The New Leica V-LUX 3

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Leica has announced the arrival of its latest V-LUX series bridge camera, the Leica V-LUX 3. The new camera, which retains the familiar DSLR-like profile of its predecessors, features a 12.1MP (1/2.3") CMOS sensor that can capture stills at up to 12 frames per second at full resolution, as well as 1920 x 1080 / 60p Full HD video. And for those with a need to burn through frames per second like there’s no tomorrow, the V-LUX 3 can also capture a second of stills at 60 frames / 3.5MP resolution for slow-motion playback, and up to 220 frames per second at 320 x 240 resolution—for even slower-motion playback. Audio is captured in stereo and there’s an electronic wind noise filter that better ensures the quality of the sound is up to par even on windy days.

On the optics side of the story, the Leica V-LUX 3 sports a 24x Leica Vario-Elmarit 4.5-108mm f/2.8-5.2 ASPH zoom lens (25-600mm equivalent) that should satisfy the needs of landscape and wildlife photographers alike. Stills can be captured as JPEG, RAW and MPO files for 3D viewing.

For composing and reviewing stills and video the V-LUX 3 offers a choice of a 3.0-inch 461,000-dot LCD that tilts and swivels in all directions, which makes operating at awkward camera angles far easier. Being a bridge camera, the V-LUX 3 also has a 202,000-dot electronic viewfinder that like the camera’s LCD, displays 100% of the image area. Both the LCD and EVF also display the full range of exposure data and being electronic in nature, reflect any and all exposure, white balance and filter effects in real time.

The Leica V-LUX 3 features Power OIS image stabilization, has a top ISO sensitivity of 3200 with shutter speeds of 60 seconds to 1/2000-second, gets up to 410 exposures per battery charge, accepts SD/SDHC/SDXC memory cards and has about 70MB of internal memory.

Included with the Leica V-LUX 3 is a copy of Adobe Photoshop Elements, Adobe Premiere Elements, and a two-year warranty, which is twice the coverage of comparable cameras in its class. We expect to see the first shipments of the new camera in January, 2012.

Sensor 1/2.3" CMOS with 14.1 MP
Format Raw, JPEG, AVCHD, MPEG4, Quick Time
ISO 100 - 3200
Flash0 Built-in Flash
LCD 3" - 461,000 dots
Viewfinder Color LCD - 202,000 dots
Memory  SD, SDHC, SDXC, 70MB Internal Memory
Dimensions (W x H x D) 4.8 x 3.14 x 3.7"
Weight  1.2 lb

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What kind of images does this camera/lens produce at ISO of 400 or higher? 

I ask this question because I have a V LUX 1.  I like the camera & the photos @ISO 100.  At ISO 400 or higher my camera noise renders the photos as unuseable.

I really hope the new V LUX 3 will produce decent photos at ISO 400, at the very least. 

I'm really hoping someone with this camera will comment on the noise, or lack of noise at ISO 400 or higher.

Sensor technology has come a long way in the 5 years since the V Lux 1 was announced.  The V Lux 3 has drastically improved.  The High ISO setting on it is 3200 which is quite useable with very little noise to comment on. Not only will the new V Lux 3 produce great images at ISO 400, it will also at ISO 800, 1600 and even at 3200. 

Following is a link to image samples from a test conducted by the photographers at DPReview.com.  You can see examples of the camera in low light and high ISO's to get an idea of its performance and capabilities.

See the images on the following link:  http://bit.ly/uyNNNK

If you have any other questions, feel free to email us at askbh@bhphotovideo.com and we can help you further.

Happy Holidays to you!

Yossi O - Ask B&H

Those images answered my question about noise at the higher ISO's. 

I probably need to ask Leica this next question.  Can the new sensor be installed in my V LUX 1?

Just out of curiosity, .....on 2nd thought, I think I'll call you.....What deal can we work out to trade my old V LUX 1 in on the new V LUX 3? 

Leica, the repair people in NY, really treated me right in repairing my V LUX 1, they replaced the sensor for me when it was underexposing & adding a blue tint to my photos.  Yeah, I was without it for 2+ months, 3 times, however they FIXed the problems & I feel a certain degree of willingness to reward Leica by staying with Leica products.

