RhinoCam Turns Your Sony NEX Into a Digital Medium Format Back


Fotodiox has announced a new mount system called the RhinoCam that turns a Sony NEX mirrorless camera into a digital back for 645 medium format photography. The kit allows NEX owners to shoot with classic medium format camera lenses to capture 140+ megapixel photos.


Photos resulting from the RhinoCam are equivalent to those captured with a sensor three times larger than a 35mm full frame sensor. This could be useful for photographers in certain fields (e.g. landscape, commercial, architecture) who would like ultra-high-res photos for a fraction of traditional costs.

How RhinoCam resolution stacks up against other camera systems.

How RhinoCam resolution stacks up against other camera systems.

Here’s how the system works. First, it connects a NEX camera with a Pentax 645, Mamiya 645, or Hasselblad V medium format lens.

The photographer then looks through the built in Composition Screen to preview their shot. During the capture process, the camera is moved around on a moving platform while the lens remains fixed. The RhinoCam guides the NEX to a number of fixed positions for precisely positioned exposures.

Instead of shooting one high-res photo with one large sensor, RhinoCam lets you turn many lower-res photos shot with a smaller sensor into a high-res photo.

Instead of shooting one high-res photo with one large sensor, RhinoCam lets you turn many lower-res photos shot with a smaller sensor into a high-res photo.

Once the photographs are captured, the photographer can use a number of photo stitching programs (e.g. Photoshop) to create the final ultra-high-res photo. Since the exposures were all created along a linear plane, flat-stitching can be used with minimal distortion in the final result.

The RhinoCam system is available now for $500 through the Fotodiox website.

  • pretty_ugly_1

    Why MF dynamic range is so good compared to 35 format? IF because of its size, this thing uses the same MF lens. Same image circle, same image sensor area(after stitching). If it’s the CCD thing, then why is 35mm CMOS better than 35mm CCD? Thing is CMOS tech is better than CCD in most application. And if Sony finally makes CMOS MF sensor, it will smokes CCD back big time.

    Film is a different story.


    35 mm SLR digital back, please…

  • coca

    you would loose to much quality doing this

  • caca

    no this is not, this is made to landscape photographers or architectural
    it’s similar to a zork or mirex shift adapter

  • Joseph molina

    I too would still be interested in what camera, lens, and film you used to determine this. It can make a huge difference. No doubt, digital is way more economical. I just got a mamiya RZ 67 system for about 600$, but film cost, are definitely something i have to deal with, and even chemicals since i develop myself. That being said, the quality of some of these medium format cameras and lenses is insane when exposed through the right lens, on the right film, and developed and printed the right way. Its a touchy process forsure but in my personal opinion one thats much more exciting than digital photography. Thats just my personall opinion though. I can see why someone else may want one of these rhino cams but for me.. eh, i’ll just stick with my 67 system.

  • Teun Dilles

    That would only allow for macro-shots, as moving away from the lens decreases focusdistance.

  • Rama

    For $500 it should be motorised..

  • Sam W

    Medium Format?!?! not even close.

  • Sam W


  • rdavidmarks

    Another thing to consider: Most medium format lenses do not resolve at the same lpm (lines per millimeter) as lenses designed for 35mm film, or in this case, a digital sensor. Medium format lenses weren’t designed to resolve as high because they didn’t have to. The advantage of medium format was/is in the larger piece of film that didn’t have to be enlarged as much for a given print size.

  • Missumlaut

    IMHO is would be even more interesting if it was meant as a back for large format tilt-and shift camera. The cost of film and processing is awful.

    I’ll buy one, sure.

  • [email protected]

    Hmmm… If this could be mounted on a view camera and we could use the view camera’s tilts and swings that would be very cool.

  • [email protected]

    I posted too soon before reading this on the RhinoCam website: “RhinoCam also mounts directly onto a 4×5 Graflock board to open up additional possibilities with wider range of lenses, tilt shifts, bellows systems and more.”

  • derf

    Actually the Dynamic range of my Nikon d800 is better thn the dynamic range of my medium format digital back and better than that of newer backs.

    Also medium format digital backs are plagued with color shifts when using very wide angles due to the fact that the sensors used were not originally primarily designed for regular photography. 35mm sensors on the other hand are made and designed by photography companies so they don’t suffer from wide angle color casts.

  • derf

    Actually the dynamic range of the Nex & is superior to Medium Format Digital backs. MFD older tech thatn the new Sony Sensors.

    For repro houses make thier money on volume. Stitching would increase the time required too much.

    This product is targeted towards still life photographers and landscape photographers

    It exceeds the quality obtained with medium format digital used for single shots.

    Some still life photographers use view cameras and to 4 frame stitches with a medium format back. That is another story.

    The interesting thing is how this Rhinocam on a low budget exceeds the quality of a $ 50,000 mdieum format camera and reproduces what the lenses are capable of better.

    Only yhe multishot hasselblad 200MS gets the same quality or maybe a bit better.

  • derf

    Actually if you were to use the Rhinocam even with the very best new Rodenstock or new Schneider lenses you would get better results than with a Digital back especially with wide angles. The Nex sensor also has more dynamic range.

    As far as using a Nex7 behind one of these lenses… well you are still talking about a bigger capture area with the Rhinocam and you also get a much higher pixel count as well as a cleaner image as the nex sensor does not suffer from Moire issues that MFD backs have.

    Also the combo would still be far less…

    Fancy lens $ 5,000 Digital back $30,000 plus

    Fancy lens $5,000 Nex 7 $ 1,000 Rhino $ 500

    I have built my own much larger equivalent of the Rhino that uses Fuji gx680 lenses that have a far bigger capture area. The image quality is better than anything I have obtained with medium format digital.