Leica Rumors reported that Leica is going to release a new waterproof and shockproof camera called Leica X-U in the next few days. I do not have any internal source but a new product of Leica is always interesting. Who is the target customer?
From the specifications, it seems that it is a special edition of Leica X, Typ 113, not a rebranded Panasonic point-and-shoot, and its construction is up to the quality level of Leica prosumer cameras made in Germany.
Leica X features a Summilux 35 mm f/1.7 lens with an image sensor of 16.5 megapixels. This is an excellent wide angle lens for all purpose. A Summilux-M 35 mm f/1.4 lens costs around AU$5200. I reckon it is not unreasonable that this camera will feature a price tag of AU$3500. Just imagine a Leica X plus a underwater housing for the camera. A underwater housing is not cheap.
According to Leica Rumors, you can use this camera to dive down to 15m deep. I do not think it is capable enough.
The camera is also shockproof. That means it is targeting the use in some extreme environment. In other words, it is an ideal camera for travel, land and sea, if you are a demanding Leica user. The close-focus distance is 0.2m for you to take close-up pictures.
Will I buy it? I think I need to know the price first. I do not need an auto-focus waterproof and shockproof camera at this stage. Perhaps wait until the day I am not able to focus precisely through the rangefinder.
The two image featured in this post were taken by the Summicron-M 50 mm f/2.0. The contrast of highlight and shadow in both pictures produces a dream-like effect. I guess the Summilux-M or Noctilux-M will be much better.