Combining classic Leica styling with a 16.2-million-pixel APS-C size sensor and a 23mm f/1.7 lens, the new Leica X-U enables videographers to shoot 1080p video to depths of 15m

In the list of things that we weren’t expecting to see from Leica, a fully waterproof underwater camera was certainly near the top of the list. However, as we have seen with last years Leica T and Leica SL (see our first look of the Leica SL and it’s 4K video features), the German company have been full of (good) surprises recently. The latest random surprise they have thrown our way is the new Leica X-U.

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Based on the exisiting Leica X camera, the Leica X-U adds the letter ‘U’ to its designation, which denotes that the camera can be used underwater, to a reasonably impressive depth of 15m.

The camera has a 16.2-million pixel APS-C size CMOS sensor, with a Leica Summilux f/1.7 23mm lens, which is roughly the equivalent of 35mm on a full frame sensor. Video can be reocrded at 1080p, however it should be noted that there is no image stabilisation, not that you should need too much when up to 15m underwater.

Developed in collaboration with Audi Design, the camera features a aluminium top-plate as well as ‘high-grip TPE armouring’, which should aid handling, especially underwater.  image001The Leica X-U (Typ 113) is available now from Leica stores and authorised Leica UK dealers, at a suggested retail price of £2,400 inc VAT.

Accessories:
Red floating carrying strap – £50.00 inc VAT
Outdoor-wrist strap (black neoprene) – £32.00 inc VAT

Additional information can be found at uk.leica-camera.com

Technical Information

Leica X-U (Typ 113)

Sensor:

CMOS sensor, size APS-C (23.6 x 15.7mm) with 16.5/16.2 million pixels (total/effective), format aspect ratio 3:2

Resolution:

Selectable for JPEG format: 16 MP – 4928 x 3264 pixels,12.2 MP- 4272 x 2856 pixels, 7 MP – 3264 x 2160 pixels, 3 MP- 2144 x 1424 pixels,1.8 MP – 1632 x 1080 pixels, DNG: 4944 x 3278 pixels

Video Recording Format:

MP4

Video Resolution/ Image Sequence Rate:

Selectable, 1920 x 1080p, 30fps or 1280 x 720p, 30fps

Lens:

Leica Summilux 23mm f/1.7 ASPH. (equivalent to 35mm field of view in 35mm format), 10 lens elements in 8 groups, 4 aspherical surfaces, UW protective glass

Aperture Setting:

From f/1.7 to f/16 in 1⁄3 EV increments

Image Data File Formats/ Compression Rates:

Selectable: JPG Super Fine, JPG Fine, DNG + JPEG Super Fine, DNG + JPEG Fine

Storage Media:

SD/SDHC/SDXC memory cards, multi-media cards

ISO Range:

Automatic, ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800, ISO 1600, ISO 3200, ISO 6400, ISO 12500

White Balance:

Automatic, daylight, cloudy, halogen lighting, shadow, electronic flash, two manual settings, manual color temperature setting

UW Mode:

Accessible via separate button, adapts white balance and distortion correction to underwater conditions

Autofocus System:

Contrast-based

Distance Settings Range:

From 20 cm to infinity, automatic (autofocus) or manual distance setting, optional MF Assist function for distance settings

Autofocus Metering Function:

Single field, 11-field, spot, face recognition

Exposure Modes:

Automatic program, aperture priority, shutter speed priority, and manual setting

Exposure Metering:

Multi-field, centre-weighted, spot

Exposure Compensation:

±3EV in 1⁄3 EV increments

Automatic Bracketing:

Three pictures in graduations of up to 3EV, can be set in 1⁄3 EV increments

Shutter Speed Range:

30 s to 1/2000 s

Image Series:

3fps or 5fps, max. seven exposures at constant exposure frequency with DNG + JPEG Fine

Flash Operating Modes:

Automatic, automatic/red eye reduction, ON, ON/red eye reduction, long-term synchronisation/red eye reduction, OFF

Flash Exposure Compensation:

±3EV in 1⁄3 EV increments

Flash Operating Range:

(for ISO 100/21°) approx. 0.3 – 2.0m, guide number 5

Flash Recharge Time:

Approx. 5s with fully charged battery

Monitor:

3″ TFT LCD monitor with approx. 920,000 pixels

Self-Timer:

Delay time either 2 or 12s

Operating Conditions:

Ambient temperature: 0°- +40°C/32°-104°F (on land / underwater), max. humidity 85% (non-condensation)

Water/Dust Resistance:

In compliance with JIS/IEC protection class 68 (IP68) (in accordance with Leica Camera AG testing conditions1), allows underwater photography in depths up to 15m / 49ft for max. 60 minutes

Impact Resistance:

In compliance with MIL-STD 810G, method 516.52 (in accordance with Leica Camera AG testing conditions1)

Power Supply:

Lithium-ion rechargeable battery, nominal voltage 3.7V, capacity 1600mAh (as per CIPA standard): approx. 450 exposures, charging time (after deep discharge): approx. 200 min., Model No. BP-DC8, manufacturer: PT SANYO Energy Batam, manufactured in Indonesia

Charger:

Input: 100 – 240V AC, 50/60 Hz, 0.2A, automatic switchover, output: 4.2V DC, 0.65A, Model No. BC-DC8, operating conditions: 0 – 35°C/32°-95°F Manufacturer: Phihong (Dongguan) Electronics Co.,Ltd, Made in China

Housing:

Plastic core, aluminum upper and lower covers, flexible TPE reinforcement

Tripod Thread:

A 1⁄4 DIN 4503 (1⁄4″)

Dimensions:

(W x H x D) Approx. 140 x 79 x 88 mm

Weight:

Approx. 600/635g (without/with battery)

NOTES
1 The testing conditions do not constitute a blanket warranty in terms of damage or destruction; purely cosmetic damage as a result of the impact test, e.g. damage to the colour or deformation and also water tightness after the impact test are not part of the water resistance tests. Water resistance tests do not apply for any other liquids except sweet or salt water, and not for current or jet pressure.
2 The test entails a fall of the camera from a height of 1.22m onto a wood surface with a thickness of 5cm.

Subject to changes in structure and design.