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Leica V-Lux 5 Review - Performance

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Leica V-Lux 5 Performance

The performance section is where we look at the image quality performance of the camera. Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.

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Leica V-Lux 5 Sample Photos

Sample Photos - Colours and detail are both good with the Leica V-Lux 5 handling wide dynamic range well, too. HDR mode has brought detail out in the highlights at the end of the tunnel shot while not losing shadow detail in the tunnel itself and close-ups are sharp with the centre of flowers remaining in focus. Exposure is reliable, although we occasionally used exposure compensation to darken images. This was a personal preference, and on looking back at the photos on the computer, this was mostly unnecessary. 

 

Leica V-Lux 5 Lens test images

Lens Performance - There's plenty of reach on the Leica V-Lux 5 with an equivalent zoom range of 25-400mm and detail remains sharp right through the zoom range, perhaps with just a slight drop off in detail at the longer end of the telephoto lens. Colours are also good and the camera handles scenes with mixed lighting levels well. You can clearly read the writing on the road sign as well as the posters on the wall when at full zoom and these were captured handheld, too. With a 3cm close focusing distance, it's possible to get some very detailed close up shots, with pleasing background blur (bokeh). 

Purple fringing was noticeable when taking photos of trees, with areas of high-contrast. However, we didn't spot any signs of vignetting, and any distortion is automatically corrected in the camera. The lens is also very resistant to flare, with it difficult to produce any in the photos we took. 

The aperture available on the lens changes as you zoom, so at 25mm equivalent the brightest aperture available is f/2.8. As you zoom this is reduced, so at 30mm the aperture is f/3.0, and this continues as you zoom further towards the telephoto end of the lens, with the aperture becoming f/4.0 at 170mm (equivalent) and beyond.

 

 

Leica V-Lux 5 Outdoor images

We used the Leica V-Lux 5 for a spot of bird spotting, and for taking photos of wildlife on the east coast, where we spotted Gannets (at Bempton Cliffs), and seals. In these situations, the 400mm equivalent telephoto reach of the camera helped to get frame filling shots of wildlife. For the most part this was enough reach, but in some situations, it would have been nice to have further optical zoom available. Focus was generally reliable, although for the best results, we took a number of shots, and selected the best. 

 

 

Leica V-Lux 5 ISO test images

ISO Noise Performance - As always, we recommend sticking with the lowest ISO rating possible and anything between ISO100-400 you'll be fine with. Noise starts to become more obvious at ISO1600 / ISO3200, and ISO12500 is where it can really be seen. ISO25000 is best avoided all-together. There is reduced dynamic range when shooting at ISO80.  

 

 

Leica V-Lux 5 White-balance test images

White Balance Performance - Auto White Balance (AWB) under mixed lighting is a little on the warm side as is the white balance tungsten preset. The AWB mode under Fluorescent lighting isn't as warm but it is dark in places while the AWB Cool Tungsten setting produces the best result. AWB under Tungsten is again, a little on the warm side and, as the name suggests, so is the AWB Warm Tungsten setting. 

 

 

Thornwick Bay Panoramic | 1/2500 sec | f/4.0 | 9.1 mm | ISO 125
Thornwick Bay Panoramic | 1/2500 sec | f/4.0 | 9.1 mm | ISO 125

Panorama mode - The camera features an automatic panoramic mode, where you simply press the shutter release button and pan the camera from one side to the other. Results are very good, and well stitched together with a medium resolution (12mp) image produced.

 

Video - The Leica V-Lux 5 offers the same, excellent, video recording capabilities as the FZ1000 II. This means you get high quality 4K video recording, at 30,25,24fps, and the optical image stabilisation helps keep video stable and steady. When using the full optical zoom, you'll benefit from the use of a tripod or something solid to hold you camera, but even when used handheld, the camera gives good results. When recording 4K video, the focus range changes to 37 - 592mm (equivalent) due to the crop factor, giving you more reach. 

There's a microphone socket on the side, should you want to use an external microphone, and you can record up to 29 minutes of video. You can also record FullHD video at 120/60fps for high-speed video, and slow-motion playback. Continuous focus performed well despite the subject and zoom changing during recording. You can find additional Leica V-Lux 5 videos on the ePHOTOzine YouTube Channel

 


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Photographs taken using the Leica V-Lux 5

Costa de Adeje, TenerifeMystical ImageLyme Park FollyDon't look at me...Gannet defending nest from SeagullPair of Gannets at BemptonGannets at Bempton Cliffs

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Comments


pablophotographer 9 1.9k 407
1 Aug 2019 12:20AM
Leica made in China?
You make me wonder where the Panasonic cousin is made...

I find the USB charging option a convenient solution. My replacement battery is coming through the post.

Take a note of the serial number and save it. Mine (in the Panasonic cousin) got erased by time.

steveb127 3 1 United Kingdom
6 Aug 2019 4:11PM
Will we be saying a 'con' of no usb-c in the review of every camera which doesn't have one, or were you just looking to pick holes ?
6 Aug 2019 11:05PM
Micro USB charging is compatible with my other Panasonics, my Android phone and my Kindles. Why on earth would I want to add an incompatible cable?
joshwa Plus
10 927 1 United Kingdom
7 Aug 2019 8:39AM
Hi,

USB-C cables can be inserted both ways up (therefore easier to connect), is generally more solid than MicroUSB, is generally quicker (USB3 rather than USB2), and MicroUSB is being used by less and less in new devices.

Thanks
Josh
steveb127 3 1 United Kingdom
7 Aug 2019 11:37AM
@ Joshwa - yes USB-C can be inserted either way, as to being more solid, pure conjecture, there's no peer reviewed data on that - but back to my original question - Will we be saying a 'con' of no usb-c in the review of every camera which doesn't have one, or were you just looking to pick holes ? You should not cherry pick the comments you are willing to respond to.
joshwa Plus
10 927 1 United Kingdom
7 Aug 2019 12:48PM

Quote:@ Joshwa - yes USB-C can be inserted either way, as to being more solid, pure conjecture, there's no peer reviewed data on that - but back to my original question - Will we be saying a 'con' of no usb-c in the review of every camera which doesn't have one, or were you just looking to pick holes ? You should not cherry pick the comments you are willing to respond to.



Yes we may put it as a con for all future reviews, although considering most new cameras are now using USB-C, we may not need to. (Depending if there are not an excessive number of other negatives).

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