Leica X-U

Leica X-U front
  • 16MP - APS-C Sensor
  • 3" Fully Articulated Screen
  • ISO 100 - 12500
  • 1920 x 1080 video
  • 35mm (F1.7-16.0) lens
  • 635g - 140 x 79 x 88mm
  • Announced January 2016
  • Additionally Known as Typ 113
  • Read full specs
  • Alternatives
  • Size Comparison
  • FAQ

Leica X-U summary

Leica X-U is Leica's Large Sensor Compact digital camera first released on January of 2016. The camera houses a 16MP, CMOS APS-C sized sensor and has a full resolution of 4928 x 3264. The camera is referred to as "Typ 113" in some regions.

The X-U places at #44 out of 65 in Large Sensor Compact cameras and over all #358 out of 1465 for digital cameras in our list. Please check out our Advanced camera search to get camera ratings based on your personalized factors.

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Below is a graph of various factors used in the rating system.

Leica X-U history

The Leica X-U comes with a history of related digital cameras. Listed below, you can look at all previous and brand new models along with main features.

ModelVisualizeLensResolutionSensor SizeReleased
Leica-X-U front thumbnailLeica X-U35mm
Leica-X front thumbnailLeica X (Typ 113)
X-U vs X (Typ 113)
Kodak's Tri-X Black-and-White Film Now 30% Cheaper
Leica-X-Vario front thumbnailLeica X Vario
X-U vs X Vario
Leica-X2 front thumbnailLeica X2
X-U vs X2
Leica-X1 front thumbnailLeica X1
X-U vs X1

Leica X-U Pros and Cons

Below is a shortlist of good and bad points of the Leica X-U based on factors that are normally regarded as important in a digital camera.

built-in flash
decent sensor resolution (16 megapixels)
decent sensor size (APS-C)
delivers RAW formats
great battery life (450 shots)
great max aperture (f1.7)
great minimum ISO (100)
great video quality (1920 x 1080 resolution)
manual focus
screen articulates
screen is a decent size (3 inch)
very good screen resolution (920 k dots)
weather sealing
can't change lenses (fixed lens mount)
does not have a selfie friendly screen
does not have phase detect autofocus
focal length is fixed (35mm)
heavier than competitors (635 grams)
missing external mic support
missing HDMI out
missing headphone support
missing Time Lapse recording
no image stabilization
slow frames per second (5.0 frames/s)
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Leica X-U Sensor specifications

The sensor spec in the Leica X-U is 23.6mm x 15.7mm (APS-C). The 371 mm² sensor can capture 4928 x 3264 pixels at aspect ratios of 3:2.

OM System OM-1 Set to Enhance Autofocus

The CMOS sensor boasts 16 megapixels and delivers a standard ISO range of 100 - 12500. RAW photos are supported therefore the user has wider margin for error.

The graphic below displays the X-U's sensor dimensions compared to other popular sizes. The X-U sensor comes with a crop factor of 1.5 and is shown in green.

Leica X-U sensor size European Users Can Now Disconnect Accounts to Comply with EU Regulations

To get an understanding of different aspect ratios, you should refer to the graphic below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Leica X-U dimensions

Leica X-U weighs in at 1.40 pounds (635 grams or 22.40 ounces) and features outer proportions of 140mm x 79mm x 88mm (5.5" x 3.1" x 3.5"). The weight of average Large Sensor Compact camera is 396 grams so the Leica X-U is weightier when compared with other rivals.

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Below is a pic of the Leica X-U next to a soda to help you to have a sense of its scale.

Leica X-U dimensions scale

The top view here will show you the button arrangement on the X-U.

Leica X-U topview buttons dials

Leica X-U Lens specifications

The X-U provides an inbuilt lens providing a fixed focal length of 35mm meaning that you don't have the option to zoom.

At the widest 35mm, the lens will have an aperture of f1.7 which will be helpful in low light conditions and getting a shallow depth of field. It will also enable you to use a lower ISO and get clearer images.

