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Old Aug 13, 2003, 5:53 AM   #1
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Default Lauren's Leica D-Lux first look

Another brick in the growing line of boutique digicams, the Leica D-Lux is the camera of choice with those with more money than brains.

The shape of the D-Lux is phenomenal. I mean it. At first glance, it is almost laughable how little design appears to have gone into the shape of the camera, but when holding it and shooting pictures, it becomes clear that it is a very well designed shape. The box with round corners fit snugly in my hand, leading to at least the impression of better stability. I really liked the shape of the D-Lux.

But shape is not everything.

The power button is a little slider bar on top of the camera. It is totally retro and quite out of place considering the other 'normal' digicam buttons on the back.

The imaging sensor is only 3.2MP. Now this might not be so bad, after all it's got a Leica lens, but take a gander at the price and it's not exactly a great deal. Over $1,000 for this thing? 3MP???

The zoom is a standard 3x optical and 3x digital zoom. But I keep coming back to that price. Is it really worth spending that much for this when you could get a Sony or Panasonic with Leica lens and more zoom for half that?

The price. The price... YGBFKM. Like the Contax before it, the Leica D-Lux is aimed at people who have the gnawing anxiety that their current camera is subpar and that only by owning a Leica can those anxieties be quieted.

It's got a beautiful wooden case which you can keep the camera in so that it doesn't get exposed to the environment. After all, if you spend that much on a digital camera, you aren't going to want to take the chance of getting it soiled.

Conclusion: Leica just keeps proving P.T. Barnum right with every sale.
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Old Sep 8, 2003, 8:00 AM   #2
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Do you have any objective comments about the actual performance of this camera? Your post suggests you own one of these cameras, or did you just use a demo' version?

I would be very interested to hear of anyone's actual photographic experiences with a D-Lux.

I am considering buying a D-Lux and therefore may fall into the "brainless" category; however, I normally base my decisions on quality and proven results - anyone got any?
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Old Sep 8, 2003, 6:12 PM   #3
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The format of my Contax first look is a little different, but I mention how I perform my review.


It is not meant to be anything more than a little humorous (?!) respite from the everyday "which camera should I buy" posts.

That said, I wasn't impressed with the quality of the prints that accompanied the camera (they have a little 5x7 booklet of prints for each camera sitting next to the models). I wasn't disappointed, but I wasn't impressed. The real test would be to take another look at the prints at 8x10 or higher and compare to another 3MP starting with Panasonic (same lens) then going down the line: Canon, Sony, Oly, or Fuji.

One thing I did think of while looking at the camera was that if I were to spend so much on a digicam, I would seriously think about getting a dSLR with an interchangeable lens system. I guess size may begin to become a consideration though.

On a completely unrelated note, the saying is "more dollars than sense". The right wording must have slipped my mind.
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