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Wednesday, August 23, 2006

New Zeiss SW

Just what you needed: a film rangefinder-type camera without the range/viewfinder. Zeiss has announced the Zeiss SW (superwide? Makes sense), a less (but still very) expensive variant of the "known Zeiss Ikon" [sic] that uses only an external, shoe-mounted viewfinder, presumably with scale/zone focusing.

Here's the press release, FWIW. Make of this marketing move what you will....

See Wider!

The Zeiss Ikon SW is the 35mm precision camera for uncompromising superwide photographers. Its lens mount takes any lens with M bayonet, in particular the ZEISS high performance superwide-angle lenses Distagon T* 2,8/15mm ZM and the Biogon T* types from the ZEISS ZM range.

An accessory shoe directly above the lens takes the corresponding superwide viewfinder. A second shoe is built in to take a flash, a bubble level or other accessory.

The electronically controlled metal focal plane shutter offers speeds ranging from 1/2000 sec. – 8 sec. in automatic mode (AE-lock is available) and 1/2000 - 1 sec. + B in manual mode. Fastest flash synchro speed is 1/125 sec.

The Zeiss Ikon SW offers the same extremely high image quality as the known Zeiss Ikon rangefinder camera: far above today’s digital cameras. It is fully integrated into the Zeiss Ikon system. The Zeiss Ikon SW comes without the complex rangefinder and is therefore considerably more affordable than the rangefinder camera.

The Zeiss Ikon SW will be available as of October 2006.

List price is 799,00 € (without VAT)

Posted by: MIKE JOHNSTON with thanks to Oren


Blogger DonovanCO said...

Great idea, but Cosina was there first with the Bessa rangefinder without a viewfinder. I bought a new one for $75 and put either my Voigtlander 15mm or 25mm on it. Total cost of camera, two lenses and two viewfinders is less than this new camera. The Cosina designed and made lenses are excellent!!

6:56 PM  
Blogger h said...

Which reminds me that I'm still awaiting your promised review of the ZM lenses. Any chance you'll be tempting my wallet soon?

And, while I'm glad to see Zeiss making new toys for us film boys(not that I'm personally interested in this one) can anyone tell me where, apart from here, I go to find out about them? doesn't have anything on this camera. It doesn't even have anything on the Sonnar 50/1.5, and that's months old now.


9:14 PM  
Blogger oren said...

can anyone tell me where, apart from here, I go to find out about them?

10:26 PM  
Blogger h said...

Thanks Oren

11:19 AM  
Blogger Howard Cornelsen said...

Same idea as the Leica MD and MDa years ago, designed as copy cameras for use on the Reprovit copy stand; marvelous that ZI would revive the idea.

Regarding zone focusing, I don't believe the 15/2.8 is RF-coupled anyway; and many photographers such as Cartier-Bresson used primarily lenses 35mm and shorter and zone-focused them for the "decisive moment."


3:06 PM  
Blogger Mike Johnston said...

Actually, H.C.-B. used a 50mm more than 90% of the time--maybe 95%--but I take your point--lots of photojournalists do use mainly wide lenses.


3:34 PM  

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