Camera company Leica has recently unveiled the Leica X-U, a camera that is created to be "simply unstoppable" as opposed to previous models that focused on picture quality and finesse.
For potential Leica customers, the Leica X-U presents another option when it becomes available later in the month. Other good choices for a Leica camera are the Leica X Vario and Leica X2.
How do these three Leica cameras stack up against one another, and which one should customers look to acquire?
All three options, being part of the Leica X line of cameras, are able to create exposures with very low image noise, accurate color differentiation and high dynamic range. The Leica X-U, the Leica X Vario and the Leica X2 all pack the large, professional APS-C format CMOS sensor, which features a high resolution of more than 16 megapixels, which the company said guarantees extraordinary brilliance, natural color rendition and impressive resolution on even the finest details, even in low light situations.
However, the zoom range of the Leica X Vario from wide-angle to telephoto gives photographers several options for composition, whether for indoor shots, landscape photos or close-up portraits.
The Leica X Vario is capable of shooting full-HD video, at 1,920 x 1,080 pixels and 30 full frames per second. The videos can then be saved in the Internet-friendly MP4 format and the directly uploaded to mobile devices or social media without the need for conversion.
The Leica X-U adds a 1,280 x 720 pixel resolution option for times when HD videos are not needed. The Leica X2, however, does not offer a video feature.
The Leica X2 is the lightest of the three, weighing in at only 345 grams (12.2 ounces). This makes it much easier to carry around on hectic shoots, as the Leica X Vario and the Leica X-U both come in weighing almost double at 635 grams (22.4 ounces).
The new Leica X-U was built with adventure in mind, as the camera is shockproof and dust-sealed so that photographers will not have to worry about the device while taking pictures in extreme conditions. It is also waterproof to depths of up to 15 meters and can last as long as 60 minutes in dives, with the camera even sporting an underwater snapshot button. The Leica X-U also has a fast prime lens that has an underwater protection filter.
The new Leica X-U also has TPE armoring, a tough protective cover for its LCD screen, aluminum top and bottom plates and a failsafe double locking system for its memory card slot and battery compartment.
Compared with the Leica X Vario and the Leica X2, the Leca X-U will be the choice for outdoor photographers.
Being of the same Leica X line, the three cameras share several features, especially in terms of image quality. However, the Leica X-U, the Leica X Vario and the Leica X2 all cater to different lifestyles.
The Leica X-U is meant for the rugged photographer, while the Leica X Vario is meant for professional photographers. The Leica X2 seems to be the one that will cater most to casual photographers.
Of course, the final decision still rests on the customer.