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Or can we say Leica D-Lux 5 vs D-Lux 4? :)

I am probably not the only one who said when first hear about Panasonic Lumix LX4 “Thats it!” LX4 was probably first compact camera with all manual feature any even DSLR user can imagine. What is more finally with real wide angle fast lens. Lumix LX3 so become another camera along with my Nikon Dslr. Now we have an upgrade: Panasonic LX5… reason enough to upgrade or not? How about LX6 rumours? :)
UPDATE: Fuji X100 i is here… new man in the town?

Panasonic LX5 (or LX3): first compat camera for DSLR users

Remember the times when I almost crash my compact camera because of impotency to make pictures i want. No manual, click no manual focus, click no bracketing, no histogram. I always miss all potential what I have with my Nikon DSLR. I saw LX3… I bought one. And from that time, my Nikon has much more free time… Belive or not but most of the time i shot at full auto called iA. Really, unbelievable. The auto mode is so good here that I do not use all features I cried for that much as I expected. Of course the picture quality is something different… it is still just compact camera. However I do not want to write review of this camera, you can find much better articles. This is about latest comparison… the new one vs old one. Until Lumix LX6 arrive. :)

What I hate on my LX3

Well… not too many things. Just two:

  • Lens distortion at wide angle – you need to be careful not to have people in the corner. They do not look good. And they will hate you! :)
  • Zoom – 2.5x zoom is not enough when you start at 24mm. Sometimes I have been cheating with digital zoom, sometimes i just cried.

Both camera side by side… looks pretty much the same:)

So lets see, what are the main difference between these two great cameras…

  • Longer zoom, 30mm more… great!
  • Better dynamic range
  • Better video rec options
  • Some new control buttons (jog dial vs joystick), battery life etc.

And Leica version of the camera… i really like the design

Well, not much differences here. What do you think? … just the only things I really want. Lets see everything in table to make it clear and visible how similar these cameras are. In fact, it looks just like a facelift if i can use this car-magazine term.

Panasonic LX5 / Leica D-Lux 5 Panasonic LX3 / Leica D-Lux 4
Sensor 10 MP / 1.63″ CCD 10 MP / 1.63″ CCD
Lens Leica Vario-summicron 24-90 mm F/2-3.3 Leica Vario-summicron 24-60 mm F/2-2.8
LCD 3 inch 460k px 3 inch 460k px
Dimension/weight 109.7 x 65.5 x 43.0 mm / 271g 108.7 x 59.5 x 27.1 mm / 265 g
Battery battery life 400 shots battery life 380 shots
ISO up to 3200, expansion up to crazy 12800, usable up to 400 up to 3200, usable up to 400
Movie mode HD 1,280 x 720 px, 30fps, AVCHD Lite HD 1,280 x 720 px, 30fps
Continuous shooting 2.5 fps (can be more in lower res.) 2.5 fps (can be more in lower res.)
Other improvements etc. improved(?) hand-grip, jog-dial, 1:1 ratio switch, movie recording button strange joystick

UPDATE: Leica D-LUX 5 vs Panasonic LX5

Ultimate battle: Panasonic vs Leica. What are the difference… not much. The basic camera hardware and lens are the same. The main difference is in final design and whole bundle. So what are the main diferences between LX5 vs D-LUX5?

  • Better software: Leica has Adobe Lightroom worth $200
  • Better warranty: not real difference in EU, however in US it is a great value. Leica has 3 years limited warranty.
  • Different design: some people like it some not. Panasonic has small hand grip on right side of the camera for better handling. Leica users do not like it… and their version is much simpler when we talk about design. I like Leica D-LUX 5 design more.
  • Different menu layout. I can judge this.
  • Different setting: It said that Leica has different setting of the final JPEG processing.
  • Leica keep value: when you sell your camera after 5 years on ebay… you probably not get anything… until you sell Leica D-Lux. Leica is really strong brand… even very old camera such as Leica Digilux 1 is still keeping even $400 value.

The only problem of Leica version is that is at least 1,5 times more expensive. In some EU countries even more (close to double). And for the price you get the very same camera.

UPDATE: Fuji X100 vs Panasonic LX5… or Fuji X100 vs D-LUX 5 Leica

This is the question nowdays and probably it is a topic of my next article. Fuji X100 with its APS-C sensor looks like a dream machine. There is no question about image quality and high iso performance. Panasonic LX5 is probably more versatile due to its zoom optics however AF performance could be weaker compare to X100. No personal expirience here so far.

Leica D-LUX 4 vs Panasonic LX3… or Leica D-LUX 4 vs D-LUX 5

Well… it is the same: D-LUX 4 and LX3 is the exactly same situation as D-LUX 5 and LX5. Read section above. When we compare D-LUXes… we get also the same like with Lumix. So D-LUX 4 vs D-LUX 5 is the same as LX5 vs LX3.

What about Panasonic LX4

I have been asked several times about Lumix LX4. Probably not every knows… asian people are very much into numbers and its meanings. 8 mean luck/fortune in money terms. 98 mean “forever rich”, 28 “easy to get rich”… 668 “all the way to get rich” … 58 “not getting rich” … and our number 4? 4 means “dead” … 48 “dead rich” etc. Thats why you do not see even Palm T4, Nikon D4 etc… it is similar as EU/US number 13.

Final verdict: enough to buy one?

No. Clear answer. Even I really miss that 30mm+ of the new LX5. Everything else remain the same. What I really appreciate from Panasonic was the fact that they really care about LX line. They made several firmware updates and add many features during product life of LX3. They probably do the same just for LX5 which is a pitty. However I stay with LX3, waiting for Panasonic Lumix LX6. Some one maybe asking what is the difference between Leica and Panasonic bundle. Well, first of all price, then better software include (Leica include Adobe Elements), nice box, red dot logo and cool image. :) Not worth of money when its arrive on the market. Later on great deal. As always with Leica compat cameras. :)

One more thing I am really looking forward to is to see lumix lx5 firmware update. Updates of my LX3 brings a lot of new features… it will be interesting to see whats new come soon and how it will look in 2012 when we see Lumix LX5 vs LX6 comparsion. Or maybe whole LX series disapear by new fight: Fuji X100 vs LX5. Just look at Fuji X100 review and you know what I am talking about.

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