Introduction

Studio product pictures by Dan Bracaglia

The Zeiss ZX1 is the first-ever digital digital camera to return with Adobe Lightroom Cell built-in, encouraging you to shoot, edit and add pictures from a single gadget. It has a 37.4MP full-frame sensor, a set 35mm F2 lens and the most important display we have ever seen on a contemporary digital digital camera at 4.34″ (11cm) diagonal.

It is also a digital camera that I questioned if I would ever see; it was introduced means again in 2018, and there was a stretch of greater than a yr and a half the place we heard no information and revealed no developments on it. Then, in late 2020, we acquired a cheery e-mail that one was obtainable, asking if we needed to strive it out. And only recently, we have gotten our palms on a model with firmware 1.Four to complete up our full evaluation.



Look out, world, the Zeiss ZX1 has landed.
Out-of-camera JPEG | ISO 100 | 1/683 sec | F2

Key specs:

  • 37.4MP full-frame sensor
  • Mounted 35mm F2 lens with Zeiss T* coatings
  • 4.3″ ‘angled’ LCD with 2.76M dots
  • 0.74x magnification digital viewfinder with 6.22M dots
  • Most shutter pace of 1/2000 sec (flash sync as much as 1/1000 sec)
  • Distinction and phase-detection AF
  • Three fps max burst pace
  • 4K/30p, 1080/60p video seize
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
  • 512GB inside SSD, exterior storage utilizing USB-C
  • Single USB-C port, supporting USB Energy Supply and HDMI alt mode

Along with having Lightroom put in, the ZX1 is unconventional in that it consists of an particularly minimal set of bodily controls – ostensibly, to encourage a ‘back-to-basics’ means of capturing – whereas additionally requiring you to make use of that massive touchscreen in a means that you just needn’t on most different high-end cameras.

So, how effectively does ‘back-to-basics’ work when mixed with a contemporary, smartphone-esque interface? Learn on to seek out out.

The Zeiss ZX1 is accessible now at a instructed worth of $6,000.


What’s new and the way the Zeiss ZX1 compares

That fancy angle on the display truly separates a slate of controls from the principle display in stay view and playback.

The ZX1 is not the primary try we have seen at marrying a sensible gadget with extra conventional digital camera {hardware}. The likes of the Panasonic DMC-CM1 and Samsung Galaxy NX each benefitted from higher sensor and/or lens know-how than smartphones of the time in addition to Uncooked picture processing, however right this moment’s telephones use computational methods that can have largely closed the picture high quality hole with these units.

So Zeiss wanted to do one thing somewhat totally different; as a substitute of being largely a telephone that has some additional digital camera bits on it, the ZX1 is probably greatest considered a digital camera with some telephone bits in-built (like one other old-timer, the Nikon S800c).

On the coronary heart of the digital camera is a 37.4MP full-frame sensor we have not seen earlier than. We have discovered that the sensor presents nice decision, however maybe not probably the most versatile Uncooked information. The 35mm F2 lens presents spectacular sharpness and pleasing out-of-focus areas, and its in-built leaf shutter permits for synchronization with exterior flashes at shutter speeds of as much as 1/1000 sec.

We’ve not absolutely examined the ZX1 but, however thus far, we’re fairly taken with its 35mm F2 lens.

The 4.3″ touchscreen is among the many largest we have seen on a digital digital camera, and is a pleasant technique to body up your pictures. The viewfinder is massive and high-res, however you really want to press your eye proper up in opposition to it to get the complete view (not nice for glasses-wearers). The snazzy angle/curve on the display is not only for present; it usefully separates the principle display from the touch-controls that you’re going to be working along with your proper thumb whereas capturing or in playback.

The inclusion of Adobe Lightroom Cell is an attention-grabbing transfer. To make use of it, you will need to sign up with an Adobe account. I discovered I used to be in a position to edit Uncooked information with an Adobe account that wasn’t at the moment subscribed to Inventive Cloud, however there was an ever-present warning reminding me that until I subscribed, I would not have the ability to edit Uncooked information. It is somewhat complicated.

