The new Leica C (Type 112) Compact Camera
Beautiful compact design!
Leica got it RIGHT with this one folks (for a rebadged Panasonic)! A spiffy and attractive compact pocket camera with a 28-200 zoom that looks amazing and has a built-in EVF. Based on the Panasonic Lumix LF1 but with much more style, the new Leica C looks more like an old Leica CM than anything, and that is a good thing. It will be shipping in October and will come in at $699 which is $200 more than the Panasonic version but this is a Leica with an all new design and as usual will have the Leica warranty and come with software. I think the new colors here are very very nice with a black/dark red top and white with a Champaign colored top. Very elegant if I do say so myself.
You can pre-order at dealers like Ken Hansen (firstname.lastname@example.org) or the Pro Shop (561-253-2606) if you want yours at launch next month. 🙂
This new C Type 112 is a point and shoot style with a small 1/1.7″ 12 MP sensor and a 28-200 f/2-f/5.9 equivalent lens. Full HD video and WiFi/NFC. Based on the Panasonic LF1 BUT this Leica is much nicer looking and designed by Audi Design. A slew of accessories is slated to hit by December.
I LIKE THIS one just for the design and the fact that it has a built-in EVF. Can’t wait to give it a spin. To be fair, the LF1 is the same but with a matte black finish. I played with one at B&H Photo today and it was actually quite nice. Also played with a Hasselblad Stellar at another store. That was very interesting 🙂
To those who feel this is overpriced..do you really think LEICA would release its hot rodded customized looking LF1 for the same price as Panasonic? NO. $200 upcharge is quite good for Leica as in the past it has been as high as $500, so $200 is not so bad for the premium for the Leica design and name and warranty.
Below the Panasonic LF1 which comes in at $498
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE BELOW of the NEW LEICA C:
LEICA C – the new line of Leica digital compact cameras
With the Leica C, Leica presents the first model of a new line of Leica digital compact cameras. Featuring a high-performance Leica DC Vario-Summicron 6–42.8 mm f/2–5.9 ASPH. zoom lens and an exceptionally large sensor with a resolution of 12 megapixels, the Leica C guarantees images that are particularly rich in details. Together with this, the fast zoom lens is ideal for an almost infinite number of photographic situations and delivers outstanding imaging performance even in unfavourable light. The Leica C is the first Leica compact camera to feature an integrated Wi-Fi and NFC (Near Field Communication) module for the wireless transmission of image data to smartphones and tablet PCs. It also offers a wide range of camera functions, various settings, in-camera processing options and an intuitively simple handling concept for flexible and spontaneous photography. All this, plus its particularly stylish and elegant compact design, makes the Leica C an ideal companion for all occasions where photos are a must.
Its technical features are certainly impressive, but the eye-catching beauty of the Leica C is above all characterised by its slim and stylish form. The elegant looks of this camera are the work of Audi Design, who were also commissioned with the development of the unique range of camera accessories. An unusual colour concept – the Leica C is available in two finishes, light gold and dark red and is complemented by a range of accessories in premium materials that highlight the unique looks of the new Leica compact camera line.
Its Leica DC Vario-Summicron 6–42.8 mm f/2–5.9 ASPH. 7× zoom lens, with a range equivalent to 28 to 200 mm in 35 mm format, is extremely versatile and ideal for every kind of photography from portraits to wide-coverage shots and capturing the beauty of landscapes. Even more creative freedom is provided by a freely programmable ring on its lens. The combination of high-precision optics and a large sensor guarantees outstanding imaging performance and pin-sharp pictures with brilliant, natural colours, clarity and contrast. Thanks to its extremely fast autofocus and a continuous-shooting mode with up to ten frames per second, it captures even the tiniest details.
The Leica C is the first Leica camera to feature an integrated Wi-Fi and NFC (Near Field Connection) module. This allows the wireless transfer of still pictures and video data to smartphones and tablet PCs via a WLAN connection. To enable this function, all users have to do is download the Leica C Image Shuttle app and install it on their iOS or Android end device. The photographer can then dial into a WLAN connection and the data transfer can begin. Another highlight: WLAN and the app enable remote control of the Leica C from a smartphone or tablet PC – particularly practical for remote-release photography and shooting with the self-timer.
The camera’s full-HD video function opens up even more creative opportunities. The 3″ camera monitor offers photographers complete control during exposure and recording. The camera’s integrated viewfinder is an additional aid to composition and assessment of scenes in brightly lit situations. Videos and still pictures alike can be creatively processed either in the camera or with the Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom® professional imaging software supplied with the camera.
Concurrent with the launch of the Leica C, Leica is also extending its service portfolio. This provides particular benefits for Leica C customers, as they can take advantage of a secure image-archiving package as an exclusive starting offer. More details will be announced in the near future.
As the perfect complement to the Leica C’s elegant and stylish looks, Leica now offers a range of specially designed, perfectly finished, premium matching accessories. The range currently features five different models. Every single one of these bags and cases is a unique and fashionable accessory – for example, the Leica C-Clutch, an elegant clutch handbag with carrying strap. In light gold or dark red Alcantara with a sandblasted metal closer, it offers two separate compartments with ample space for the camera and other personal belongings. The Leica C-Twist wrap-around bag is also new. Also in Alcantara and in a choice of two colours, this bag is attached to the tripod bush on the base of the camera and then simply wrapped around the Leica C and elegantly closed with a magnetic clasp. Available in light gold and dark red, the Leica C-Snap and its materials mix of hard plastic and elastic silicone provides optimum protection against scratches and inadvertent knocks. A unique design lends this unusual accessory for the compact camera an eye-catching and personalised look. The Leica C-Pouch is an elegant pouch with a fascinating wrap-around design in black lambskin nappa. The Leica C-Case, an elegant case in black leather with lighter contrast stitching, also offers excellent protection for the Leica C. Thanks to its magnetic clasp, the case can be opened and closed quickly and ensures that the camera is always ready for action within seconds. This case is supplied complete with a matching carrying strap in black leather with lighter contrast stitching. The C-Hand Straps in soft and supple Alcantara in a choice of light gold or dark red complement the collection of premium accessories for the Leica C and guarantee optimum carrying comfort.
