Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?
Does anyone have this new Leica mini yet? Is this, at last, a P&S that can be used at ISO 400 or 500 without creating high levels of noise?
#1. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 0snegron Nikonian since 05th May 2007Sun 25-Jan-09 01:24 PM
The D-Lux 4 has the same specs as a Lumix LX3; they are identical except for the red dot. When I did some research on the D-Lux 4 and LX3, I couldn't find any full reviews of the D-Lux 4. All that was written was that it was the same camera as the LX3. The LX3 had several reviews though.
I came to the conclusion that if there were no real diferences between the two cameras, I couldn't justify paying double the price just for the red dot.
#2. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 1Sun 25-Jan-09 02:02 PM | edited Sun 25-Jan-09 02:02 PM by edoruan
Yeah, I've read that again and again, Sandy--but there's a little more to it than "the red dot." The D-Lux 4 has a 3-year warranty, while the LX3 has two. And the Leica has a better software package included. With RAW that's paramount. At $850, less the current $150 rebate, that means the Leica runs about $150 more for those extras . . . and the red dot (which I would cover with black tape).
My personal requirement for a high-quality P&S is no noise problems at ISO 400 to 500. All my reading tells me noise is still a problem with both these cameras--so I've decided to give it a miss and stay with my DSLR's.
Thanks for your input, Sandy.
#3. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 2snegron Nikonian since 05th May 2007Sun 25-Jan-09 11:24 PM
FWIW, I have obtained images from my LX3 at ISO 400 which appear much cleaner in terms of noise than my D200 (and no, I don't have a faulty D200, I own two of them)! Don't forget that the LX3 has a VR system as well as a 2.0 lens. This is a great advantage as you can shoot at lower ISO's and still get sharp results.
As far as the software package, I'm not sure what you are refering to. The LX3 RAW images can be opened in CS4. Also, the new version of SilkyPix that comes with the LX3 is not too bad when it comes to opening and working with RAW files.
I'm sure that a 3 year warranty is a good thing, but the way I see it I will hopefully get a Lumix LX4 in about two years anyway.
I'm not saying that the LX3 is without fault (it is smaller than I expected), but in terms of compact cameras it is in class of its own, way above anything else being offered today. IMO, until an affordable digital rangefinder is available to the general public, the LX3 is a great choice for low light, compact street shooting.
#4. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 3Mon 26-Jan-09 12:34 AM | edited Mon 26-Jan-09 12:38 AM by edoruan
I too own two D200. And more recently I got myself both a D90 and D700. I shoot for stock, so I'm VERY interested in having low-to-no noise in my images, even at high ISO's. My dream is to own a cigarette-pack sized P&S that I can use in candid situation for high-quality results. The VR you mentioned would be a huge help.
I already have a Canon S70, which is a perfectly good personal snapshot camera---but too noisy for stock.
As with Nikon RAW images and Capture NX2, I feel the "Leica" software might make a real difference. (I can't find the link.) NEF files are much better when opened and converted in NX2 than with any third-party software, including Photoshop.
Anyway, the $150 rebate runs out tonight, so I won't be getting either the LX3 or the Leica mini at this time.
#5. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 3BJNicholls Charter MemberTue 27-Jan-09 05:12 PM
For sensor performance, the Canon G10 is very similar. If you're getting similar noise from your D200 and the LX3 at any identical ISO, you're not comparing apples to apples with respect to noise reduction settings. The LX3 is good for a tiny sensor compact, but it's not even close to DSLR noise territory. Check out DxOMark ratings where the D200 21st is ranked and the LX3 is ranked 53rd. The D200 has an ISO rating of 562 vs. the LX3's miserable 83.
Few people ever see an LX3 image in it's actual raw state. The lens has lots of distortion and Panasonic has required raw converters to correct the optical and noise defects of its raw images automatically.
While the LX3 is a very good compact considering its still-tiny sensor, it's not enough better than my LX2 to get me to buy the newer model. And it's not competitive with even the lowest ranked DSLR for noise performance. I'm waiting to see what Olympus does with its Micro 4/3 compact camera. That's a sensor format that will blow the LX3 out of the water - witness the image quality from the Panasonic G1.
#8. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 7Mark V Registered since 18th Jun 2004Thu 26-Feb-09 03:55 AM
The results of some research:
Leica uses different Jpeg algorithms then the Panasonic. Other then that they may handpick the best lenses?? The bodies are a bit different...probably enough to insure they use different accessories.
A Leica battery costs $70, Leica flash is $350, the view finder is an insane $350. The Panasonic versions cost half as much....which brings up the question if they will interchange?
The Panasonic is $420 if you can find one, the Leica $700 and easy to find.
The real issue is that point'n shoots are lousy in poor light. If Leica's firmware is enough to give it a real edge then it could be worth the almost double price.
