launch.
Reasons to prefer the Leica V-LUX 1:
- Easier framing: Has an electronic 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 an integrated lens, whereas the T Typ 701 necessitates an extra lens.
- Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in September 2006).
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the T Typ 701 is the clear winner of the match-up (17 : 7 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. 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.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Leica T and the Leica V-LUX 1 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera and Best Superzoom 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 T Typ 701 or the V-LUX 1. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate.
This is where reviews by experts come in. The adjacent summary-table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], 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.||Leica T||3/5||..||..||4/5||4/5||Apr 2014||1,850|
|2.||Leica V-LUX 1||..||..||..||..||..||Sep 2006||849|
|3.||Canon SL1||4/5||+||78/100||4/5||4/5||Mar 2013||549|
|4.||Fujifilm X-A2||4/5||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2015||399|
|5.||Fujifilm X-T10||4.5/5||+ +||80/100||5/5||5/5||May 2015||799|
|6.||Leica CL||..||..||..||..||4/5||Nov 2017||2,795|
|7.||Leica TL2||3.5/5||..||..||4/5||4/5||Jul 2017||1,950|
|8.||Leica TL||..||..||..||..||4/5||Nov 2016||1,695|
|9.||Leica X Vario||3/5||..||..||4/5||4/5||Jun 2013||2,850|
|10.||Leica D-LUX 6||..||..||..||4/5||4/5||Sep 2012||699|
|11.||Leica V-LUX 4||..||..||..||..||..||Sep 2012||949|
|12.||Leica X2||3/5||..||..||3/5||4/5||May 2012||1,995|
|13.||Leica D-LUX 5||..||..||..||4.5/5||4/5||Sep 2010||699|
|14.||Leica V-LUX 2||..||..||..||..||..||Sep 2010||849|
|15.||Nikon D80||..||+||+ +||o||4.5/5||Aug 2006||999|
|16.||Ricoh GR II||..||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2015||699|
|17.||Sony A6000||5/5||+||80/100||4.5/5||5/5||Feb 2014||599|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price 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 your choice using the following search menu. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.
Specifications: Leica T vs Leica V-LUX 1
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 T||Leica V-LUX 1|
|Camera Type||Mirrorless system camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||Leica T mount lenses||35-420mm f/2.8-3.7|
|Launch Date||April 2014||September 2006|
|Launch Price||USD 1,850||USD 849|
|Sensor Specs||Leica T||Leica V-LUX 1|
|Sensor Format||APS-C Sensor||1/1.8" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||23.6 x 15.7 mm||7.14 x 5.36 mm|
|Sensor Area||370.52 mm2||38.2704 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||28.3 mm||8.9 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||16.2 Megapixels||10 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4944 x 3278 pixels||3648 x 2736 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||4.79 μm||1.95 μm|
|Pixel Density||4.37 MP/cm2||26.08 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/30p Video||480/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 12,500 ISO||100 - 1,600 ISO|
|ISO Boost||no Enhancement||100 - 3,200 ISO|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||75||..|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||23.0||..|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||12.7||..|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||1082||..|
|Screen Specs||Leica T||Leica V-LUX 1|
|Viewfinder Type||Viewfinder optional||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||235k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.7inch||2.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||1300k dots||207k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Swivel screen|
|Touch Input||Touchscreen||no Touchscreen|
|Shooting Specs||Leica T||Leica V-LUX 1|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||5 shutter flaps/s||2 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||no||no|
|Connectivity Specs||Leica T||Leica V-LUX 1|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||no HDMI||no HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Body Specs||Leica T||Leica V-LUX 1|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||400 shots per charge||360 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||no USB charging|
134 x 69 x 33 mm
(5.3 x 2.7 x 1.3 in)
141 x 86 x 142 mm
(5.6 x 3.4 x 5.6 in)
|Camera Weight||384 g (13.5 oz)||734 g (25.9 oz)|
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