Leave it to Leica to rebrand a recent Panasonic camera, tack on its iconic red dot and then likely charge a premium. Such is the case with its "new" V-Lux 3 digital superzoom, which is essentially its take on the venerable Lumix FZ150 we spent some hands-on time with back in August. To recap, this shooter features a 12.1 megapixel CMOS sensor, Leica's DC Vario-Elmarit 4.5 - 108 mm f/2.8 - 5.2 ASPH lens (that's 25 - 600mm for you full-frame buffs), 1080p AVC HD video recording at up to 60fps with stereo sound and an a77-like 12fps continuous burst mode (albeit using manual focus). On back, you'll find an articulating 3-inch LCD loaded with a 460K pixel resolution and a 0.2-inch EVF, both of which feature nearly 100% frame coverage. While there's no word price, you can surely expect the V-Lux 3 to cost a few Benjamins more than its Lumix counterpart when it hits shelves in January. Hey, at least you can say it's a Leica, right?
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NEW: LEICA V-LUX 3

The versatile all-in-one camera for creative stills and video

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)

Resolution

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 × 480

High 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

Flash modes:


AUTO, AUTO with pre-flash (red-eye reduction), AUTO with slow sync and pre-flash, on, off

Flash range (with ISO AUTO and

shortest 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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Leica rehashes Panasonic's Lumix Fz150 as the V-LUX 3, because 'image' matters