We just started testing cameras, and our test bench v0.7 is rather simplistic, so we decided to launch without text in the test boxes. If you have any suggestions on what to improve, let us know here. As we gather your suggestions, we plan on making more frequent changes to our methodology and we'll be able to add text to the reviews in the near future.

Leica V-Lux 5 Camera Review

Tested using Methodology v0.7
Reviewed Jun 29, 2021 at 10:25 am
Leica V-Lux 5 Picture
7.2
Travel Photography
7.8
Landscape Photography
8.0
Sport & Wildlife Photography
7.0
Vlogging
7.1
Studio Video
4.0
Action Video
Body Type
Bridge
Mirrorless
Yes
Sensor Size
1-inch
Tested Lens
Built-In Lens

The Leica V-Lux 5 is a bridge camera with a zoom lens. It's very similar to the Panasonic LUMIX FZ1000 II, with the same built-in Leica DC Vario-Elmarit lens but a slightly different body design and more premium Leica branding. Like other bridge cameras, it trades the larger sensor size of an interchangeable lens camera for the convenience of a built-in lens with longer maximum zoom, allowing you to shoot close-ups or zoom in on faraway subjects. It delivers impressive image quality, with fantastic dynamic range and minimal visual noise, even at higher ISO levels. It's also decent for video, with good video stabilization and autofocus performance in FHD. However, it performs noticeably worse in 4k.

Our Verdict

7.2 Travel Photography

The Leica V-Lux 5 is decent for travel photography. It takes high-quality images with little noise at higher ISO levels, helpful when taking photos in dimmer conditions. Its wide focal length range also gives you a lot of flexibility for framing. However, it's not the most portable or lightweight camera to take on the go. Also, while its autofocus system is good with tracking moving objects, it struggles with face tracking. On the upside, it has a decent advertised battery life in photos, and the screen gets bright enough to overcome glare in sunny conditions.

Pros
  • Impressive image quality.
  • Autofocus is good at tracking objects.
  • Decent battery life.
Cons
  • Poor face tracking.
  • On the bulky side.
7.8 Landscape Photography

The Leica V-Lux 5 is good for landscape photography. Its image quality is impressive, with fantastic dynamic range to bring out highlights and lowlights in landscapes. It feels well-built and comfortable to use, and it has eight customizable buttons that you can set to your preference. Its screen also gets bright enough to overcome glare, which is great when shooting on sunny days. However, it's not the most portable to take to remote shooting locations.

Pros
  • Impressive image quality.
  • Fantastic dynamic range.
  • Feels well-built.
  • Relatively long focal length.
Cons
  • On the bulky side.
8.0 Sport & Wildlife Photography

The Leica V-Lux 5 is great for sport and wildlife photography. It has a fairly long zoom range to help you capture far-off subjects. Unfortunately, its face-tracking performance is disappointing, but it does a good job of tracking moving objects. The image quality is great, with minimal noise at higher ISO levels, making it suitable for lower light conditions. Finally, its shooting speed is impressive, with a fast continuous shooting rate and virtually instant buffer empty time when shooting in JPEG.

Pros
  • Great shooting speed.
  • Impressive image quality.
  • Autofocus is good at tracking objects.
  • Relatively long focal length.
Cons
  • Poor face tracking.
7.0 Vlogging

The Leica V-Lux 5 is decent for vlogging. It's not the smallest or lightest camera, but it has a fully articulated screen to help you monitor the video while self-recording. Its battery life is also superb for video, although this can vary with settings and usage. It also has a good video stabilization feature in FHD to smooth out camera shake while walking, but unfortunately, it doesn't offer digital video stabilization in 4k. The video quality is okay overall. Also, its autofocus system is decent at tracking faces in FHD, but it does a poor job in 4k.

Pros
  • Decent overall video quality.
  • Fully articulated screen.
  • Good FHD video stabilization.
Cons
  • Lackluster autofocus system.
  • On the bulky side.
  • No 4k video stabilization.
7.1 Studio Video

The Leica V-Lux 5 is decent for studio video. It delivers decent overall video quality, and the menu system is fantastic and easy to use. It has many helpful inputs for studio video, including a microphone jack, a remote control port, and an HDMI port that supports clean HDMI output for connecting an external recorder without any overlays, but it lacks a headphone jack. Unfortunately, the autofocus system is just okay in FHD and performs poorly in 4k.

