Are Y’All Ready For An 80mp Digital Back ?!!

Barely a week after I was pissing and moaning about the big announcement from PhaseOne that they were introducing a $42,000 digital back that captures only Black & White images, comes today’s bombshell from Leaf that they’re gonna now about to trot out has to be to most ridiculous bit of technological overkill yet seen on the digital landscape…an 80MP digital back that kicks out a 165mb RAW file and…ya might wanna sit down for this…a 480mb TIFF file! Now for those of you who understand such things, then you know that by starting with a base TIFF of 480mb, your final layered, retouched & messed-with file can easily end up being larger than TWO GIGABYTES in size!!! For those less geek-savvy, let’s just agree that the file size this thing produces is waaaaaay bigger than just about anybody needs, wants, asked for or even thought would be necessary! With resolution like this I would imagine you could stand on top of a tall building in New York and take a pretty sharp picture of Boston (I kid, of course!), but no…the number one reason Leaf claims this thing is necessary is to “eliminate Moiré and more perfectly render objects – from the texture of fine fabrics to the smooth curves of car metal”…! Now you’ll hafta excuse me whilst I digest that statement, because I’m on my third Leaf back and with each new back Leaf has made the exact same claim…and I still have Moiré! Oh…not so much that it makes any real difference and what there is can usually be eliminated with a bit of Photoshop fuckery, but I hafta ask…just what is the new 80mp Aptus-II 12 with its’ newly designed 53.7×40.3mm full-frame CCD sensor really good for besides forcing its’ owner to buy stock in companies that manufacture hard drives?!!

Just for kicks, I took the last job I did with my ‘Old Skool’, 33MP Leaf Aptus 75S and ran the numbers to see what the difference in storage would be if I shot the same job on the new Aptus-II 12. I shot 307 RAW files, each one of which is 68.3 megabytes in size, that translated into 20.97 gigabytes of total space used, and quite frankly, that’s already a huge pile of ‘zeroes’ and ‘ones’ filling up disc space! However, the same 307 RAW files shot on the Aptus-II 12 with its 165 megabyte capture rate will give you a 50.66 gigabyte meatball that you have to store on multiple redundant backups systems until they plant your dead ass in the ground! That’s a lotta gigabytes, Baby!

Oh yeah….the Aptus-II 12 is gonna come in at about $32 Grand, just in case you wanted to start saving up your pennies now…..

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5 thoughts on “Are Y’All Ready For An 80mp Digital Back ?!!

  1. HI Brad, thanks for posting this. I have a current need for a mural size image of an Asian elephant dressed up for at Hindu ceremony for the Denver Zoo. This would be about the size file I need to have it – a 20 Ft x 30 ft. mural for exhibition. Wish I could fly you over to India to photograph and elephant with this new Phase One back!

    Sorry to hear about Jay Colton. Thank you for posting this info, very sad news. He was an amazing & energetic force of enthusiasm for all things relating to storytelling with images and photography. He was also a photographer himself and did some great work.

  2. More than a gig per file for a single still photo???? I bitch and moan about storage space when a full length porno takes up more than a gig on my drive.

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