Phase One IQ2 digital backs and IQ260 achromatic for black and white photography

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Danish manufacturer of medium format digital backs Phase One unveiled its the new generation of camera back : Phase One IQ2. For this new range of medium format full-frame 645 backs, Phase One focuses not only on the definition of its huge sensors, but also on the high-speed wireless connectivity, and generous dynamic range their sensors that may capture up to 13 EV. The IQ260 Achromatic digital back is dedicated to black and white photography.

Phase One IQ280 : 80-megapixel / 13EV / ISO 35

Although the resolution is not at the heart of the debate opened today by the new Phase One digital backs, still, the IQ2 version IQ280 shows a pretty comfortable resolution of 80 megapixels… It also focuses on the high speed wireless connectivity to fit in a studio and get rid of the cables while allowing a reasonable time transfer to get the huge files delivered by the sensor of 80 megapixels on your tethered computer. You can use the IQ280 back with an iPad via the application called “Capture Pilot”. The IQ280 has an extremely low sensitivity setting of only ISO 35, which will provide both an increased dynamic range, extremely subtle gradations and also a killer small details restitution.

phase one IQ2 : IQ280
Phase One IQ2 camera bacl : IQ280 gets a 80MP sensor.

Phase One IS260 : 60-megapixel

The IQ260 Phase One digital back is equipped with a 60 megapixel sensor. It is characterized by a range of shutter speeds ranging from 1/10,000s till the entire hour.
Both models (Phase One IQ 280 and IQ260) capture pictures with a color depth of 16 bits per channel … If you want subtle tones and gradations, that’s the camera you need. Well, if you ever can afford it…

Phase One IQ2 for Black and White Photography : IQ260 Achromatic

The Phase One IQ260 Achromatic back surfs the trend of black and white photography and dedicated cameras. A bit like the Leica M Monochrom, it does not see the colors and capture images in black and white. It is equipped with a 60-megapixel sensor without low-pass filter nor colored matrix. No interpolation is necessary to decode the signal and the entire photodiodes are fully committed to the restitution of fine details. Phase One pushes the refinement a step further than its competitors and the IQ260 Achromatic has the ability to capture images in three different light spectra: infrared, visible and ultraviolet. Artistic experimentations and scientific applications have found their most wanted camera !

phase one iq260 achromatic
A medium format camera back based on a 645 sensor dedicated to black and white photography. I like that.

The entire Phase One IQ2 line comes with accelerometers which are used to align the images. They can display a virtual horizon useful for the correction of the horizon. The metadats stored in the EXIF datas of the photos may also be used by Capture One Pro 7 software when processing photos to correct the composition accordingly. (Phase One has also released last week Capture One Express 7, a lighter version lof Capture One Pro, but still with their excellent RAW engine).
The Phase One medium format back IQ2 will be available from June 2013. The “entry price” is $29,990 or € 29,990 …

 

Phase One IQ2 digital backs : the official press release

COPENHAGEN, March 4, 2013 — Phase One, the world’s leader in open-platform, medium format camera systems and solutions, today announced the Phase One IQ2 series: three new full-frame 645 format digital camera backs with high-speed wireless connectivity and 13 f-stops of dynamic range, plus new options to meet specific photographic goals. Building on the IQ digital back platform, the first choice of many of the world’s leading photographers, the technical advances in the Phase One IQ280, IQ260 and IQ260 Achromatic go beyond delivering ultra-high megapixel resolution to introduce greater mobility and workflow flexibility for professional photographers.

“Instead of trying to make our wireless connection a replacement for a wired file transfer, as others have done, our solution focuses on helping get the right image capture — whether that means perfecting composition or focus, or simply easing the challenges of capturing a hard-to-reach image from a remote location,” said Jan H. Christiansen, marketing director, Phase One.

All IQ2 camera backs feature full-frame 645 format sensors designed collaboratively by Phase One and Teledyne Dalsa to deliver the world’s best image quality. In addition, Phase One IQ2 camera backs deliver a full 13 f-stops of dynamic range, which combined with meticulous calibration and careful hardware and software optimization ensures that the image quality is matched by no other camera.

— The 80 megapixel IQ280 puts Wi-Fi in a new perspective, enabling remote image capture and viewing of huge 80 megapixel images on an iPad running Phase One’s Capture Pilot App. It represents the pinnacle of image quality. With an ISO as low as 35, no other camera or digital back can get better silk-like images.

— The 60 megapixel IQ260 offers unparalleled capture versatility, with exposure ranges from 1/10000s to one hour with virtually noise-free images. The 60 megapixel sensor at the heart of the IQ260 is a unique 645 format full-frame device found only in this digital back. It offers the widest exposure range opportunities on the market coupled with phenomenal image quality. And both the IQ280 and IQ260 capture raw images at 16-bit color depth per channel, enabling reproduction of scenes with ultra-smooth transitions.

— The Phase One IQ260 Achromatic is a dedicated image capture device designed to deliver the highest-quality pure black and white images. It fully shares the IQ2 series’ “unplugged” assets. At the core of this system is a 60-megapixel sensor with no color filter array mounted, which means that no interpolation is necessary. Each and every pixel of the sensor is focused purely on capturing the finest details of an image. This digital back comes with no mounted IR cut-off filter, and the IQ260 Achromatic is capable of capturing image in three light spectrums: infrared, visible and ultraviolet — permitting photographers to experiment with a wide range of their choice of filters to create unique images for artistic and scientific purposes.

Capture Made Easy

All IQ2 backs include built-in accelerometers, whose input helps align images perfectly at the moment of capture. An intuitive virtual horizon offers a precise visual indication of an image’s roll and pitch; that data is automatically stored with the images and can be automatically corrected in Capture One software after import.

Rugged Build

IQ2 digital backs combine functional design with rugged build quality. Built of 100 percent aircraft grade aluminum, all electronic connectors and ports are protected with automatic retracting hatches or rubber covers to ensure that they work continuously even in the toughest shooting environments.

Capture One 7 Software

Capture One 7 is built on the world’s best raw processing engine and is included with all IQ2 backs, providing highly responsive precision tools to capture, organize, view, edit, share and print images for an efficient workflow and superior image quality results.

Availability and Pricing

The Phase One IQ2 series camera backs are expected to be available in June 2013; they may be ordered now through Phase One professional photography partners worldwide. Prices start at 29990 EUR / 39990 USD. Attractive upgrade offers are available for all existing Phase One photographers.