Pros
  • Decent overall video quality.
  • Supports clean HDMI output.
Cons
  • Lackluster autofocus system.
  • No headphone jack.
4.0 Action Video

The Leica V-Lux 5 isn't for action video. It's bulky and isn't designed for use with an action cam mounting accessory. Also, it's not water-resistant, although we don't currently test that. It also can't shoot video in 120 or 240 fps to generate smooth slow-motion footage.

Pros
  • Decent overall video quality.
Cons
  • Lackluster autofocus system.
  • Not designed for action mounts.
  • Not water-resistant.
  • Can't record 120 or 240 fps.
  • 7.2 Travel Photography
  • 7.8 Landscape Photography
  • 8.0 Sport & Wildlife Photography
  • 7.0 Vlogging
  • 7.1 Studio Video
  • 4.0 Action Video
  1. Updated Jun 29, 2021: Review published.
  2. Updated Jun 25, 2021: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
3.7
Design
Portability
Height 3.8" (9.7 cm)
Width 5.4" (13.8 cm)
Depth 5.4" (13.8 cm)
Volume
112.7 in³ (1,847.3 cm³)
Weight
1.81 lbs (0.82 kg)
Weight With Lens
1.81 lbs (0.82 kg)
7.5
Design
Build Quality

  • The body is made of sturdy plastic
  • Inputs and outputs are covered by robust rubber flaps
  • Buttons are flatter and wider than those on the Panasonic LUMIX FZ1000 II
  • Lens ring turns smoothly but offers nice resistance
  • Command dials are smooth and easy to use, and unlike the Panasonic FZ1000 II, the top back dial feels nicer to use
  • Zoom toggle is sensitive to make use easy, but not so much so that you can't control it
  • The screen and hinge mechanism feel very sturdy
  • The flash mechanism feels somewhat flimsy
  • Has a directional pad to navigate the menu as opposed to a dial, which may make it more difficult to navigate depending on personal preference
  • Shoulder strap hooks are made of plastic, as opposed to metal hooks on the Panasonic LUMIX FZ1000 II

Design
Body
Water Resistance
No
Rugged
No
Hot Shoe
Yes
Customizable Button
Yes
Command Dial
3
Tripod Mount
Yes
Lens Mount
No Lens Mount
Built-In Flash
Yes
Design
In The Box

  • Leica V-Lux 5
  • Shoulder strap
  • Lens cap
  • Lens cap string
  • Lens hood
  • USB-A to Micro-USB cable
  • AC adapter
  • 1x Leica BP-DC12 battery
  • Instruction manual

8.5
Design
Ergonomics & Comfort
Hand Grip: Small Hand
Yes
Hand Grip: Medium Hand
Yes
Hand Grip: Large Hand
Yes
Hand Grip: Extra-Large Hand
Yes

  • The grip is large, with rubberized thumb rest and front grip, and holding the camera feels secure
  • Three command dials, including lens ring, make it easy to adjust exposure parameters
  • Most buttons are easy to reach
  • Rubberized eye cup around the viewfinder feels comfortable, with a lot of space between the viewfinder and the body
  • Screen is fully articulated
  • In AF mode, the lens ring is used to adjust zoom, and it does so in increments, making it easy to reach your desired focal length
  • Can't change SD card while mounted on a tripod due to placement of slot

9.0
Design
Menu System
Guide Mode
Yes
App Name
Leica FOTOS App

  • Menu system is easy to navigate using the directional pad or touchscreen
  • Quick menu gives you access to commonly used settings like ISO, drive mode, and exposure compensation
  • Can be a little difficult to see the highlighted option in the Q menu, as it's only underlined by a thin red line
  • You can customize up to eight buttons to suit your preferences, along with five customizable tabs on the screen
  • Display option allows you to check shooting mode, aperture, shooting speed, ISO, exposure bias, white balance, flash setting, drive mode, autofocus mode, focus mode, file format, Wi-Fi, and more all at once, though you can't see through the viewfinder or screen while looking at this display
  • Guide mode can explain certain features and functions to novice users and is easily toggled by pressing the 'Display' button when in the menu

