Leica V-LUX 1 Comparison Review
The Leica V-LUX 1 is a fixed lens compact camera that was officially introduced in September 2006 and is equipped with a 1/1.8-inch sensor. It offers a resolution of 10 megapixel.
Is the Leica V-LUX 1 a good camera? The V-LUX 1 has a Camera Elo of 951. This rating puts the V-LUX 1 below average of all superzoom compact cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (small sensor cameras), the V-LUX 1 also ranks below average. – Well, the Leica V-LUX 1 is more than 14 years old, and there have been many other good digital cameras released since 2006.
|Leica V-LUX 1|
|Fixed lens compact camera|
|10 MP, 1/1.8" Sensor|
|ISO 100 - 1 600 (100 - 3 200)|
|Electronic viewfinder (235k dots)|
|2.0 LCD, 207k dots|
|Swivel screen (not touch-sensitive)|
|2 shutter flaps per second|
|360 shots per battery charge|
|141 x 86 x 142 mm, 734 g|
Read on to find out more about the camera's size, sensor, features, reception by expert reviewers, and how it compares to other digital cameras.
Body comparison with a credit card
An illustration of the physical dimensions of the Leica V-LUX 1 vis-à-vis a credit card is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Leica V-LUX 1 alongside a set of comparators. If you want to review a camera pair side-by-side, just select a right-side 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 comparisons there.
|Leica V-LUX 1||5.6 in||3.4 in||5.6 in||25.9 oz||360||n||Sep 2006||849|
|Leica Q Typ 116||5.1 in||3.1 in||3.7 in||22.6 oz||300||n||Jun 2015||4,249|
|Leica X Vario||5.2 in||2.9 in||3.7 in||24.0 oz||450||n||Jun 2013||2,850|
|Leica D-LUX 6||4.4 in||2.7 in||1.8 in||10.5 oz||330||n||Sep 2012||699|
|Leica V-LUX 4||4.9 in||3.4 in||4.3 in||20.7 oz||540||n||Sep 2012||949|
|Leica V-LUX 3||4.9 in||3.2 in||3.7 in||19.0 oz||410||n||Dec 2011||949|
|Leica D-LUX 5||4.3 in||2.6 in||1.7 in||9.6 oz||400||n||Sep 2010||699|
|Leica V-LUX 2||4.9 in||3.1 in||3.7 in||18.3 oz||410||n||Sep 2010||849|
|Leica X1||4.9 in||2.4 in||1.3 in||10.8 oz||260||n||Sep 2009||1,995|
|Nikon D80||5.2 in||4.1 in||3.0 in||23.6 oz||600||n||Aug 2006||999|
|Panasonic FZ1000||5.4 in||3.9 in||5.2 in||29.3 oz||360||n||Jun 2014||899|
|Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
The listed prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The Leica V-LUX 1 was launched in the US market at a price of $849. 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 with a 35mm slide
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant 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. 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 tent to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
The Leica V-LUX 1 features a 1/1.8-inch sensor and has a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 4.8. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the Leica V-LUX 1 among the smaller-sensor digicams that favor affordability and compact design.
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
| DXO |
|Leica V-LUX 1||1/1.8||10.0||3648||2736||480/30p||..||..||..||..|
|Leica Q Typ 116||Full Frame||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||24.3||12.7||2221||85|
|Leica X Vario||APS-C||16.1||4928||3272||1080/30p||23.4||12.7||1320||78|
|Leica D-LUX 6||1/1.7||10.0||3648||2736||1080/60p||..||..||..||..|
|Leica V-LUX 4||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||..||..||..||..|
|Leica V-LUX 3||1/2.3||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||..||..||..||..|
|Leica D-LUX 5||1/1.7||10.0||3648||2736||720/60p||..||..||..||..|
|Leica V-LUX 2||1/2.3||14.0||4320||3240||1080/60i||..||..||..||..|
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The V-LUX 1 indeed provides movie recording capabilities. The highest resolution format that the V-LUX 1 can use is 480/30p.
