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Sony QX100 captures interactive panoramas from a model railway

The curious mobile hybrid camera from Sony has been used to capture stills and video from the world's largest model railroad in the US.

Thirty five years ago, Bruce Williams Zaccagnino set up a model railway in his basement. Since then, Northlandz has become the world's biggest model railway covering 4830 square metres.

(Screenshot by CBSi)

Zaccagnino made his millions as a game developer and publisher, responsible for titles such as Perfect General and Solitaire's Journey. He channelled his funds into his passion, turning Northlandz into a 100-train behemoth with 12 kilometres of track. Sony decided to showcase Northlandz and its camera technology in one fell swoop.

The Sony QX100 and its companion device the QX10 turned plenty of heads when they were released last year. These two modules are a compact digital camera distilled down to its most basic elements — lens, processor and sensor. Pair the module with a smartphone and you have control over what you see.

The QX100 was used to capture both stills and video of Northlandz. Its form factor allowed the photographer Matthew Albanese to get unique angles and perspectives of the railroad. According to Xperia Blog, Albanese used the Xperia Z1 as his viewfinder and attached the QX100 to several of the trains to get tracking shots.

You can watch the short film below, but there are more things to explore from the QX100 on the project's website. Using a mock interface from the QX100, you can zoom in and out on panoramas and capture stills from Northlandz.