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Leica X-U Connectivity

The X-U has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes

Digital cameras that contain NFC and Bluetooth connectivity are able to be controlled wirelessly with smartphones. You will be able to send files and sometimes change settings without connecting straight to the camera.

Certain applications even stream a Liveview and release the shutter in case you are not near the camera. If the camera features a HDMI out, it can easily be attached to an external screen. Almost all cameras will allow you to recharge the battery pack using the USB port.

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Leica X-U Video specifications

The highest possible video quality in the Leica X-U is 1920 x 1080 and it can capture in MPEG-4 file format. 1080p quality will provide a decent balance between video quality vs file sizes but 1080p is not going to leave you with much room to crop. The camera does not offer a mic and headphone jack which means that you have got no control over your sound. It is perhaps best to order a different camera in case you require decent sound in your videos.

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Leica X-U Weather Sealing

Leica X-U has weather proofing making it a fantastic candidate to use during tough places. This is especially handy in case you are uncertain about the conditions you may encounter during outdoor photography.

Leica X-U Screen and Viewfinder

The Leica X-U is equipped with a 3" fully articulated display boasting a resolution of 920k dots.

Please note that the display screen offers no touch support.

Leica X-U screen and viewfinder Captivating footage reveals once-in-a-lifetime moment with Florida Panther

The ViewFinder details regarding Leica X-U are below:

  • ViewFinder None

Viewfinders can be quite helpful during bright outdoor conditions which can easily make the camera screen washed out and very difficult to view.

Leica X-U Shutter specifications

Leica X-U can shoot continuously at 5.0 frames/s. The maximum shutter speed is 1/2000 seconds.

OM System OM-1 Set to Enhance Autofocus

Leica X-U Flash and Hot shoe specifications

Leica X-U boasts both inbuilt flash and also external flash support.

Leica X-U Autofocusing specifications

Leica X-U boasts just Contrast Based Auto Focus and doesn't have Phase Detect Auto Focus. Phase Detection focusing is more snappier and exact when compared with Contrast Based focusing.

It supports 11 focus points to pick from. Leica X-U comes with manual focusing when needed during low light scenarios or you want to have more precise focusing control.

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Leica X-U Battery life

The battery life (BP-DC8) on the Leica X-U is built to last for 450 shots as per the CIPA measurements making it above standard when compared to its category. The average Large Sensor Compact camera battery life is 301. Leica X-U has the best (450) battery life within this category of cameras.

Listed below is a number of Large Sensor Compact cameras that have the highest battery life:

ModelVisualizeBattery LifeRAWNFCBluetooth
Leica-X-U front thumbnailLeica X-U450 yesnono
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Leica-X2 front thumbnailLeica X2
X-U vs X2
450 yesnono

Leica X-U for various styles of photography

The following graph provides a rundown of the Leica X-U for various styles of photography. To check out more, go to the specific paragraph below.

Leica X-U as a Portrait photography camera

The Leica X-U has a score of 76 which is wonderful, and means the camera is a superb pick for portrait images. Shooting portraits favors greatly towards sensor resolution, RAW support and flexibility to use off-camera lighting.

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focusing manually
MP count decent (16 megapixels)
nice sensor size (APS-C)
delivers RAW files

Leica X-U Street photography information

Coming in at a very good rating of 64, the Leica X-U is a very decent pick for street photography. A very good street photography camera has a fine balance of picture quality plus portability.

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fully articulated screen
sensor size is nice (APS-C)
saves RAW formats
weather proofing
no image stabilization
more heavy than competition (635 grams)

Leica X-U Sports photography info

A modest sports photography rating of 55 suggests the Leica X-U is somewhat suitable for taking photos of sports. A camera really should have fantastic tracking and shutter speeds for sports photography.

