Lecia Compact Questions: C Lux Travel vs D 109

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by ross_lipman, Jan 2, 2022.

  1. I have a D Lux 5 Titanium and note that I can upgrade to a C Lux Travel or D109 for very little extra cost after selling the D5..

    I use the 5 as a pocket camera for mostly casual night time and small group event pictures. Low light and ISO 400+ performance is lacking. Flash is good for fill in use when snapping pics of people or anything inside of 10-15ft. Image quality is so-so, rendering cool color direct from the camera, and requiring a good amount of LR post processing.

    Both the CLux and 109 would be better for low light and high ISO performance. CLux has a modest flash, 109 requires an external flash that creates a bulky package that may not fit into a pocket very well. 109 lens seems to be of better quality, and is faster, opening up to 1.7-2.2 depending on distance and focal length, while the CLux opens to 3.3...this is a big difference in low light situations. However the 109 lens is limited to about 75mm (35 equv) on the tele end, while the CLux goes out to 300mm+ (!!).

    Sensor sizes are very different. 109 has a larger 4/3 sensor, but lower resolution (12mp). CLux has a sensor of just over half the size, but higher resolution (20mp), and benefits from about 6yrs of sensor development.

    My questions are:

    Which camera has better low light and higher ISO performance ?
    Which sensor delivers better pictures ?
    Which lens gives more accurate color ?

    Thank you !

    --Nikon D7100 // Leica IIIc / Canon P / Zorki 3m
  2. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Administrator Staff Member

    My D Lux 109 was a Gift and is an excellent little camera. By no means a pocket camera unless you have rather large ones, but very sophisticated and capable. It is complex and takes some effort to learn all of its tricks. On a trip, you would be well served to bring the manual. It is my "City / Town" camera better than half the time. Cam't offer help on comparison, only have the one.
  3. The C Lux and D Lux 109 are substantially identical versions of the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS200 and DMC-LX100, which means that is substantially easier finding full reviews of the Panasonic stablemates than the Leica brand versions. I would recommend looking at the dpreview.com reviews of those Panasonic cameras. I don't own either of these cameras but given the specifications, they are significantly different from each other in terms of function and capabilities. The D lux, with its manual controls and fast lens would be more enjoyable to use (IMHO), while I would probably like the C Lux for family vacations (if I still did those). Given the multiple aspect ratio feature of the D Lux, the camera does not record images over the entire 4/3 sized sensor, so the imaging area is only about 1.5x larger than the C lux. The C lux uses the Sony 1" BSI sensor which is used on a number of Sony, Canon, and Panasonic/Leica compact cameras. Best of luck deciding.
  4. Update. both the 109, and C Lux have much better high ISO/low light performance. Most would say go for the one with highest resolution, in this case the C Lux. However it is not that easy. I read mult reviews of both cameras, and their Panasonic equivalents. and was able to see that the older 109 has more realistic color rendition than the newer model. Tele reach and more MP are not always better.... I like the 109, and would buy one today if it had a built in flash. I will use my D Lux 5 one more time then make a decision. Thanks !
  5. Sandy Vongries

    Sandy Vongries Administrator Staff Member

    The flash for the D Lux 109 is very tiny, and locks firmly in place. Given care, it could be left on the camera, or the very small pouch tucked in virtually any pocket. A remarkable and capable little camera.

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