The Leica C will be available from authorised Leica dealers starting in October 2013. The Leica C-Pouch and C-Snap accessories will be available from December.
LEICA C (Type 112) the first of a new compact range
Launched in October 2013, the first of a new compact range, does size matter? Or is it how you use it? Beauty is in the eyes of the Leica C holder. This camera has design input for the outer body and controls from Audi Design. With its one piece aluminium stepped top plate and smaller “M” type controls it looks like a miniaturised “M”. I have nicknamed it the “PICO M” in light of all the hype in the recent Leica ad campaign calling the X-Vario the “Mini M”.
The camera is available in two classy finishes, one with a black body and a shiny black lens unit topped off with a rich dark burgundy top plate and controls, the other is a complete contrast having an ivory body but the same shiny black lens unit finished off with a stylish champagne light gold top plate selector dial and controls.
The groundbreaking features for a Leica compact include the 1/1.7” MOS sensor the largest in its class, 12.8 Megapixels (12.1 effective), secondly a very fast f2 (7x) zoom lens, Wi-Fi/NFC connections to your Smartphone mobile or tablet (iPhone or Android) for full remote control or image swap/transfer, a user programmable ring around the lens unit also last but not least is EVF viewfinder for composing shots like a pro camera or in bright sunlight.
To call this new model a “point and shoot compact” would be an insult really considering its lens type, features and settings, but having said that it can still be slipped into a shirt or trouser pocket.
So now for my tour of the camera body. Starting from the left of the top plate “LEICA C” is engraved on top of the Wi-Fi unit then we get the 4 Dolby® stereo anti wind microphone slots then we step down to the silver or black knurled selector dial and the silver or black tele/wide slider surrounding the ivory or black shutter release button respectively and finally we come to the recessed on/off push button. Notice as with most compacts no flash hot shoe °.
On the back most space is taken up by the 3” LCD, then starting from the top left we find the EVF electronic viewfinder with a ±4 dioptre adjustment wheel. Next, to its right are 2 buttons, an EVF button to change between viewfinder/LCD and the Wi-Fi button. By the side of these is a dual purpose LED, blue when Wi-Fi is enabled and red charging the battery/camera ². Now on the right hand side starting from the top we have 3 thumb grips and an HD Video button, slightly recessed to prevent accidental operation. Below them we find a programmable function button and the playback button. Next comes the now usual multifunction joy pad type 4 way selector with a rotating ring surrounding it and a set button in the centre. Finally come the display and delete buttons. Note that many of these controls are programmable or multipurpose.
The right hand end has a strap eyelet in gold or burgundy and a hinged plastic door in ivory or black ¹ exposing the micro HDMI type D connector (NB no lead provided (see EBay)) and an AV/charge 8 pin
The front of the camera has at its top left the built in flash unit and AF assist/self timer red light. The retractable shiny black aluminium 2 piece telescopic lens unit has its front element protected by a guillotine type unit when closed. Surrounding the lens is a programmable selector dial knurled over the full 360° of its circumference, finished like the top plate, in champagne light gold or dark burgundy red.. The “Red Dot” Leica logo is on the top right in front of the aluminium raised step housing the Wi-Fi unit.
Finally the base plate has a metal tripod mount, speaker and a spring loaded plastic hinged door ² for the battery and SD/SDHC/SDXC card
Now for some more technical details starting with its high quality lens, a high-performance LEICA DC VARIO-SUMMICRON 6–42.8 mm f/2–5.9 (min f8), ASPH zoom lens (28-200mm in 35mm terms) with 10 elements in 8 groups, 4 aspherical lenses with 7 aspherical surfaces including 1 ED (Extra low Dispersion) lens that compensates for chromatic aberrations. This fast zoom lens is ideal for an almost infinite number of photographic situations and delivers outstanding imaging performance even in unfavourable light, I know that for sure as I’ve used it and was amazed when the flash did not fire indoors f2 1/50th of a second ISO 400 hand held! Yes I’ve bought one, my 5th Japanese Leica, from my favourite Leica specialist shop in Manchester, the staff are more than helpful and also made some contributions and ace ideas for this book, Stephens Premier.
The large 1/1.7” 7.44 x 5.58mm MOS sensor has optical OIS stabilization, and a further 4x digital zoom on top of the 7.1x optical zoom. Equivalent film speed ISO 80-6400 with a boost to 12800, a very fast AF with up to 693 point focus or 23 multi area with tracking and face detection modes. Metering can be Multi, CW (Centre Weighted) or spot.
The 3 inch TFT colour LCD screen is a 100% FOV, fixed LCD panel with 921,600 pixels, auto brightness and AR (Anti Reflective coating).
The 0.2 inch EVF is also 100% FOV, colour LCD with approx 200,000 pixels. Diopter correction facility: ± 4 diopters.
Shutter sounds can be silent for in a church, cinema or concert or typical Leica M “click” with speeds from 250 seconds to 1/4000th
Focusing is very fast AF or manual down to 50 cm or 3 cm in macro.
Battery capacity 250 shots CIPA ³
Flash modes Auto, Auto /Red eye reduction, Slow sync/Red eye reduction, ON, OFF. Up to 7 metres °.
The C can record pictures in JPEG, JPEG/RAW or RAW.
1080-50p HD Video is Motion pictures (with audio) – AVCHD with Dolby® Digital (2ch)/MP4 with AAC (2ch).
Plus many other settings notably the panning Panorama with no stitching pics together, even an electronic spirit level.
