Hitting the century mark: Phase One and Sony collaborate on new 100-megapixel sensor


posted Monday, January 4, 2016 at 1:31 PM EDT


Just before CES 2016 kicks off in Las Vegas, Phase One has announced the result of a collaborative development effort with Sony, a 100-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor back for Phase One’s medium-format XF camera system.

Unlike some digital medium-format camera sensors, such as the IQ250 sensor, this new IQ3 100MP sensor has no lens crop factor; it is a true full frame digital sensor. This isn’t Phase One and Sony's first collaborative effort, they also worked together on the IQ250.

The 53.7 x 40.4 millimeter sensor offers 16-bit color output, a 15-stop dynamic range, and an ISO range from 50 to 12,800. With this incredibly high-resolution sensor, Phase One’s hardware and software teams have created a new, exclusive file format to bring the most out of the XF 100MP camera system, which “will offer unprecedented image quality.”

IQ3 100MP sensor size compared to other image sensors. Image credit: Fstoppers

Capable of 60 minute exposures, the XF 100 MP system is very versatile for its class. The XF camera system also utilizes Phase One’s Electronic First Curtain Shutter technology. EFCS reduces the effects of vibration on high-resolution images by allowing “less mechanical dependency.” EFCS activates automatically when using Vibration Delay or Mirror Up modes.

For an overview of the Phase One XF 100MP camera system, see the video from Phase One below:

For more information on Phase One’s XF 100MP camera system, see here. At the above link, you're also able to download full-resolution (and very large…the sensor does pack 101,082,464 pixels, after all) sample files. You can also watch a review of the new XF 100MP from Peter Eastway below:

The Phase One XF Camera System, which was introduced in June of 2015, was built around the concept of optimal 100-megapixel performance. The system utilizes features such as Honeybee Auto Focus, Vibration Tracking, and Vibration Detection technologies in addition to the EFCS mentioned above. Utilizing a new series of Schneider Kreuznach Leaf Shutter lenses and interchangeable viewfinders, the XF system allows photographers to fine-tune their own personal shooting experience and bring out the best that Phase One’s high-resolution sensors have to offer.

The new back, shipping today, is priced just under $44,000 USD. For a camera body, the new back, and a 50mm equivalent lens, you’re looking at a cost of $48,990. So if you're thinking that the new 100-megapixel sensor is just what you've been looking for all these years and that you need that kind of detail in your images, it'll cost you roughly the same as a dozen Canon 5DS R DSLRs (or perhaps more real world, one 5DS R and a bevy of fantastic lenses).

(Seen via DPReview, the Phoblographer, and Fstoppers)