Well, I guess it was inevitable that someone would, as they did in a comment late yesterday, ask me to get embroiled in the raging debate over whether there is actually any difference between the images taken by the Panasonic Lumix LX5 camera and its near-identical sibling, the Leica D-Lux 5. The short answer is that I don’t have a good answer. I have followed many discussion threads on this topic in the Leica Talk and Panasonic Talk forums on dpreview.com. There are numerous photographers who are more expert than I am on technical matters relating to image quality and firmware, and there have been various opinions stated fairly strongly on both (or more) sides of the issue.
My own informal opinion is that there is no major difference between the cameras in image output, but I have not tried to make any serious study of the matter. When I have some time, I may try to post images of the same scene from both cameras, though I’m not sure if that would prove much, especially at the low resolution of images seen on the computer screen. As I work on the book about the D-Lux 5, I certainly see some differences between the cameras. For example, the Leica camera has no Conversion menu option, because Leica does not advise you to attach a wide-angle conversion lens to the camera, as Panasonic does. On a more minor note, the LX5’s menu item, “Optional Viewfinder,” is called “Monitor Mode” on the D-Lux 5. The two menu items have the same function, though — to enable you to turn off the LCD screen when it’s not needed.
Anyway, I didn’t want to ignore this comment, but I’m not ready to tackle this major issue — at least not right now.
On the Amazon front, I’m somewhat puzzled by the fact that Amazon.com is now listing the Panasonic Lumix LX5 book as shipping in 1 to 3 weeks. That should not be the case, because the book is available at any time from the print-on-demand printer, and it should not take more than a few days for the book to ship. I’m monitoring the situation, and will check with the printer if the situation doesn’t resolve itself within a day or two.
Also, still no “Search Inside the Book” on Amazon. I’ll be working on getting that feature implemented.
Finally, because of a request from one person who wanted the LX5 book shipped sooner than 1-3 weeks, I listed a couple of my copies on Amazon.com as a third-party seller, using my seller name of “alexstrawhite.” If anyone orders one of those, I will ship it the next business day to anywhere in the world that Amazon takes orders from. So, that’s one option, at least until those two copies sell out. (I don’t have any more copies available at this point, though I may get some more from the printer if the Amazon situation doesn’t improve fairly soon.)