Usual additions these days on a Leica, such as aperture priority, shutter priority, manual and 3 auto settings, plus 4 user custom settings and full HD video are based internally on the Panasonic DMC-LF1. The Leica firmware customisations however, together with the freely programmable ring on the lens provide greater ease of use. The combination of high-precision optics and a large sensor guarantees outstanding imaging performance and pin-sharp pictures with brilliant, natural colours, clarity and contrast. Thanks to its extremely fast autofocus and a continuous-shooting mode with up to ten frames per second, it captures even the tiniest details.
The Leica C is the first Leica camera to feature an integrated Wi-Fi and NFC (Near Field Connection) module. This allows the wireless transfer of still pictures and video data to Smartphones and tablet PCs via. a WLAN connection. To enable this function, all users need do is download the Leica C Image Shuttle app (FREE) and install it on their iOS or Android devices. The photographer can then dial into a WLAN connection and data transfer can begin. Another highlight provided by this feature is the ability to remote control the Leica C from a Smartphone or tablet PC – particularly practical for remote-release photography and shooting with the self-timer as you can see exactly what the camera sees on your handheld device screen before shooting still or HD video.
The camera’s full-HD video function opens up even more creative opportunities. The 3″ camera monitor offers photographers complete control during exposure and recording. The camera’s integrated viewfinder is an additional aid to composition and assessment of scenes in brightly lit situations. Videos and still pictures alike can be creatively processed either in the camera or with the Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom® 5 professional imaging software supplied with the camera.
As mentioned previously, the elegant looks of this camera are the work of Audi Design, who were also commissioned to develop the unique range of camera accessories. An unusual colour concept – the Leica C is available in two finishes, light gold and dark red and is complemented by a range of accessories in premium materials that highlight the unique looks of the new Leica compact camera
As the perfect complement to the Leica C’s elegant and stylish looks, let’s look at the perfectly finished, premium matching accessories. The range currently features five different items. Every single one of these bags and cases is a unique and fashionable accessory – for example, the Leica C-Clutch, an elegant clutch handbag with carrying strap. In light gold or dark red Alcantara® suede with a sandblasted metal closer, it offers two separate compartments with ample space for the camera, smartphone and other personal belongings. The Leica C-Twist wrap-around case is also new, also in Alcantara® and in the two colours, this bag is attached to the tripod bush on the base of the camera and then simply wrapped around the Leica C and elegantly closed with a magnetic clasp. Again in both finishes, the Leica C-Snap with a material mix of hard plastic and elastic silicone provides optimum protection against scratches to the 3 optical components (lens, LCD screen and viewfinder). A unique design lends this unusual accessory for the compact camera an eye-catching and personalised look. The Leica C-Pouch is an elegant pouch with a fascinating wrap-around design in black lambskin nappa. The Leica C-Case, an elegant “classic” case in black leather with lighter contrast stitching, also offers exceptional protection for the Leica C. Thanks to its magnetic clasp, the case can be opened and closed quickly and ensures that the camera is always ready for action within seconds. This case is supplied complete with a matching carrying strap in black leather with lighter contrast stitching. The C-Hand Straps in soft and supple Alcantara® in the same 2 finishes complement the collection of premium accessories for the Leica C and guarantee optimum carrying comfort.
Included in the box with the C Camera body is a battery/camera charging AC adapter 2, rechargeable lithium battery, wrist strap, AV cable, USB cable, CD with long instructions (PDF), short instructions, Adobe® Photoshop® Lightroom® 5 professional imaging software, Guarantee Card and Passport application form.
Dimensions (W x H x D) Approx. 103 x 63 x 28 mm (lens retracted), weight 195g.
Nothing is perfect in this world and whilst I adore this compact camera I have 4 minor gripes:
° No hot shoe! Also with my large hands I have to concentrate on not obscuring the tiny poorly placed flash window. Fortunately a 3rd party (Gloxy) make a full bounce/swivel/tele/wide auto flash unit that senses the one on the Leica C firing and it has a bar to connect to your C to the tripod mount. See http://www.digitaltoyshop.co.uk/Extended_range_digital_flash_Panasonic_Lumix_DMC-LF1_t3148_3621
¹ The 2 plastic doors, as other Panasonic Leica’s are made from harder wearing longer lasting quality aluminium.
² No battery charger is supplied, again all previous Panasonic Leica’s were supplied with a separate charger. With the C you are expected to connect your camera to the mains or a PC. Fortunately separate chargers are made by 3rd parties (via Amazon/EBay). As I always buy spare batteries one can leave a cell on charge and still go out and take photographs. Note that neither Leica nor Panasonic make a stand alone charger for the C, yet!
³ Battery capacity seems less than most of my other Leica’s, although this could be just due to my learning curve of the many settings only time will tell. Again depending where I am going I take 1 or 2 spare batteries anyway.
Leica C Type 112 2013
C-Clutch Gold C-Clutch Burgundy (front open) C-Case
C-Twist Gold (with C-Wrist Strap)
C-Twist Burgundy (with C-Wrist Strap)
C-Snap Gold C-Snap Burgundy
Excuse me, but the readers hardly needs a company communication copied-and-pasted in a forum used for creative discussions.
Most useless post ever…
I wrote that! every word! Its only copied and pasted from my own published book, Yo-Leica–Leica’s made in Japan, available on Amazon Kindle,Android,IOS or PC. No Plagiarism at all as I had the authors permission, ME!
So please go and “exchange useless comments about your dead king” quote unquote.
(PS no idea what that comment has to do with a review/discussion about a camera).
Finally why don’t you join a forum group that talks about your Japanese plastic camera.
Mr.Costa you wrote “Finally why don’t you join a forum group that talks about your Japanese plastic camera”……………… I think you forget to mention that most Japanese plastic cameras are also made in China these days!
Please tell me, what is the title of your book and where I can get a copy bearing in mind that I live in the Antipodes and if I buy a copy will it Costa Packet?
