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Leica Announces V-Lux 3 superzoom

By dpreview staff on Dec 8, 2011 at 14:00 GMT

Leica has announced the V-Lux 3, a 24x superzoom with 12.1MP CMOS sensor. The camera has a 4.5 - 108mm F2.8-5.2 image stabilized lens, equivalent to 25-600mm in 35mm film terms. The camera is also capable of 1080p60 video capture with stereo sound and 12fps shooting at full resolution. Unlike the otherwise similar Panasonic DMC-FZ150, the Leica comes with both Photoshop Elements and Premier Elements. It will be available from January 2012. We've been using a production V-Lux 3 for a few days and have prepared a samples gallery that will be published shortly.

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Press release:

NEW: LEICA V-LUX 3

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.

Additional Images

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Discuss in the forums

Comments

Total comments: 133
12
Photomonkey
By Photomonkey (Dec 8, 2011)

All you Socialist haters, what's a millionaire got to do to get some love? I am sure there were some OWS people decrying Leica and Hasselblad and cursing Michael Reichmann as a stooge for the 1% cameras. ;)

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 10, 2011)

Pls, folks -- let us not use "LEICA" and "HASSELBLAD" in the same sentence, shall we?

0 upvotes
Tuka108
By Tuka108 (Dec 14, 2011)

Absolutely! Leica clones downmarket cameras - Hasselblad does not.

0 upvotes
steve_hoge
By steve_hoge (Dec 8, 2011)

Unless they emit "FZ150" in the EXIF data then RAW support is going to be broken in the MacOS at least until the next RawCamera update. An example of "rebranding" biting back.

0 upvotes
SeeRoy
By SeeRoy (Dec 8, 2011)

"Emit" vs "Omit"
Compare and contrast.

2 upvotes
James Pilcher
By James Pilcher (Dec 9, 2011)

Between the two words you've chosen, "emit" is proper in this context; unusual but proper. Read closely. Compare and contrast. Sheesh.

0 upvotes
jj74e
By jj74e (Dec 8, 2011)

What's the point of these....honestly. To me it just makes Leica seem like a lazy, unattractive brand that tries to oversell itself, but without actually having that much market presence or advertising for that matter. Their rangefinders might be revered, but for someone looking for a bridge camera, Leica is just an overpriced out of the blue Panny.

1 upvote
Hauer
By Hauer (Dec 8, 2011)

Probably at some rediculous pricing again...

2 upvotes
Mr Fartleberry
By Mr Fartleberry (Dec 8, 2011)

Funny I can't find a dollar sign in my search. Is it .... cheaper than the Sigma? ... More outrageous than the D3X? ... Available in Paris Hilton pink?

2 upvotes
OneGuy
By OneGuy (Dec 9, 2011)

But of course. With the genuine Paris Hilton Pink Lens it is worth a lot more. Why didn't I think of that!?

0 upvotes
panacealater
By panacealater (Dec 8, 2011)

Surely you're not suggesting the wealthy should not have purchasing options that reflect their status. Why should they be confined to the price constraints many of us respect?

While I do not share the attraction to their efforts to remain a viable manufacturer by supporting the needs of their traditional customer base, I see no reason to disparage them.

Now, if someone gave me one for Christmas, I wouldn't exchange it. lol

1 upvote
jj74e
By jj74e (Dec 8, 2011)

If someone gave me one for Christmas, I'd sell it and use the money to buy some lenses or some new bodies, depending on how much this thing actually is.

Sure, the wealthy shouldn't be confined. But then again, even a lot of wealthy people can't be that dumb to just throw away money like that. Among the point and shoot crowd, the Panasonic FZ150 is already considered a pricey, top of the line camera.

3 upvotes
Tom Bird
By Tom Bird (Dec 8, 2011)

If someone gave me one for Christmas, I'd sell it and use the money to buy some lenses or some new bodies, ...

--> why not give the money to the poor, you capitalist!!?

1 upvote
jj74e
By jj74e (Dec 8, 2011)

Uhhh first of all, I was just trying to make a point- that with the money you need to buy this camera, you could be buying multiple other things that give you more use for your money. Hm....a pricey point and shoot or a couple new lenses or bodies?

