Leica V-Lux 3 camera is now officially announced

The new Leica V-Lux 3 camera ($949) is now official:

Solms, Germany (December 8, 2011) - Leica Camera AG presents the Leica V-Lux 3, a new compact digital camera with an extensive range of features. The camera is extremely versatile, making it ideal for almost all photographic situations. For photographers shooting landscapes, architecture, sport, travel, portraits or wildlife, the V-Lux 3 incorporates an enormously flexible lens. The Leica DC Vario-Elmarit 4.5 - 108 mm f/2.8 - 5.2 ASPH. 24-fold super-telephoto zoom lens covers a wide range of focal lengths equivalent to 25–600 mm in 35 mm format. The newly developed 12.1-megapixel CMOS image sensor guarantees exceptional image quality for all applications. A truly universal solution for creative photographers looking for an all-in-one camera, the V-Lux 3 also features extensive broad range of video options and offers video quality comparable to premium-range camcorders.

“The Leica V-Lux 3 combines exceptional performance with the handy size of a compact camera. It offers a vast range of focal lengths and covers almost all photographic situations that usually require the use of a camera system. The V-Lux 3 is therefore an attractive alternative to entry-level DSLR cameras with interchangeable lenses,” says Peter Kruschewski, Product Manager for Digital Compact Cameras at Leica Camera AG.

The Leica V-Lux 3 features a very impressive range of video functions, capturing full-HD video in AVCHD format with 1920 × 1080 pixels and 60 full frames per second. This 1080p60 video format not only guarantees the perfect rendition of fast movement in outstanding detail but is also ideal for conversion to alternative resolutions and refresh rates. The entire 24-fold zoom range is available during video recording while an integrated stereo microphone with an electronic wind noise filter guarantees a crystal-clear soundtrack.

One of the fastest consecutive shooting cameras in its class, the V-Lux 3 incorporates a high-speed burst-shooting capability: bursts of 12 frames per second at full resolution, or 60 frames per second at a resolution of 3.5 MP.

A reliable aid to photographers in the precise composition and assessment of images, the 3" LCD display with 460,000 pixel resolution delivers an extremely bright and clear view. The monitor screen of the V-Lux 3 can be twisted and turned in almost any direction, opening up entirely new horizons for image composition from even the most unusual angles. When shooting stills or video from above their head or down close to the ground, photographers using the V-Lux 3 always remain in full control.

The design of the Leica V-Lux 3 is characterized by a compact form and extremely simple handling. The camera’s integrated handgrip keeps it steady and its light weight allows for one-handed shooting. All controls are clearly laid out and simple to use. For instance, video recording can be started quickly and easily at the touch of a button on the top deck of the camera.

Supporting Leica Camera’s commitment to an uncompromised customer experience, the Leica V-Lux 3 comes complete with a two-year warranty. The camera also is supplied with a comprehensive software package, including Adobe® Photoshop® Elements and Adobe® Premiere® Elements. The image-processing software Adobe® Photoshop® Elements offers users options for viewing, organization and administration in addition to a wide range of image-processing solutions. Adobe® Premiere® Elements is especially designed for video processing and offers optimum features for processing videos recorded by the V-Lux 3 in AVCHD format, enabling the creation of professional audio and video effects. Both programs are available as free downloads from the Leica Camera website after registration of the camera.

The Leica V-Lux 3 will be available from Leica Camera dealers beginning January 2012.

