The Raspberry Pi Foundation has announced a new camera board that should dramatically improve the photographic capabilities available to the popular DIY computer’s enthusiasts and hobbyists. It’s called the High Quality Camera, and it’s built around a 12.3-megapixel backside-illuminated Sony IMX477 sensor with 1.55-micron pixels.

There have been official Raspberry Pi camera boards before, but they used much smaller, lower resolution sensors and relied on fixed-focus lenses. The High Quality Camera, however, supports interchangeable C- and CS-mount lenses and offers adjustable back focus. The first options to be available through approved resellers include a $25 6mm CS-mount lens and a $50 16mm C-mount lens.

The board has a CS mount but comes with a C-mount adapter. This means that it’ll be easy to attach a wide variety of lenses through third-party products. Here, for example, is what the board looks like with a Canon 70-200mm f/2.8, which is probably not a good idea but awesome anyway:

Raspberry Pi owners have been using camera modules for projects ranging from home security systems to DIY drone setups. Raspberry Pi Press is publishing a new guide to using cameras with the Pi, available today for £10 ($12.50) in print or free as a PDF.

The High Quality Camera is compatible with all Raspberry Pi computers from the 1 Model B onward, and the previous 8-megapixel camera module will continue to be available as a cheaper, smaller option. The new camera will go on sale today for $50.

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