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Leica X2 versus Fujifilm X100S

The Leica X2 and the Fujifilm X100S are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in May 2012 and January 2013. Both the X2 and the X100S are fixed lens compact cameras that are equipped with an APS-C sensor. The Leica has a resolution of 16.1 megapixel, whereas the Fujifilm provides 16 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 X2 vs Fujifilm X100S

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Leica X2 and the Fujifilm X100S 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 X2 – represents 100 percent across all the size and weight measures).

Snapsort Leica X2 vs Fujifilm X100S
Compare X2 versus X100S top
Compare X2 and X100S rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Fujifilm X100S is notably larger (10 percent) than the Leica X2. Moreover, the X100S is markedly heavier (29 percent) than the X2. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the X2 nor the X100S are weather-sealed.

Concerning battery life, the X2 gets 450 shots out of its BP-DC8 battery, while the X100S can take 330 images on a single charge of its NP-95 power pack.

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
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Leica X2» 4.9 in 2.7 in 2.0 in 12.2 oz 450 n May 2012 1,995- i
Fujifilm X100S« 5.0 in 2.9 in 2.1 in 15.7 oz 330 n Jan 2013 1,299- i
Canon G1 X« » 4.6 in 3.2 in 2.6 in 18.8 oz 250 n Jan 2012 799- i
Fujifilm X70« » 4.4 in 2.5 in 1.7 in 12.0 oz 330 n Jan 2016 799 i i
Fujifilm X100T« » 5.0 in 2.9 in 2.0 in 15.5 oz 330 n Sep 2014 1,299- i
Fujifilm X20« » 4.6 in 2.8 in 2.2 in 12.5 oz 270 n Jan 2013 599- i
Fujifilm X-Pro1« » 5.5 in 3.2 in 1.7 in 15.9 oz 300 n Jan 2012 1,699- i
Fujifilm X100« » 5.0 in 3.0 in 2.1 in 15.7 oz 300 n Sep 2010 1,199- i
Leica TL2« » 5.3 in 2.7 in 1.3 in 14.1 oz 250 n Jul 2017 1,950 i i
Leica TL« » 5.3 in 2.7 in 1.3 in 13.5 oz 400 n Nov 2016 1,695- i
Leica T« » 5.3 in 2.7 in 1.3 in 13.5 oz 400 n Apr 2014 1,850- i
Leica D-LUX Typ 109« » 4.6 in 2.6 in 2.2 in 14.3 oz 300 n Sep 2014 1,195 i i
Leica X Typ 113« » 5.2 in 2.9 in 3.1 in 17.1 oz 350 n Sep 2014 2,295 i i
Leica X Vario« » 5.2 in 2.9 in 3.7 in 24.0 oz 450 n Jun 2013 2,850 i i
Leica D-LUX 6« » 4.4 in 2.7 in 1.8 in 10.5 oz 330 n Sep 2012 699- i
Leica X1« » 4.9 in 2.4 in 1.3 in 10.8 oz 260 n Sep 2009 1,995- i

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 X100S was launched at a markedly lower price (by 35 percent) than the X2, 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 X2 vs Fujifilm X100S

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.

Both cameras under consideration feature an APS-C sensor, but their sensors differ slightly in size. The sensor area in the X100S is 1 percent smaller. They nevertheless have the same format factor of 1.5. Both cameras have a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 3:2.

Leica X2 and Fujifilm X100S sensor measures

With 16.1MP, the X2 offers a slightly higher resolution than the X100S (16MP), but the X2 has marginally smaller individual pixels (pixel pitch of 4.79μm versus 4.80μm for the X100S). Moreover, the X100S is a somewhat more recent model (by 7 months) than the X2, and its sensor might 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 the X100S has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.

X2 versus X100S MP

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.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Leica X2» APS-C 16.1 4928 3264-----
Fujifilm X100S« APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----
Canon G1 X« » 1.5-inch 14.2 4352 32641080/24p21.710.864460
Fujifilm X70« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----
Fujifilm X100T« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/60p----
Fujifilm X20« » 2/3 12.0 4000 30001080/60p----
Fujifilm X-Pro1« » APS-C 16.0 4896 32641080/24p----
Fujifilm X100« » APS-C 12.2 4288 2848720/30p22.912.4100173
Leica TL2« » APS-C 24.1 6014 40144K/30p----
Leica TL« » APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p----
Leica T« » APS-C 16.2 4944 32781080/30p23.012.7108275
Leica D-LUX Typ 109« » Four Thirds 12.7 4112 30884K/30p----
Leica X Typ 113« » APS-C 16.1 4928 32641080/30p----
Leica X Vario« » APS-C 16.1 4928 32721080/30p23.412.7132078
Leica D-LUX 6« » 1/1.7 10.0 3648 27361080/60p----
Leica X1« » APS-C 12.2 4272 2856-----

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The X100S indeed provides for movie recording, while the X2 does not. The highest resolution format that the X100S can use is 1080/60p.

