Pixii, the $3,000 Leica-like with no LCD and no memory card, is finally here

Jul 6, 2020

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

Pixii, the $3,000 Leica-like with no LCD and no memory card, is finally here

Jul 6, 2020

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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It’s been a minute since we heard about Pixii, huh? It’s been right around 18 months, actually, but now the Leica M mount rangefinder that sounds suspiciously like the Leica M10-D (but without a memory card) has finally given us an update. It’s now for sale with either 4GB or 8GB internal memory, and it starts at around $3,000.

It features an 11.1-megapixel APS-C electronic global shutter CMOS sensor and yes, 4GB and even 8GB don’t sound like a lot of storage, but the whole point of this thing is not to store pictures on your camera but to send them straight to your phone where you can edit and share them instantly. And at 11.1-megapixels, how quickly are you even going to fill 4GB, really?

The only display on the camera is on top, to show you your exposure settings, and it does offer complete manual control. But the only way to review your images is by connecting it up to a smartphone. Presumably, the small amount of internal storage is simply to force you to do it more often than you otherwise might in order to unload.

On the back there are only three simple status lights, to tell you the current status, whether there’s a link to your smartphone and whether you need to worry about your battery.

The specs appear to be largely as they were when the camera was first announced last January, although a couple of have changed. The native gain is now at ISO320 instead of ISO200 and the colour options have changed slightly. It’s also now described as being powered by a dual-core ARM processor rather than two separate ARM processors and Bluetooth LE 5.0 is now standard instead of an upgrade option.

VIEWFINDER

  • Optical viewfinder with coinciding rangefinder (magnification 0,67X)
  • LED backlit framelines with exposure indicators
  • Automatic parallax correction
  • Automatic led intensity adjustment
  • Framelines for standard prime lenses: 40/50mm, 28/35mm

SENSOR

  • CMOS sensor with 5.5um pixels
  • 12-bits sampling rate, and high dynamic range (60-90dB)
  • Global electronic shutter
  • Native gain: ISO 320
  • RGB colour matrix, optimized with micro-lenses
  • IR filter < 1.0mm, no low-pass filter

LENS

  • Interchangeable lens system
  • Manual focus and aperture control
  • Leica M compatible lens mount, also compatible with M39/LTM lenses (with adapter)
  • Dark chamber designed to fit collapsible lenses

BODY

  • Dual-block Machined aluminium body
  • Finish: silver anodized, matte black, space gray
  • ISO accessory shoe, tripod socket A ¼, lugs for carrying strap
  • Dimensions : 138x79x33mm
  • Weight: approx. 460g (incl. battery)

CONTROLS

  • Manual shutter speed selector
  • Automatic speed mode
  • 2 stage shutter button: exposure metering/lock, shutter release
  • Quick ISO selection, white-balance and supplementary settings via an integrated menu
  • OLED control screen

SYSTEM

  • Dual-core ARM SoC with integrated FPGA accelerator
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n connectivity, Bluetooth LE 5.0
  • 8GB or 32GB internal storage

POWER

  • Li-ion 7.4V battery, 1000mAh capacity, model NP-FW50
  • Integrated USB charger
  • Programmable suspend and power off timer

Interestingly, the specs still list a 32GB storage option, although only 8GB (which is already sold out) and 4GB “Launch Edition” options are listed on the website.

It’s an interesting looking camera, for sure, although some of the language on their website definitely seems like they’re aiming more towards the “pretentious hipster” crowd with more money than sense on this one. Given that it’s only a measly 11.1-megapixels and it’s intended to be used in tandem with your smartphone, they’re certainly not targeting the professionals.

At the moment the camera is available in two capacities. There’s the 4GB “Launch Edition” at €2,700 (US$3,049) or the 8GB version at €2,900 ($3,279), which they say is plus applicable taxes, depending on your location. When it comes to colour, you can get anodized grey or matte black. No word on the “silver anodized” yet

[via DCW]

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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20 responses to “Pixii, the $3,000 Leica-like with no LCD and no memory card, is finally here”

  1. Reynardt Badenhorst Avatar
    Reynardt Badenhorst

    Wedding photography?

    1. Alex Minkin Avatar
      Alex Minkin

      Reynardt Badenhorst probably just Brooklyn Beckham

  2. Michael Bray Avatar
    Michael Bray

    Doctors and lawyers

  3. Jeff Hayward Avatar
    Jeff Hayward

    Would be a nice street photography tool. But no street photogs I know are busting out $3,000 for a toy.

  4. David Hermoza Avatar
    David Hermoza

    It’s aimed at people who won’t print shit

    1. Camera operator Hong Kong Avatar
      Camera operator Hong Kong

      and a bit rich.
      3,000 USD?!

  5. Howardo Mansfieldio Avatar
    Howardo Mansfieldio

    “A measly 11.1 megapixels”
    You kids today. I remember when professionals were producing great photos from a 10.1 megapixel Canon EOS 1D mark III.

    1. David Triregno Avatar
      David Triregno

      Howardo Mansfieldio Except that it is 2020 and that for half the price, you have sensors much more qualitative and that we prove themselves with in addition, 28/32/40mgp …

  6. Thomas Weinsheimer Avatar
    Thomas Weinsheimer

    200 bucks for 4 gb more ?

  7. Miroslav Vrzala Avatar
    Miroslav Vrzala

    Waste of money I think

  8. Michael Beckerman Avatar
    Michael Beckerman

    That’s going to sell really well to the “trying way too hard to be cool” crowd and the “more money than brains” bunch, I’m sure. Have fun with that.

  9. Ciprian Ungur Avatar
    Ciprian Ungur

    If Apple ever made a camera… This would be it.

  10. Joost Avatar
    Joost

    Love the concept, not particularly mad about the price tag. Might get R6 instead.
    Who in their right mind would buy this?!
    These things are the reason I’m not in Sales department.

  11. Neil Pentecost Avatar
    Neil Pentecost

    If you want a cool 1, buy a.. film 1

  12. Duncan Dimanche Avatar
    Duncan Dimanche

    it’s a sad
    day… i mean for that price or less you can get yourself the m240 which is a killer camera… what on earth are they thinking ?

  13. MegaNickels Avatar
    MegaNickels

    Lol hwut. Just buy a Leica lol.

  14. John M Fuller Avatar
    John M Fuller

    Ridiculous waste of money.

  15. Ali Zakaria Avatar
    Ali Zakaria

    Considering it’s price, might as well get a bona fide full frame mirrorless camera.

  16. Saso Domijan Avatar
    Saso Domijan

    Only if it comes with very thin leather strap!

    No hipster will ever wear it for the whole day waking around the city with a wide comfortable camera strap.

  17. Robert Li Avatar
    Robert Li

    Simple question: if the company may not stick around for long due to low sales, how will the early adapters be supported of repair and spare part? 3000 EUR for aps-c range finder is niche, 3000 EUR for disposal camera (due to lack of repair) is joke. Good luck to those who “just want it and nothing else”.