Replace as of 12/11/20: Zeiss has confirmed that, even and not using a paid Adobe account, you’ll be able to use Lightroom Cell on the ZX1 to do fundamental modifying and changes. You will not have the ability to use so-called ‘premium options’ (denoted by the blue stars on the icons within the picture under), however this could set many customers’ minds relaxed in that the overwhelming majority of changes chances are you’ll wish to make the most of can be found subscription-free.

Lightroom Cell on the ZX1 may be very acquainted for anybody who’s used it on one other sensible gadget. The yellow warning image on the highest appears to be a glitch from this early manufacturing digital camera; Zeiss says customers can do fundamental modifying on the ZX1 while not having a paid subscription in any respect.

Many different cameras additionally enable for in-camera modifying of Uncooked and JPEG information, however to not the diploma nor with the polished interface supplied by Lightroom. Since there’s so much to delve into, we’ll go into extra depth on how the modifying and sharing course of works on the ZX1 in a while within the evaluation.

In comparison with…

The Zeiss ZX1 joins a comparatively small membership of large-sensor, fixed-lens compact cameras, however all of them differ significantly by way of measurement, functionality, controls, and extra. All the different cameras right here require larger reliance on bodily controls and much much less on their touchscreens than the ZX1 (and the Sony has no touchscreen in any respect). The ZX1 is the most important digital camera right here by a wider margin than you would possibly guess from the official product photographs.

Zeiss ZX1 Leica Q2 Sony RX1R II Fujifilm X100V
MSRP
(at launch)
$6000 $4995 $3299* $1399
Sensor 37MP full-frame 47M full-frame

42MP full-frame

26MP APS-C
Lens 35mm F2 28mm F1.7 35mm F2 23mm F2 (equiv. to 35mm subject of view)
Viewfinder decision 6.22M dots 3.68M dots 2.36M dots 3.69M dots + optical
LCD 4.34″ mounted;
2.76M dots
3″ mounted;
1.04M dots
3″ tilting;
1.23M dots
3″ tilting;
1.62M dots
Contact-screen Sure Sure No Sure
Constructed-in flash No No No Sure
Climate-sealing No Sure, IP52 rated No Sure*
Max. burst Three fps 20 fps 5 fps 20 fps (elec. shutter)
Max. shutter, mech | digital 1/2000 | N/A 1/4000 | N/A 1/2000 | N/A 1/4000 | 1/32000
Wi-fi connectivity 802.11ac Wi-Fi + Bluetooth Wi-Fi and Bluetooth LE 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi + NFC 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi + Bluetooth
Video 4K/30p, 1080/60p 4K/30p, 1080/120p 1080/60p 4K/30p, 1080/120p
Battery life (CIPA) Not rated 350 pictures 220 pictures 420 pictures
Dimensions 142 x 93 x 46 mm 130 x 80 x 92 mm 113 x 65 x 72 mm 128 x 75 x 53 mm
Weight 800 g 734 g 507 g 478 g

*X100V comes with claims of climate sealing when the AR-X100 adapter ring and a 49mm filter are hooked up to the lens.

One different digital camera to contemplate right here is Ricoh’s GR III. It is an extremely compact and comparatively reasonably priced digital camera with an APS-C sensor just like the X100V however with a 28mm (equal) F2.eight lens, so it has the identical subject of view because the Leica Q2. It additionally depends closely on bodily controls, may be very customizable and has in-body picture stabilization.

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Physique, controls and dealing with

I do want that ISO dial was a generic management dial or an publicity compensation dial. As a result of I simply go away it on ‘A’ myself.

The Zeiss ZX1 has a minimalist design; there are a complete of solely seven bodily management factors. The fundamentals embody an aperture ring, shutter pace dial and ISO dial. Apart from that, there is a handbook focus ring, an AF/MF swap on the lens, the on/off/sleep/video mode toggle, and a customizable button on the rear of the digital camera. Would not get a lot less complicated than that.