Technical data LEICA V-LUX 3 
Lens: Leica DC Vario-Elmarit 4.5 - 108 mm f/2.8 - 5.2 ASPH., equivalent to 25–600 mm in 35 mm format
Zoom optical/digital: 24×/4×
Distance settings
Operating modes: Normal/Macro, continuous autofocus (on/off), AF tracking
Metering modes: Face recognition, AF tracking, 23-field, 1-field, spot (flexible/scalable)
Distance-settings range
P/A/S/M: 30 cm (wide angle)/2 m (telephoto)–∞
Macro/Intelligent/ Auto/Video: 1 cm (wide angle)/1 m (telephoto)–∞
Scene modes: May differ from the ranges above.
Sensor: 1/2.33"CMOS with 12.8 MP (effective 12.1 MP)
Still image: JPG: 4:3 format: max. 4000 × 3000 pixels (12 MP), 3:2 format: max. 4000 × 2672 pixels (10.5 MP), 16:9 format: max. 4000 × 2248 pixels (9 MP), 1:1 format: max. 2992 × 2992 pixels (9 MP)RAW: 4:3 format: max. 4000 × 3000 pixels (12 MP), 3:2 format: max. 4000 × 2672 pixels (10.5 MP), 16:9 format: max. 4000 × 2248 pixels (9 MP), 1:1 format: max. 2992 × 2992 pixels (9 MP) 
Video: AVCHD: 1920 × 1080 (60p)/1280 × 720 (60p)MP4/30 fps: 1920 × 1080/1280 × 720/640 × 480High speed: 320 × 240 pixels, 220 fps (motion JPEG)
File format/compression rate
Still image: RAW/JPEG (based on Exif 2.3 standard)/DPOF-compatible
Video: AVCHD/MP4/QuickTime Motion JPEG
Exposure control
Exposure modes: Program (P), aperture priority (A), shutter speed priority (S), manual (M)
Exposure compensation: Steps: 1/3 EV increments, range: ±3 EV
Metering modes: Multi-field, center-weighted, spot
White balance: Auto, daylight, cloudy, shade, halogen, custom
ISO sensitivity: Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200
Shutter speeds: 60 s–1/2000 s(Starry-sky mode: 15 s, 30 s, 60 s)
Continuous shooting/burst rate: (Max. number of frames/max. resolution)
With central shutter: 2 fps: 100/12 MP, 5.5 fps: 100/12 MP,12 fps: 15/12 MP
With electronic shutter: 40 fps: 50/5 MP, 60 fps: 60/3.5 MP
Video recording: 2/5/10 fps: 40/3.5 MP
Flash modes: AUTO, AUTO with pre-flash (red-eye reduction), AUTO with slow sync and pre-flash, on, off
Flash range (with ISO AUTO andshortest focal length): Approx. 30 cm–9.5 m / Approx. 11.8 in – 31.18 ft
Self-timer: 2/10 sec. delay
Monitor: 3.0" TFT LCD, approx. 461,000 pixels, coverage: approx. 100%, automatic brightness adjustment
Viewfinder: Color LCD, approx. 202,000 pixels, coverage: approx. 100%, adjustable by ±4 dioptres
Microphone/speaker: Stereo/mono
Recording media
Built-in memory: Approx. 70 MB
Memory cards: SD, SDHC, SDXC
Interfaces: Digital: USB 2.0 (high speed), data from PCs cannot be transferred to the camera with the USB cable, mini HDMI cable (Type C). Analog video/audio signals: NTSC/PAL FBAS (menu setting option), audio line-out (mono), dedicated jack (8-pin). MIC/REMOTE: 2.5 mm jack
Printer compatibility: PictBridge
Operating temperature/humidity: 0–40°C/10–80%
Rechargeable lithium-ion battery
Voltage/capacity: 7.2 V/895 mAh (410 images, CIPA standard)
Dimensions (W × H × D): 124 × 81 × 95 mm / Approx. 4.88 x 3.19 x 3.74 in
Weight: 540 g / Approx. 19.04 oz (including memory card and battery)
Package includes: Camera with lens cap, battery charger (Leica BC-DC 9), battery (Leica BP-DC 9), lens hood, carrying strap, AV cable, USB cable, CD with detailed instructions
Software: Adobe® Photoshop® Elements®, Adobe® Premiere® Elements® (available as free download after registration)
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  • Ben

    I kinda get that they re-brand the LX5 which is a nice little camera but I never got this line. I mean how desperate are people to have a red dot (or how much money do they have to waste). With a 1/2.33″ sensor, I am pretty sure its image quality will not outshine the V-Lux 2 by much (although MPs dropped to 12), and that was pretty borderline IMO… underwhelmed.

  • zd

    If the V-lux can do 12 fps, presumably its buffer can hold as much to wait for the write to card. How comes the flagship M9, which costs several times more, can only hold 7-8 shots in its buffer? How expensive can memory be in this already-stratospheric M9?

    • I don’t get this whine. The M is not a DSLR and not mean for drive-by papparazzi. Who cares if it can buffer more than a shot or two?

      • zd

        I love my M9. Wouldn’t trade it for any DSLR. I’ simply disappointed that such a high end camera is missing common features from a much cheaper one.

        It’s not drive by shooting with the Leica, but there are times that I wished it worked faster. Like in my son’s high school graduation. On top of that is the slow write to card. It takes 3 – 4 seconds / DNG even if I haev a Sandisk Extreme Class 10 inside. What’s that for? Chimping, a major benefit of digital.

        But again… you can argue that the chimping wasn’t available in the film days, so get over it.

        This is modern time, the M9 is a high end digital camera. It’s no slouch optically, but the electronics need to keep up with the time.

        • CK Dexter Haven

          Firstly, “chimping” may have been a cute term when it was initially coined, but it’s a worn, trite, meaningless expression for those who perpetuate it.