Second of all, it's a Christmas present, and I'm going to enjoy it. I do help the poor, but like any other person who needs to live a decent life, I SHOCKINGLY spend money on myself as well. I hate when people bring up "Oh, why didn't you buy a cheaper electronic device and give money to the poor?" Well, why did you buy new clothes instead of old ones? Why did you buy a two story house and not one? Why did you buy a new car and not a used one? Why don't you take 3 minute showers everyday instead of 15? Point being, who's to say where the line stops? If everyone gave all they had, we'd all be in poverty, and if some people can live a decent life, why not let them as long as they're doing something to help the poor?

3 upvotes
M1963
By M1963 (Dec 8, 2011)

Sometimes I wonder whether people who buy bridge cameras know they're actually buying a point-and-shoot. And why buying this when they can get the Panasonic for much less?
What's worse, this time Leica didn't even bother to personalize the camera (other than the badge). That chrome (?) embellishment on the grip makes it look cheap!

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
4 upvotes
pixel_colorado
By pixel_colorado (Dec 8, 2011)

I totally agree with you...I purchased the FZ150 and kept it for almost 4-weeks and returned it. Besides the zoom, it did NO better than my Panasonic P&S that has a 12x zoom and fits into my pocket. If people are going to purchase a big bridge camera, they should do themselves a favor and get a real DSLR.

2 upvotes
dmanthree
By dmanthree (Dec 8, 2011)

Well, I bought the FZ150 knwing full well it's a P&S, but one with some very nice features, like the lens, ergonomics, 1080p movies, swivel LCD, EVF, and so on. And the image quality isn't bad at all. Not up to SLR standards by any stretch, but pretty good. It's a very nice travel package. How much gear would you have to carry for an SLR package with coverage from 25mm to 600mm? I'm guessing it would be pretty heavy.

1 upvote
pixel_colorado
By pixel_colorado (Dec 8, 2011)

@dmanthree...yes the old debate on the weight of lenses. To be honest an 18-250/270 would work for most applications and you can still crop for some extra reach. I rather have awesome quality and performance than a longer reach.

0 upvotes
gerry328
By gerry328 (Dec 9, 2011)

The Nikon Coolpix P500 with a 36X zoom (22.5 to 810mm equivalent at 35mm) also 1080p 30fps video is a better deal than either the Panasonic or Leica.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 10, 2011)

It really looks rather like krap, frankly.

0 upvotes
SF Photo Gal
By SF Photo Gal (Dec 8, 2011)

At least with the D-Lux/LX collaboration they make an effort to change the exterior enough to make it LOOK and feel different. Here, all they do is slap the Leica logo on it. Sad.

1 upvote
Lost in Time
By Lost in Time (Dec 8, 2011)

Actually, I think that this is a good thing. It seriously devalues the Leica brand and image. Ultimately the only effect is to drive the brand down market, potentially meaning that Leica's more serious cameras and lenses will have to become cheaper.

It is hard to understand who would buy one of these. It certainly makes a statement about the buyer - though probably not what Leica might hope for.

1 upvote
wkay
By wkay (Aug 30, 2012)

remember Cadillac Cimarron?

0 upvotes
VadymA
By VadymA (Dec 8, 2011)

Yes, this is a rebadged FZ150, but Leica has developed the most important component for it - wonderful lens. Together with powerful processor and chip from Panasonic it made the best super-zoom on the market. So I think Leica fully deserved a fair share of success associated with this model, at least on par with company's contribution to it. So I see nothing wrong with Leica catering a very narrow niche market of Leica owners with rebadging a product that represents great share of Leica R&D. It doesn't take anything from Panasonic customers and delivers a new product to Leica customers making overall market share of Leica-Panasonic bigger. I am sure Panasonic also benefits from Leica sales in many ways. For example this announcement greatly contributed to my decision to by FZ150 over other super-zooms.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 1 minute after posting
2 upvotes
deleted_081301
By deleted_081301 (Dec 8, 2011)

Panasonic design and make all the panleica lenses ......all leica do is approve them and take the licence money......No leica R&D money was spent on this product

7 upvotes
M Jesper
By M Jesper (Dec 8, 2011)

lol, no they didn't.

2 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 10, 2011)

VadymA -- you MUST work for Leica. Oh, you do?

