Leica V-Lux 1 Digital Camera

Leica V-Lux 1, 10.0 Megapixel, 12x Optical/4x Digital Zoom, Digital Camera

Leica V-Lux 1, 10.0 Megapixel, 12x Optical/4x Digital Zoom, Digital Camera

B&H # LEVL1 MFR # 18313
No Longer Available

Leica V-Lux 1 Overview

  • 1Description

The Leica V-Lux 1 is a digital compact camera which combines high-performance optics and outstanding picture quality in a compact camera body. The camera offers 10 million pixels and a Leica DC Vario-Elmarit lens with an extremely wide range of focal length from 35 to 420mm (equivalent), thus commanding surprisingly universal capability. From spacious landscape shots, filigree macro close-up shots through to photos of far distant objects in super telephoto mode, the lens, with its 12 times zoom, creates outstanding picture results in all photographic situations. The integrated picture stabilizer gives the user additional protection against camera shake, even under difficult lighting conditions. The Leica V-Lux 1 has a tilting 2.0" TFT display for optimum picture checking. Thus the photographer is assured of secure control even in difficult photographic situations, and gains additional possibilities for picture composition by means of unusual camera perspectives. Furthermore, a variety of manual settings, including a diverse subject program for many photographic situations, round out the creative composition possibilities of the Leica V-Lux 1.

12x Zoom Leica Vario-Elmarit Lens
The Leica Vario-Elmarit Lens lens delivers top-quality pictures as well as offering maximum flexibility, from the wide-angle to the super-telephoto range. It consists of 14 lens elements in 10 groups, including 3 aspherical lenses and an ED (extra-low dispersion) lens. The ED lens is manufactured from special optical glass to compensate for chromatic aberration, preventing color fringing and loss of focus, resulting in clear sharp images. The aspherical lenses further enhance the outstanding performance of the lens and are also a key factor for the remarkably compact dimensions of the camera.
Compact and Powerful
As a true alternative to a digital SLR - which is often cumbersome and costly, the compact V-Lux 1 leaves nothing to be desired. The camera provides superb picture quality thanks to its high quality 12x zoom lens and with 10 megapixel picture resolution, you'll be able to produce poster size enlargements with incredible detail. The camera is also remarkably compact considering it's capabilities, and the ergonomically designed body makes camera use practical and comfortable.
Automatic and Creativity Photography
The Leica V-Lux 1 offers completely intuitive, fast and reliable operation for taking quick snapshots. However the camera also offers a full range of manual controls including exposure and focus controls for more creative image applications. Furthermore, the focusing and zoom ring on the lens allows you to concentrate fully on the scene, without having to delve into camera menus.
Razor-sharp Images
The integrated image stabilizer (MEGA O.I.S.) prevents camera shake from blurring your images. This is especially important when shooting in the super-telephoto range, Shooting interiors or when taking twilight hand-held shots. The MEGA O.I.S system means that your pictures will always be razor-sharp and precise without using a tripod.
Integral flash
The Leica V-Lux 1 is equipped with a built-in multifunctional flash which offers functions such as Auto, Auto/SlowSync or red-eye reduction. Manual adjustment of the flash power is possible in a range of ±2 aperture stops. External TTL flash units can also be used on the flash shoe of the Leica V-Lux 1. Such versatility makes the V-Lux 1 a true "high-end" camera in the compact camera class.
Faster and More Accurate
With the V-Lux 1 you will be ready for action at all times. The autofocus is very fast with extremely precise focusing, and the image data acquired is processed and stored by the image signal processor in a flash so you'll capture those unique moments with spontaneous shots.
2.0" Swiveling Display and Electronic Viewfinder
The high resolution 2.0 inch LCD can swivel through 180° both horizontally and vertically. This makes framing your images much easier - even when shooting at a worm's or bird's eye view. The Leica V-Lux 1 is also equipped with a high resolution electronic viewfinder. The advantage this electronic viewfinder has over the optical viewfinder is that key functions such as white balance, depth of field and even a real-time histogram appear directly in the field of vision before taking the picture.
In the Box
Leica V-Lux 1, 10.0 Megapixel, 12x Optical/4x Digital Zoom, Digital Camera
  • 512MB Secure Digital (SD) Card
  • BP-DC5-E Lithium-Ion Rechargeable Battery
  • Battery Charger
  • USB Cable
  • A/V Cable
  • Lens Cap
  • Hand Loop
  • Software CD-ROM (Adobe Photoshop Elements 4.0 (PC)/3.0 (Mac), (QuickTime Movie Player)
  • User Guide
  • 2-Year Leica Limited Warranty
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description