Mr. Kenneth, the reply about “Japanese plastic cameras” was written by Mr. Jay, not me. I have no probs admitting that I use a “plastic japanese camera” for making photos, perhaps Mr. Jay has some serious insecurity issues and has to tote around a pricey toy while sipping red wine during a charity auction. I prefer to go out with my toy making photos. BTW Please Mr. Jay, don’t use this forum to sell your “merchandise”. And stop trolling with your poorly constructed “english”.
Mr Blue Field 66,
For you say that to mention that some cameras are made in China these days is racist is nothing less than a shed load of bovine excreta! If I had said that some cameras are made in Germany but few if any are made in Fiji or Tonga in your mind it seems would also be racist, so get real, think outside the square before you are labelled as a buffoon!
There also no cameras made in Australia where I reside but no one gives a damn and just play games that involve the use of their balls.
Your English is so fake that your trolling isn’t even funny anymore.
I suggest you to spend more time making photographs and less time “writing” so-called “books” about cameras.
And BTW, what do you means your commend about the cameras being made in China? It seems quite a racist remark to me…
Who is Mr Jay? I can not see one comment from him.
Dear Mr Kenneth Williams
My book called Yo-Leicas made in Japan, it is available on Amazon Kindle for approx $3 orr one can download a free app then buy and view it on Android,IOS or PC.
YO!–Leica’s “Made in Japan”.
Author: Jamie Bell
There are many books celebrating the 100 year success story of the 20 German engineered Leica cameras but this book is unique in discussing the 40 Leica’s made in Japan.
It commences with a brief history of the Leica company then describes each model in chronological order with a general description, then finer details, specifications, designers and quantities made with photographs of each model It has approx 120pages, almost 18,000 words and over 100 colour photographs.
Thanks Jay, I will download a copy to my KINDLE.
I bought my D-lux 4 for $200 more than the comparable Panasonic at the time. I got a better warranty and much better software, as I absolutely loathe Silkypix. When I sold it, I got a good $200 more than what the Panasonic was fetching at the time. Like it or not, that’s they way of the world. For those of us who change point and shoots frequently, the resale value of the Leica means it is pretty much a wash in terms of price. I don’t like Panasonic jpegs (or haven’t in the past), and never got along with the bodies. So I don’t think I’d be a fool who was seeing what he wanted if I bought the Leica. Why are Panasonic buyers so defensive. Buy your camera and enjoy for goodness sake, without bashing people who prefer the Leica.
I agree with everything you say except that a Leica is a rebadged Panasonic. If you read the history of the Leica/Panasonic get together you will find that it is actually the other way around, a Panasonic is a rebadged inferior Leica. The only thing some of the early Panasonics had in common was Leica lenses but not any more.
Those that knock Leica I would wager have never owned one and will never do so because it is out of their price range. The new Leica C Type 112 is a thing of beauty and classic design as well as being good enough to be the only camera you will need and will be fetching high prices long after a Panasonic sells for peanuts on E=Bay.
There are however some who own Leica cameras who do so just because they are a Leica and they have lots of money to spend.
Not true. The Leica is a rebadged panasonic. Camera innards are designed and made by Panasonic. Lens is built by Panasonic, NOT Leica. This will also depreciate as all Leica’s do but make no mistake on what it is..it is a Panasonic, made by Panasonic.
With a lens designed by Leica, with Leica lens coatings, internal software reprogrammed by Leica etc.
Steve I love reading your camera reviews I hope you will try and review the “C” soon
Fantastic compact camera ace C-Twist case………..all the paying for the “red dot” and moaners about the viewfinder, have not tried the camera in real life ….just magazine/brochure/internet readers..
Ace style, fab f2 lens, Adobe Lightroom, 2 year G/tee, 1 year Passport extra G/tee (UK) replace if dropped etc, and just a “rebadged” Panny are all wrong. TRY one.
Many people who read reviews of cameras on the internet naturally compare the Japanese made Leica’s with the “sister” “doppelganger” Panasonic model and fail to understand why the Leica’s cost a lot more, there are many reasons, here are the main and most important ones
(a) The lenses take 40 minutes for each element to be individually ground, polished and tested, made on German imported machines to Leica tolerances and use Leica lens coatings. (The Panasonic Lumix ones are mass produced on their own machines to a basic Leica spec. and use their own “Nano” coatings).
(b) The CCD’s are individually tested to Leica manufacturing tolerances and are made by Kodak, Sony etc. (Panasonic Lumix ones are not).
(c) The Panasonic made Leica’s are ALL sent in to Leica AG, Solms, to be inspected by hand/eye then wired to a computer to have the firmware (digital only) customised so each image gives the “Leica look” and European skintones and other colour rendition and LCD menu changes, then tested again.
(d) Boxed and packaged in Germany.
(e) Appropriate Adobe® /Photoshop®/ Lightroom® / Premiere®/ Elements® software added
(f) 2 year unconditional guarantee and Leica Passport (covers accidental damage) instructions and other documents added.
(g) The distinctive “Red Dot” Leica logo is added.
(h) Many models have different outer bodies often made of aluminium or even titanium and different switches/dials and buttons.
(i) Higher resale values, for example a mint Leica DIGILUX 3 sells on Ebay for £799, the Panasonic equivalent DMC-L1 £224!
(j) Leica Passport, A Leica passport protects your treasured Leica against all accidental damage for the first year from purchase date. During the period of cover, if you drop and break or water damage, any camera protected by the passport, Leica will either repair or replace the item with a new one free of charge
Read more on your Kindle Yo! Leicas made in Japan.
Perhaps you have not very clear what a camera is all bout: TAKING SHOTS. If in that field the end result is not on par with price asked: camera fail.
I’m sorry there are still “photographers” that doesn’t understand that…
But while they enjoy parading around with a pricey gadget, I enjoy going around making photos with my humble piece of japanese plastic…
you get what you pay for then , you pay peanuts……….