Sadly, the handbook focus and aperture rings are actually troublesome to function by really feel when you’re utilizing the viewfinder; although they’re product of a rubberized materials but it surely’s sort of slippery rubber and it is laborious to know which ring you’ve got discovered along with your fingers. The texture of the handbook focus ring is not nice; there’s virtually no damping. The aperture ring has 1/Three cease detents, however they’re pretty refined, and with no detents between ‘A’ (auto) and the F2 setting, you would possibly assume you’ve got grabbed the main target ring as a substitute as you first begin turning it.

The viewfinder has good magnification and backbone, however it’s a must to actually press your eye up in opposition to it to get the complete view. It is also laborious to function the aperture and focus rings by really feel when you’re wanting by way of the EVF and never at your palms.

The grip is supremely comfy, and when you’re capturing, there’s an array of controls working down the portion of the display to the best of the angle/curve. These embody publicity compensation, drive modes, white steadiness, and so forth. You faucet these tabs after which drag a slider up and down to regulate it.

These changes will also be made along with your eye to the finder; the journey facet of the preview within the digital viewfinder is occupied with the controls, simply as you see on the display, and whenever you faucet or drag your finger round, a small circle exhibits the place you are tapping and dragging. It really works fairly effectively, however being exact along with your changes takes some effort.

The ZX1’s contact controls on the righthand facet of the display embody publicity compensation, drive mode, white steadiness, metering, an AF contact pad, AF space measurement, AF-S or AF-C, the place you need your information saved, and ‘helpers’ just like the grid strains and histogram.

Frankly, we might take an publicity compensation dial over an ISO dial since we have a tendency to make use of Auto ISO virtually the entire time, and use publicity compensation to regulate picture brightness as mandatory. Alas, you are caught utilizing the touchscreen for that, or making use of ‘publicity lock’ on the customized button. However when reaching for that button, it is too straightforward to swipe the Publicity Comp contact management and by chance dial it as much as +3; it is annoying.

Extra positively, the general touchscreen interface is fairly responsive. From stay view / capturing mode, swipe up for settings and swipe right down to go to playback, after which down once more to go to the digital camera’s Android residence display (on the time of this writing, you can’t obtain extra apps).

The rubberized handbook focus ring is good and clean, and the aperture ring strikes in 1/3-stop detents as you flip it.

On the subject of the Android OS, you will not wish to be powering down and powering up the digital camera on a regular basis, as the method takes 10-20 seconds identical to a smartphone. However as soon as powered on, a flick of the facility toggle will put the digital camera into sleep mode, identical to ‘locking’ your telephone. One other flick and the digital camera is again and able to shoot in lower than a second, and when you preserve the digital camera ‘locked’ between pictures, a full day of capturing on a single cost is straightforward.

In case you’re completed for the day, it is best to totally shut the ZX1 down as sleep mode does eat battery energy if left alone for hours. You may as well set the digital camera to totally shut down after a specified time frame asleep.

With the ZX1, it is best to get used to placing it to sleep whenever you’re not about to make use of it – identical to a smartphone.

When it comes to storage, energy and ports, the ZX1 comes with a built-in 512GB SSD (although a few of that’s taken up by the working system) and a replaceable battery pack with 22.9Wh of juice (Zeiss does not give CIPA scores, and it would be laborious for them to make sense of a half-camera, half-phone sort of product anyway). When it comes to ports, you solely get a USB type-C connector that helps USB 3.2 speeds. It is good for charging the digital camera, transferring information to your pc or to an SSD, or adapting to an HDMI output sign.

There aren’t any claims of weather-sealing on the Zeiss ZX1, and with the uncovered USB-C connector, it is maybe greatest to be cautious when capturing in inclement climate.

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Enhancing on, and sharing from the ZX1

Identical Lightroom, totally different platform; as you’d anticipate, the ZX1 produces equivalent outcomes to what you’d get on a desktop machine. You’ll be able to see and obtain the unedited JPEG and DNG file right here.

