Leica Q3 | An immoral temptation

No, don’t worry, this guy isn’t going to start writing reviews about Leica. Actually, not even about the Leica Q3, despite what it might look like at first glance. So, what is this all about?

Prologue

I never had any serious interest in Leica (digital) cameras. This is not only due to the price, I consider it to be very high and I could hardly have afforded it when I was younger. It had more to do with the cameras, which were simply not designed for my needs.

When Leica presented the first Q in 2015, my interest was nevertheless immediately piqued. A modern autofocus digital camera with an incredibly good and fast 28mm lens – it goes without saying that I was curious. To me, it all sounded like my ideal documentary camera.

However, there were a few reasons why it never materialised – until a few weeks ago. The price was always one of these reasons, of course, but not the only one. A few – for my taste – shortcomings kept me from getting involved. With the Q-P and the Q2 Reporter, though, I was damn close to becoming weak after all.

Overall, I’ve always seen the specific advantages for me in the Fujifilm X system – especially with the X100 and X-Pro models.

With the Leica Q3, I couldn’t resist the temptation any longer and I would like to share my thoughts on it here. At the moment I don’t have the time or interest to write a very detailed individual review of the Leica Q3. I also don’t have the long-term experience that I have with Fujifilm – that would be a bit pretentious.

Therefore, the focus of my thoughts is primarily on the main differences to the Fujifilm X100VI.

The Leica Q3 – What is it for me?

The Leica Q(2/3) is regarded by its fans as both a design icon and an outstanding one-camera-one-lens solution. I personally can only agree with both. It is a beauty and a great piece of industrial design. But that’s not the point here…

For one thing, there is the aforementioned idea of using only one camera and only one lens. And for another, it’s precisely this lens that attracts me so magically. A 28mm F1.7 is the kind of lens that makes my heart beat faster as a wide-angle photographer. It’s not just the technical specifications. It is this unique, by now almost legendary quality of this Summilux that I simply cannot ignore. But more on that later…

The Summilux 28mm F1.7 ASPH. on the Leica Q3

One camera – one lens?

To make it clear once again: The reason why I bought the Leica Q3 is not because I suddenly and surprisingly became rich. Nor is it a late midlife crisis (at least I hope so) or the fact that I’ve become a camera collector after all. The real idea behind it is to find out if I can use the Leica Q3 as my only camera for my photography. With the consequence that I would part with all my Fujifilm equipment. So, no more X-T5, no more X-Pro3 and no more X100VI. The Leica Q3 would then be the camera to replace all the others.

Of course, I absolutely understand that this alone will not make me a better photographer. Nor is a Leica Q3 in 2024 generally sooooo much better than my current, equally up-to-date cameras. I just want to get rid of the baggage and concentrate on the essentials – the photography that really means something to me.

I also realise that the Q3, just like the X100VI, cannot completely replace the other cameras. So the question is: do I reduce my photographic scope to what is really important to me? And do I simply forego the many technical possibilities that I currently have, but which I rarely use and don’t truly need?

I wanted to finally answer this long-simmering question for myself. The last question that remains is which camera, if any, could be this one-camera-one-lens solution. The Leica Q3 or the Fujifilm X100VI?

Leica Q3 vs Fujifilm X100VI

The following is exclusively about my own personal needs and which of the two cameras can fulfil them better. An objective 1:1 specs comparison of the two cameras would be nonsense, you can’t really compare them like that. It’s all a question of my needs and my preferences.

The Lens

With a fixed-focus camera, this point is obviously immensely important and is therefore also the most important for me.

General comparison

OK, here I could keep it short and just write Leica vs Fujifilm: 1:0.

In terms of optical quality, nobody can seriously have a different opinion. Whether it’s unfair or not, the 28mm Summilux is far superior to the 23mm Fujinon in almost every respect. It is significantly sharper, renders images more beautifully, focusses faster and more quietly and is also half an f-stop faster. Furthermore, you can really use this lens at open aperture without any restrictions. These two lenses are worlds apart, that’s a fact!

Specific comparison

At full-frame equivalent level, we are talking about a significant difference in focal length. 28mm for the Leica Q3, 35mm for the Fujifilm X100VI. For me, that alone is a huge plus for the Leica, but others may see it the other way round. On the other hand, the Fujinon is much more compact, which I appreciate a lot.

However, there is very little left of it if you compare the focal lengths equivalently. With the WCL-X100 wide-angle converter on the X100VI, the difference in size almost disappears. At least this combination is practically the same length.

In addition, the already inferior imaging performance of the Fujinon is logically not improved by the converter. Overall, the Summilux remains clearly superior here.

