When 150 megapixels isn’t enough
When discussing high end digital capture, the question often arises, WHO NEEDS 150 megapixels?!? Well, sometimes 150 isn’t enough, as the project I photographed last week illustrates. The call came in because the client had a need that only the best equipment with the highest quality output could provide.
HiViz LED Lighting out of Hendersonville, NC needed to produce a floor to ceiling, 224″ long mural showcasing their FireTech line of LED fixtures on the lobby wall of their new headquarters. Far more demanding in resolution than a billboard, the viewable distance of this massive installation will be measured in inches, not yards.
In this case, the solution was the IQ4-150 digital back, coupled with the ALPA 12 XY with it’s massive shift movements and paired with a 50mm Rodenstock HR lens. (A big thank you to our friend David Naughton for the special camera loan, I wish ALPA still produced this camera new!)
I chose the XY because I could shift to the limits of the 50HR with 25mm of shift each way on the horizontal axis.
Using the electronic shutter on the IQ4, three vertical primary images were captured and stitched together to provide a massive 322 megapixel image so that even printed at 224″, >100dpi native resolution was maintained. (exposure pushed ~2 stops in Capture One as the original muted presentation was scrapped for more color saturation and vibrancy in the amazing sunset)
The resulting detail is phenomenal.
While the base 14,204 x 10,652 resolution of the IQ4-150 is fantastic, it would have only yielded 63 dpi in this application. Sometimes 150 megapixels just isn’t enough.
(Edit 04/14/21: I’ve recently complete another mural format project that hit 8’x22′ at 122ppi – 32,448 x 11,726 shot on the ALPA Pano)