Everyone seems to want to jump onto the “mirrorless” bandwagon since it is becoming clearer that it is the future. ZEISS has just announced its first 37.4MP full-frame fixed-lens camera, the ZX1. The ZEISS ZX1 has a ZEISS Distagon 35mm f/2 T* lens and, since the lens is fixed (i.e., you cannot change lenses), the ZX1 does not unfortunately qualify for the “mirrorless” moniker (since all mirrorless cameras are interchangeable lens cameras), however badly ZEISS wants it to be so. Instead the ZX1 falls into the premium fixed-lens camera category.
The ZX1 wants photographers to shoot AND edit right in-camera on the 4.34″ multi-touch display using Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC loaded right into the camera. Even though 4.34″ might seem like a big screen, once you pop up the editing controls, the image shrinks to a small area and that might pose quite a challenge to precise image editing.
The ZX1 has 512 GB of internal SSD memory, which it says “provides sufficient space for approximately 6,800 RAW files (DNG) or over 50,000 JPGs” — but that does not take into account memory space required to load the Lightroom program, work space required to do the actual editing as well as space required to save the edited images. Still, that amounts to a lot of RAW and/or JPEGs.
Bear in mind that the ZX1 does not have a memory card slot, so file transfers are done through Wi-Fi or USB-C. Likewise, firmware updates are pushed down to the camera “over-the-air” without requiring a computer (but that means you need an Internet connection).
Besides the fixed LCD on which you’ll do your image editing, there is also a Full HD OLED EVF (with 0.74x magnification) and a hot shoe (supporting Sigma flash protocol). There are two control dials on the top to set the Shutter Speed (A, T (30 sec.), L, 1 sec.- 1/1000 sec., H (1/8000 sec.)) and ISO (A, L (80), 100 – 6400, H(51200)). An aperture ring on the lens allows you to select aperture (A, f/2-22). Continuous shooting is up to 3fps. UHD 4K video is captured at up to 30fps (Full HD at 60fps). Since the leaf shutter is built into the lens, it is very quiet (“virtually silent”) and, theoretically, it should be able to flash sync at any shutter speed.
View the ZEISS ZX1 Technical Specifications
The Camera Concept for the Creative Flow in Photography
First full-frame camera from ZEISS with first-class image quality and the familiar, intuitive image editing and connectivity of a smartphone.
ZEISS ZX1 – That is the name of the newly developed mirrorless full-frame camera from ZEISS that was presented today in Cologne, Germany. Thanks to the ZEISS lens and a sensor developed in-house at ZEISS, the camera delivers first-class image quality combined with an operational concept and user experience that make the photographer’s jobs-to-be-done as intuitive as on a smartphone.
The ZEISS camera concept is just the first step to opening up a new world of possibilities for ambitious photographers – from taking the shot to editing the image and sharing it on the web.
SHOOT. EDIT. SHARE. – Harmonized hardware, software and optics for a seamless creative process
SHOOT: the ZEISS ZX1 features a newly designed, integrated ZEISS Distagon 35 mm f/2 T* lens with autofocus that has been perfectly matched to the 37.4 megapixel full-frame sensor developed in-house at ZEISS. The interplay between the lens and sensor ensures first-class picture quality with that typical ZEISS look.
EDIT: The ZEISS ZX1 enables photographers to professionally process RAW images directly on the camera thanks to fully integrated Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC. Moreover, the ZEISS ZX1’s unique user interface supports the user’s particular workflow without any interruption – providing direct access to the most frequently used functions via a 4.3″ multi-touch display.
SHARE: when the networked full-frame camera is connected, the user can upload selected images directly to the internet – without the intermediate transfer to memory cards or other external devices.
512 GB of internal memory provides sufficient space for approximately 6,800 RAW files (DNG) or over 50,000 JPGs – more than enough to handle photos, even during a longer trip, and giving the photographer the chance to let their creativity flow. Versatile connectivity options such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and USB-C ensure that various peripherals can be connected. Over-the-air software updates keep the camera up to date without requiring a computer connection.
Designed with a passion for detail and a focus on the essentials
The design of the ZEISS ZX1 is characterized by its iconic shape with carefully crafted details. The overall form and reduction to just those elements that are absolutely necessary lay the foundation for an ergonomic camera and ensure easy handling. The symbiosis of hardware and software is exemplified by the newly defined user interface that utilizes the 4.3″ multi-touch display. The slightly bent screen separates the live view from the control elements, making camera operation comfortable and straightforward.
“We know that we are exploring new ways and are initially addressing a special target group with the ZEISS ZX1. With our concept we are focusing on ambitious, professional creatives who want to produce their photographic experiences quickly and efficiently, and inspire as many people on the Internet as possible. This requires a streamlined workflow in addition to high-end features. This is exactly what the concept of the ZEISS ZX1 offers,” explains Jörg Schmitz, Head of the Consumer Products business group at ZEISS.
ZEISS ZX1 available from early 2019
The ZEISS ZX1 will be available at selected dealers in early 2019. ZEISS will announce the recommended retail price at the start of the official market launch. Starting now, anyone interested in receiving information on exact availability can register at www.zeiss.com/zx1.
ZEISS is an internationally leading technology enterprise operating in the fields of optics and optoelectronics. The ZEISS Group develops, produces and distributes measuring technology, microscopes, medical technology, eyeglass lenses, camera and cinema lenses, binoculars and semiconductor manufacturing equipment. With its solutions, the company constantly advances the world of optics and helps shape technological progress. ZEISS is divided up into the four segments Research & Quality Technology, Medical Technology, Vision Care/Consumer Products and Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology. The ZEISS Group is represented in more than 40 countries and has over 50 sales and service locations, more than 30 manufacturing sites and about 25 research and development centers around the globe.
In fiscal year 2016/17 the company generated revenue approximating €5.3 billion with around 27,000 employees. Founded in 1846 in Jena, the company is headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany. Carl Zeiss AG is the strategic management holding company that manages the ZEISS Group. The company is wholly owned by the Carl Zeiss Stiftung (Carl Zeiss Foundation).
Further information at www.zeiss.com
The Consumer Products business group combines the company’s business with camera and cine lenses, binoculars, spotting scopes and hunting optics. The business group is represented at sites in Oberkochen and Wetzlar. The business group is allocated to the Vision Care/ Consumer Products segment. In fiscal year 2016/17 the segment generated revenue of €1.1 billion with around 9,770 employees.
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