Camera Hardware for Computer Vision, Robotics, Video Conferencing, and More

About Commonlands

Commonlands is a US-based company located in Santa Monica, a neighborhood within Los Angeles. The company was founded in 2018 as a camera and optical design services company. We assist with optical design trade-offs, image quality testing, camera qualification, project management, and more.

We've cultivated select high-performance lenses from over 40 Asia-based manufacturers. These companies work with major OEM camera device companies and are not well-known outside of the camera industry. We enable you to gain access to hidden suppliers, and lenses, which are usually only available for high-volume projects. To provide a second level of assurance, we inspect every unit in the United States and ensure the accuracy of our specifications. Out of Stock items are typically restocked within 2-3 weeks.

A cut away picture from a camera

Optics Design, Camera Design, and Project Management Services

Example Projects

We have managed the development of over 50 different camera projects, resulting in >200k lenses and >20k camera modules shipped. These are in use across the autonomous vehicle, robotics, factory automation, medical, and VR industries. We are part of the official Zemax Consulting Partner Program, which consists of <100 consultants and companies world-wide. Consulting projects have included:

A custom optical engineering project.
  • Advise the camera development process for a consumer device, including a custom lens. Responsible for a multi-vendor RFP and down-selection process. Created active alignment design and managed vendors through optical design, mechanical design, and prototyping.
  • Led hardware project management for a catadioptric video-conferencing camera. Project included 6+ prototype, EVT/DVT/PVT stages, resulting in successful product launch. Guided technical efforts related to optical design, mechanical design, and image quality tuning.
  • Sourced lenses and implemented image quality testing techniques at a ruggedized stereo-vision robotics company. Provided support on business strategy and financial modeling.
  • Sourced lenses and implemented image quality testing techniques at a ruggedized stereo-vision robotics company. Provided support on business strategy and financial modeling.
  • Upgraded and sourced a new imaging system for a pre-seed agricultural imaging startup.
  • Reviewed camera performance and sourced new camera hardware for a Series B surveillance robotics startup.
  • Designed an afocal viewfinder and developed image quality standards for a legacy US camera company.
  • Defined go-to-market strategies for a Fortune 50 company's computer vision ecosystem.
  • Upgraded and sourced a new camera for a Series D robotic kiosk startup.

A Background in Optical Engineering and Business


Max Henkart

Max holds a B.S. in Optical Engineering from the Institute of Optics at the University of Rochester. Max spent 5 years as a Technical Sales Manager and Applications Engineer at Sunex, a top 3 leading automotive lens manufacturer. He was responsible for lens selection, optical design optimization, sales management, and project management.

After Sunex, Max returned to get his MBA at Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business. He spent time in computer vision classes and working on startups with robotics engineering students. Max started Commonlands as a part-time consulting company in 2018, while completing a venture capital internship with LDV Capital and pursuing a high growth start-up. The company became his full-time effort in Q4 2020.

Max Henkart Headshot Picture May 2020