Why I'm tempted: I'm taking hundreds of shots a week in dark, dirty industrial settings with a Canon G9 in the poin't shoot insane zone of less then a 1/4 sec at 200 Iso. (400 Iso is a joke.) Image Stabilization is hit or miss at these slow speeds, to insure that one shot comes out I take 5 at the exact same setting, Any Nikon DSLR will do far better - but won't fit in a pocket.
Why I'm not: $840 for a point'n shoot with 2 extra batteries!
Visit my Nikonians gallery.
#9. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 0
You aren't going to get good noise performance with a 10 MP camera with such a tiny sensor; it's just not possible at this time. Given your noise requirements Edo, it just isn't the camera for you.
I have a D-lux 4 and its a great camera to slip into my pocket and take with me basically everywhere. What I like most is that if you set it up correctly, it is silent and have very little shutter lag (turn it to MF & aperture priority and set a hyperfocus to check it out). It's not the 32 mS of a D3 or a Leica M7, but it sure is better than every other P&S that I've ever tried. Also, turn off the stupid "shutter click" noise and its the quietest camera i've ever used. No one will hear it, and most won't see it as it fits well in the palm of your hand.
I love the fast lens (how many P&S's have a f2-2.8 lens!?) and if I don't want to use the LCD, I mount on my 35mm Voightlander/Cosina external finder ($160 at CameraQuest) and I am off and running.
It's the first point and shoot camera I've actually bought and while it's a bit noisy at ISO 400, it is certainly usable for carrying around when I don't want to lug my DSLR's around and the M7 is just a bit too big.
Flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/37977699@N00/
Visit my Nikonians gallery.
Visit my Nikonians gallery.
#10. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 0
Actually, I think the new Fuji F200exr is gonna be the small sensor king for a while as far as DR and relatively clean high ISO images...
#11. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 10blw Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004Mon 09-Mar-09 12:37 PM
Reading the specs, it's easy to wonder why anyone would bother carrying a D2x or D80. (Of course, shooting one would probably tell the story quickly, but I'm speaking of the typical spec-purchaser.)
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member
My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!
#12. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 11Mark V Registered since 18th Jun 2004Tue 10-Mar-09 03:53 AM | edited Tue 10-Mar-09 04:02 AM by Mark V
Yes, the specs are a cruel joke. An D40 outperforms any pocket camera.
What I want is James Bonds cell phone from the latest movie. The one with the 600mm equivalent lens that instantaneously downloads to a computer.
LOL! After writing that I noticed Nikon just announced a 26mm-624mm point'n shoot. You can replace a fortune in glass with this thing!
Visit my Nikonians gallery.
#13. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 0
I just got the Leica D-Lux 4. I wrote why I decided for the D-Lux 4, in my blog. The following are my observations after getting the Leica.
I just fell in love with the D-Lux 4 and I am extremely glad that I got it instead of any other P&S camera. The camera reminds me, from years past, of the little models that the shops used to have to advertise their Leica products, except that this little model takes pictures. It is like a retro little baby Leica. To say that is cute does not even begin to describe it. The pictures are surprisingly very good for such a small camera. However, keep in mind that it is a P&S camera, first and foremost, with a very small sensor.
It is a bit noisier than I thought it would be. However, I have some pretty good and aggressive software like DFine 2 or even Noise Ninja. DFine does an excellent job with ISO 400, especially the inside shots.
Are there any better P& shoots? I believe that the Fujifilm FinePix F200 EXR is better, with 5 x zoom (35mm equivalent = 28mm – 140mm,) but from f/3.3 – f/5.1. The D-Lux 4, on the other hand, ranges from f/2 – f/2.8, but 2.5x (35mm equivalent = 24mm – 60mm.) In addition, Sony is coming out with two new P&S with the CMOS Exmor (backlight) sensor, this September, not to mention the Panasonic GF-1 (micro 4/3) with interchangeable lenses.
Regardless, it is all very psychological and a value judgment. This baby Leica is not going anywhere. I might even take it to my grave with me. Again, it looks like an old rangefinder (baby size) and not like a toy P&S and the built is Leica like.
I will take it for an extended “test drive” tomorrow and will post the link for the photos on Monday or Tuesday.
#14. "RE: Is the Leica D-Lux 4 the ultimate P&S?" | In response to Reply # 13Ramesses Registered since 29th Mar 2007Sun 16-Aug-09 06:29 AM | edited Sun 16-Aug-09 07:08 AM by Ramesses
The following is my link to the Test Photos with the new D-Lux 4. They were taken at the South Coast Botanical Gardens and the Wayfarers Chapel, my testing grounds, today, 15 August 2009. The camera is great. Never mind about the noise, JPEG vs. RWL, pixels, sensor size, f-stops, Leica built, etc. It is all about the LCD screen. In the sun, I could barely see what I was shooting - not a good thing. Viewfinder in the works? No way – it defeats the whole purpose of a compact digital camera.