 

Feature comparison: Leica X2 vs Fujifilm X100S

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the X100S has an electronic viewfinder (2360k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the X2 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 X2, the Fujifilm X100S, and comparable cameras. The full specs-sheets can be found in the camera manual or, for example, in the dpreview camera hub.

Core Features
  Camera Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Shutter
speed
(1/sec)
Shutter
flaps
(1/sec))
Build-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Build-in
Image
Stab
Leica X2»- n 2.7 230 fixed n 2000 5.0 Y n
Fujifilm X100S«2360 n 2.8 460 fixed n 4000 6.0 Y n
Canon G1 X« »optical n 3.0 922 Swivel n 4000 1.9 Y Y
Fujifilm X70« »- n 3.0 1040 tilting Y 4000 8.0 Y n
Fujifilm X100T« »2360 n 3.0 1040 fixed n 4000 6.0 Y n
Fujifilm X20« »optical n 2.8 460 fixed n 4000 12.0 Y Y
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »1440 n 3.0 1230 fixed n 4000 6.0 n n
Fujifilm X100« »1440 n 2.8 460 fixed n 4000 5.0 Y n
Leica TL2« »- n 3.7 1230 fixed Y 4000 7.0 n n
Leica TL« »- n 3.7 1230 fixed Y 4000 5.0 Y n
Leica T« »- n 3.7 1300 fixed Y 4000 5.0 Y n
Leica D-LUX Typ 109« »2764 n 3.0 921 fixed n 4000 11.0 n Y
Leica X Typ 113« »- n 3.0 920 fixed n 2000 5.0 Y n
Leica X Vario« »- n 3.0 920 fixed n 2000 5.0 Y n
Leica D-LUX 6« »- n 3.0 920 fixed n 4000 11.0 Y Y
Leica X1« »- n 2.7 230 fixed n 2000 3.0 Y n

Both the X2 and the X100S have build-in prime lenses. The X2 has a 36mm f/2.8 optic and the X100S offers a 35mm f/2.0 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Leica provides more tele-photo reach than the Fujifilm. The X100S offers the faster maximum aperture.

Both the X2 and the X100S have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The X100S was replaced by the Fujifilm X100T, while the X2 does not have a direct successor.

Review summary: Leica X2 vs Fujifilm X100S

So how do things add up? Which of the two cameras – the Leica X2 or the Fujifilm X100S – has the upper hand? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.

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Arguments in favor of the Leica X2:

  • Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 100g or 22 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • Longer lasting: Can take more shots (450 versus 330) on a single battery charge.
  • More prestigious: Has the Leica luxury appeal, which ensures a high resale price.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in May 2012).

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Reasons to prefer the Fujifilm X100S:

  • Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
  • Broader imaging potential: Can capture not only stills but also 1080/60p video.
  • Easier framing: Has an electronic viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (2.8" vs 2.7") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (460k vs 230k dots).
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (4000/sec vs 2000/sec) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (6 vs 5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.0 vs f/2.8).
  • Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (35 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Was introduced somewhat (7 months) more recently.

If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the X100S is the clear winner of the contest (11 : 5 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.

X2 05:11 X100S

In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the handling experience and imaging performance when actually working with the X2 or the X100S. 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 table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). You can find the full text of the reviews by clicking on the site logo in the table header.

Review scores
  Camera cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Leica X2»--3/5-4/5 May 2012 1,995- i
Fujifilm X100S«HiRec81/1004.5/54/55/5 Jan 2013 1,299- i
Canon G1 X« »Rec76/1004/54/54.5/5 Jan 2012 799- i
Fujifilm X70« »-76/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Jan 2016 799 i i
Fujifilm X100T« »Rec81/1004.5/54.5/55/5 Sep 2014 1,299- i
Fujifilm X20« »HiRec77/1004.5/5-5/5 Jan 2013 599- i
Fujifilm X-Pro1« »HiRec79/1004.5/54/54.5/5 Jan 2012 1,699- i
Fujifilm X100« »-75/1004/54/55/5 Sep 2010 1,199- i
Leica TL2« »--4/5-4/5 Jul 2017 1,950 i i
Leica TL« »----4/5 Nov 2016 1,695- i
Leica T« »--4/5-4/5 Apr 2014 1,850- i
Leica D-LUX Typ 109« »--4.5/5-4.5/5 Sep 2014 1,195 i i
Leica X Typ 113« »--3.5/5-4/5 Sep 2014 2,295 i i
Leica X Vario« »--4/54/54/5 Jun 2013 2,850 i i
Leica D-LUX 6« »--4/5-4/5 Sep 2012 699- i
Leica X1« »-Rec--4/5 Sep 2009 1,995- i

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. An an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool. If you cannot find the camera you are interested in, please contact me, and I will try to locate and add the respective data to the application.

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