The rendering

Photography roughly translates as “drawing with light”. The pure content is not everything in the pictures, not even for a documentary photographer. The light, the colours, the (focus) transitions… and how a lens brings this into the picture – that’s what photography is all about!

In my opinion, the Leica engineers have achieved an absolute masterpiece here. This lens does something that I have rarely – if ever – seen like this. It almost forces me to look at pictures with fascination, even if they are completely trivial – simply because of the very special look. In contrast, the Summilux often transforms the good pictures into a real treat for your eyes.

Boring image, great rendering

Is that clear here? The image itself is content wise totally irrelevant! But it simply has a certain “pop”, which is not only due to the shallow depth of field, but to the whole way the image was rendered. It may not be so clear to see here, but it will be visible on a large monitor or in print.

Or take a look at the two pictures above. Yes, different subject, different light, blah blah blah… all right. But despite everything, you can just see the very different nature of the rendering. I don’t think I need to mention which one was taken with the XF18mm F2 and which one with the Summiliux.

Macro mode

Some users of the Q series criticise the macro mode of the Summilux because it has probably also made it a larger lens. I see it differently, even if I would also prefer a smaller lens. This close focusing distance of 17cm is extremely practical – especially as a one-camera-one-lens solution. Apart from that, the image quality at close range is also extremely impressive. So, I think this implementation is pretty smart.

The maximum aperture in macro mode is reduced to 1:2.8, but that is more than OK at close range anyway. You tend to stop down even much further.

Manual focus mode

Yes, it is probably the best implementation of manual focussing on an autofocus camera there is. This applies to the switching mechanism on the focus tab as well as the tactile operation. Despite being focus by wire, it feels very mechanical and is super smooth. There is also a real distance and depth of field scale at the lens, which makes it possible to work with zone focussing.

If you like manual focussing, you will probably be delighted here. I don’t care, I actually always use autofocus.

So, how good is the Summilux really?

In one word: Exceptional!

The Summilux 28mm F1.7 ASPH. is one of the best lenses I’ve ever had the pleasure to use – perhaps the best. I would possibly rate it even higher than some of the fantastic Fujinon GF medium format lenses. And it’s also significantly better than the XF18mm F1.4, which I consider to be bloody excellent as well. In fact, it’s so outstanding that I’m at a loss for words. I honestly didn’t expect it to be like this.

If I didn’t believe in the Leica Look before, I’m not that sure anymore.

The comparison of the lenses clearly favours the Leica.

By the way, another question that is often discussed: Is it really a 28mm focal length? I don’t know, how should I measure that? Fact is that the angle of view is indeed slightly wider compared to other 28mm (and equivalent) lenses. I would say that in comparison it has more the angle of view of a 26.x mm lens. I’m fine with that.

Image Quality (technically)

We have just clearly established that the lens has the far better imaging performance. But the lens is only one of the main components, the sensor is the other. What’s the situation here?

In terms of specifications, 60 MP on an FF sensor seems “better” than 40 MP on an APS-C sensor. And that is indeed the case. Logically, you simply see even more detail. To be honest, I would credit most of this to the Leica’s significantly better lens. Dynamic range and colour rendition are probably also a little better, but that’s really within the measuring range – and I’m not really interested in that.

Does the high resolution of the sensor also have a disadvantage? Sure, you only get it at the expense of file size. And we’re talking about raw files of around 75 MB here.

Overall, however, the files have a visible quality advantage over the Fujifilm.

Image Quality (real world)

But do I also need this enormously high image quality in practice for my own photography? That really is the crucial question. The pixel peeping is truly impressive and, like with the GFX cameras, shows what is possible. However, this increased detail sharpness and resolution does not necessarily make my images any better in terms of content.

Nevertheless, I have to admit that the incredible quality of the lens and sensor is naturally transferred to the image and is very visible. Whether this is absolutely necessary is another question…

Ergonomics

After the first round was clearly in Leica’s favour, it will now be foreseeably more difficult for the Q3. Yes, the Leica design is beautiful – clean and timeless. The workmanship is extremely good and it feels super high-quality and very robust. But is this built like a tank monolithic magnesium die-cast block also easy to use? I have to differentiate here a bit.

How does it feel in the hand?

I would say: so-so. Surprisingly, it feels better in the hand than you might expect from its shape. This is possibly due to the curves and the thumb recess on the back. You can hold it quite well and securely. Nevertheless, I still miss the grip, especially because I usually just hold the camera loosely in my right hand while walking. Logically, this doesn’t work so well – especially not for hours. Here the X100VI is slightly better and also lighter – even if not perfect as well.

