A fellow photographer friend and blog reader asks:
Have you any thoughts about the Leica D-LUX 4 in comparison to the Canon G11 Which would be the better buy? Thanks
I do have thoughts, yes. And of course am happy to share them.
Although both feature full SLR controls (eg Av and Tv modes, etc), and both have good sensors without too many megapixels, these cameras are aimed at a different audience.
The Leica is really a typical “little point and shoot”. Few buttons and much hidden in menus. It’s really a Panasonic of course. I teach this type of camera often, and see the drawbacks well:
- Convoluted menus.
- Much needs to be done through those menus.
- Slower operation.
- Easy to hit the wrong button, even with the few buttons it has.
The benefits: the Leica badge, the lens, and “light and small and inconspicuous”.
Now the G11. I recently updated the Henrys G10/G11 course. I love the G11 because it feels much more like an SLR. The G11’s build quality is excellent.
It has easy to use buttons for things like exposure compensation, ISO, etc. Although it too has a few “compact-type” (i.e. slow to operate, confusing, and easy to accidentally hit) controls and menus (I’ve never understood why you need two different menus; now you have three), at least there are fewer such.
The G11 has an articulated LCD. It also has a viewfinder. It is a lousy little almost-unusable viewfinder, but that is the key: “almost”. It works and the Leica needs a flash-shoe mounted viewfinder add-on. Call me crazy, but I consider a viewfinder a necessity.
As an SLR shooter, control is important to me. And since I consider the G11 the next best thing to an SLR, I would wholeheartedly recommend that as my choice.
My verdict: Unless the small size or the Leica name are essential to you, go with the G11 if you know anything about cameras.