In the days of film, professional photography wasn’t defined by the 35mm film format. Fashion photographers shot at much larger formats such as 2×4, 4×5, and 6×7 inch formats. These allowed sharp, virtually grain-free print enlargements to 30×40 inches. Medium and large format cameras were the studio tools for shooting pictures for magazines. A new digital camera from Leica is due to be released in 2009 to cater to the high-end photography market. The market that shoots those images for elite fashion publications at the level of Vogue, Glamour, Playboy, and Elle magazines.
The evolution of the digital camera has been, thus far, catering to the general consumer market and the active hobbyist and journalist. Studios have continued using large film formats for those stunning model magazine and catalog shots. The reason was bound to the size of the digital sensor. These optically sensitive transducers delivered resolutions suitable for general photography. Images then could be enhanced using software like Adobe Photoshop.
In fashion and modeling photography, where precise color, shading, and skin detail, cater to multi-billion dollar markets, the 14 megapixel digital resolution simply wasn’t enough. Instead of resorting to software enhancers, studio film photographers seek the best prime image available. That is where medium and large format film formats remained solid.
One of the leading professional camera manufacturers, Leica, is introducing a medium format digital camera to meet the demands of the very sophisticated, professional photographer – The Leica S2 Medium-Format Digital Camera.
Due for release in October 2009, the Leica S2 boasts a 37 megapixel image file. Unlike the bulky large-format film cameras, the S2 resembles a 35mm DSLR, only about 33% larger. Leica offers a series interchangeable lenses for different applications. The S2 camera body is expected to sell for about $23,000.
The Leica S2, with its premium AF objectives including everything from ultra wide to super telephoto, is an absolute photographic highlight. The digital SLR camera has a special new sensor with 30 x 45 mm and 37.5 megapixels. The S2’s metal body is appreciably smaller and easier to carry than similar models from other camera brands, and yet it’s also nearly twice as fast thanks to ultra modern processor technology.
With the S2, Leica has created an entirely new class of camera – technically innovative but incredibly flexible thanks to a wide selection of accessories. It’s a must for every professional photographer who is looking to upgrade from standard 35mm SLR systems.
The Leica S System, the high-end digital single lens reflex camera system in Leica Pro Format, is specifically designed with the needs of professional photographers in mind. Leica is establishing a unique sales and support system that will aim at the professional market and the unique demands of highly sensitive artists and clientele.
The result is an entirely new path for the digital camera. The Leica S2 represents an emergence of the digital camera from par excellence to a precise artistic tool. It appears that the future of medium and large format film cameras is dwindling as the digital market spreads its wings.