• 08-20-2007, 01:28 PM
    Photo-John
    Sony 12.47-Megapixel CMOS Sensor - Press Release
    Sony Commercializes APS-C size CMOS Image Sensor with Industry-leading 12.47 Effective Megapixel Resolution for use in Digital SLR Cameras
    Unique Column-Parallel A/D Converter Technology Realizes 10 frames/second Ultrahigh-Speed, Enhanced Image Quality and Noise Reduction

    Tokyo, Japan - Sony Corporation today announced the commercialization of "IMX021", an APS-C size (diagonal: 28.40mm/Type 1.8) 12.47 effective megapixel ultra-high speed, high image quality CMOS image sensor designed to meet the increasing requirement for rapid image capture and advanced picture quality within digital SLR cameras. Sony will position "IMX021" as a key device capable of generating new added value in the high-growth digital SLR camera market, actively promoting its use within Sony and externally.

    http://www.sony.net/SonyInfo/News/Pr...72E/IMX021.jpg

    One of the main strengths of CMOS image sensors is their potential for system integration, enabling both analog and digital circuits to be combined on the same chip. "IMX021" maximizes these advantages, while also incorporating Sony's newly developed "Column-Parallel A/D Conversion Technique", providing each column within the sensor with its own A/D* converter.

    This system enables analog signals transferred from the Sensor's vertical signal lines to be A/D converted directly, over the shortest possible distance. It also minimizes image degradation caused by the noise that arises during analog processing, while at the same time delivering an extremely high signal conversion speed (in all-pixel scan mode) of 10.39 frame/s (12 bit).

    Furthermore, since processing is performed in parallel for each column, even if the number of pixels or the frame rate increases, A/D conversion can be performed at significantly lower frequencies than with conventional non-parallel circuit structures. Consequently, high picture quality digital signals can be processed without the noise interference that results from high frequency signals.

    The "Column-Parallel A/D Conversion Technique" aligns both digital and CDS* circuits alongside each column. Column-parallel digital CDS circuits reduce not only pixel noise, but also the noise and inter-column processing variations that can affect analog CDS circuits. These circuits also limit A/D converter fluctuations. With this dual noise cancelling technology realizing high-precision noise reduction across both analog and digital circuits, the "IMX021" image sensor allows signals to be transferred, with limited noise, to the image processing circuits of the camera unit itself. This makes it ideally suited for the development of high image quality digital SLR cameras.

    http://www.sony.net/SonyInfo/News/Pr...07-072E/02.gif
    left : Conventional Image CMOS Image Sensor Circuit Structure
    right : Column-Parallel A/D Converter CMOS Image Sensor Circuit Structure

    The enhanced quality images generated by "IMX021" are the result of its advanced noise cancelling features based on a unique circuit structure, its pixel array micro-fabrication technologies, and its cleaning and color-filtering capabilities - encapsulating the range of imaging expertise that Sony has accumulated throughout its history of CCD development.

    "IMX021" production will be carried out at Sony Semiconductor Kyushu Corporation's Kumamoto Technology Center.

    *A/D : Analog/Digital
    *CDS : Correlated Double Sampling

    Features <ul><li>CDS/PGA Circuit, 12bit-AD Converter on chip
    PGA: Programmable Gain Amplifier
    <li>12 channel parallel LVDS output
    <li>Readout mode:<ul><li>All-pixel scan mode (12 bit:10.39 frame/s)
    <li>Window readout</ul></ul>
    <table bgcolor="#808080" width="550" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="5" border="0"><tr><td bgcolor="white" colspan=2><strong>Device Structure</strong></td></tr><tr><td bgcolor="white" width="45%">Model name</td><td bgcolor="white" width="55%">IMX021 </td></tr><tr><td bgcolor="white" width="45%">Image size</td><td bgcolor="white" width="55%">Diagonal width 28.4mm (Type 1.8) </td></tr><tr><td bgcolor="white" width="45%">Total number of pixels</td><td bgcolor="white" width="55%">4428(H)2948(V) approx.13.05M pixels </td></tr><tr><td bgcolor="white" width="45%">Number of effective pixels</td><td bgcolor="white" width="55%">4320(H)2888(V) approx.12.47M pixels </td></tr><tr><td bgcolor="white" width="45%">Number of active pixels</td><td bgcolor="white" width="55%">4312(H)2880(V) approx.12.41M piixels </td></tr><tr><td bgcolor="white" width="45%">Chip size</td><td bgcolor="white" width="55%">28.0mm(H)22.3 mm(V) </td></tr><tr><td bgcolor="white" width="45%">Unit cell size</td><td bgcolor="white" width="55%">5.49m(H)5.49m(V) </td></tr></table>
  • 08-20-2007, 02:41 PM
    Franglais
    Nikon D300 soon?
    It had 10 frames/second that's good. But only 12 bits per colour when Canon have gone to 14 bits per colour.

    I'm waiting for the 40D vs D300 test to see which technology is best.
  • 08-20-2007, 02:48 PM
    Photo-John
    Re: Sony 12.47-Megapixel CMOS Sensor - Press Release
    What's the D300? :P
  • 08-20-2007, 11:20 PM
    Franglais
    Re: Sony 12.47-Megapixel CMOS Sensor - Press Release
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Photo-John
    What's the D300? :P

    The D300 is just a rumour from Chasseurs d'Images - a D200 with the new Sony chip. Supposed to be announced any time now..
  • 08-21-2007, 08:53 AM
    photophorous
    Re: Sony 12.47-Megapixel CMOS Sensor - Press Release
    There's something I've been wondering about ever since Sony took over Minolta's camera business. What kind of agreements does Sony have with Nikon, regarding new sensor development? Who gets this fancy new sensor first, Sony DSLRs or Nikon DSLRs? I guess we'll just have to wait and see, but I wonder if Nikon will begin looking elsewhere for sensors, since they are currently coming from the competition. It's a weird set up.

    Paul
  • 08-21-2007, 01:31 PM
    Franglais
    Re: Sony 12.47-Megapixel CMOS Sensor - Press Release
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by photophorous
    There's something I've been wondering about ever since Sony took over Minolta's camera business. What kind of agreements does Sony have with Nikon, regarding new sensor development? Who gets this fancy new sensor first, Sony DSLRs or Nikon DSLRs? I guess we'll just have to wait and see, but I wonder if Nikon will begin looking elsewhere for sensors, since they are currently coming from the competition. It's a weird set up.

    Paul

    Nikon supply the optical stepper machines that Sony use to make the sensors. This is not a client-supplier relationship, it's a partnership. Nikon get to have special versions of the Sony sensors :

    - 4-channel output version of the 10Mpix sensor used in the D200
    - electronic shutter version of the 6Mpix sensor which allowed the D70 and similar to have a 1/500s shutter speed

    A high-performance 12-channel readout sensor that can do 10fps like this one is really only suited to pro models (lD200 replacement?). Up till now Minolta has not been in a position to offer such a camera, but now that Sony has taken control it seems like they want to enter this market. Chasseurs d'Images thinks that this family of sensors will replace the existing 10Mpix sensor so there should be a lower-performance version one day for the D40x, Pentax, lower Minoltas etc.