There is something going on in the rangefinder world: A vibrant French start-up has released its new version of its Pixii rangefinder camera. It appears to be a modern body with M mount and a world-first 64-bit processor.
Pixii? Never seen one? You’re in good company. Neither did I nor any rangefinder photographer I personally know. But I patiently followed the news from the French start-up. The camera sparked my interest more than one year ago because Pixii’s offering was so unique. A rangefinder camera with M mount, APS-S sensor, optical viewfinder with integrated electronic display, no rear display and high connectivity. Looked like something in between Leica CL, Leica M10-D and M8.2. Looked attractive. Isn’t it cool that a young business takes such a risk? With the Pixii rangefinder camera, they did.
The Pixii rangefinder camera has not grabbed the headlines so far
However, I started to become doubtful. Apart from a handful of reviews which were partly from Pixii-affiliated authors, not too much was to be read. An exception is the in-depth article by Hamish Gill, and I can also recommend this review by Gannon Burgett on DPreview. And despite living quite close to France, I never saw someone carrying such a camera. Nor did other rangefinder photographers I personally know. I almost thought the Pixii was a phantom were it not for the occasional contact with the team. Let’s put it like that: They seemed very busy.
The 64-bit processor in the Pixii rangefinder camera is claimed to be a world first
Now I know they actually were. Behind the scenes, they were developing the new, third (!) model, which is sold as Pixii Camera (2023), Model A2572. As mentioned, it has a new 64-bit processor, a 26 MP APS-C sensor and the (certainly interesting) interactive viewfinder. You can order it with 16, 32, 64 or 128 GM internal memory (since there is no memory card slot, that’s an important up-front decision). The current production run seems to be sold out already, but by the time of writing (10 December 2022), you can get one in February if you order now.
Prices are almost in the range of a used M10
The price of the various versions of the camera on the website seems to be attractive. They range between €2,699 and €3,150 but mind you, this is without tax. Delivered to Germany, the camera will cost you almost €3,300 in the smallest and about €3,800 in the largest memory configuration. You can almost get a used Leica M10 with a full-frame sensor for that money. On the other hand, if the Pixii is as well manufactured as it is designed, its pricing is definitively fair.
The Pixii rangefinder camera is a perfect candidate for The M Files
I have to confess that was quite enthusiastic about the Pixii concept from the start. For all those of you who know my M Files project (a somewhat encyclopaedic approach to Leica M Mount products which are not part of the Leica M system – see the full list of episodes at the end of this Macfilos article), it will be instantly clear that I saw the logical extension of my research in the Pixii camera.
Is the interactive viewfinder what Leica never gave us?
The new model is fascinating for many reasons. Pixii claims superior performance of the sensor in black and white work and the interactive rangefinder could be precisely what some of us expect from Leica. The modern design beams the rangefinder camera somehow into the 21st century. And, and, and.
A review of the Pixii rangefinder camera for Macfilos is drawing closer
Hopefully, we will have a Pixii Camera (2023) for review soon. I still hope I can meet the Pixii team somewhere, maybe in the French city of Besançon, where they are based. Seldom have I been so curious when embarking on a camera review. Despite this thrill, I will only report on this camera here on Macfilos if I can have enough time with the Pixii for real-life experience and only if I experience no constraints when it comes to my verdict (you may know why I do so much to defend my independence).
So stay tuned. I hope to be able to bring you exciting news. Until then, feel free to visit the Pixii website to whet your appetite. All images for this article were provided by Pixii.
What do you think? Is the Pixii of interest to you? Could it be just for the sake of curiosity or as a tool you would actually consider working with? Is APS-C the way to go? Will this young company be able to hold its own next to Leica’s established competition? What would the Pixii have to do for you to get you to consider buying it seriously? What would be a clear impediment for you? Have you tried it already? Discuss here and give me hints for the (hopefully) forthcoming review.
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