End of the Road: Zeiss Ikon Rangefinders To Be Shuttered

After bidding farewell to the Super Wide and Silver editions of its Zeiss Ikon 35mm rangefinder earlier this year, Cosina is officially saying goodbye to the last of the Zeiss Ikons, relegating the whole line to the history books. The news, which began as a rumor based on this tweet by one of Cosina’s retailers, has since been confirmed by The Phoblographer with the company itself.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Zeiss Ikon, all three now-discontinued models were M-Mount alternatives to Leica’s M bodies. They were introduced at Photokina 2006, and the silver and black editions soon built up a sparkling reputation due to their exceptional build quality and bright viewfinder (the Super Wide had no viewfinder).

Film enthusiasts who couldn’t afford a Leica found themselves with a high-quality alternative that was still fully compatible with all of their favorite M-Mount lenses.

Sadly, the slow decay of the film camera industry in the face of the digital revolution isn’t anything new — it seems we hear about another “casualty” every other month — but Zeiss Ikon owners will be quick to tell you that this truly is a sad day for film photography.

For now you can still get your hands on both the silver and black editions through various retailers, but if you want one for your collection we suggest you hurry — once stock runs out, the Ikons will officially have gone extinct.

(via The Phoblographer)

Image credits: Zeiss Ikon ZM with Planar T* 2/50 by scottwallick, Zeiss Ikon by Adam Haranghy

  • Sean Lucky

    Damn, now I want one even more…

  • Gary C

    Sony should buy the design and slap a full frame sensor in one of those bad boys to complete with the Leica M.

  • georanson

    I’d buy it in a second as long as they kept the m-mount

  • G

    I don’t know if this camera ever sold well (guessing not as they’re discontinuing it), but I’ve always felt it’s problem is you can get well-working second-hand Leicas for much less. Even second-hand the Ikon tends to be the same as an M6 (yes, the M6 doesn’t have aperture priority and the Ikon does, but that’s just electronics interfering with the shutter and thus a nightmare when it breaks).

  • Dikaiosune01

    It is (and ‘was’) really hard for the Zeiss Ikon to be the middle child. At least they’ll keep making the much cheaper Voigtlanders; and the much too expensive Leica’s.

  • Duke Shin

    They just can’t compete with Voigtlander.

  • E

    I never really understood the appeal of the Bessa. It feels like a Holga for M6 money (in Europe at least). Not saying it doesn’t take good pictures (a film camera is basically just a light tight box, a reliable shutter and a good lens anyway), but it is incredibly overpriced for what it is: a plasticy camera.

    It has the same issue as the Ikon (mentioned above): I just don’t understand why I should choose one over a second-hand Leica!

  • Ken Akiva Shapero

    A truly wonderful film camera.I guess I’ll have to slum it with my M3. RIP Zeiss.

  • none

    Well, bessa has a 1:1 viewfinder, wich is a plus.

  • Bruno Candeias

    99% of this site readers don’t give a crap about this.. this, the high prices of the film this days, the lack of slide films, the bankruptcy of Kodak.. film is having a bad time these days :(

  • Dave

    I believe Voightlander and Zeiss Ikon are made by Cosina, just to different standards.