The world's most amazing digital photography company isn't Canon or Nikon. It's a tiny company in Tucson, Arizona: Spectral Instruments. They make the craziest digital cameras on the planet. This one has a dynamic range so incredibly big that it can photograph both the sun and the stars in broad daylight.
It's their 1110 series, a device with a 112 megapixel CCD, black and white, with no Bayer mask or filter of any type, "nothing to detract from the overall image sharpness." Their sensors are extremely light sensitive and can take exposures that last for hours without any noise at all. That's why you can do something like taking a picture of a starry sky in the middle of the day.
The sensor measures 95 x 95 millimeters. For comparison, a typical DSLR has a 24 x 36 mm millimeters sensor. A medium format camera, like a Hasselblad, uses a 48 x 36 millimeters sensor. It's a staggering difference, over five times the area. These things suck light like black holes.
Usually, Spectral Instruments' cooled, ultra-expensive custom CCD-based camera systems end up in orbit or in closely monitored in the installations of laboratories and research institutions around the world. But they want to give this camera to a professional photographer, so she or he can take some stunning shots.
A challenge for you
Why am I telling you all this? Because they want to build a version of this camera for normal photographers. Not for instrumentation or satellites, but real people. They want to see what a professional would do with something like this applied to normal subjects, but they need to know first if there's any interest among you, the people. That's why they have asked us to pass the word around.
And sure, it's a way to get some free publicity on their part, but I don't really care—because I really want to see this camera used by someone here on Earth, to take some shots to blow my mind. And yours too, I'm sure.
So let's make it happen, boys and girls. Pass this article around, write in the comments and tell them how much your like the idea and ask your friends to tell them how much they would like to see this camera in the hands of a human being. Remember that it will cost them $100,000 to make the sensor alone, and the camera will be custom built for this purpose only. [Spectral Instruments via Fstoppers]