Phase One XF 100MP Field Test

A test-drive with the highest-resolution camera we've ever used

by William Brawley |

The Phase One XF 100MP: A camera on another level
I've had the opportunity to test and use a number of different kinds of cameras, from pocketable point-and-shoots to big, full-size DSLRs. For me, while I've known about medium format cameras for a long time, they were always sort of "out there;" a camera system that for the most part was way too expensive for a mere mortal such as myself to ever own, let alone even have the need to rent one. So, when Phase One came knocking at IR's proverbial door asking us if we wanted to test their new XF camera system with a 100-megapixel digital back, well, color me intrigued.

Getting the Phase One XF System is much different than just ordering from Amazon!
Right off the bat, the experience with this camera system was different than any other camera I, and most of the IR staff, have used. For starters, just acquiring the camera was out of the ordinary. Phase One won't just ship you a camera and some lenses. I mean, the base MSRP for this Phase One XF100 Kit rings up at just under $50,000! No, you need to get in touch with a Phase One partner retailer and have them hand-deliver the system to you. In our case, we coordinated with Capture Integration here in Atlanta for a hands-on demonstration session with the camera at their shop before we were set free with the gear.

The Capture Integration product tour of the Phase One system, as it turns out, was very helpful, as there are tons of minor tips and tricks as well as extensive tether-based shooting features that we do not typically see or use on "run-of-the-mill" interchangeable lens cameras. Sure, you could slap a lens on there, slide in a CF card, and fire away, but tethered shooting opens up a lot of expanded versatility.

Phase One IQ3 100MP Trichromatic Field Test

A superb image sensor inside a slow and expensive camera system

by Jeremy Gray |

I recently had the opportunity to shoot with a Phase One XF camera and the new IQ3 100MP Trichromatic digital back. This 101-megapixel medium-format camera system is expensive, precise and impressive. Make no mistake, this is not a typical camera system and is not something many photographers, myself included, ever expect to have a chance to use.

In this Field Test, I will be discussing the XF camera in general and then speak more specifically to the IQ3 Trichromatic digital back itself, as they are separate components and you can use the XF camera with different digital backs.

XF camera system design and handling
The Phase One XF camera is quite large by normal standards but isn't overly large in real use. It's very comfortable to hold thanks to its ample front grip. It features customizable dials and buttons, all of which feel very well-built and are located in convenient places. It's not very much larger than a pro-oriented DSLR camera.

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