Things look better if you decide that ergonomics is more important than design. I opted for the Q3 grip from IDS and am very happy with it. The grip makes the camera only slightly higher, offers a super good hold and both the battery and the SD card slot remain perfectly accessible. As a little “goodie”, the Q3 now stands upright and no longer tilts forwards. It’s not cheap, but it’s high quality and worth the money.

Incidentally, I tried two thumb rests (the original one and LIM’S Camera Thumb Support Grip 6061) and decided against them. I’m fine with the handgrip and the existing thumb rest on the body.

Controls & Display

The controls are not perfectly, but reasonably well positioned. In detail, I find the two rear FN buttons somewhat inconspicuous and difficult to feel. The 4-way directional pad is perhaps a little small and positioned relatively far down. However, it is easier to use than some people say. It works for me, even though I have large hands. Finally, the rear dial is a little too far out for me. I can only operate it if I take my index finger off the shutter release. As I said, it’s not sensationally good, but everything is OK so far.

The folding display is not a design gem, but it makes an extremely stable impression and is certainly a significant improvement over the Q/Q2. It cannot be folded sideways for shooting in portrait format. And I find it a little difficult to grip. It can only be opened from the top (easy) or bottom (not that easy) and not gripped from the left side – which I definitely prefer. As a little personal workaround, I often grip it from the top, but then swing the bottom side up. That works pretty well.

Incidentally, there is no joystick at all. Although this is not a tragedy, in practice it’s a small disadvantage for positioning the AF field. I am OK with the 4-way pad, but a joystick would have been the better solution.

Overall, for me the Fujifilm X100VI wins in terms of ergonomics by a slight margin. It is lighter, easier to grip and the controls – including a joystick – are somehow better positioned and more accessible.

This and that

It should also be mentioned that the Leica Q3 can score points here and there with little things. The on/off switch is super easy to grip and the battery mechanism is unique. And a lens hood for screwing, but whose thread has a clear stop point, is also not a matter of course everywhere. Finally, the option of wireless charging with the Leica’s handgrip is certainly interesting for some people.

Operation & Handling

Menu

I have already strongly criticised the current Fujifilm menu in many of my reviews. It is too complex, too confusing and too difficult to read. In contrast, the menu of the Leica Q3 is a real joy. It is very clean, not overloaded, easy to read and can also be operated by touch in some areas. The Q3 is therefore not as extremely configurable as the X100VI, but this could also be interpreted as intentional. For me, a clear point in favour of the Leica.

Autofocus

I’m essentially only talking about the AF-S here. I’m leaving AF-C and AF tracking out of it, as I’m not really interested in that with either the Leica Q3 or the Fujifilm X100VI. I also don’t think that the two cameras are very different in this respect. It’s somehow halfway OK on both, but by no means usable without limitations.

In general, however, I think the AF on the Leica Q3 is a touch better. Perhaps the same in terms of speed, but in contrast to the X100VI, the AF is almost silent and doesn’t pump at all. I simply find it very good and unagitated.

OIS (Leica) vs IBIS (Fujifilm)

Due to my lack of experience with the image stabilisation on both cameras, I can’t really make a serious statement here. My first impression is that the Fujifilm performs a little better here than the Leica. I can shoot freehand with the Leica Q3 at 1/8th of a second with a fair amount of confidence, and 1/4th of a second with a little care. I have the impression that the X100VI is slightly better here, but I don’t want to bet my life on it just yet. For me, this is a good performance for both and helps me a lot.

However, it may not be the very best image stabilisation system on the market for both cameras.

1/8 sec @100%

Viewfinder

OK, the Leica Q3 does not have the hybrid viewfinder of the Fujifilm. But otherwise, my goodness, there really are worlds apart. The viewfinder of the Q3 is so much bigger, brighter and sharper that I actually find it difficult to look into the viewfinder of the X100VI without being disappointed. The whole thing is very similar to the Fujifilm X-T5, or even better, the X-H2(s) with the same resolution of 5.76 million pixels. Honestly great und the winner is definitely the Leica.

Film simulations & looks

Since the Q3, Leica has been offering so-called Leica Looks in addition to the general JPG settings – at least for this camera and for the SL3. In principle, these could be compared to the long-known film simulations from Fujifilm. However, “in principle” hits the nail on the head here. The Leica Looks are far from being truly competitive.

This is not only due to the number of looks – the Q3 currently has six, in contrast to Fujifilm’s total of 20. You can choose between three colour and three black and white looks. In my opinion, these are still a long way from being as usable as the film simulations in practice. They are neither as good in quality nor as customisable as the latter.

