A high band-gap (~1.55 eV) chalcopyrite compound film (CuInGaS2) was synthesized by a precursor solution-based coating method with an oxidation and a sulfurization heat treatment process. The film revealed two distinct morphologies: a densely packed bulk layer and a rough surface layer. We found that the rough surface is attributed to the formation of Ga deficient CuInGaS2 crystallites. Because of the high band-gap optical property of the CuInGaS2 absorber film, a solar cell device with this film showed a relatively high open circuit voltage (~787 mV) with a power conversion efficiency of 8.28% under standard irradiation conditions. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.