Lightroom serves as the one means (on the time of this writing) to essentially fine-tune your output on the ZX1. Most different producers supply colour profiles, or the power to tweak JPEG output by way of sharpening, tone curve, and so forth. On the ZX1, you don’t have any such choices (effectively, as of firmware 1.5, launched the day earlier than we needed to ship the digital camera again, now you can alter JPEG sharpening – evidently, we have not had time to check it). You should pull a file into Lightroom to make any vital tweaks in any respect. The tradeoff for the additional effort is, in fact, the diploma to which Lightroom permits you to make edits.

The Lightroom modifying expertise is pretty responsive and will probably be acquainted to these used to the Lightroom cellular expertise on Android or iOS. Sadly, we discovered it was generally troublesome to get the ZX1 to reply to our inputs, notably when dragging sliders – it may take as many as 5 makes an attempt to get the interface to reply. By default, Lightroom does not allow lens corrections on the ZX1’s DNGs, so chances are you’ll wish to try this your self if the vignetting is just too sturdy (there’s not a lot in the best way of distortion to be corrected).

Additionally, exporting edited DNGs took anyplace from 30-50% longer on the ZX1 than a Pixel 3a smartphone (a midrange 2019 mannequin that is not particularly highly effective or costly), with the identical file and equivalent changes.

Whereas it is good to have the flexibleness of Lightroom on the ZX1, you do not at all times want it. I wasn’t at all times blown away by the ZX1’s JPEGs, however I assumed this one was good, vibrant and contrasty, and the white steadiness nailed the nice and cozy sundown mild.
Out-of-camera JPEG | ISO 100 | 1/242 sec | F8

When it comes time to share your pictures, you will need to first dive into the digital camera’s settings, hook up with a Wi-Fi sign and log in to Fb or cloud providers Flickr, DropBox or OneDrive. As soon as you’ve got completed that, you possibly can share them immediately from the digital camera’s playback mode. Testing with a OneDrive account, solely a few faucets have been required, and the digital camera created a ‘ZX1’ folder and uploaded a full DNG file with no hiccups.

You could discover that you just’re having to log in to comparable accounts somewhere else, although, which is somewhat bit complicated. You can share on to Instagram from playback, however it’s a must to log in from the playback display; there is not any choice to log into Instagram from the principle menus the place you possibly can log in to a Fb account.

Logging into an account is not at all times probably the most streamlined affair.

There’s additionally the choice to share immediately from Lightroom Cell, however the app itself handles all of these logins, so that you’d must arrange your accounts there, too. In different phrases, login settings you’ve got entered within the digital camera’s menus aren’t carried over into Lightroom mechanically. If you wish to add immediately from the Lightroom app as a substitute of the playback display, you are able to do so within the background if you would like to renew taking pictures.

After you’ve got gone by way of a number of rounds of logging-in, although, importing photographs to a wide range of providers is fairly simple, and until you are switching accounts, you will not must log in once more.

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Utilization impressions

The query we began out with was, “how effectively does ‘back-to-basics’ work when mixed with a contemporary, smartphone-esque interface?'”

Because it seems, pretty effectively. The Zeiss ZX1 does not come off as if it is having an identification disaster, nor as an digital gadget with novelty that begins to put on off on the packaging you take away it from. It comes off, merely, as a digital camera – albeit one which has its justifiable share of quirks.

This was one in all my favourite pictures from a fast yard photograph shoot, however even with the AF space over my topic’s face, the picture ended up barely back-focused 🤬 That bokeh, although…
Faucet or click on by way of for the complete picture.
Adjusted in Digicam Uncooked 13 | ISO 100 | 1/271 sec | F2

The direct dials and massive shows go a great distance in direction of permitting you to simply deal with photographing what’s in entrance of you. It is a digital camera that’s fairly well-suited to being your day by day photographic companion, capturing the ins and outs of day by day life and permitting you to share these moments from wherever you occur to be. Sadly, the management rings are extremely troublesome to function by really feel along with your eye to the finder, and it’s a must to actually press your eye to the finder to get the complete image.