Personally, I can do very little with the three black and white Leica Looks. They simply don’t suit my aesthetic tastes and are light years away from an ACROS simulation, for example. Of the three coloured looks, I find “Contemporary” and “Classic” quite interesting and in some cases already useful – even if they really can’t be used in every light. I haven’t yet found a real use for the rather intense “Eternal” look.

Furthermore, the (currently still) missing implementation of the Leica Looks in Lightroom is a pretty big disadvantage. It’s nice to have the JPGs and be able to quickly post images with the looks online – but for prints and the final result, I’ve always used the raw files with the presets based on the simulations. Unfortunately, that’s not (yet) possible here.

The X100XI is the clear winner here, and not just because of the last point. We will see whether Leica can improve massively here in the future.

A smart move could be if Leica finds and provides a way to upload your own presets as additional looks. That would be added value.

ND filter and electronic shutter

The X100VI is of course unbeatable here. Not only does it have a really clever and practical feature in the form of the built-in ND filter. The electronic shutter with the fastest shutter speed of 1/180000 second (in contrast to the 1/16000 second of the Q3) is also a clear advantage of the Fujifilm.

I also have the impression that the readout speed of the sensor on the Leica severely restricts the electronic shutter in practice. Even quite small movements in the image lead to a clearly visible rolling shutter effect. The Fujifilm is also much less susceptible to this.

Smartphone Apps

The Leica FOTOS App has long been considered one of the best apps for connecting cameras to a smartphone. And it is indeed very good. Since the new edition of the Fujifilm XApp, however, I no longer see any huge differences in the usability of the two apps. Only the transfer speed is much faster with the Leica FOTOS App.

Battery life

I’m struggling here because I simply haven’t used both cameras for very long. My first impression: neither of them show record values here, but they are definitely OK. I think it’s about the same – perhaps with a slight advantage for the Leica.

Responsivness

The major problems with the responsiveness of the Q3 appear to have been resolved with the latest firmware. However, I don’t consider the Q3 to be lightning fast here, but it is sufficiently fast in most aspects. The cold start-up time is at least a solid second, and then the EVF flashes once about another second after booting up. The wake-up time from standby is only marginally better. During this time, the Leica Q3 is either not or at most only partially operational.

Not a real dealbreaker, but it’s not great either. It has annoyed me a few times in practice, especially when just waking up from standby. I hope this will improve again with further firmware updates.

At the current stage, I would therefore favour the X100VI in terms of overall performance and responsiveness. It starts up faster and is more responsive in other respects too.

Full frame vs APS-C

Perhaps you’re wondering why I’m only now talking about it – apart from a few lines in the lens chapter. Quite simply, it doesn’t interest me that much per se. APS-C also has many advantages and is sometimes the sweet spot of size and quality for me. But yes, if the size is kept within limits, as with the Q3, then the larger sensor for sure does have some advantages.

The fun factor

Yes, the fun factor is extremely subjective and only plays a very limited role in the quality of the results. But hey, I don’t do photography for a living and fun and enjoyment are two of the main drivers for me. So, logically, I personally couldn’t do much with the statements of some professional photographers who only care about whether the camera simply does its job.

I really want to enjoy using my camera and the question of whether a camera also has a kind of soul is really important to me.

And what is the difference between the X100VI and the Q3? To be honest, it’s not that easy to answer. On the one hand, the fun factor is actually clearly in favour of the X100VI. Somehow everything feels easier there. The weight, the ergonomics, the whole experience… and also the fact that I don’t have to think about carrying a €6000 camera around with me. And then there’s the really great fun of being able to work with the wonderful Fujifilm film simulations.

On the other hand, the Leica Q3 adds a slightly different fun factor. Just looking through the viewfinder (in comparison, the viewfinder of the X100VI is a dark cave) brings a smile to my face. The results never cease to amaze and delight me. And the simplicity of the Leica also frees me somewhat from the optimisation and configuration mania.

OK, let’s put it this way. The direct fun factor goes to the X100VI, the somewhat hidden (and more serious) fun factor goes to the Q3.

The cost factor

Leica is very expensive. That’s nothing new. The Leica Q3 costs almost three and a half times as much as the Fujifilm X100VI, which is quite a lot, because the X100VI is no bargain either. 5950€ is a sum that you probably think twice about spending – if you can or want to spend it on a camera at all.

It would be even worse if I tried to replace my entire Fujifilm X system with similar focal lengths and cameras from Leica. I would probably end up with somewhere in the region of an absurd 60000€. Which I would neither want nor be able to do – that would never be an option.