…and still with this peanuts, I can produce beautiful (in others opinion) and appreciated shots. The same can’t be said of many “photographers” that hangs pricey Leicas aroud their neck while parading at the local photowalks.
Because, man, if someone still have not learned that it is the indian, not the arrow, that kills you, I suggest to him/her to continue spending time arguing on forums, not trying making photographs. He/she’ll have more success.
What would happen if your Indian does not have a bow and arrow but just a whopping big Tomahawk, does your theory still hold up?
I never mentions indians?? or tomahawks but if you buy a humble plastic tomahawk it will not be as good as a precision extra sharp one designed for Leica made of metal…………read comment 47 or look up Yo!–Leicas made in Japan by me on Amazon Kindle or get a free downloadable app to view the book on your IOS, Android or PC
It seems that your comment about Indians and arrows and my response to the wrong guy about Tomahawks and Indians and his talk of a new Leica camera made of plastic Tomahawks has got a bit out of hand so why don’t we all meet somewhere and have a nice hot Indian curry meal and talk the whole mess over?
We can sit down and exchange sad stories about the death of the King…
So, I bought the Leica C on impulse. I wanted a compact camera (fit in your jean pocket) as my SLR is too conspicuous for my work in central Africa. (The Leica dot is irrelevant as any camera is wealth.)
I am a Canon SLR user, and planned to buy a G-type to keep it in the family. I previously had a Sony T-Series, but destroyed it. However, while testing a few cameras in the store I picked up the Leica C. It felt right, and the front dial is incredible. The menus are intuitive. After using it for several days I love it. It takes great shots that one would expect. The smart macro mode is exceptionally clear.
Camera selection tends to be emotional (see the above comments for amusing reading). My comment would be to pick one up and try it out. I tried the Panasonic as well, and it did not have the same ‘feel’. When you carry a camera all day, every day, feel is as important as specs.
Looks good to me. I have a Sony RX100 as a pocket camera when I am not using the M9. Love it but no viewfinder is a real pain outside in the sun and an add on viewfinder adds bulk and reduces the compact utility of the camera. Yes the Sony has a much larger sensor but then looking at the shots I took with my D Lux 4 (one of my favourite ever cameras which met a horrible end…only think that I didnt like about it was absence of a VF) with a similar sensor to the C, I reckon the IQ is just fine. I am buying one – and I will even get one of those groovy “C Wrap” cases too. I agree with Steve – great package and they got it right. I dont really care what anyone says about “paying for the dot” – happy to do it and that does not make me stupid, just someone who sees the value and is happy to pay!
The Panasonic LF1 lens has a great deal of image deterioration around the edges compared to the D-Lux6 (was not able to compare to the LX7), and since I have the LF1 on hand and the Leica ‘C’ on order, I’ll be able to compare the Panasonic and Leica versions directly to see if Leica improves on the LF1 optics, or whether they’re actually the same.
“Based on the Panasonic Lumix LF1 but with much more style.” Enough said. Pass. I’d get the panasonic. Proof will be in the pudding though. If it outperforms the RX100 then maybe. Otherwise, as I said earlier…….
Answer this if you will.
If the so called Panny Lumix LF1 and the LEICA C were side by side in your favourite camera shop window AT THE SAME PRICE tell me son, which camera would you buy?
If you say the LF! then all I can say is that you must be a fully retarded wankel engine, if you know what I am getting at.
I have the LEICA C and all I can say is forget the specs and all the technical crap and just go out and take wonderful photos or do you prefer a phone with an on board camera?
LEICA, das Uber Kamera!
If i had to buy a Leica, it won’t be for the red dot. In that case, i would hide the dot to be more discrete in the brand of camera against stealing.
The M Monochrom has no red dot, no black dot – just plain black.
M Monochrom? Completely out of budget for me at $7950.00 (Ouch!) (very expensive to not showing the red dot 🙂 ) I prefer to put a piece of black tape over the dot –not even $0.01!
It seems that almost all are only concerned about the styling and the ubiquitous red dot. To me, the two cameras look almost identical. How could they not?
What about performance? Are the pictures $200 better? Someone criticized the EVF – is the Leica one any better than the Panny? I doubt it.
A camera is primarily to take photographs, and marginally to be admired. Ok, it’s great to have the Leica red dot, but if you already own Lightroom, you don’t need a second copy. Resale Value – is it a camera to be used, or just an investment?
I love my LX7! Or is it a D-Lux 6?!
Perhaps I should hold judgement and maybe I deserve to get flamed but here it goes…. I fail to see what Leica got right. I am trying to give Leica the benefit of the doubt but I am having a hard time. A Canon S95 sensor size for around the price of a Sony RX100. Puzzling….I think it’s beyond drinking Kool-Aid. This is more like eating mushrooms. Eat if you must and enjoy… 🙂
Based on the LF1 build quality, if the Leica ‘C’ isn’t significantly better, people are going to get a shock when they get it. So far as I know, all the Pana-Leicas prior to the ‘C’ looked and felt somewhat professional (like a Leica for lack of a better term), but the LF1 at least looks like a $100 digicam, except for the tiny vewfinder, which should bump the perceived value up to $150 or so.
x1 is better (IQ)?
How do they compare in IQ in low light situations? 🙂
RX100 II with EVF blows this away, albeit for more $
A bit off topic; but: I have the Nikon V1 with the kit zoom, and mostly use it for the wide angle. I can trade in for a Leica X1 (USD 400 + the Nikon kit). Would that be stupid?
Thanks for your brilliant site!
For $400 plus your Nikon V1 and kit zoom? Seems like you are getting a premium price for your Nikon V1 kit. If you like the X1 go for it, just know the X1 is very slow with AF.
Yes Slow in AF, but wonderful quality pictures
reminds me Nikon, they also have a special Sony sensor, made to their own specs. Just believe it if you want? I dont care, I look at the IQ ir produces only. And, champagne, bordeaux, red dots, 200$ more, who sees that on your shot?
