Leica X1 versus Leica M10
The Leica X1 and the Leica M10 (Typ 3656) are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in September 2009 and January 2017. The X1 is a fixed lens compact, while the M10 is a rangefinder-style mirrorless. The cameras are based on an APS-C (X1) and a full frame (M10) sensor. The X1 has a resolution of 12.2 megapixel, whereas the M10 provides 23.8 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 X1 vs Leica M10
The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Leica X1 and the Leica M10. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter. You can also toggle the display to switch to a percentage comparison if you prefer that the measures are being expressed in relative terms (in this case, the camera on the left – the X1 – represents the basis or 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 Leica M10 is considerably larger (49 percent) than the Leica X1. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the X1 nor the M10 are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the X1 has a lens build in, whereas the M10 is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup. You can find an overview of optics for the M10 and their specifications in the Leica M Lens Catalog.
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 X1 (⇒ rgt)||124 mm||60 mm||32 mm||306 g||260||no||2009||1,995||discont.||check|
|Leica M10 (⇒ lft)||139 mm||80 mm||39 mm||660 g||210||no||2017||6,595||latest||check|
|Canon 6D Mark II (⇒ lft | rgt)||144 mm||111 mm||75 mm||765 g||1200||YES||2017||1,999||latest||check|
|Canon SL2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||122 mm||93 mm||70 mm||453 g||650||no||2017||549||latest||check|
|Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt)||109 mm||76 mm||40 mm||356 g||360||no||2013||549||latest||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 TL2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||134 mm||69 mm||33 mm||399 g||250||no||2017||1,950||latest||check|
|Leica Q Typ 116 (⇒ lft | rgt)||130 mm||80 mm||93 mm||640 g||300||no||2015||4,249||latest||check|
|Leica D-LUX 6 (⇒ lft | rgt)||111 mm||68 mm||46 mm||298 g||330||no||2012||699||discont.||check|
|Leica X2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||124 mm||69 mm||52 mm||345 g||450||no||2012||1,995||discont.||check|
|Leica M Typ 240 (⇒ lft | rgt)||139 mm||80 mm||42 mm||680 g||..||YES||2012||6,950||discont.||check|
|Leica D-LUX 5 (⇒ lft | rgt)||110 mm||65 mm||43 mm||271 g||400||no||2010||699||discont.||check|
|Leica V-LUX 2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||124 mm||80 mm||95 mm||520 g||410||no||2010||849||discont.||check|
|Nikon D7500 (⇒ lft | rgt)||136 mm||104 mm||73 mm||720 g||950||YES||2017||1,299||latest||check|
|Panasonic LX5 (⇒ lft | rgt)||110 mm||65 mm||43 mm||271 g||400||no||2010||499||discont.||check|
|Panasonic G1 (⇒ lft | rgt)||124 mm||84 mm||45 mm||360 g||410||no||2008||599||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 X1 was launched at a lower price than the M10, despite having a lens build in. 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 X1 vs Leica M10
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.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Leica X1 features an APS-C sensor and the Leica M10 a full frame sensor. The sensor area in the M10 is 131 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 1.5 and 1.0. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.
With 23.8MP, the M10 offers a higher resolution than the X1 (12.2MP), but the M10 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 6.00μm versus 5.51μm for the X1) due to its larger sensor. Moreover, the M10 is a much more recent model (by 7 years and 4 months) than the X1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the M10 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
For most 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.
|Leica X1 (⇒ rgt)||APS-C||12.2||4272||2856||no||-||-||-||-|
|Leica M10 (⇒ lft)||Full Frame||23.8||5952||3992||no||24.4||13.2||2133||86|
|Canon 6D Mark II (⇒ lft | rgt)||Full Frame||26.0||6240||4160||1080/60p||24.4||11.9||2862||85|
|Canon SL2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||23.6||13.4||1041||79|
|Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1/1.7||12.0||4000||3000||1080/60p||21.0||11.7||230||54|
|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 TL2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||APS-C||24.1||6014||4014||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|Leica Q Typ 116 (⇒ lft | rgt)||Full Frame||24.0||6000||4000||1080/60p||24.3||12.7||2221||85|
|Leica D-LUX 6 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1/1.7||10.0||3648||2736||1080/60p||-||-||-||-|
|Leica X2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||no||-||-||-||-|
|Leica M Typ 240 (⇒ lft | rgt)||Full Frame||23.7||5952||3976||1080/25p||24.0||13.3||1860||84|
|Leica D-LUX 5 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1/1.7||10.0||3648||2736||720/60p||-||-||-||-|
|Leica V-LUX 2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1/2.3||14.0||4320||3240||1080/60i||-||-||-||-|
|Nikon D7500 (⇒ lft | rgt)||APS-C||20.7||5568||3712||4K/30p||24.3||14.0||1483||86|
|Panasonic LX5 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1/1.7||10.0||3648||2736||720/60p||19.6||10.8||132||41|
|Panasonic G1 (⇒ lft | rgt)||Four Thirds||12.0||4000||3000||no||21.1||10.3||463||53|
Feature comparison: Leica X1 vs Leica M10
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the M10 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 Leica X1 and Leica M10 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras. If you need more detail on the specs, you can find comprehensive listings, for example, in the dpreview camera hub.