    Leica V-Lux 1 Specs

    Camera Type Advanced Digital Camera
    Image Quality
    Image Sensor 1/1.8" 10.4 Megapixel CCD sensor
    Effective Resolution 10.1 million pixels
    Color Depth 24-Bit RGB
    Color Modes Cool, Warm, Black & White, Sepia
    Image File Formats RAW
    JPEG (Fine, Standard)
    Recorded Resolution 4:3 Aspect Ratio
    3648 x 2736
    3264 x 2448
    2560 x 1920
    2048 x 1536
    1600 x 1200

    3:2 Aspect Ratio
    3600 x 2400
    3248 x 2160
    2560 x 1712
    2048 x 1360

    16:9 Aspect Ratio
    3584 x 2016
    3072 x 1728
    1920 x 1080 (HDTV standard)

    Video Recording QuickTime Motion JPEG with Audio
    848 x 480 @ 30 fps
    848 x 480 @ 10 fps
    640 x 480 @ 30 fps
    640 x 480 @ 10 fps
    320 x 240 @ 30 fps
    320 x 240 @ 10 fps
    Clip length limited only by available memory
    Audio Recording QuickTime Audio
    Up to 5 seconds record time with image, up to 10 Seconds Dubbing
    Lens Type Leica DC Vario-Elmarit Aspherical Lens
    Optical Zoom 12x
    Lens Focal Length 7.4mm - 88.8mm (35mm - 420mm equivalent)
    Digital Zoom 4x
    Minimum Focus Distance 2" (5cm)
    Maximum Aperture f/2.8-3.7
    Optical Image Stabilization Yes (MEGA O.I.S. - 2 modes)
    Accessory Lens/Filter Mount 55mm with lens adapter
    Focus Control
    Focus Type Contrast Type Auto Focus (1 point, 1 point high speed, 3 points high speed, 9 points, Spot) with AF assist Lamp
    Focus Modes Auto, Manual Focus (menu select or ring), Continuous AF (On/Off)
    Focus Range Normal: 11.9" (30cm) - infinity
    Macro/Manual: 2" (5cm) - infinity wide
    Exposure Control
    Sensitivity Automatic (ISO 100-800)
    Selectable ISO (ISO 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600)
    High-sensitivity Mode (ISO 3200)
    Shutter Type Not Specified
    Shutter Speed 60-1/2000 second
    Aperture Range f/2.8-3.7 - f/11.0
    Exposure Metering Multiple field measurement (middle integral, spot measurement)
    Exposure Modes Auto, Program AE, Aperture Priority AE, Shutter Priority AE, Manual, Exposure Compensation (+/- 2EV in 1/3 EV Steps), Backlight Compensation, Auto Bracketing AE +/-1/3EV-1EV Step, 3 Frames), AE Lock
    White Balance Modes Automatic, daylight, cloudy skies, shadow, halogen light, flash, 2 manual settings, white balance fine tuning (-1500 to +1500 K in 150 K steps)
    Scene Modes Portrait, Sport, Night-time landscape, Night-time portrait, Fireworks, Parties, Snow, Self-portrait, Food, High-sensitivity mode, Baby 1, Baby 2, Soft skin, Candlelight, Starry skies, Landscape
    Built-in Flash Yes (Auto, Red-Eye Reduction, Slow-sync, Forced On/Off)
    Flash can operate with or without pre-flash.
    Effective Flash Range 1' (0.3m) - 23' (7.0m) @ ISO Auto
    External Flash Connection Hot Shoe
    External Flash Control Simple Synchro or TTL with select Flash Units
    Start-Up Time 0.7 seconds
    Shutter Lag 0.009 seconds
    Time Between Shots 0.8 seconds
    Burst Capability 1 or 2 fps up to 5 frames (Standard) or 3 frames (Fine)
    0.7 fps continuous up to card capacity
    Self Timer 10 seconds or 2 seconds
    Interval Recording No
    Date & Time Stamp Yes
    Memory & Power
    Built-in Memory No
    Compatible Memory Cards Secure Digital (SD) Card
    Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card
    MultiMediaCard (MMC)
    Recording Capacity Not Specified
    Battery Type BP-DC5-E Rechargeable Lithium-Ion Battery (7.2 v, 710 mAh)
    Power Adapter AC Adaptor (Optional)
    Computer Interface USB 2.0 (Full Speed)
    Direct Print Capable Yes (PictBridge)
    Remote Control Wireless Remote (Optional)
    Video Output Yes (NTSC & PAL)
    Web-Cam Capable No
    System & Software Requirements Windows 98/98SE, 2000, ME, XP
    Macintosh OS 9.x, OS X
    Viewfinder 0.44" Color Electronic Viewfinder (EVF) (235,000 pixels)
    LCD Display Swiveling 2.0" TFT color display (207,000 pixels)
    Language Options English, Spanish, Japanese, Chinese (Traditional), German, Italian, French
    Playback Options Single image thumbnail display (9 or 25 up), Calendar display, Zoomed playback (16x max), image rotation (except for Raw), Slide Show, Favorite Pictures, Resizing, Trimming, Picture Adjustment (Contrast, Sharpness, Saturation, Noise Reduction), Image Protection, Aspect Conversion, DPOF Print Setting
    Dimensions (HxWxD) 3.3 x 5.5 x 5.6" (85 x 141 x 142mm)
    Weight 23.6 oz (668g) without battery