Maybe not the best comparison but how would you all rate this “pocket” camera compared to the Rx100II which I have and am very happy with? I like the viewfinder though from the comments, it sounds inadequate. The RX is my walk around camera and I have a 5R to switch lenses with. This is mostly a travel setup. Curious what if anything would make this a better option. Tks
Adaption of “other people’s products” that are technically not even up to date, suggest that Style seems to be a bigger sale argument than the pure photographic performance.
For the photographer there is the M line of cameras, both film and digital. All the rest are just fashion accessories.
I agree. I still have the Leica M3 and M4, they are superb camera. But now in my view, Leica is a not a leader in electronic and we are now in the electronic age in cameras. Leica now copy the ideas from Japan camera. (Including the latest M $$$$$ series). 🙁
N.B I do have a DSLR Nikon.
Negatory – The X1, X2 are quality cameras and lenses, not fashionable in the least. The X Vario (also plain and unfashionable) has a better image quality than anything less than a Nikon D800. The D-Lux6, and especially the G-Star edition, could be arguably fashionable although they are very understated, yet their lens and image quality beats anything their size or less. Take the shots, then look all the way to the edges.
For the type of photography that i do, I don’t care for edge sharpness. There are others factor more important to me.
C’mon Leica, bring the X3, charge $1499. And you’ll have a best seller.
A fixed 35 mm effective lens at $1500 will never be a best seller.
The Leica 35 1.4 ASPH was a HUGE seller and still a top seller at..$5495. Nothing like Canon numbers or Nikon numbers but you would be amazed at how many have sold at this price.
what a shame.
This “C” looks more like a “D-” to me.
If Audi designed it I would like it with the Audi rings instead of this red dot…
It wo’nt fit the “body”;-))
This Panasonic-Leica scam… again?
I’d think about it, but I’ve got no time– I just got an email from Nigeria from someone who needs my bank account to deposit a million dollars.
Except for that red, ugly, and big dot actually this is a very gorgeous camera (or handsome?) Actually is the first Leica I really want, the accessories also are great.
There is no much difference against the Panasonic model and to me the design is enough attractive to draw my attention (and my savings :S)
Looks like the P&S EVF era is upon us at last. A Sony RX100 and Fuji X20 with built-in EVF’s would be great. Or a Canon GX1 with EVF. More choices.
Oh come on, “Leica got it right this time?”
Rebranding a Panasonic compact camera?? 🙂
We should expect much more from Leica.
Actually Maurice its what I expect from Leica these days. :-). Coming from a beloved M3 owner.
Leica got it RIGHT ? what ? Sorry Steve but NO THANKS . BEAUTIFUL DESIGN? NOt TRUE .$700 ? whattttt?
Yes, they got it right for one of their rebadged cameras. The LF1 is fantastic, had a go with it this weekend. For Leica to make a version of it with their branding, design and warranty and ONLY up charge $200, they got it right. They used to up charge $400-$500, so this is a good sign. Does anyone really think they would price it the same as the Panasonic version? They never have, and never will.
Haven’t touched it so I can’t fully comment on what they got right. However when you look at the market place I am having trouble understanding what they actually got right? Purchasing this only sows the seeds to Leica’s demise. We should demand better from Leica. In not doing so we give Leica a lazy way out. Put the red dot on something and hope it sells. Not very compelling reason to buy. I am confuse by Leica.
My 2 cents: Red Dot brand addicted will love it. I find the design nice but it’s not that special and at this price I would buy something different (rx100 anyone?).
At that price point, they probably will sell a lot of them at the Leica Stores as a kind of souvenir 🙂
Seriously, the nice body styling and attractive optional leather cases and the bundled LR, combined with the fact that the price is not too crazy, means that they will probably sell a bunch of them.
Another rebadged Panasonic (nothing wrong with those cameras). “but with much more style”.
Why are you excited…. they’re a far cry from the looks and feel of my M6’s….
Steve, it is designed by Audi not by audio
That was an autocorrect issue, I know it is Audi 🙂
Looks are good, but same price for the Sony RX100 II with a much larger sensor, and a nice flipscreen??
Makes it hard for me to choose, and what about the rumour on the Fuji X30??
No different than the D-Lux vs LX7. Some just want the Leica name, design and dot. That is all it is.
I can see a comparison, Porsche?
All Porsche fan boys are talking 911. Very nice for the already brain washed. However, these fan buys are a limited crowd, and Porsche Company cannot survive on these few as they are not willing paying more than currently prices. So what to do? Make the Boxter & Cayman which are 70% of a 911, talking technical contents an at a lower price. In addition, Porsche added the SUV Cayenne and that model is basically approx. 50% of the total Porsche production and, make the profit to the company which gives them an opportunity developing the 911 and other super sports cars, e g 918 Spyder. All this said, goes back to Leica with its M-series. We ‘house hold’ photographers, welcome this new approach from Leica and this can make them survive. Yes, same as for Porsche, a balance act not giving the customers of the ‘cheaper’ models too much. Says a Cayman owner and, importantly, a car man since 40 years in production. A Cayman/Boxter is maximum pleasure for less money. Period!
If looks could kill…….. Checked out the LF1 versus the LX 3 on the Comparometer at ISO 800. My way of checking the D-lux 4, which I have, against the C which is tempting. Result: less noise on the LF 1, but a shade more definition on the LX 3. If someone at some stage can tell me that the zoom on the C can manage 2.8 at 60mm equivalent (the max length on the DL 4), then I’ll take the slower speeds at longer lengths on the C as a bonus over the D-lux 4. Plus of course the viewfinder and various other features. Helpful comments welcome!
699$, Lightroom included, is a good surprise given the LF-1 price. I like the design but must admit I’m not found of the colors. Which is why I’d rather buy the black LF-1.