          And, YES, there was “chimping” “in the film days.” It was called Polaroid. And it was employed by just about every commercial/fashion photographer. Photographers who worked with huge budgets, on sets with huge crews. Working with editors and art directors who DEMANDED perfection. Where you couldn’t miss/lose a shot or it cost you your career.

          But, sure, play it cute. Icons and innovators like Irving Penn and Albert Watson — they ‘chimped.’

          Now, though, any diletante with a red dot thinks he’s superior because he waits for ‘the decisive moment.’ Another BS phrase. But, the Leicaphiles fall for it at every turn. They swallow every bit of chum the German company tosses in their direction. This Panasonic is no different. Some dumb schmuck buys it, pays a premium for it, and somehow believes he’s better than the guy next to him with the Panasonic version around his neck. This is nothing more than class separation. Desperate and sad people need to show they’re different from the desperate and sad people immediately next to them. “I captured it with a Leica!” Good for you, son. Good for you.

          • regular


          • max

            My word, you’re a bore

  • I had the previous model of this camera & honestly, it’s not worth the money. I now use the Panasonic FZ 150 & that works fine for me in a pinch. I don’t understand why Leica bothers with putting their name on stuff like this….

  • Craig

    Explain to me again who buys a camera like this.

    • Actually you will be surprised – several readers asked me when will that camera be announced. They wouldn’t be doing it if it doesn’t sell.

    • MJr

      I can see people liking this. The samples look great for a all-in-one, and with the included Photoshop- and Premiere Elements included you’re all set in one buy. And so the Leica badge is mostly a placebo, it works so why not. Great deal for its target audience. Looks alright too.

    • Me! Me!

      Just kidding. Where is M10? 😉

      • MJr

        So i can get the M9 cheap 😉

  • What we all have been waiting for! Right? 😉

  • CHD

    Oh look, another Panasonic, but more expensive. At least it comes with PS Elements…..but don’t I already have CS5?? Hey, at least I get the red dot…

    Big yawn…..

  • Nobody Special

    Can’t wait to see it at the new Leica Boutique Store in Melbourne!!!

    I’ll be flying in on my jet for the partay!!!! I hope they have it in stock!!!

  • M!

    It appeals to those who don’t want a proper Leica but want the red dot.
    This type of camera is good for vacation – all in one. (minus waterproof).
    Having said that, the specs is similar to the Fuji X-S1. but then again, X-S1’s iso is spec at 12800. the V-Lux3 is at an ancient 3200.

    • MJr

      Having 12800 doesn’t mean it’s better at 3200, but i don’t know.

  • kmhb

    pro V-Lux3
    der pixelreduzierte sensor sorgt für eine deutliche und vor allem sichtbare BQ-verbesserung*.
    bildvergleiche lumix FZ100/FZ150, siehe u.a. bei imagine resource oder im “colorfoto.test” in dem die leica V-Lux2 vs. FZ100 bei der BQ deutlich besser beurteilt wurde. dto auch den vergleich – lumix5 vs. leica D-Lux5 – betreffend.
    unterschiedliche messwerte bei absolut identischen einzelparameter der kamerainternen software und/oder JPEG-engine sind nicht nachvollziehbar. ergo gehe ich davon aus, dass leica gewisse software-änderungen vorgibt oder vornimmt, u.a. im bereich der farbgebung, zumindest wurde ich diesbezüglich immer wieder auf meine V-Lux2 oder D-Lux5 fotos angesprochen.

    ich fotografiere nicht im professionellen bereich, trotzdem habe ich selbst mit der V-Lux2
    bei fest voreingestellter ISO 100 gute bis sehr gute BQ-ergebnisse im vergleich mit 1/2,33 sensorkameras erreicht. (ISO 400 und 800 nur im ausnahmefall)

    bei den sogenannten bridge bzw. all-in-one-kameras sind die erwartungen oft zu hoch. sie sollen alles wie eine APS oder Vollformatkamera können, das ist einfach nicht möglich.

    trotzdem habe ich schon genügend schrottfotos aus diesen bereichen gesehen, aber das kann nicht den kameras angelastet werden, das problem liegt in diesen fällen fast ausschließlich hinter der kamera.

    nochmals zum eigentlichen thema:
    wer die lumix FZ 150 wählt, hat eine gute kamera – ok.
    wer die leica version wählt hat ebenfalls eine gute kamera, ok.

    fazit meiner bisherigen erfahrungen:
    die leica version ist JPEG-mäßig etwas besser abgestimmt, insbesondere was die parameter der farbgrundeinstellungen und der schärfe betrifft.

    mfg kmhb

    ps: die orientierung an leica-M kameras ist hier absolut fehl am platze.

    • Harold Ellis

      fellow german dude, just few notes.
      1) TL;DR
      2) nobody cares
      3) lol

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