    Leica V-Lux 1 Reviews

    V-Lux 1 Digital Camera is rated 4.6 out of 5 by 41.
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Sweet Sweet V Lux 1 As a still like film best photographer, I find the V-Lux 1 functions and menu options very intuitive. I prefer the zoom function being the usual twist of the lens with the left hand over a zoom switch on the body. This is just one of the 'muscle memory' functions that Leica has retained and I enjoy it very much. I have owned several digital cameras and am very pleased with my purchase. Additional features I like: * stabilization is in the body * ability to attach the Vlux to a spotting scope to increase depth of field/function ( photograph grasshopper eyelashes? ) * fits in the hand nicely * optics are outstanding
    Date published: 2008-04-15
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect (if you liked the old days) The manual controls for both focus and zooming, as well as for exposure, work exactly like a manual camera in the film era. I would have loved a camera with the large zoom and manual controls, with optional automation using 35 mm film. I'm not sure if the Leica is any better than the largely identical Panasonic FZ-50, but with the extras thrown in by both Leica and B&H, it is only about 30% more expensive than the Panasonic, and that is worthwhile since Leica's are backed up by Leica Co., and hold resale value longer. I bought this to replace my Leica CL, and plan to use it similarly, though I might use it instead of an SLR as well.
    Date published: 2008-10-30
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Outstanding Camera ... Fast, smooth and safe transaction purchasing from B&H. No call-back nonsense trying to upgrade the sale. I have had the Leica V-Lux Camera for about 3 weeks and it is all and more than I expected. It is a quality camera with exceptional build fit and finish and picture-taking features. The internal software programming is great contributing to its ease of use. I also own a Panasonic Lumix with a Leica lens and while I am also very pleased with that camera, Leica takes it one step further. Bottomline is that while Leica may be more expensive than most cameras, there is no substitute for quality. Will definitely buy again from B&H.
    Date published: 2009-01-12
    Rated 2 out of 5 by from Great lens, cheap body The good: the user interface is pretty easy, the lens is great and the pictures are sharp. The bad: the body just feels cheap, the battery compartment opens by itself very easily (my Leica has to have tape on it!), and the LCD is entirely too tiny. Bottom line: This camera has the potential to be great but falls short. It is a good camera but the price tag and Leica name should warrant a much better camera! I am actually a little surprised they would put their name on this body.
    Date published: 2008-02-22
    Rated 3 out of 5 by from disappointing This camera has one of the best lenses I have ever seen. But to have put it on a mediocre camera body as they have is a real downer. The controls are not convenient, not easy to access, or to understand. The manual is little help. The shutter and focus lag are so long as to be worthless for nature photography. With a good body such as those offered by Nikon, Canon and others this camera could eclipse the industry. There would be NO competivive offering. Leica has missed a real opportunity.
    Date published: 2008-02-13
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Get some great shots This camera provides a lot of possibilities, but still suffers from all the problems digital cameras of the non SLR variety have. Namely low light issues. It is very light weight for the zoom range and the lens offers great performance. Speed was not an issue for me. In terms of great shots to not so great shots it performed as I would have expected but no where near as well as cameras with interchangeable lenses. In essence the choice I made was to use a camera on a vacation that would allow me not to carry so much gear. The benefit of 100% view finder coverage should not be underestimated for creative photogrpahy. The ease of set up and flexibility of this camera is pretty great all being revealed.
    Date published: 2008-11-18
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Twice the price it should be Being a field biologist specializing in the study of animal behavior, I wanted a camera with high resolution (10 mp), good optical zoom (at least 10x), minimal delay between shutter release and recording on the CCD, fully manual focus option, video capacity, and reasonably light weight for carrying on my neck through the day. The Leica V-Lux 1 fits the bill as no heavy DSLR could possibly do. Similar advancedcameras by Canon, Fujifilm, and Nikon have less resolution or smaller zoom, or both, as well as other deficiencies. The Leica has proven to be a wonderful camera with which I have (in only a few months) taken an estimated 4000 photos -- but the price is a bit to high. Before explaining , I report one annoying