Design
Viewfinder
Type
Electronic
Advertised Coverage
100%
Advertised Resolution
2.36 million dots
Advertised Magnification
0.74
9.4
Design
Screen
Screen Articulation Type
Fully Articulated
Screen Max Brightness
894 cd/m²
Advertised Resolution
1.24 million dots
Size
3.0" (7.5 cm)
Touchscreen
Yes
Design
Sensor
Sensor Type
MOS
Advertised Effective Pixels
20.1 MP
Processor
Unspecified
Extended ISO Minimum
80
ISO Minimum
125
ISO Maximum
12,800
Tested Firmware
Ver.2.0
7.4
Design
Battery
Battery Type
Leica BP-DC12
USB Charging
Yes
Use When Charging
No
Advertised Battery Life In Photo
360 photos
Tested Battery Life In Video
131 min
7.1
Design
Lens
Lens Type
Built-in
Maximum Aperture
2.8 - 4.0
Max Aperture (Full Frame Equivalent)
f/7.6
Minimum Focal Length
9.1 mm
Maximum Focal Length
146 mm
Max Focal Length (Full Frame Equivalent)
400 mm
Luminance
79.6%
Light Falloff
67.2%
Photo
Photo
Photo Features
JPEG File Format
Yes
RAW File Format
RWL
Shutter
Electronic and Mechanical
Minimum Shutter Speed
60 s
Maximum Shutter Speed
1/4,000 s
Silent Shooting
Yes
HDR
Yes
Focus Peaking
Yes
Zebra Pattern
Yes
Histogram
Yes
Time Lapse
Yes

Note: When using the mechanical shutter, the shutter speed ranges from 60s to 1/4000s. When using the electronic shutter, the shutter speed ranges from 1s to 1/6000s.

8.2
Photo
Shooting Speed
Low Speed Continuous
2 fps
High Speed Continuous
11 fps
Silent Shooting Continuous
11 fps
Raw Buffer Size
31 RAW Photos
JPEG Buffer Size
104 JPG Photos
Buffer Empty Time
0 s

Note: When shooting in RAW format, the buffer empty time is 24s.

7.2
Photo
Autofocus
Advertised Coverage
N/A
Advertised Focus Points
49
Manual Focus Assistance
Yes
Face Detection Distance
80" (203 cm)
Eye Detection
Yes
Face Tracking Success Rate
42.5%
Object Tracking Success Rate
75.2%

Note: This camera can capture images using all of its focus points at once, allowing for the 'Post Focus' and 'Focus Stacking' features. These features, respectively, let you change the focus point of an image after it's already been taken or combine all the images taken using different focus points, resulting in an expanded focus range. However, we don't currently test these functions.

7.8
Photo
Image Stabilization
In Body Image Stabilization
No
Minimum Shutter Speed Achieved
1/13 s
8.3
Photo
Image Quality
Dynamic Range At ISO 100
9.76 f-stops
Color Accuracy (dE2000)
10.99
JPEG SNR 18% At ISO 800
38.61 dB
JPEG Sharpness At ISO 800
2.965 pixels
JPEG SNR 18% At ISO 1600
37.76 dB
JPEG Sharpness At ISO 1600
3.266 pixels
JPEG SNR 18% At ISO 3200
35.59 dB
JPEG Sharpness At ISO 3200
3.639 pixels

ISO Setting Sample Photo
ISO 100 Photo
ISO 200 Photo
ISO 400 Photo
ISO 800 Photo
ISO 1600 Photo
ISO 3200 Photo
ISO 6400 Photo
ISO 12800 Photo
ISO 25000 Photo

Note: Unlike most cameras, the Leica V-Lux 5 doesn't shoot at ISO 25600. Also, ISO 100 and ISO 25000 are only available as extended ISO levels, so the results may not be fully comparable with other cameras we've tested for those settings.

6.6
Photo
Luminance Noise
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 100 39.72 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 200 37.82 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 400 35.45 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 800 32.78 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 1600 30.13 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 3200 26.99 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 6400 24.07 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 12800 20.76 dB
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 25600 N/A
RAW SNR 18% At ISO 51200 N/A

Note: Unlike most cameras, the Leica V-Lux 5 doesn't shoot at ISO 25600. At ISO 25000, there's 19.93 dB of noise.