|Leica X1 (⇒ rgt)||no||no||2.7||230||fixed||no||2000||3.0||YES||no|
|Leica M10 (⇒ lft)||optical||no||3.0||1037||fixed||no||4000||5.0||no||no|
|Canon 6D Mark II (⇒ lft | rgt)||optical||YES||3.0||1040||swivel||YES||4000||6.5||no||no|
|Canon SL2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||optical||no||3.0||1040||swivel||YES||4000||5.0||9.8||no|
|Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt)||optical||no||3.0||922||fixed||no||4000||2.2||7||YES|
|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 TL2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||no||no||3.7||1230||fixed||YES||4000||7.0||no||no|
|Leica Q Typ 116 (⇒ lft | rgt)||3680||no||3.0||1040||fixed||YES||2000||10.0||no||no|
|Leica D-LUX 6 (⇒ lft | rgt)||no||no||3.0||920||fixed||no||4000||11.0||8.5||YES|
|Leica X2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||no||no||2.7||230||fixed||no||2000||5.0||YES||no|
|Leica M Typ 240 (⇒ lft | rgt)||optical||no||3.0||920||fixed||no||4000||3.0||no||no|
|Leica D-LUX 5 (⇒ lft | rgt)||no||no||3.0||460||fixed||no||4000||2.5||7.2||YES|
|Leica V-LUX 2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||202||no||3.0||460||swivel||no||2000||11.0||9.5||YES|
|Nikon D7500 (⇒ lft | rgt)||optical||YES||3.2||922||tilting||YES||8000||8.0||12||no|
|Panasonic LX5 (⇒ lft | rgt)||no||no||3.0||460||fixed||no||4000||2.5||7.2||YES|
|Panasonic G1 (⇒ lft | rgt)||1440||no||3.0||460||swivel||no||4001||3.0||10.5||no|
The M10 is a current model that online retailers, such as amazon, will have in stock. In contrast, the X1 has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the X1 was succeeded by the Leica X2.
Review summary: Leica X1 vs Leica M10
So what conclusions can be drawn? Is the Leica X1 better than the Leica M10 or vice versa? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Advantages of the Leica X1:
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Ready to shoot: Has a lens build-in, whereas the M10 requires a separate lens.
- More compact: Is smaller (124x60mm vs 139x80mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Less heavy: Is lighter even though it comes with a build-in lens (unlike the M10).
- Longer lasting: Can take more shots (260 versus 210) on a single battery charge.
- Easier fill-in: Is equipped with a small onboard flash to brighten deep shadow areas.
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a build-in lens.
- More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in September 2009).
Reasons to prefer the Leica M10 (Typ 3656):
- More detail: Has more megapixels (23.8 vs 12.2MP), which boosts linear resolution by 39%.
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Better image quality: Is equipped with a larger and more technologically advanced sensor.
- Easier framing: Has an optical viewfinder for image framing 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 (1037k vs 230k dots).
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (4000/sec vs 2000/sec) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (5 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More flexible: Takes interchangeable lenses and can thus be used with different optics.
- More modern: Reflects 7 years and 4 months of technical progress since the X1 launch.
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the M10 emerges as the winner of the match-up (10 : 8 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 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 X1 or the M10 handle or 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 why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The following table reports the overall rankings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites. The full reviews are available, respectively, at cameralabs.com, dpreview.com, ephotozine.com, imaging-resource.com, and photographyblog.com.
|Leica X1 (⇒ rgt)||-||Rec||-||-||4/5||2009||1,995||discont.||check|
|Leica M10 (⇒ lft)||-||-||4/5||-||4.5/5||2017||6,595||latest||check|
|Canon 6D Mark II (⇒ lft | rgt)||Rec||80/100||4.5/5||4/5||4/5||2017||1,999||latest||check|
|Canon SL2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||78/100 Silver||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||2017||549||latest||check|
|Canon G16 (⇒ lft | rgt)||Rec||-||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||2013||549||latest||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 TL2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||..||..||4/5||..||4/5||2017||1,950||latest||check|
|Leica Q Typ 116 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||80/100 Silver||4.5/5||-||4.5/5||2015||4,249||latest||check|
|Leica D-LUX 6 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||-||4/5||-||4/5||2012||699||discont.||check|
|Leica X2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||-||3/5||-||4/5||2012||1,995||discont.||check|
|Leica M Typ 240 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||-||4/5||-||-||2012||6,950||discont.||check|
|Leica D-LUX 5 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||-||4.5/5||-||4/5||2010||699||discont.||check|
|Leica V-LUX 2 (⇒ lft | rgt)||-||-||-||-||-||2010||849||discont.||check|
|Nikon D7500 (⇒ lft | rgt)||HiRec||86/100 Silver||5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||2017||1,299||latest||check|
|Panasonic LX5 (⇒ lft | rgt)||Rec||73/100 Silver||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||2010||499||discont.||check|
|Panasonic G1 (⇒ lft | rgt)||88/100 HiRec||70/100 HiRec||4/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||2008||599||discont.||check|
The above review scores should be interpreted with care, 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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