What does the Leica X Vario, Minolta XD and a Schiedmayer piano have in common? They are all German, but also Japanese…in a way. The Leica camera is made in Germany, but with the help of Japanese electronic components on the inside. The Minolta XD is made in Japan but is a sibling to the Leica R4 (so similar that their backs are inter-changeable). The Schiedmayer piano is an all wood action, German designed piano, but built in Japan by the Kawai Piano Company. I love what happens when the Germans and Japanese work together to build something.
Thanks to Eric Kerwin of Leica Canada, I have in my possession for 1 week the new Leica X Vario. I’ve only shot with it for a few hours today, but I can tell you that I love the concept already. It’s a manual zoom, manual focus (with AF) APS-C sensored point & shoot, with full shutter speed and aperture dials on top. You can see all your main settings from the outside. That’s awesome.
I’ll post my full review soon, but I’ll probably do a comparison with the Ricoh GR which I am also testing, and I also have a Fuji X-100S on its way soon. However, I won’t be doing any pixel peeping side by side image comparisons. What I will do is review how it shoots, and how it feels to shoot. That’s the most important to a street photographer. All three cameras will give you amazing images, each with their own strengths and weaknesses.
So keep checking back for my upcoming reviews and images. Don’t forget to subscribe to my Twitter, Instagram, or my mailing list. Happy shooting!
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Leica X Vario, Minolta XD and Schiedmayer
Shot with Ricoh GR D IV @ ISO 1250, 1/80 sec F/4.0
Shot with Leica X Vario at ISO 400, 1/160 sec F/6.4 zoomed to 70mm equiv
P.S. for NERDS: The SCHIEDMAYER is my wife’s, and it has a beautiful sound and action for an upright. The Minolta XD-11 is one of two XD’s that I own. All XD’s have the Leica anodized black finish on it, so they look and feel amazing. I also have mounted the MD 24mm F2.8 lens. All Leica’s SLR bodies from the R4 to the R6.2 were all based on this Minolta chassis from the 1970’s.