0 upvotes
wkay
By wkay (Aug 30, 2012)

confirmation that Vlux3 is a $650 sucker trap

0 upvotes
Plasmoic
By Plasmoic (Dec 8, 2011)

...wonder if even this statement is a rebadged one (that Panasonic used for fz150:) )

0 upvotes
gareddg
By gareddg (Dec 8, 2011)

Was trying to decide whether to buy a Panny FZ-150 or wait to see how the new Fuji X-S1 would test out. Now that Leica has put their logo on the 150 will send my order to Amazon for the 150 ASAP

0 upvotes
wetsleet
By wetsleet (Dec 8, 2011)

I wonder what those stick on Leica badges and red dots are worth on the black market. In terms of 'value-added', as a percentage of the derisory cost of production, they must be pretty impressive.

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 10, 2011)

I saw a box of self-adhesive red dots on sale at Staples Office Supplies for US$1.00 the other day. If that's any hint.

0 upvotes
Henry M. Hertz
By Henry M. Hertz (Dec 8, 2011)

this is a rip off....

the M9 price is a joke already but this is just rebranded....

4 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 10, 2011)

Germany needs your $$$$ and €€€€ to help out the Greeks and Portuguese, don't you know?

0 upvotes
dmanthree
By dmanthree (Dec 8, 2011)

I always wondered why someone would buy these rebadged Pannys. The software bundle isn't that great, so is the prestige of that red dot worth that much (assuming Leica prices it as usual: much higher)? I'll stick with my FZ150.

"Another pleasant valley Sunday, here in status symbol land!"

2 upvotes
Island Golfer
By Island Golfer (Dec 8, 2011)

You're undoutedly correct. Lieca had no way to jump into the digital market on its own, so they teamed up with Panasonic. Lieca got the camera and Panasonic got the glass (Lumix and the M9 are the same deal). The only difference between the Panasonic and the Lieca is a $250 software package that Lieca puts into its camera.

0 upvotes
magneto shot
By magneto shot (Dec 8, 2011)

but M9 has nothing to do with Pana....

1 upvote
TheCyberKnight
By TheCyberKnight (Dec 8, 2011)

This is a rebadged DMC-FZ150.
Why would someone buy this? Seriously.

7 upvotes
Chaitanya S
By Chaitanya S (Dec 8, 2011)

Some stupid people with deep pockets buy Leica compacts to show off that they own a Leica. I have seen people buying C-Lux and D-Lux series of compacts.

6 upvotes
James Pilcher
By James Pilcher (Dec 9, 2011)

Some stupid people with deep anxiety buy Panasonic compacts to show off...well...nothing. I have seen people buying FZ and ZS series of compacts and they get nothing but a Panasonic.

0 upvotes
Dan Ortego
By Dan Ortego (Dec 8, 2011)

As a former Leica owner, this is a great addition although I believe it will be priced in typical Leica fashion.

0 upvotes
a1shot
By a1shot (Dec 8, 2011)

Of course or it would not be a Leica..
But you don't have to buy IT""

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Deleted1929
By Deleted1929 (Dec 8, 2011)

What does it give you that the FZ-150 does not ?

Leica embarrass themselves every time they release one of these re-badged Panasonics. Not because there is anything wrong with the Pansonics, but because they're not contributing anything to it apart from their magic red dot.

Very sad.

5 upvotes
harry harris
By harry harris (Dec 8, 2011)

Has it not been the case with previous rebadgings (ie, LX3) that the firmware's been tweaked as well?

0 upvotes
David G Peterson
By David G Peterson (Dec 8, 2011)

Looks like a nice $350.oo camera.

1 upvote
M Jesper
By M Jesper (Dec 8, 2011)

Photoshop- and Premiere Elements are not cheap so having those included already adds value a good bit. But if one's not going to use those anyway i'd recommend the Panasonic indeed.

0 upvotes
KDM
By KDM (Dec 8, 2011)

The Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements bundle is £60 on Amazon UK.
The rebadged camera may be poor value, but says much for the Panasonic. One poster mentioned that PannyLeicas have better warranties, but Panasonic UK are offering 5 years on the FZ48 and FZ150.

1 upvote
Peter Sanders
By Peter Sanders (Dec 9, 2011)

Am an old man now, been in photography 62 years,
I will buy the new Leica, why? Because over many long
years my Leica has never let me down, whether film or
digital. You get what you pay for, and as a sage put it,
comparisions are odious.
nokton.

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Dec 10, 2011)

Yeah, a "great addition." To the list of cameras that never should have been born.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 133
12