Additional quirks do irk. The ZX1’s autofocus system is each fundamental and a bit uncommon – we’ll cowl extra particulars within the devoted autofocus part to return. Capturing with ‘picture evaluation’ enabled forces you into watching an animation of your last-shot picture fly as much as your digital camera roll, which takes additional time (simply disable picture evaluation for probably the most fluid capturing expertise). Additionally, that ISO dial ought to actually be an publicity compensation dial or at the very least a multi-purpose dial with publicity compensation as an possibility.

This photograph may very well be many issues. An actual-estate firm’s annual report cowl? A weary traveler’s reminder of a neighborhood? Just a few digital camera reviewer’s bizarre tackle Pioneer Sq. in Seattle? You determine.
Out-of-camera JPEG | ISO 100 | 1/304 sec | F5.6

After which there’s the ZX1’s raison d’être; the inclusion of Lightroom Cell. Fortunately, you do not want an Adobe subscription to make use of the digital camera and even make many of the edits you would possibly wish to, in-camera. On the draw back, the Lightroom export course of is mostly slower than a midrange Android telephone, and its integration with the principle digital camera’s settings may very well be improved.

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Picture high quality

Our take a look at scene is designed to simulate a wide range of textures, colours and element varieties you will encounter in the true world. It additionally has two illumination modes to see the impact of various lighting situations.

Immediately, we are able to see that the sensor / lens mixture on the ZX1 turns in gobs of element in all places you look. It is spectacular whilst you get out in direction of the perimeters of the scene. The worth you pay for this stage of sharpness comes by way of moiré patterning. At increased ISO values, we begin to see the ZX1’s sensor fall behind the competitors by way of noise (and a few occasional ‘banding’ patterns).

JPEG high quality is fairly strong, however the white steadiness was a problem. After a number of makes an attempt, this was the very best white steadiness we may get the customized white steadiness perform to provide. And, for the reason that digital camera lacks the choice to manually alter the inexperienced/magenta ‘tint’ axis, we had no means of enhancing on it. This is not a problem when you course of the DNGs in-camera, in fact, as Lightroom offers way more refined correction instruments.

Immediately, we are able to see that the JPEG engine is failing to carry on to the entire nice element that we see in Uncooked, wanting a bit ‘fuzzier’ than the Q2. We will even see this as we get into the corners, the place the ZX1 has a definite benefit in Uncooked. Regardless of the white steadiness woes, JPEG colour appears fairly pleasing, with punchy reds and blues, heat greens (which we choose) and good vibrant yellows. At increased ISO values, the ZX1 leaves behind extra luminance noise (grain) than its friends, however does a fairly good job of holding onto element. Even with low-contrast element, the ZX1 appears fairly good.

Whilst we ship this evaluation to publication, Zeiss has simply launched one other firmware replace – model 1.5 – that enables for the choice to pick JPEG sharpening ranges. Whereas we have not had time to guage this earlier than sending the ZX1 again to Zeiss, it is reassuring to see continued firmware updates including performance.

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Autofocus

For the sorts of travelogue-style pictures you are more likely to seize utilizing a digital camera with a set 35mm lens, the ZX1’s autofocus system will perform nice a lot of the time.
Processed in Adobe Digicam Uncooked 13 | ISO 100 | 1/2544 sec | F2

The autofocus implementation on the ZX1 is pretty fundamental: You get Single AF and Steady AF, together with a alternative of three AF space sizes. There’s additionally face-detection autofocus (included in firmware 1.4), however we’ll delve into that somewhat in a while, and there is a ‘touch-and-release’ possibility which helps you to faucet wherever you need to amass focus, and the digital camera will then focus and hearth off a shot.

With touch-and-release turned off, there is not any choice to faucet the place you need the digital camera to focus; as a substitute it’s a must to press and drag the AF level from its present place. Double-tapping the display returns the AF level to the middle.

To allow touchpad AF, you will need to first faucet somewhat icon on the management portion of the display, after which you possibly can drag within the field overlay to maneuver the AF level round.

There may be an choice to deliver up a small touch-pad overlay on the display, on which you’ll be able to drag your finger to maneuver your focus level round extra simply along with your eye to the viewfinder. Sadly, it disappears each time you half-press the shutter to provoke focus anew, and so you will need to re-enable it regularly with a faucet on the facet controls.

