Phase One IQ2 Medium Format Digital Backs

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With newer full-frame DSLRs like Nikon’s D800 pushing the possibilities when it comes to megapixel count, some people think they may catch up to medium format digital backs. But, Phase One seems pretty determined to keep the gap intact with their new IQ2 series capture devices that deliver an insane amount of photographic firepower.


There are three new backs being introduced, all of which use a 645 format medium format sensor designed by Phase One and the ominously named Teledyne Dalsa. The IQ280 has a total output resolution of 80-megapixels and allows you to drop the ISO all the way down to 35. The IQ260 has a 60-megapixel resolution and boasts a minimum shutter speed of 1/10000th of a second.


The IQ260 Achromatic is a black-and-white-only capture device, leaving off the color filter and the IR filter entirely. Because of its unique build, you can choose different filters to capture images in both the ultra-violet and infrared spectrums in addition to the visible spectrum. It’s like buying a super-charged Leica M Monochrom, which is actually the cheaper camera in this case.

Of course, as always, all that gun comes with a giant price tag. Prices will start at $40,000 when they start shipping in June.

While it is a lot of money, you have to remember that these are built for heavy use by serious pros, so it’s to be expected. They’re built of aircraft grade aluminum and everything is weather-sealed to keep out grime and other camera-ruining particles.

All the cameras promise a 13 f-stop dynamic range and the color bodies offer 16-bit color, which means you can likely expect insanely smooth images. Plus, they have built in pitch and roll sensors, which can be crucial in the studio when you need to get the camera perfectly straight.

They’ve also implemented a new wireless system, which lets you use an iPad as a remote control and viewfinder, even for those giant 80-megapixel images. That might be a little much for Instagram to handle.