I just purchased a Canon T2i 18-55mm lens which I know I can return to Amazon.com IF we can work out a deal.  I have no need for all the software because I already have an IMAC & Aperture.

Bill

I have just purchased a V-Lux 3 and would like to buy a leica flash for it. Built-in flash is usually is not sufficient enough for tele-shots.

What flash would you recommend,i.e., that is compatible with this camera?

Thanks.

Hello,

The manaul lists the Leica CF 22 Compact Electronic Flash Unit.

Leica Recommneds removing the hood when using the pop up flash or any small flash unit as the hood may cause darkening of the edges of the image frame.

Metz also offers several larger models that will work with the camera.

In the camera's user manual, is there an option to shoot 25p video and 50i video please?? 

I am in Australia and we have 50Hz electricity and therefore video editing timebase

Hello,

Page 36 states;  AVCHD - 1920X1080/60p for the US model we carry. 1920X1080/50p for model #18-159 not sold in the USA.

It is agreed that the Leica V-Lux 3 is identical to the Panasonic DMC-FZ-150.  Any idea why anyone would pay $500.00 more?  But a more answerable question:  The FZ-150 manual describes a "mauual focus assist" option in Settings.  The Settings Menu does not afford access to such a feature, and Panasonic customer service was today not able to determine why, in a phone conversation today.  Has anyone had any experience with this,  and/or with the histogram setting?  The latter is also not accessible on the new FZ-150 that I have.

yes, it is most certainly avaliable, in the setup menu, on page four. the histogram, on page three. to access these, use a mode setting on the dial, such as aperature, or shutter, as intelligent auto keeps you from making many settings in it's mode setting.

hope this is of some help.

I just purchased the Leica V-Lux 3 from Adorama, and already I am sorry that I did not know that the Panasonic FZ-150 sells for only $169. You see I paid $659. for the Leica, oh well I get an extra yr of warranty and the Photoshop Elements Software.

Currently shooting with the  Sony A100 with a 18-200 zoom lens ~ like it but would like to have more zoom range while traveling in the mountains (nature photography and wildlife) without having to go to the heavier lenses.  

How does looking through the viewfinder on the V-Lux 3 compare to looking through the viewfinder of a DSLR? Is it very grainy or dotty?  Or is it clear?  Most of the viewfinders that are not true SLR seem to be so "dotty" that it is hard to get a feel for the picture taken.  

Also can not find any reason for the doubled price of the Leica vs the Lumix FZ150 other than the Leica name ~ is overall photo quality any better?

Any advice as to whether to give the Leica a try or to just hang on to the old Sony?  I am only an amateur photographer ~ this is only for taking pictures of travel/nature/wildlife and our 5 yr old grandson ~ so the video aspect is another lure!

Thank you

Hello,

Having used many cameras with EVF's, they do not compare to a traditional DSLR's optical VF. The image looks electronic.

The V-Lux3 does include Adobe Photoshop Elements, Adobe Premiere Elements, and a two-year warranty (compared to Panasonic's 1yr). The FZ150 according to our data base is no longer available, otherwise the cameras are identicle.

Long zoom P/S's are great for when you do not want to carry a larger DSLR set up. Being able to shoot video unexpectedly is a great feature and will make the purchase worth while when you are able to capture a moment you would have missed with your still only DSLR.

Go with the FZ150., otherwise you're really just paying for the name. The FZ150 is still available from many sources.

Hello to all.
I am sooo tired of the posts that say that the Leica v lux 3 is no
different than the panasonic 150.

The IQ is better with the Leica as the firmware is different.

I have the Leica and my friend has the pany.

You can buy the Leica for less than $500.

I must repeat - THEY ARE NOT THE SAME - If you want better image
quality the Leica is the one for you. So, go find one for under
$500 and you will see for yourself.

How do I turn off the 2(?) second freeze of display after taking a shot and before it's OK to take the next one?

As indicated on pages 21-22 in the Leica D-Lux 3 Digital Camera Instruction Manual, under the SETUP menu, you would scroll down to the "Auto Review" option, press the [MENU/SET] button, then select [OFF] from the listed options.