In use, we discovered that – regardless of firmware 1.4’s promise of improved AF consistency – the digital camera would often front-or-back focus, even with stationary topics in single AF. It was simply sufficient to be noticeable when you look intently, and with an excellent sharp lens in entrance of a sensor with 37MP of decision, it is regularly tempting to look intently at your ZX1 pictures.

Don’t climb on orcas. Sadly, regardless of having an AF space immediately over the stationary sculpted orca, the ZX1 back-focused, seen at full-size.
Out-of-camera JPEG | ISO 100 | F2.2 | 1/724 sec

The above picture is an efficient demonstration. Regardless of there being no motion within the scene and the AF space positioned over the whale, the ZX1 back-focused onto the grass behind the topic. Then once more, when you’re simply going to add this to your favourite whale-watching neighborhood social media web page, it is not so out-of-focus to be an issue contemplating how a lot compression some platforms apply.

Steady autofocus works effectively sufficient with contrasty topics, although chances are you’ll discover some looking. In case you’re capturing with the rear display, you possibly can drag your AF space round and the digital camera will proceed to regulate focus accordingly so long as you retain the shutter half-pressed. You’ll be able to program the rear customizable button to be ‘Focus Lock,’ so you possibly can halt focusing and recompose as mandatory.

There isn’t a generic subject-tracking possibility on the ZX1, so chances are you’ll end up sticking to single AF, buying focus after which recomposing barely – it is usually faster than manually re-positioning the AF level, however once more, with a lot decision, any photographer or topic motion throughout re-framing may imply your primary topic will get a bit out of focus.

Focus on this picture, utilizing single AF and a single space, was spot-on.
Processed from Uncooked in-camera | ISO 800 | 1/60 sec | F2

The addition of face detection in firmware 1.Four is appreciated, however the implementation is considerably missing. As soon as enabled, you will discover the digital camera re-focusing on a regular basis, whether or not you could have the shutter half-pressed or not, making an attempt to amass deal with no matter topic is beneath your AF space. (This may very well be as a result of the digital camera would in any other case battle to discover a face in an especially defocused scene, but it surely’s nonetheless not best habits a lot of the time.)

As soon as a face is detected, the AF space field disappears and the digital camera will draw a top level view round that face and try to take care of deal with it, once more, whether or not you are half-pressing the shutter or not. If there are a number of faces in a scene that the digital camera can acknowledge, you possibly can faucet to decide on which face to deal with.

However the truth that the digital camera makes an attempt to refocus (and subsequently hunts backwards and forwards) consistently whereas face detection is enabled signifies that you will in all probability go away it off for normal capturing, after which could neglect to show it on whenever you’d like to make use of it. (In my expertise, at the very least.)

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Video

The ZX1 offers sufficient management over video to be helpful for photographers desirous to seize occasional clips, although there are just a few limitations to pay attention to. The primary of these limitations is a big 1.48x crop issue whether or not you are capturing 4K or Full HD (1080p) footage, supplying you with a subject of view roughly equal to a 52mm lens in full-frame phrases. For a lot of, that can instantly rule out the ZX1 for a lot of sorts of video work.

There may be additionally vital rolling shutter when capturing 4K; we measure the readout fee to be round 32.4ms. Which means when you’re hand-holding the digital camera or partaking in even light pans, you will notice slanted verticals and a ‘jell-o’ impact very often. That is much less of a problem when capturing 1080p, the place we measure a readout fee of round 16ms.

Now, let us take a look at outright high quality.

As you possibly can see, the ZX1 captures excellent element in its 4K mode, handing over higher efficiency than the Leica Q2 (although the Leica has a a lot much less restrictive 1.09x crop when capturing UHD 4K), and the Zeiss falls somewhat behind the efficiency of Fujifilm’s X100V. In case you swap to 1080p seize, be ready to cope with loads of moiré patterning.