But back to the price of the Leica Q3. To be honest, it doesn’t bother me that much. Yes, it’s a lot of money, but I get a very good full-frame camera with a truly outstanding lens for it. That’s just about all right.

Do the hefty prices for the accessories bother me? You can get a thumb rest for 230€, a lens hood for 230€, a battery for 170€, a soft release button for 70€, a lens cap for 50€ and a hot shoe cover for 40€. That’s slightly crazy when you look at it rationally. My answer to this: I wanted Leica, I got Leica. It makes little sense to then complain about it…

But of course, in terms of price, the X100VI is obviously more attractive.

Conclusions

How can you objectively conclude the impossible? Exactly, actually not at all. Is the Leica Q3 the better camera? Sure, in many respects it certainly is. Perhaps not in every single respect, but in very decisive points – such as the lens – it is to a large extent.

I also could add up the individual points won by the cameras in the categories (which I didn’t do) and I might end up with more or less a tie. But that’s nonsense. These points are of course not equally weighted. An outstanding advantage in optical performance cannot be compensated by the presence of an ND filter.

In this case, it generally does not help to weigh up specifications against each other. At the end of the day, I have to make a very personal decision about what is important to me and what would help me move forward. And I haven’t made my final decision yet.

If the Leica Q3 stays, I would start selling my entire Fujifilm X set – starting with the X100VI and the X-Pro3. Little by little, the X-T5 and my X lenses would then probably also leave me.

Until recently, I wouldn’t have thought to even consider it. After all, I love the Fujifilm X system and I still think it’s an excellent choice for many photographers and for many applications. But for me personally, it would also be a kind of liberation. The shelf would be empty, lens and camera decisions would be made automatically, the ballast would be smaller. I love that idea!

At the moment, the scales are actually tipping slightly in this direction. After all, the Leica Q3 combines many of the things I need and want for my photography in a very unique way. And if I were to occasionally ask myself why this happened … then I would actually already have the answer.

It’s the lens, stupid. 😉


There is always light somewhere – go out and shoot!

35 Comments

  • Hi Peter,

    As I mentioned in responding to your earlier post, I recently acquired a used “obsolete” Q2 for reasons similar to yours. And, like you I’ve been using an X-Pro3, an X-T5 and an X100V. I’ve had the Q2 for a few weeks now and I also have been blown away by the lens and the rendering. When I came back from taking some test shots, I just was stunned by the difference. And, yes, the macro mode is such a nice bonus. For me, the choice is clear, the Q2 will meet 90% or more of my needs (obviously not the limited bird/wildlife photography I do) so the X-Pro3 and the X100V are for sale. I’ll be keeping the X-T5 and the long telephoto lens for the present. Thanks for another great blog post.

    • Hi Rene,

      thank you for your kind comment. Well, that’s astonishing about the lens. I suspected that it was good, but I was actually more interested in the focal length. That’s my real problem with the X100VI, if it had an 18mm lens I wouldn’t even be tempted. But I didn’t expect the images to be rendered in such a different and fascinating way. I have now given myself at least the next two weekends to make up my mind. Among other things, there’s a wedding coming up where I’m going to do a bit of reportage-style photography. I’m very curious about that. As I don’t own or use any telephoto lenses anyway, your last point is completely out of the question for me.

      Peter

  • Schade. Nach all den Jahren mit Fuji. Aber sehr gut nachvollziehbar. Ich für meinen Teil könnte das nicht. Danke für dein ehrliches Statement.

    Übrigens.
    Hatte damals zufällig deine H1 auf dem gebraucht markt gekauft. War noch in den Copyright Einstellungen ersichtlich. Lustig
    Hätte Interesse an der pro 3

    Gruß Matthias

    • Hallo Matthias,

      danke für Deinen Kommentar. Ich weiß nicht, ob Du den (wieder mal) zu langen Artikel zu Ende gelesen hast – noch ist die Entscheidung ja nicht final gefallen. Ich habe an den nächsten beiden Wochenenden erstmal die Gelegenheit, sie wirklich mehr in der Praxis zu nutzen. Bisher bin ich damit ja mehr oder minder nur rumgelaufen. Mal sehen…

      Das mit der X-H1 ist natürlich witzig. Und die X-Pro3 geht in jedem Fall, so oder so. Ich hatte sie sogar schon online, habe sie aber wohl aus Versehen wieder gelöscht. Abgelaufen kann die Anzeige eigentlich nicht nicht gewesen sein. Ich werde sie wieder online setzen.