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decent MP (16MP)
sensor size is decent (APS-C)
environment sealing
good battery power (450 shots)
fixed focal length (35mm)
very slow continuous shooting (5.0 frames per second)
lack of image stabilization
lack of phase detect AF

Leica X-U Travel photography information

Size is super important in buying a camera for travel. On the whole, the Leica X-U gets a very good 62 for a travelling camera which makes it a fine pick to purchase for your trips.

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great battery power (450 shots)
environment sealing
megapixel count decent (16MP)
has built in flash
fast max aperture (f1.7)
doesn't have Timelapse recording
more heavy than competition in class (635 grams)
screen isn't selfie friendly

Leica X-U Landscape photography highlights

If you are planning to buy a camera for landscape photos, the most significant aspect will be image quality. The Leica X-U with it's nice score of 63 as a landscape camera is a fine option in the current market.

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manual focus
great max aperture (f1.7)
good sized screen (3")
megapixel count good (16MP)
sensor size is good (APS-C)
exports RAW files
environment proofing
better than average battery power (450 CIPA)
cannot swap lens (fixed lens mount)
fixed focal length (35mm)
does not have image stabilization
lack of Time Lapse mode

Leica X-U Vlogging factors

A camera for vlogging ought to posses a moving display screen, microphone input and preferably image stabilization. Taking everything in to account, the Leica X-U is not really suitable as a vlog camera as it delivers a lousy rating of 25.

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great maximum aperture (f1.7)
high quality video (1920 x 1080 pixels)
screen isn't selfie friendly
no image stabilization
lack of mic support
heavier than others in class (635g)

Leica X-U Alternatives

If you are shopping for replacements to the X-U, below is a range of the top rated cameras which fall within the category of Large Sensor Compact.

The line chart underneath provides you a bird's eye view of the X-U compared to it's top scored competitors listed earlier.

Following are several cameras you might see as alternate options. To read a complete comparison, simply click on the "compare" link.

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General Information
Brand Name
Model type
Leica X-U
Otherwise known as
Typ 113
Large Sensor Compact
Physical type
Large Sensor Compact
Sensor Information
Sensor type
Sensor size
Sensor dimensions
23.6 x 15.7mm
Sensor area
Sensor resolution
16 megapixel
Anti alias filter
Aspect ratio
Max resolution
4928 x 3264
RAW format
Max native ISO
Min native ISO
Manual focusing
Touch focus
Autofocus continuous
Autofocus single
Tracking autofocus
Autofocus selectice
Center weighted autofocus
Multi area autofocus
Live view autofocus
Face detection autofocus
Contract detection autofocus
Phase detection autofocus
Total focus points
Lens mount type
fixed lens
Lens zoom range
35mm (1x)
Largest aperture
Crop factor
Type of screen
Fully Articulated
Screen size
3 inch
Resolution of screen
920k dots
Selfie friendly
Touch function
Viewfinder Information
DXO scores
DXO Overall rating
not tested
DXO Color Depth rating
not tested
DXO Dynamic range rating
not tested
DXO Low light rating
not tested
Minimum shutter speed
Fastest shutter speed
Continuous shutter rate
5.0 frames/s
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Manual mode
Exposure compensation
Change white balance
Image stabilization
Integrated flash
Flash distance
2.00 m (at ISO 100)
Flash modes
Automatic, automatic/red eye reduction, on, on/red eye reduction, long-term synchronization/red eye reduction, off
Hot shoe
AE bracketing
White balance bracketing
Multisegment metering
Average metering
Spot metering
Partial metering
AF area metering
Center weighted metering
Video features
Supported video resolutions
1920 x 1080 (30p), 1280 x 720 (30p)
Max video resolution
Video file format
Mic support
Headphone support
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
Environment sealing
Water proofing
Dust proofing
Shock proofing
Crush proofing
Freeze proofing
635 gr (1.40 lbs)
Physical dimensions
140 x 79 x 88mm (5.5" x 3.1" x 3.5")
Battery life
450 photos
Form of battery
Battery Pack
Battery ID
Self timer
Time lapse recording
Storage type
Card slots
Pricing at release