Earlier this year in February, the up-and-coming American company Konost announced that they were working on the first “true” digital rangefinder camera. The word “true” implies that unlike the popular and iconic Leica M that uses a 100% optical rangefinder mechanism, the Konost FF uses a dedicated digital sensor to display a digital overlaying image in the viewfinder instead of relying on traditional rotating mirrors and prisms. Add to the specs a 20MP full frame sensor and a Leica M mount and the project suddenly becomes an interesting option for rangefinder aficionados.
However, since the press release in February, there has been little news about the camera’s development. We knew that Konost was looking for investors and partners at the time, which also meant that it would take a long time for them to deliver a final product.
A few days ago, the company decided to respond officially to the numerous questions received via their social media accounts concerning the status of the project, and the news seem positive indeed. Quoting from their post:
Well, we are happy to say that Konost is more than just alive. In fact, we’ve doubled the size of our team.
Konost is working hard on sensor calibration, the rangefinder mechanism, image processing, as well as many other aspects. The company also plans to improve its communication to give more regular updates.
Of course this doesn’t mean that the product is close to being finalised. Our guess is that there is only a prototype right now and it might not be a functional one. The project could also easily end up on a crowdfunding website, much like the well-known example of the Digital Bolex, a S16mm digital camcorder. Let’s hope to hear more news next year!