      VG
      Peter

  • Ich hatte das Review schon bis zu Ende gelesen. Aber mein Englisch ist nicht so gut. Vielleicht hab ich das überlesen. Ich selbst hab schon zweimal versucht von Fuji loszukommen. Nie geschafft. 😅 heute hab ich die x-t1 die urX100 die X-100VI und die X-T4.

    • … ach so, OK… na ja, da steht halt, dass ich mich noch nicht endgültig entschieden habe. Allerdings ist die Kamera und vor allem das Objektiv doch sehr beeindruckend… mal sehen.

      VG Peter

  • Ok. Mache mich mal auf die Suche. Sind viele drin derzeit. Nur Kleinanzeigen ist immer ein bisschen dejavu behaftet. Da hab ich Extrem schlechte Erfahrungen gemacht

    • Da sind viele Betrüger unterwegs… und auch seltsame Leute. Aber wenn man weiß, worauf man achten muss und die üblichen Regeln einhält, habe ich damit bisher auch gute Erfahrungen gemacht.

  • Hi Peter,
    What’s the date again today? April 1…
    You really added a lot of fuel to my G.A.S.!!
    Could elaborate on why a second hand Q2 which goes for around € 2K less than the Q3 would not be suitable for your use case? Is it the tilting screen, the ability to crop from 60Mp, the better viewfinder resotion, or any of the other difference is specs, that was the defining criterium for you not to consider the Q2. Personally I’m on the fence for buying an secondhand Q2, but will keep my X-T5 and lens suite, just because I’m not a 100% street photographer.
    Just your 2 cents, would be interesting.
    Best wishes with your J

    • Hi Jan,

      yes, it’s the 1st of April, but it wasn’t meant to be an April Fool’s joke. And above all, I didn’t really want to trigger a G.A.S. The idea for me was actually the exact opposite, to get rid of equipment. But to your questions, which are not so easy to answer. Well, it definitely wasn’t the 60MP sensor, that wouldn’t be necessary for me either, especially as I hardly ever crop. The better EVF resolution is very nice, but wouldn’t have been decisive as well. I think the tilting display was more of a deciding factor. And perhaps the whole package. It has USB-C (for charging), is faster, a bit more modern, more future-proof, etc. Somehow I wanted to make as few compromises as possible with the somewhat radical idea of the “only camera”. Provided I finally decide in favour of it, I mean. I just have the feeling that for my needs I’m taking the best Q with the Q3. Apart from that, I think the Q2 is also a great camera.

      Cheers,
      Peter

  • Hi Peter,
    Thanks for your clarifiaction and may the Q3 give you the satisfaction you are looking for in your specific style of photography.
    My real problem is: where and when is this ever going to stop…? on Flickr I see photographers who, besides having Fuji, added the Q, then the Q2/3, only to move on to an SL3 because just one lens wasn’t enough in the end.
    Best wishes,
    Jan

    • … yeah, you’re right… I also often think about the “more and more” and the “better and better”. And of course I’m always at risk myself…

      Peter

  • I did the same thing in December last year. Have sold my X100V and XT5 + lenses since then. So far no regrets. I’ve tried to pull this off with Q2 in 2021 but could not live the noise from that sensor. Q3 turned to be much better in that regard.

    • Hi Anton,

      nice to know not to be the only one with those thoughts. Let’s see, how I will decide in the end. Enjoy your Q3…

      Peter

  • Oh well,
    First of all – I do like your aricles, although I don’t agree to all of it. Obviously, we are two different characters and there is nothing wrong with disagreeing here and there – the opposite would be far more surprising 🙂
    Having said this, I feel that we share the same interest in photography: mainly street, urban landscapes, whatever you call it.
    Now, here is the point: I have no serious doubts that the Q3 produces „better“ results than *any* Fujifilm X camera with *any* Fujifilm X lens.
    However, if I were you, I would think twice (three, four, five times…) to sell all my X stuff.
    I love my 100V and it is by far my most used camera. Unlike you I just love the 35 mm equivalent. Here is the point: for anything wider or closer I do have my X-Pro2.
    The Pro2 with the 14mm gives me 21mm equivalent – OMG I love that focal length – I always did! 28 mm is – strictly for me – a bit lame: not really wide, but too wide to be considered all round. 21 mm gives me that „wide punch“, that I am after every now and then.
    On the other hand I love to do some portraiture every now and then (not nearly as much as I used to and as I should do, but still, I do it). Ever tried that 90mm f 2.0 from Fujifilm? OMG – it blows me away time after time!
    Some unique stuff – well, the legendary 35mm with all its „flaws“ creates such an awesome image, probably BECAUSE of its flaws.
    Granted, these lenses are not used that often, the X100 is my go to camera – but I would never want to miss them! They are essential to my photography!
    Another thing: I normally print in A3 size, very rarely in A2, never really any bigger – so the benefit of the sheer resolution upgrade would be pretty minor for me.

