Better Light launches 416 Megapixel Scanning Back

Better Light, a producer of digital scanning backs, has unveiled the Super 10K-HS, a digital scanning back that captures up to 416 Mp (3x10,200x13,600 pixels) for a file size of 794 MB, which would just fit on your 1GB memory card. Luckily, it comes with a 40 GB (or an optional 80 GB) internal hard drive. Although the Scanback is labeled to be portable, it's not the kind of device you would take to the stadium, as a full image scan may take up to two minutes. But then again, $22,995 is kind of steep for a day at the games...


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New Super10K-HS Scanning Back Generates 794 MB 48-bit RGB File at Native Resolution

Better Light, the leading designer and manufacturer of large-format digital scanning camera backs, has announced the addition of a new digital scanning back to its SuperModel family that captures up to 416 megapixels of true RGB image data in every scan.

The combination of large high-resolution files, extraordinary detail and superb control of color and tones, has made Better Light scanning backs the device of choice for a wide variety of advertising, commercial, reproduction and archival applications since 1994.

Better Light scanning backs are widely acknowledged for capturing image quality superior to film or fixed-array digital cameras. Used on a 4x5 view camera or any device accepting 4”x5” film holders, the capture area is 72mm x 96mm (120mm diagonal), creating a huge pixel population with the scan movement of its tri-linear sensor. Each pixel receives pure red, green and blue data so there is no interpolation of color data, or typical digital artifacts, or moiré pattern issues to deal with in post-production.

The new Super10K-HS™ answers the call of museums and similar institutions for larger native file sizes. It has the ability to create a direct digital image at a native resolution of 10,200 x 13,600 pixels. This high resolution allows scanning of originals up to 34 x 45 inches in size at 300 pixels per inch without stitching or interpolation, and generates a 794 MB 48-bit RGB file size.

“This new file size capability will be of special interest to those portions of the art repro market that deal with large originals, and who demand very fine detail in reproducing line art, text, scrolls, and other subjects where absolute clarity is of maximum importance,” said Better Light President Michael Collette.

“A unique aspect of the increased resolution possible with the new Super10K-HS back is that its resolving power can exceed that of the camera lens. At its 100% resolution setting, the Super10K-HS captures 70 line pairs per millimeter with 60% contrast, which is higher than most lenses can deliver.”

The new Super10K-HS offers an ISO range from 64 to 1000, line times from 1/8th to 1/120th of a second, and a 40 GB (or optional 80 GB) internal hard drive for image storage. The unit provides 11 resolution settings that can be used to capture the perfect file size for each imaging project, independent of the selected ISO sensitivity. The camera is also ICC profile-compatible. The Super10K-HS is priced at $22,995 and will ship at the end of March.

Each of the company's scan back models includes Better Light's ViewFinder™ camera control software, which allows the user to fine-tune exposure, ISO sensitivity, color balance and contrast, matching the subject, lighting and output conditions for a perfect digital image — like having a customized "digital film emulsion". Quality judgments are made based on a high-quality preview image on the monitor, prior to the capture of the large, high-resolution file. This software is provided for both Macintosh and Windows computers.

Better Light offers six models with image file size capability up to 1.1 GB (48-bit RGB). Priced from $6,495, any model is upgradeable to a higher performance model, enabling the photographer to upgrade as requirements change.  The product line covers the diversified range of photographic applications including commercial, catalog, still life, landscape, art reproduction, scientific and archival imaging.

Additional Information: Visit the Better Light website

March 12, 2007

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