When capturing video on the ZX1, you’re solely in a position to shoot 4K/30p utilizing an h.265 codec or 1080/60p with an h.264 codec: no different decision / body fee combos are doable. Each automated and handbook publicity choices can be found, and if you wish to lock in your shutter pace and aperture manually, publicity compensation is accessible and can management your Auto ISO worth. The ZX1 has stereo inside microphones with ranges that may be mechanically or manually managed.

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Conclusion

What we like What we do not
  • Inconsistent UX, notably when logging in to accounts for sharing
  • Uncooked information present extra noise than rivals at excessive ISO
  • JPEG colour and auto white steadiness can look a bit ‘off’
  • Sometimes sluggish operation
  • Lens management rings laborious to make use of by really feel
  • Publicity compensation solely accessible by way of touchscreen
  • Autofocus system might be unreliable, interface is a bit cumbersome
  • Processing and exporting Uncooked information in-camera might be prolonged
  • Max 1/1000 sec mech. shutter pace, 1/2000 sec elec. shutter pace
  • It is costly

It has been some time since I reviewed a digital camera that has elicited the variety of ‘oohs’ and ‘aah’s and ‘what sort of digital camera is that?‘ reactions that the Zeiss ZX1 has. Maybe it is that the outward design resembles a form of oxymoronic mini-monolith and appears to genuinely seize individuals’s imaginations. After they wrap their palms across the rubberized grip, really feel the burden of the factor, and see for themselves simply how massive the rear display is, their quick response is, “now this is a pleasant digital camera.”

And the Zeiss ZX1 is a pleasant digital camera. At its worth level, it had higher be. It is from being a digital camera for the lots, and after spending a lot time with it, I am not completely satisfied that it is a lot extra than a pleasant digital camera, regardless of the implications of the ‘Keep in your circulate’ tagline within the branding supplies.

The ZX1 is able to excellent picture high quality. The lens displays a number of vignetting, as you possibly can see right here, however a few faucets of the lens correction tab will handle it if it is to not your liking (although it’s to mine).
Processed in Adobe Digicam Uncooked 13 | ISO 100 | 1/320 sec | F2

Positive, the ZX1 has key options to attraction to these trying to rapidly and simply shoot, edit and share high-quality content material from a single gadget in a streamlined style: options like face detection autofocus, detailed 4K video, and naturally, sturdy in-camera Uncooked processing utilizing one of many trade’s hottest software program suites.

However there are inherent limitations in these options that actively discourage their use, distracting you from no matter portion of the ‘shoot, edit, share’ circulate you end up in. The AF system is clunky and sometimes unreliable, the 4K video has tons of rolling shutter and a considerable crop, and the Lightroom integration, with its often unresponsive interface and prolonged export instances, is not fairly the sport changer that I (and maybe Zeiss) thought it could be.

So it is maybe greatest to consider the Zeiss ZX1 as, at the start, a succesful, premium journey digital camera – and one which simply occurs to have some novel options in-built must you wish to make the most of them. On this vein, for well-heeled world vacationers, these which can be wanting a few of the greatest still-image high quality they’ll get in a fixed-lens compact, or people who worth absolute simplicity of capturing expertise above all else, the ZX1 may make some sense.

Out-of-camera JPEG | ISO 800 | 1/60 sec | F5.6

As for the remainder of us? Properly, the ZX1 is, in spite of everything, a $6000 proposition, and $6000 buys you a number of different digital camera gear in addition to a number of smartphone or pc to make use of for modifying and sharing. Despite this, I am glad the ZX1 exists. It is refreshing to see a producer enterprise away from the gang and do one thing really totally different.

The ZX1, as the results of such a enterprise, was at all times unlikely to be as polished because the tried-and-true designs we’re accustomed to seeing (which are sometimes finely honed from many years of ergonomic design expertise and person suggestions). However the ZX1 succeeds in making an impression. It is hanging. So whereas I am unable to wholeheartedly advocate that the ZX1 is the fixed-lens compact digital camera that everybody ought to rush out and purchase, it’s going to, for the best particular person, spark pleasure and reward them with glorious picture high quality and a singular person expertise. Exclusivity, in spite of everything, carries a special price ticket for everybody.


Pattern gallery

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