Sample Gallery
Sample Gallery
The Skate Park

Format Link
JPEG Photo
RAW Photo

Sample Gallery
The Polish Church

Format Link
JPEG Photo
RAW Photo

Sample Gallery
The Studio

Format Link
JPEG Photo
RAW Photo

Sample Gallery
The Stairway

Format Link
JPEG Photo
RAW Photo

General Video
General Video
Video Feature
Full HD Video
Yes
4k Video
Yes
6k Video
No
Clean HDMI Output
Yes
Advertised Max Chroma Sampling Over HDMI
Not Advertised
Advertised Max Bit Depth Over HDMI
N/A
Log Picture Profile
No
Recording Light
No
General Video
Audio
Audio Test Sample
Audio Recording
Stereo
Microphone Level Display
Yes
General Video
Video Exposure Assistant
Zebra Line
Yes
Histogram
Yes
Waveform
No
General Video
Recording Format And Compression
MP4 H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC
Yes
MP4 H.265 / HEVC
No
MOV H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC
No
MOV H.265 / HEVC
No
AVCHD H.264 / MPEG-4 AVC
No
All-I Compression
No
4k Video
5.8
4k Video
4k Frame Rate
240 fps In 4k
No
120 fps In 4k
No
60 fps In 4k
No
30 fps In 4k
Yes, with a Crop
24 fps In 4k
Yes, with a Crop
Crop At Max Available fps
1.42 x

Note: This camera has a longer equivalent focal length (37mm to 592mm) when recording in 4k compared to FHD, as a result of the 4k crop factor.

4.9
4k Video
4k Video Autofocus Performance
Eye Detection In 4k
Yes
Face Detection In 4k
Yes
Face Tracking In 4k
5.1
Object Tracking In 4k
3.0

Note: We tested autofocus performance using settings that deviate from our usual methodology to account for this camera's focal length. As such, the results may not be fully comparable with other cameras we've tested.

6.1
4k Video
4k Video Stabilization
In Body Video Image Stabilization In 4k
No
Walking Test In 4k
14.22 pixels/frames
Running Test In 4k
40.13 pixels/frames
Crop
1 x

Note: This camera's digital stabilization feature isn't available in 4k.

7.3
4k Video
4k Internal Recording
Bitrate Maximum In 4k
94 Mbps
Bitrate Minimum In 4k
94 Mbps
Chroma Sampling In 4k
4:2:0
Bit Depth In 4k
8 bits
Record Time Limit 29 min
Overheat Recording Interruption
No

Note: This camera doesn't have any adjustable bit rate settings.

7.1
4k Video
4k Video Quality
Low Light Capability In 4k
7.0
Test Scene Extract In 4k
8.0
4k Rolling Shutter
5.44°
Full HD Video
5.5
Full HD Video
FHD Frame Rate
240 fps In FHD
No
120 fps In FHD
No
60 fps In FHD
Yes
30 fps In FHD
Yes
24 fps In FHD
No
Crop At Max Available fps
1 x
6.6
Full HD Video
FHD Video Autofocus Performance
Eye Detection In FHD
Yes
Face Detection In FHD
Yes
Face Tracking In FHD
7.1
Object Tracking In FHD
5.0

Note: We tested autofocus performance using settings that deviate from our usual methodology to account for this camera's focal length. As such, the results may not be fully comparable with other cameras we've tested.

8.4
Full HD Video
FHD Video Stabilization
In Body Video Image Stabilization In FHD
No
Walking Test In FHD
5.92 pixels/frames
Running Test In FHD
9.52 pixels/frames
Crop
1.1
7.4
Full HD Video
FHD Internal Recording
Bitrate Maximum In FHD
27 Mbps
Bitrate Minimum In FHD
20 Mbps
Chroma Sampling In FHD
4:2:0
Bit Depth In FHD
8
Record Time Limit 29 min
6.8
Full HD Video
FHD Video Quality
Low Light Capability In FHD
7.5
Test Scene Extract In FHD
7.1
FHD Rolling Shutter
4.46°
Storage And Connectivity
Storage And Connectivity
Storage
Card 1 Slot
SD Card UHS-I
Card 2 Slot
No 2nd Card Slot
7.8
Storage And Connectivity
Input / Outputs
USB
Micro USB
HDMI
Micro (Type D)
Headphones
No
Microphone
Stereo
Wi-Fi
Yes
Bluetooth
Yes

Note: This camera also has an input to connect a remote. Note also that the microphone jack is located on the other side of the camera (not pictured above).

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The Leica V-Lux 5 only comes in one color variant: 'Black'. You can see our unit's label here.

If you come across another variant, or your Leica V-Lux 5 doesn't correspond to our review, let us know, and we'll update the review.

Discussions