    Changing my X100V to a Leica Q3? Maybe, although (as I elaborated above) I would miss the 35 mm equivalent.
    But dropping my X lenses and cameras altogether?

    No way 🙂

    • Hi Andreas,

      Thank you very much for your detailed comment. It goes without saying that not everyone has to be of the same opinion (or should be).

      Regarding the content: I can understand much of what you write. Nevertheless, it reflects your needs, not necessarily mine. And I hope it has become clear that the question of “better” or “less good” is of secondary importance. I am also not interested in certain technical possibilities or focal lengths – such as the XF90 mentioned above. My main concern remains the “one camera solution” with the right focal length for me… the fact that this camera may then have the coolest lens in the world is a great add-on.

      With this in mind, let’s stay different and enjoy the things we love… 😉

      Peter

      • Thanks for your nice answer 🙂
        Indeed it was clear to me that you were not talking about „better“, whatever that means 🙂
        I was hoping that it was clear that I was reflecting the situation based on my needs only, in return.
        The point (again, strictly for me!) is: if I would sell all my stuff and reduce on a single camera – single focal length I am afraid that I would also kind of reduce my work – if this makes sense?
        What I mean: reducing equipment and concentrating on the option you have at hand is generally speaking a great concept. I believe it has the power to make you a „better photographer“ (whatever that means, again), simply because you get so used to the perspective and you start to really work on your photos – use the „feet zoom“ for example 🙂
        Still, you can’t make a 21 mm out of a 28 mm and other technical limits apply.
        This may be fine for you – I am just trying to say: think twice, Peter, you may run into a situation, where you miss that other lens. If it happens once in a while – so what. If it happens more, then you may be on the wrong path 🙂

        Stay focussed and enjoy your shooting,
        Andreas

        • Hello Andreas,

          I think I understood you that way, but thank you anyway for your clarifications. Of course there’s a lot to the question of whether I’m going in the wrong direction. And believe me, I’m not just thinking about it in detail now – I’ve been thinking about it extensively for a long time. And I’m simply allowing myself to test the Q3 first and then consider whether I should sell something else. Also important: it can’t be completely wrong, because I have too much equipment that I don’t need. I don’t need to do any jobs and earn money with it, so my many lenses are definitely too much. If I do that quite radically and then realise that I still want a system camera with one or two lenses, then I might just buy another one later. That wouldn’t stop me from trying this path now. If in two or three weeks’ time I have the feeling that it’s not for me… then I’ll leave it and the Q3 will go. But I will reduce anyway. The X-Pro3 is already for sale, and I would also give away some of the lenses.

          Peter

          • „ I have too much equipment that I don’t need.“

            LOVE THAT QUOTE 🙂
            Same here, there is a lot of GAS (Gear Aquisition Syndrom) going on with me, other stuff I bought in good faith (had a need, but it turned out to be a single need…).
            Indeed, I‘ve been to Barcelona last year and had way too many stuff with me. At the end of the day the X100 and the Pro2 with the 14 and 35 mm lenses were just enough (if not already too much)
            Still, I feel that some of that stuff I have I do so for a good reason.
            I have no reason to not believe you, that you are taking this decision serious, so carry on, look at it from all sides and make up your mind – you will nit go wrong, if you listen to your heart

            Good light,

            Andreas

  • On the theme “immoral temptation”, the thread seems to begin te reflect the monogamy vs polygamy preference. I would say: each to his and lets wait for the outcome op Peter’s temptation!
    Cheers,
    Jan

  • I love(d) my Fuji X100S, now converted to an IR-camera, which was replaced by an X100V. The lack of IS is the major drawback for me, the optical viewfinder the delight in broad daylight shooting conditions, and the size/weight even with a tiny neck strap a real plus: no neck aching whatsoever even on long hikes.

    I bought the Leica Q3 because of (GAS, pride of ownership, or) the excellent sensor having high DR and the small stabilized lens – and for the potential to continue shooting at 35 mm wide angle using the 35 mm frame lines (corresponding to 23 mm of the Fuji) with the fallback of the wider 28 mm FOV recorded in the DNG file.

    A couple of times when editing my X100V photos I regretted that my framing was too tight – now I can correct that in post (within the limits of the 28 mm vs 35 mm frame). Ever wondered how the brain produces factual arguments for an otherwise insane appearing purchase decision?