The thing which bothers me the most is the low-res EVF: 200.000 dots only is definitely too low, especially for a premium compact! The otherwise similarly spec’d and priced Coolpix P7800 has a 921.000 dots.
I’ll pass on this one and check the next iteration before I replace my V-LUX 20.
I’ve heard rumors that the Leica branded Panasonic cameras use Leica’s color profile, and so have different output than the sibling camera.
The styling looks ok, but at least the Panasonic one had a nice thumb-rest. The Leica looks like my thumb would accidentally press the record button all day long.
read my comments and findings below about Leica reprogramming the software and and the 3 thumb groves work OK and some of the buttons are recessed to prevent accidental pressing including the record HD movie button
This camera is not designed to take pictures, it is designed to bribe your wife : Buy one with the beautiful case as a present, then freely spend 15 K on a new M240 + APO Summicron 50 !
wow! It really is $699 and includes Lightroom! bargain! (never thought I would say that about a Leica!)
I hope it will be Lightroom 5 (the recent latest version witch is an upgrade from Lightroom 4).
If this is in fact $699 I might actually buy it over the Panasonic for no other reason that the Leica versions hold WAY better resale than the Panasonic versions of exactly the same camera. Already eyeing the LF1 and so if this really is only $200 more (including lightroom?) then I will go for the badge.
So it is a Panasonic camera designed by Audi Design. Why does it have a Leica label? Maybe I’m missing something but did Leica put anything related with photography on this camera? (coming from a M9-P owner which loves Leica)
Sorry, I read the price was nearly $900 somewhere else. But even at $699, there are much better options…even though I DO love this design
When is Leica going to come up with a compact that has a large sensor? Paying $900 for a camera that has a 1/1.7″ sensor – it just doesn’t make sense. No matter how good the lens and the rest of the camera is, if the sensor is that small, the pictures can only be so good. It won’t compare with anything that has a 2/3″ or a larger (1″!) sensor
How would you like a half plate or full plate sensor in your camera? Maybe that would make you happy?
You can not put a larger sensor into a pocket able compact, as although the sensor will fit you have to have a much bigger lens unit especially if you want a fast f/2 lens. Name a compact as small as the Leica C with a viewfinder and a larger sensor? Exactly there is not one made that’s why 1/1.7″ is a large sensor for its compact size and class and anyhow the lens quality is more important than the sensor size unless you want to print or view your photos on larger than 16×12″ paper or a huge 56″ flatscreen TV. Try the next nearest and still classed as a compact camera the Leica X2 that has a large sensor but you need big pockets.!….lol
I like electronic viewfinders but the one in the Panasonic LF1 is not as good as I’d like. (okay to be honest: it’s terrible) Did anyone else play with an LF1 at the store? It literally hurt my eye because it is so small end awkward to look “through”. But maybe that’s just me. I guess the pictures are gonna be alright though. – just don’t buy it because of the viewfinder without trying it….
I agree with you. Last week I went to by a camera for my wife and I had a great hope because of the viewfinder. But I had a look at the LF1 viewfinder, Ouch! Big deception, it is so tiny without quality with or without glasses and with the dioptry correction, it is a pitty. 🙁
Did Leica made another photocopy of a camera? Well, I tought they could start to lead in new developement an conception. Another big 🙁
So, I decide to by a Lumix FZ200.
Would it have gotten a review if it were just a Panasonic? Frankly, I’ve totally lost hope for Leica. They’ve become a fashion boutique at best…
Geezzz! There is no doubt about you lot of Panny Wankers! Why don’t you have a REAL Leica instead of a Faux version? Probably no doubt that besides being wankers you are a bunch of wannabe’s who smoke all you spare cash and can’t afford to own a LEICA so GTFOOH!
I was using Leicas before your parents were born and the new model C is to die for! So eat your hearts out and go stuff you Pannies up your Fannies! (US Onlly!)
Francois – if you were using Leica before my parents then you are well over 100 years old!
Not sure whether you’re advocating buying the Leica C or not. The Leica C is not a real Leica – it is a rebadged Panasonic, albeit with a Leica lens. I’me very happy with my LX-7, or should I call it a rebadged D-Lux 6?
If you want a real Leica, then get the X-2.
Regarding my age, I will be 90 in a week or so!
Let’s get a few things into perspective. When I was young and working in the Hi Fi industry and worked for people like AMPEX .Others like SONY and NATIONAL PANASONIC were in their early stages SONY making great Hi FI gear and NATIONAL PANASONIC lower end stuff.
SONY and now PANASONIC are more known for mainly cameras! OLYMPUS, NIKON, LEICA, CONTAX, FUJI, ASAHi PENTAX to name a few have been in the camera business much longer than these new boys on the block and how interesting it is to see that the product style they made all those years ago are now being tooled up again. Everyone to-day is obsessed with sensor size and dreams of a full frame sensor as a must. OLYMPUS back in history brought out a model called the PEN, do you know that the PEN was a half frame 35mm camera and took wonderful photos because it had a good FAST lens as standard, Also not to forget that most lens kits you are foisted off with to-day are crap compared to some of the stuff sold as standard gear in the old days. 50mm 1.2, 1.4 and a cheaper 2 were the minimum you would expect. Go have a look at your big sensor baby and see what speed lens it came with!
And as for cameras in phones, just another gadget for the Bogans to fool around with,
OK I am all said for the moment but just remember that a good fast prime lens say 28mm f1.2 will do all you want to together with Photoshop or whatever the sensor size becoming of lens importance.
Keep changing your cameras, that’s what the industry wants!!!
*lol* François – you’re a funny old man ,-)
Make ’em laugh, Make ’em laugh!!!
Song from “Singing’ in the Rain”
I tend to use Leica releases of this kind as guidelines to Panny’s who use “good enough for Leica stamp” optics, but when it comes to the actual product, looking at the Panasonics instead.
