Leica Camera AG has just announced the release of its much-teased (and leaked), latest compact digital camera, the “X Vario”. Boasting what Leica calls an “unusually large”, 16.2 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, the Leica X Vario packs a 3.0 inch LCD screen within an aluminum and magnesium enclosure. Wrapped in -what else- leather trim, this camera utilizes a fixed 28-70mm format lens (35 mm equivalent) with an aperture range of f/3.5-6.4 and ISO of 100-12,500. In addition to its -more or less expected- capabilities, the X Vario captures 1080p and 720p video at 30 fps (60 fps at 720p). Not shabby. Besides, the -made in Leica Camera’s headquarters in Germany- $2,850 camera is aimed at people that want high performance in a compact body.
But then again, the X Vario appears to be a Leica X2 with a slow, variable focal length lens ( its fixed lens is disappointingly slow, with an aperture range of f/3.5-f/6.4).
Expectedly though, the Leica X Vario is distinguished by an intensely focused design concept. Its handy form, linear design and the premium materials used in its construction are reminiscent of the Leica M-System. For instance, the top plate is machined from solid aluminium in the same process used for the Leica M. This, in combination with its robust metal construction and premium high-grip leather trim ensures that the X Vario is a classic Leica camera in terms of both look and feel. Further showcasing Leica M DNA, the X Vario features an intuitive handling concept with clearly laid out functions. The user-friendly operation of the menu interface guarantees rapid access to an impressive range of automatic and versatile manual setting options. Combined with the ease of switching between manual and automatic control, it allows photographers to concentrate completely on composing their subjects and choosing the decisive instant to shoot in any situation. The dials on the top plate provide grip when setting the shutter speed and aperture. Moreover, changing the plane of focus, the white balance, and other imaging parameters allows photographers to consciously influence the look or mood of their images. In Live View mode, the generously sized high-contrast, 3-inch monitor offers photographers complete control at all times and a detailed view– even in bright surroundings.
max resolution: 4928 x 3272, effective pixels: 16.2 megapixels, sensor type: CMOS, sensor size: APS-C (23.6 x 15.8 mm), ISO: 100 – 12500 (25600 with boost), screen size: 3.0 inches, shutter speed: 1/2000 sec – 30 sec, continuous drive: 3 or 5 fps
format: MPEG-4, H.264, speaker: mono, microphone: stereo, resolution: 1920 x 1080 (30 fps), 1280 x 720 (60 fps)