    However, when photographing I instinctively try to find a pleasing composition that fills the whole viewfinder frame, and so far I always filled the full 28 mm frame of the Q3 and not the 35 mm frame lines. Room for improvement.

    The leather neck strap coming with the Q3 is very usable due to its perfect size/volume. The additional weight of the Q3 over the X100V leads me to lifting up the camera with my hand every now and then on longer walks in order to relax my neck. Not necessary with the X100V.

    Both of my cameras now have added thumb rests and hand grips for easy one-handed operation, despite the extra weight. The X100V has a NISI-UV-filter that allows to use the original lens cap, which I like. On the Q3 the normal lens hood cap nicely fits on the square lens hood.

    When replacing the X100V with the X100VI, the IBIS is finally there, and there remains mainly the (sensor)size/weight/cost difference between Q3 and X100VI, namely: 1.5 times weight and volume, 2.25 times sensor area, 3.3 times prize (1.5 times prize per sensor area).

    The Mamas and The Papas sang ” Don’t you understand that a girl like me can’t love just one man…”. That’s it!

    P.S.: I painted that red dot on my Q3 in black, in order to avoid a reddening of my face when asked by friends about the prize point of that camera.

    • Hi Stefan,

      thank you very much for your detailed and very humorous comment! Apart from that, you explained the differences between the Q3 and the X100V/VI in far fewer words than I did… 😉

      In terms of content, I also found what you wrote quite interesting. Of course, as a potential 35mm enthusiast, you have a clear advantage. That works quite easily with the Q3, the other way round doesn’t work, or only with the Fujifilm wide-angle converter. And then, unfortunately, the X100VI is no longer quite so compact.

      I also find it interesting that you obviously want to keep or are keeping both cameras. I’d somehow like that too, but I forbid myself to do that (for now). It doesn’t make any sense to me. Then I’d rather keep the X-T5 as well – but that’s not really my hoped-for approach either.

      All the best,
      Peter

      P.S. I have decided to stand by the red dot in the event of a final decision. I would then talk myself out of it by saying that the Q3 costs considerably less than all the other stuff I had up to that point 🙂

      • Dear Peter,

        thank you for your detailed reports on both cameras – and I especially like your inspiring photo book reviews!

        I keep the X100V because it is so sleek with the NISI-UV-filter, no hood, and the original cap, so that it easily slips into every bag. I do not like smartphone photography because of the lack of viewfindet and unstable one-handed operation. So the X100V is the carry-everywhere smartphone replacement for me, even in situations where I don‘t plan to take photographs. The Q3 I carry when I expect photo opportunities. The lens is much more protruding, and the weight difference might seem negligible, but for me it is not.

        The 28 mm adaptor mostly remains on my IR-modified X100S, because IR-photos often like wider view angles.

        One purchase argument for the Q3 I had omitted: The price-per-pixel. With the new X100VI having 40 instead of 26 MP it now clearly favors the X100VI. But the Fuji now squeezes 1.5 times pixels in the same space compared with the Q3. I thought the pixel density was already quite high in the Q3 having 60 MP, but for the X100VI it corresponds to 90 MP (in „full frame“ terms).

        Keep on with your blog!

        Kind regards,

        Stefan

        • Hello Stefan,

          many thanks for the further comment and your praise!

          I will most certainly not keep the Q3 and the X100VI at the same time. They are simply too redundant for my purposes – despite the differences that you correctly pointed out. If the Q3 is too heavy and big for me, then I’ll actually use my mobile phone. It’s now so good that I can often manage with it in terms of results. But if I really want to take photos, then the Q3 is small enough.

          The point about pixel density is certainly true somewhere. But I still think the Fujifilm’s 40MP sensor is great. The small weak point is rather the lens of the X100VI.

          Peter

  • I like straight photography. Therefore, the nicely implemented two-way spirit level is a real plus of the Q3 over the X100VI which has only one horizontal spirit level.

  • Hello Peter’

    Would that also mean that you would sell your GFX Equipment?

    I really like the way you write about your Equipment. The tone and the practical rather than technical point of view is very different from what one normally see’s.

    Christof

    • Hello Christof,

      Thank you very much for your kind comment, I’m delighted with your praise. However, I sold my GFX equipment a while ago. I only had it for a few months and then decided that there was simply no justification for it for my personal uses – especially as I don’t do anything commercial with my photography. So I sold it as long as I wasn’t making a loss on it – partly because of good prices and cashbacks when I bought it. Too bad, it’s fun and great, but just not justifiable for me.

      Peter

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