and initially alarming problem with the camera. In the field, in the low humidity environment of Patagonia (Chile), drizzle began and while the camera was under my rain jacket and did not get wet, the CCD went screwy. At first it put a purple haze over everything (viewfinder or LCD, viewing or playback, and permanent on the photo when downloaded). This aberration then turned to black and white horizontal lines. Nothing in the manual troubleshooting section mentions this problem, although p. 5 deals with condensation fog, which I suppose this was an unusual version of. The camera was unusable for half a day, and then the patient spontaneously recovered from its strange malady.Returning to the rip-off, according to Wikipedia, all the Leica digital cameras (with two trivial exceptions) are actually made by Panasonic in Japan. The excellent lens systems appear to have been developed jointly by the two companies. Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ50 is nearly identical with the Leica V-Lux 1, with obvious differences in external finishes and labels, and hidden differences in the firmware, so that Leica processes white balance, noise reduction, etc. differently. If you don't want to pay for the Leica label, buy the Panasonic version at approximately half the price. (Yes, the pricing is really that different.)If you've already naively bought the Leica as I did -- or decide you want it despite the small difference from the Panasonic -- at least be aware that all the accessories are interchangeable (and again, the Panasonic versions run about half the price). Third party batteries and chargers are cheaper yet. Furthermore, Leica apparently does not post their manuals online for download, so go to Panasonic website and get a pdf of the Lumix DMC-FZ50.Finally, I could not find that either Leica or Panasonic markets a teleconverter lens for the V-Lux/Lumix although such are mentioned on pp. 97-99 of the manual. (Yes, even the pagination is the same for the Leica and Panasonic manuals.) However, Olympus makes a 1.7x teleconverter with 55 mm diameter screw mount that fits the V-Lux/Lumix. That combines for a zoom of over 20x, and works just fine with my Leica. Expertise: Amateur, with many published wildlife photos Previous Equivalent Item Owned: Last of many digital cameras was the Olympus C-750 Items I Recommend: Extra battery (and perhaps even an extra charger)
    Date published: 2008-01-03
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from V-Lux 1: a deception? My disappointment, bordering on contempt, with reference to Leica's introduction of the V-Lux 1 is immeasurable. Not because of the inadequacies of the camera. The camera is truly excellent for what it is: a consumer friendly, sophisticated machine, easy to operate, reliable, producing superb images, and all this at an affordable price, somewhat under $900. The problem is this is not a Leica, this is the Panasonic DMC-FZ50 Lumix. The lenses are identical, the bodies are identical and, perhaps not surprisingly, performance is also identical. The price, on the other hand, for the camera wearing the less famous name is one half of what is sold as the Leica V-lux 1, that is under $450.I have spent the day comparing the V-Lux1 and the FZ50. I was hoping, very much hoping I would find a difference. Identical scenes photographed within minutes by both cameras, at various ISO settings, under various light conditions, outdoors, indoors, portraits, objects...Identical treatment in Photoshop, identical printer...and, unfortunately, identical images. No difference. None! If a subtle difference exists in color handling this is not evident even under close scrutiny.I am not exactly new to photography. I am 70 years old, I have been photographing since my teens. Since I was born in Europe I was raised on Leicas, first on my father's venerable Leica F ( which I still have, a magnificent camera in perfect operating condition ), then an M3, a Leicaflex, an M6 and an R9. Through these cameras I learned to trust and admire Leica products, so when the digital revolution came about I had no hesitation to explore the Digilux series. I used all three, the Digilux 3 ( another Panasonic camera, by the way, but costing almost double ) I still have, much to my sorrow. I also own a Canon 20D and 40D, unpretentious and superb cameras within the range of affordability.I feel I have been deceived along with many others who, like me, put their trust in the reputation of a company which, for well over eighty years, was a leader in this field. Nearly a century of honor and reputation of excellence put at risk...for a profit margin? Inconceivable. Expertise: Advanced amateur Problems Encountered: I use the ugly sister, that is the FZ50, but since the two cameras are identical I think I can speak for both of them. No problems. so far. Previous Equivalent Item Owned: Digilux 1, 2 and 3 Items I Recommend: Nothing in mind other than a good camera case
    Date published: 2007-12-29
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