Are you looking for the best camera to suit your needs? Due to a wide range of options, making a wise and weighted decision can be rather challenging. Which specs to keep in mind? What are the key pros and cons of each model? This comparison should give some helpful hints!
In this review, we are going to make a detailed comparison of two cameras that fall into different categories. While the first model we are looking at, Leica SL belongs to a Pro Mirrorless category, the other model, Leica SL is a Pro DSLR camera. Leica SL is equipped with a 24.0 MP CMOS sensor, while Nikon D5 comes with a 21.0 MP CMOS sensor.
Both cameras we are going to look at in our overview fall into two different categories - MirrorLess and DSLR. Keeping in mind all the distinctive features of each category, it will be hard to make a detailed comparison of these two models. However, we will do our best to make this review as unbiased and detailed as possible.
To get started, let’s take a look at some of the key features of Leica SL and Nikon D5 and, after this, we can go on to our detailed comparison of these models.
Leica SL Key Features:
Nikon D5 Key Features:
|Gps||Built-in vs Optional||Has GPS|
|Sensor Resolution||24.0 MP vs 21.0 MP||12.5% more pixels|
|Sensor Area||864 mm2 vs 855.62 mm2||1% larger pixel area|
|Weight||847 g vs 1415 g||568 g lighter|
|Max Video Resolution||4096 x 2160 vs 3840 x 2160||Higher Resolution Video|
|Dxo Dynamic Range||13.4 vs 12.3||Better dynamic range|
|Viewfinder Magnification||0.8 vs 0.72||0.08 better magnification|
|Continuous Shooting||14 fps vs 11 fps||3 fps faster|
|Number Of Focus Points||153 vs 49||104 more focus points|
|Screen Size||3.2″ vs 3″||0.2" larger screen|
|Screen Resolution||2,359k dots vs 1,040k dots||55.9% higher resolution screen|
|Battery Life||3780 shots vs 400 shots||3380 more frames with a single charge|
|Dxo Color Depth||25.1 vs 25||Better color depth|
|Dxo Low Light Iso||2434 vs 1821||Better High ISO performance|
|Touch Screen||Yes | Yes||Easy control of camera functions|
|Screen Size||3″ | 3.2″||Large display|
|Screen Resolution||1,040k dots | 2,359k dots||High resolution screen|
|Viewfinder||Electronic | Optical (pentaprism)||Better framing and control|
|Raw Support||Yes | Yes||Better image quality|
|AutoFocus Face Detection||Yes | Yes||Very handy for portraits|
|Microphone Port||Yes | Yes||High quality audio recording option|
|Headphone Port||Yes | Yes||Better video control|
|Timelapse Recording||Yes | Yes||Creative shooting|
|Storage Slots||2 slots | 2 slots||Extra Storage Slots|
|Bracketing||Yes | Yes||Useful for tough lighting conditions and HDR|
|Continuous Shooting||11.0 fps | 14.0 fps||Nice continuous shooting|
|Flash Sync Port||Yes | Yes||Port for Flash Sync|
|Environmental Sealing||Yes | Yes||Shoot at tough conditions|
|Screen Type||Fixed Type | Fixed Type||No flexible viewing angles|
|Built-In Flash||No | No||No built-in flash|
|Image Stabilization||No | No||No image stabilization|
Before heading straight to the technical characteristics of each model, let’s start with comparing their physical specs. Let’s start with looking at the physical difference of the two products. Below are images that clearly show the sizes of Leica SL and Nikon D5 from the front view.
Now, let’s go on and see how the reviewed models are different or similar by the top view.
After looking at these images, you should get a clear idea of each model’s dimensions and how they are different from each other. However, we are not going to stop there. The next characteristic worth looking at is the weight. Of course, not every photographer is concerned about the weight, for example, it wouldn't be a decisive point for those who shoot in a studio. However, it is still an important factor because if you happen to go on a long photo session or just love having the camera with you wherever you go, you want to be sure that the chosen model isn't too heavy.
Speaking of weight, Leica SL is a lighter option of these two, as it weights 568g less than the Nikon D5. This difference, in fact, can become a significant disadvantage for the photographers, who prefer to have their cameras with them wherever they go.
Sensor is, without a doubt, the most significant element of every digital camera. Its type, size, and resolution are the factors that define the quality of future shots. Thus, it is barely possible to pick a suitable camera without looking at these specs.
Are Leica SL and Nikon D5 any different in terms of sensor type?
In fact, that's exactly what makes these two models really different. Thus, it is a good point to consider if your are choosing between these two cameras. Leica SL features a 24.0 MP Full frame sized CMOS sensor and boasts of a Maestro II processor . Nikon D5, in its turn, comes with a 21.0 MP Full frame sized CMOS sensor , which makes it significantly different from the first model.