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The tables below summarize some of the other core capabilities of the Leica V-LUX 1 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.
|Leica V-LUX 1||235||n||2.0||207||swivel||n||1/2000s||2.0||Y||Y|
|Leica Q Typ 116||3680||n||3.0||1040||fixed||Y||1/2000s||10.0||n||Y|
|Leica X Vario||optional||n||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/2000s||5.0||Y||n|
|Leica D-LUX 6||optional||n||3.0||920||fixed||n||1/4000s||11.0||Y||Y|
|Leica V-LUX 4||1312||n||3.0||460||swivel||n||1/4000s||12.0||Y||Y|
|Leica V-LUX 3||202||n||3.0||460||swivel||n||1/2000s||12.0||Y||Y|
|Leica D-LUX 5||optional||n||3.0||460||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.5||Y||Y|
|Leica V-LUX 2||202||n||3.0||460||swivel||n||1/2000s||11.0||Y||Y|
One convenient feature of the V-LUX 1 is the presence of an on-board flash. While this built-in flash is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light to brighten deep shadow areas.
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 V-LUX 1 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
| NFC |
|Leica V-LUX 1||Y||mono||mono||-||-||-||2.0||-||-||-|
|Leica Q Typ 116||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|Leica X Vario||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|Leica D-LUX 6||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|Leica V-LUX 4||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|Leica V-LUX 3||Y||stereo||-||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|Leica D-LUX 5||Y||mono||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|Leica V-LUX 2||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
The V-LUX 1 has a zoom lens built in (7.4-88.8mm f/2.8-3.7), which, in full frame equivalent terms, provides a focal length range from 35 to 420mm. The camera is, hence, ready to shoot, while remaining more compact in size than an interchangeable lens camera with an optic that offers similar focal length and aperture specifications.
While the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the handling experience and imaging performance when actually working with the V-LUX 1. 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 following table reports the overall rankings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog).
|Leica V-LUX 1||..||..||..||..||..||Sep 2006||849|
|Leica Q Typ 116||..||80/100||4.5/5||..||4.5/5||Jun 2015||4,249|
|Leica X Vario||..||..||4/5||4/5||4/5||Jun 2013||2,850|
|Leica D-LUX 6||..||..||4/5||..||4/5||Sep 2012||699|
|Leica V-LUX 4||..||..||..||..||..||Sep 2012||949|
|Leica V-LUX 3||..||..||..||..||..||Dec 2011||949|
|Leica D-LUX 5||..||..||4.5/5||..||4/5||Sep 2010||699|
|Leica V-LUX 2||..||..||..||..||..||Sep 2010||849|
|Leica X1||..||+||..||..||4/5||Sep 2009||1,995|
|Nikon D80||+||+ +||o||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2006||999|
|Panasonic FZ1000||+ +||82/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2014||899|
|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. 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.
Leica V-LUX 1 FAQ
Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the V-LUX 1.
What technology is the imaging sensor in the V-LUX 1 based on?
The camera is build around a CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor.
What is the ISO sensitivity range of the V-LUX 1?
The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 1600.
Does the camera have a selfie-friendly screen?
Yes, the LCD-screen of the V-LUX 1 is flexible and can be turned to be front-facing for capturing selfies.
Does the Leica V-LUX 1 feature an autofocus assist light?
Yes, the camera has a lamp built-in that can illuminate the subject and improve autofocus in low-light settings.
Which battery does the V-LUX 1 use?
The camera gets its power from the BP-DC5, which is a rechargeable Lithium-Ion power pack.
Camera to camera comparisons
In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities with other camera models, just make your choice using the following search menu. Alternatively, you can follow any of the listed hyperlinks for comparisons that others found interesting.
|Camera Model||Leica V-LUX 1|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||35-420mm f/2.8-3.7|
|Launch Date||September 2006|
|Launch Price||USD 849|
|Sensor Format||1/1.8" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||7.14 x 5.36 mm|
|Sensor Area||38 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||8.9 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||10 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||3 648 x 2 736 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.95 μm|
|Pixel Density||26.08 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||480/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 1 600 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100 - 3 200 ISO|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||235k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View|
|LCD Size||207k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Swivel screen|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||no Peaking Feature|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/2000s|
|Continuous Shooting||2 shutter flaps/s|
|Silent Shooting||no E-Shutter|
|Time Lapse Photography||no Intervalometer|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDHC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||no|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||no HDMI|
|Wifi Support||no Wifi|
|Battery Type||BP-DC5 power pack|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||360 shots per charge|
141 x 86 x 142 mm
(5.6 x 3.4 x 5.6 in)
|Camera Weight||734 g (25.9 oz)|
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