Nikon, happy with the sucess of Altamira's Genuine Fractals with their Coolscan 2000 (LS2000) and Coolscan III (LS30) have decided to bundle the product with their upcoming Coolpix 990 digital camera. The press release states:

"The Coolpix 990 CCD captures 3.34 megapixels or 9 MB of true noninterpolated image resolution at 2048 x 1536 pixels, which would produce an 8x10 inch print at 200 dpi. The Altamira Genuine Fractals 2.0 LE software included in the bundle enables... ...a 20x27 inch print without compromising image quality."

As controversial as the interpolation subject always is, Genuine Fractals do seem to have made a name for themselves in this area (though I noted a recent rift between themselves and a pro photographer as reported on Imaging Resource). And hot on the heels of Fuji's 4700 which has native Interpolation in-camera.

But, that said, hats off to Nikon for bundling it as a separate product which will at least give home printers the ability to generate very high resolution images...

Here's the joint press release:

Nikon Bundles Altamira Genuine Fractals With New Coolpix 990 Digital Camera

Scaling Software Enables High-Quality Enlargements of Digital Photographs

Building upon an established relationship, Nikon and Altamira Group Inc. have reached an agreement to bundle Altamira Genuine Fractals limited-edition software with Nikon's new, top-of-the-line Coolpix 990 digital camera, which is slated for shipment in April of this year.

This new bundling agreement follows the success of bundling the limited edition of Altamira Genuine Fractals with the Nikon Super Coolscan 2000 (LS2000) and the Nikon Coolscan III (LS30) film/slide scanners, announced in August of 1999.

``The Coolpix 990 is designed to put the best in digital photography into the hands of the serious photographer,'' said Bill Giordano, national marketing manager of Nikon's Digital Imaging Products. ``Our agreement with Altamira plays an important part in delivering on this promise. With Genuine Fractals, the output of enlarged files is virtually indistinguishable from its source.''

``We are pleased to continue our relationship with Nikon,'' added Dennis Aubrey, Altamira's chief executive. ``Nikon's high-quality original images and Altamira's superior scaling enables the photographers to perform at optimum levels.''

The Coolpix 990 CCD captures 3.34 megapixels or 9 MB of true noninterpolated image resolution at 2048 x 1536 pixels, which would produce an 8x10 inch print at 200 dpi.

The Altamira Genuine Fractals 2.0 LE software included in the bundle enables users of the Coolpix 990 to save images as resolution-free files that can be enlarged well beyond their original size with unmatched fidelity to the original. For example, the above-mentioned 8x10 image can be reproduced as a 20x27 inch print without compromising image quality.

Users of the Coolpix 990 are eligible to purchase the full version of Genuine Fractals for a special discounted price. The full version of Genuine Fractals 2.0, the award-winning file format plug-in for Adobe® Photoshop®, is the only software on the market that is able to encode photographic quality images as scalable, reusable assets, which can be rendered to any size or resolution without sacrificing image quality.

The plug-in allows Lossless or Visually Lossless encoding and provides three scaling options for quality vs. speed. In addition to RGB color mode, the full version also supports Grayscale, Indexed Color, Multichannel (up to 16 channels) and Duotone color modes.

And, for photographers and designers who need to work in 4-color separations for conventional printing, Altamira's PrintPro plug-in is available offering additional support for CMYK and CIE-Lab color modes. Genuine Fractals 2.0 is priced at $159 and PrintPro is $299.

Both products are available for Macintosh® PowerPC and Windows® 95/98/NT platforms and, in addition to Adobe Photoshop, are compatible with all versions of Adobe PhotoDeluxe® as well as Corel PhotoPaint® 9 and JASC Paint Shop Pro® 5.03.