Take a look below to find the comparison of Leica SL and Nikon D5 by the size of their sensors.
Leica SL and Nikon D5 are identical by this indicator, as each feature a sensor of the same size. Thus, both cameras will provide the same level of control in terms of the depth of field if you use them with the same focal length and aperture.
If you are interested in photography or has made a career in this field, you should know that different types of shooting actually require different camera characteristics. While one model can produce outstanding portraits, at the same time, it can be terrible for shooting landscapes, and so on. Thus, before you purchase a specific camera, it is vital to decide, which type of shooting you do most often and consider an option that suits it the most.
This section of our comparison is devoted to the performance of Leica SL and Nikon D5 in different fields of photography. Here we are going to look at the five main areas and evaluate how well each of the reviewed models performs in them. This will help you choose an option that suits your needs the most depending on your interest in one or several of these fields.
|Photography Type||Leica SL||Nikon D5|
Disadvantages:No Significant Disadvantages
Disadvantages:No Significant Disadvantages
Hopefully, our detailed overview of these models has helped you consider all the main specs, pros and cons of each cameras. Maybe, after reading this comparison, some of you have already decided which option to opt for depending on your needs and preferences. However, if you are still wondering which option is a better choice, Leica SL or Nikon D5, below you can see what scores each of them received in five different aspects. To wrap up, we have used our unique Decision Algorithm that assesses different camera models upon 63 different factors including their price, and, if possible, DxO Mark scores. This algorithm allows us to make our verdict more consistent and objective.
What is our final verdict? Based on our comparison and the final scores of Leica SL and Nikon D5 here is what we can say in conclusion:
According all the factors that we considered in the process of comparing these two cameras, Leica SL deserves a higher Total Score than the Nikon D5. Thus, if you are choosing between these options, we would recommend you to choose the first model over the other one.
For better understanding of each model’s technical characteristics, find the detailed comparison below:
|Leica SL||Nikon D5|
|Announced||Oct 21, 2015||Jan 05, 2016|
|Body Type||SLR-style mirrorless||Large SLR|
|Sensor Size||Full frame||Full frame|
|Sensor Dimensions||36 x 24 mm||35.8 x 23.9 mm|
|Sensor Area||864.00 mm2||855.62 mm2|
|Sensor Resolution||24.0 MP||21.0 MP|
|Max Image Resolution||6000 x 4000||5588 x 3712|
|Max Native ISO||50,000||102,400|
|Max Boosted ISO||n/a||3,280,000|
|Min Native ISO||50||100|
|Lens Mount||Leica T||Nikon F|
|Number of Lenses||3||287|
|Focal Length Multiplier||1x||1x|
|Macro Focus Range|
|AF Multi Area|
|AF Live View|
|AF Face Detection|
|AF Contrast Detection|
|AF Phase Detection|
|Number of Focus Points||49||153|
|Number of Cross Focus Points||n/a||99|
|Screen Type||Fixed Type||Fixed Type|
|Screen Resolution||1,040k dots||2,359k dots|
|ViewFinder Resolution||4,400k dots||0k dots|
|Min Shutter Speed||60 s||30 s|
|Max Shutter Speed||1/8000 s||1/8000 s|
|Continuous Shooting||11.0 fps||14.0 fps|
|Manual Exposure Mode|
|Custom White Balance|
|Flash Modes||no built-in flash||Auto, Red-eye, Slow sync, Rear curtain|
|DxO Sensor Scores|
|DxO Sensor Score||88||88|
|DxO Color Depth||25.0||25.1|
|DxO Dynamic Range||13.4||12.3|
|DxO Low Light ISO||1821||2434|
|Video Resolutions||4096 x 2160 (24p), 3840 x 2160 (30p), 1920 x 1080 (120p, 60p, 30p, 24p), 1280 x 720 (120p, 60p, 30p, 24p)||4K (UHD) 30p/25p/24p, 1080/60p/50p/30p/25p/24p, 720/60p/50p|
|Max Video Resolution||4096 x 2160||3840 x 2160|
|Video Formats||MPEG-4||MPEG-4, H.264|
|USB||USB 3.0||USB 3.0|
|Weight||847 g||1415 g|
|Physical Dimensions||147 x 104 x 39 mm||160 x 158.5 x 92 mm|
|Battery Life||400 shots||3780 shots|
|Battery Type||Battery Pack||Battery Pack|
|Storage Type||Dual SD/SDHC/SDXC card (UHS-II supported on slot 1)||Dual CompactFlash or dual XQD|