For this project we have to zoom into the earth from space to about 10km
from ground level. It has to be done on HD 1920X1080 pixels.
All the maps we have tried loading into max for this have been too large
for max to handle. The lower-res map we are using is about 43200pixels wide.
Max cannot even open this file on a 64bit AMD 4400+ Dualcore with 4GB of RAM.
The map we will need to go even closer with, will probably be about 80000pixels
Is there another way we can do this? We've tried to split the entire earth map
into 800 pieces, but then we get horrible seams (see "Seams with multi-subobject materials! PLZ help" thread.
I would suggest trying going with a lower resolution image for the model, then when you are zoomed in close enough where it starts making a difference...Using composite software, After Effects, Combustion whatever you are using to match up the frames, and then zoom in to a big image...Another thing, it might be a good idea to tweak with the image in photoshop or any other image processing software to have an optimal size for what you are trying to do...For example you don't really need 16bit 32bit depth since all you are going for is resolution, maybe compressing it somehow...
From personal experience On my shabby(compared to yours computer) I was able to put in 250 meg tiff into AE
I hope that helps