Contax N Digital


The Contax N Digital was a six-megapixel digital SLR camera produced by Contax in Japan. The camera was announced in late 2000, and began to be sold in spring 2002, after several delays. The camera received mixed reviews from the press,[1] and was withdrawn from the market within a year of its introduction.

Contax N Digital
Typedigital single-lens reflex camera
LensContax N-mount
SensorPhilips 6 MP CCD
Maximum resolution3040 x 2008
Film speed25–400
Storage mediaCompact Flash (Type I or II)
Exposure meteringMulti-Segment, Center weighted, Spot
Shutter speed range32sec-1/8000sec
Battery1.5V AA x 4

It was noteworthy for being the first full-frame digital SLR, with an imaging chip the full size of a 135 film frame. All previous digital SLRs had a smaller sensor, giving a cropped view (see magnification factor). The imaging sensor was a Philips FTF3020-C, which had previously been used in the Jenoptik Eyelike medium format digital back.[2] Pentax also planned to use the sensor in a full-frame digital SLR, the Pentax MZ-D,[3] but abandoned work on the prototype in late 2001. The sensor featured ISO settings as low as ISO 25, but the reviews noted that it had a relatively high noise level above ISO 100.[4] The next full-frame digital SLRs were the Canon EOS-1Ds of late 2002, followed by Kodak's DCS Pro 14n in 2003. Nikon and Sony introduced full-frame models in 2007 and 2008 respectively.

The N Digital was based on the short-lived Contax N range of 35mm film SLRs, and used the Contax N-mount lens system. Nine lenses were produced for this mount, by Carl Zeiss.[5] There were three Contax N-Mount cameras – two 35mm film SLR bodies, plus the N Digital – all of which are now discontinued. [6]

Contax's parent company Kyocera withdrew from the digital imaging market in 2005.


  1. ^ "Luminous Landscape on the camera's press reception". Archived from the original on 10 March 2007. Retrieved 18 April 2012.
  2. ^ "Digital Photography Review on the Jenoptik Eyelike". Retrieved 18 April 2012.
  3. ^ "DPReview's announcement of the Pentax MZ-D". Retrieved 18 April 2012.
  4. ^ "Lone Star Digital's review of the N Digital". Retrieved 18 April 2012.
  5. ^ Contax Camera's description of the lens range Archived 3 July 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "'s review of the N-Mount Zeiss Planar T* 85mm f/1.4, converted to the EOS mount". Retrieved 18 April 2012.