Rumor: Full frame Zeiss Ikon digital rangefinder in development

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"Our source claims that Zeiss is working on a digital rangefinder with a Sony sensor, he goes further saying that unlike all the current dRFs the Zeiss dRF will use a CMOS sensor". (source: ZR)

This is what Zeiss had to say on this topic few years ago (September, 2006):

Q: There are rumors that Zeiss will eventually have its own digital rangefinder camera body that will accept the M mount lenses. True or false? Will it be Cosina-made? Full 24 x 36mm sensor?

A: At Carl Zeiss, we can imagine such a camera. But we feel that is not the right time to introduce such a camera now. Today digital technology is still developing fast and the initial value of a digital camera is lost in quite a short time. (source : PopPhoto)

So, is now the right time? Right before Leica launches the full frame M9?

Zeiss currently does have a film rangefinder product - Zeiss Ikon (product page):

zeiss-ikon-rangefinder

Zeiss Ikon rangefinder (source: zeiss.com)

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  • m4/3

    It would be sweet if they did, but I’m not sure I can see it happening soon.

  • http://www.peterlombardi.com Peter Lombardi

    really not a huge fan of the current batch of sony sensors, so not as excited as i should be right now.
    -peter

    • Sky

      Not a fan of Nikon DSLRs either you are? ;)

  • richard

    It could easily happen as a niche item, just like the Bessa/Epson RD1. It’s all Cosina anyway. A well designed, full frame digital rangefinder undercutting the future M9 could be very popular around the Leica/M/Rangefinder/Zeiss/German Loving set.

  • http://www.feignphoto.com Ivan

    Oh god, I would absolutely get this, if I could afford it. I’m big on street photography, and I’m dying to get my hands on a nice rangefinder, film-wise I know what I want, but the digital offerings are so small. I hope this is real.

  • boria

    A logical step – considering that leica does the same thing as zeiss at thrice the price i.e. offers M7 at approx. 3 times the price of ikon, and promotes it’s M8 digi-toy at even higher price. Personally I don’t see any reason for buying M7 instead of equally good ikon (apart from the label on it). Likewise I won’t see any reason for buying M8 if digi-ikon will be available (at a reasonable price).
    On the other hand I’m shooting mostly film and – in general – I hate digi-cams for their poor overall image quality as well as for lifespan of a fruit fly.
    Adding digi-ikon to zeiss’ portfolio might suggest that zeiss – as well as many other manufacturers – is going to betray film photograpers, and switch (completely?) to digital, wich would leave us with even less options for buing a camera.

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