This usually works well, up to the point where stuff like the Leica X Vario is released which actually has awesome sharpness for being APS-C with a zoom lens. No Panny there to chop off 20% of the price, haha. :p
Nice Leica variant of a nice Panasonic design.
BUT: Why on Earth did they omit the rubber thumb rest which the Panasonic has???
Such small cameras as these are really in need of a good way to get a fair grip.
By omitting this small but close to essential “feature” of the Panasonic I think Leica are treating people who buy it at a 200 dollars higher price than the Panny version as if they were not needing to grip their camera in a good way. Well, at that price Leica owners may actually be in even higher need of getting a good grip of the camera…
A silly omission, and also less attractive design wise. The camera as a whole is gourgeous, but the ribs (or what it may be, hard to see from the illustration) Leica did put where the rubber grip should have been are really ugly.
With my magic powers, I predict that the comments will be divided in 3 camps:
Camp1: “Looking at the characteristics, it is underspecced and overpriced. Meh.”
Camp2: “Well, it is certainly not exciting, but it is a product with Leica quality, so price is in line…”
Camp3: “You can’t look at specs alone, is a Leica product, it is all about the experience!”
Very right. Without the red dot, nobody would even take a look at it, certainly not at the Leica list price paying you the entry ticket to a different league of camera’s. Possibly Camp 2 but certainly 3 would even buy a dead cat with a red dot on. You know what’s funny, there have been quite a few people that tried to talk me in Camp 3. I always had difficulty to believe in Leica, even the M-range.
everything you believe in, is everything you don’t know. Some people tend to say, “I only believe it, when ever I see it”. That is the worst lie you can tell, since all you see with your eyes and have evidence for, turns from belief to knowledge. Now all knowledge you take and share with all others for the seek of the good, turns into wisdom.
For many, Leica is just a belief, for others it is faith, they want to make a dogma out of it and never seek for the truth, even get angry if you tell them. For those that know the truth, some are hypocrite and do not admit it, some others just don’t care, it has a red dot, and not anyone has it.
Others say that truth, and hurts many, since truth hurts always.So, is it an object to show off or is anything else, who knows?
I have all my life been standing with my feet on the ground, I compare what is comparable, and here, in this case, you pay 200 bucks more fro a red dot, a champgane or bordeaux color and some soft ware. Now, all is up to anyone to decide if it’s worth or not. It is a question of want it or not, and then comes the second part, do I have the change to pay for it. Some do, and dont, some do and pay, some want and dont, some other discredit it and blame it for what it is, or is not, just to justify not to buy it or hiding not having the money to pay it, despite they want it.
We have so many years behind us, some of us have made their own shots in darkrooms, some do not know about this and are spoiled by foolish digitals. But on the end, many bad quality shots have made history, many good shots have never been shown, that’s life.
For me, ancient Leicas, handbuild, where like expensive watches, pieces of art. today, any Leica is, for me, just one more stupid digital to throw away in a few years or sell for peanuts.
So, think what ever you want, you are the creators of your own world, by your way of thinking, and you have to live with it the same way I live with the world I create, my world.
Life is philosophy, some is good, some is bad, and that makes things go on. Call that evolution, even if most of it is not the way it should, but, that again, is may way of thinking.
So, look at this champagne or bordeaux red Panasonic LF1 with a red dot, and if you think you need one, pay the 200$ more. I will not blame anyone for that, every one can waste his money the way he thinks is the best for him.
Your comment is certainly very wise and addresses efficiency. Does it make sense to pay 200 $ more. In my opinion , YES, it does:
1 ) years later it still carries the red dot, and sells much much better. I do have a Leica, which was one of the first ever digital one for the brand. It is just an improved Fuji. Price I am offered for that is a multiply of the original purchase price. A Fuji on the other hand worths peanuts, even ALMOST the same…
2) Nice design is more pleasant than ordinary design. You being a photographer I am quite surprised you don’t catch up with that one. Art is not only what is in the box, it is the box, as well. When offering a bunch of roses you get it wrapped nicely don’t you ?
3) There are accessories that the Lumix does not carry unfortunately. It may save the conservation of the camera ( cases, silicon wrapping ), hence its value.
4) I do not have any Photoshop software. The Lightroom provided here is not it worth more that 200 $ already ?
So I bet I am convinced with the Leica C already. A friend of mine a pro photographer recommended me the Lumix, despite he himself carries, among others, a Sony X1, at some 3000 $. Told me the Lumix much better value than the Sony. So I am just here making my mind now, Leica C vs Nikon AW1, the last one only for being so rugged and underwater capable at 15 m under the surface…
Take a look at E-Bay and search for LEICA Digital Cameras and what do you find? Various Leicas up for sale but also a multitude of PANASONICS that have A LEICA Lens!
Question is why don’t those selling such wannabe LEICAS advertise them proudly under the PANASONIC label instead of trying to palm them off as a half baked LEICA?
I rest my case!
Their are many differences between the Nikon AW1 and the Leica C, so it depends if you really need a fully waterproof camera or not! If you need interchangeable lens versatility then the Nikon loses its underwater feature with other lenses so I would wait a month to see what the Leica T brings.
Based on the specs I don’t see anything compelling other then a viewfinder.
And the 200K viewfinder is just crap…
Leica claims “exceptionally large sensor”. Really?
Yes, they claim that, but “with a small 1/1.7″ 12 MP sensor” this isn’t a camera with an “exceptionally large sensor”…
If you already have Lightroom, the extra spending for software isn’t justified. They should offer a cheaper package sans redundant software.
Yes they should!!!!!!!
Steve get me the **** off your email list.
You can stop spamming every post in the comments with your vulgar text now as none will go through anyway. You signed up for the emails, otherwise you would not be getting them. It is 100% automated and every email has an unsubscribe link at the bottom of it. If you looked, you would find it. Just use that link if you no longer want to get the emails. Also, I suggest not signing up for them in the future 🙂 Thanks