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Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« on: August 24, 2010, 07:24:37 AM »

So you thought the megapixel race was over?

This will probably be in the 1D Mark IX


TOKYO, August 24, 2010—Canon Inc. announced today that it has successfully developed an APS-H-size*1 CMOS image sensor that delivers an image resolution of approximately 120 megapixels (13,280 x 9,184 pixels), the world’s highest level*2 of resolution for its size.


Compared with Canon’s highest-resolution commercial CMOS sensor of the same size, comprising approximately 16.1 million pixels, the newly developed sensor features a pixel count that, at approximately 120 million pixels, is nearly 7.5 times larger and offers a 2.4-fold improvement in resolution.*3


With CMOS sensors, while high-speed readout for high pixel counts is achieved through parallel processing, an increase in parallel-processing signal counts can result in such problems as signal delays and minor deviations in timing. By modifying the method employed to control the readout circuit timing, Canon successfully achieved the high-speed readout of sensor signals. As a result, the new CMOS sensor makes possible a maximum output speed of approximately 9.5 frames per second, supporting the continuous shooting of ultra-high-resolution images.


Canon’s newly developed CMOS sensor also incorporates a Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) video output capability. The sensor can output Full HD video from any approximately one-sixtieth-sized section of its total surface area.


Images captured with Canon’s newly developed approximately 120-megapixel CMOS image sensor, even when cropped or digitally magnified, maintain higher levels of definition and clarity than ever before. Additionally, the sensor enables image confirmation across a wide image area, with Full HD video viewing of a select portion of the overall frame.


Through the further development of CMOS image sensors, Canon will break new ground in the world of image expression, targeting new still images that largely surpass those made possible with film, and video movies that capitalize on the unique merits of SLR cameras, namely their high mobility and the expressive power offered through interchangeable lenses.





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Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« on: August 24, 2010, 07:24:37 AM »

kufucius

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2010, 07:27:37 AM »
C'mon Canon,

Please just give us (or me at least) a SMALLER Pixel count FULL FRAME "1" body (Much like Nikon D3, D3s), I just DON'T flippin need that much pixels... BUT I want FULL FRAME!!! sigh...
« Last Edit: August 24, 2010, 07:29:40 AM by kufucius »

kubelik

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2010, 07:36:29 AM »
I know I'm not nearly good enough with the physics to know this for sure, but wouldn't a 120 MP APS-H have a ridiculously low bar for lens diffraction?  I mean, given that diffraction is setting in now for 17 MP APS-C sensors at about f/5.6, what would it be for this?  f/1.4 before diffraction?  is there some way around the diffraction problem?

Sebastian

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2010, 07:38:48 AM »
Canon’s newly developed CMOS sensor also incorporates a Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) video output capability. The sensor can output Full HD video from any approximately one-sixtieth-sized section of its total surface area.

Interesting that Canon points this out explicitly. Software/Crop-based shift and IS on the way?

Images captured with Canon’s newly developed approximately 120-megapixel CMOS image sensor, even when cropped or digitally magnified, maintain higher levels of definition and clarity than ever before.

Yeah, right.  ::)
I wonder how bad the noise is on this baby, even in low sensitivity modes...  :o


Regards,

Sebastian

ELK

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2010, 08:46:16 AM »
There must be good reasons why Canon made this announcement.

Firstly is that Canon 1D mark IV is behind Nikon D3s in almost every aspect (except maybe... availability :). As a result the pros who for instance need better highISO pictures may switch to Nikon.

Secondly there are always rumors that Canon will leave APS-H sensors, which is another potential reason for people to avoid buying 1Ds.

Can we interpret that message from Canon in following way: "Folks, don't give up! Stay with us! There is something more exciting yet to come! You want better high-ISO performance? We give you more Megapixels. You want better dynamic range? We give you more Megapixels. You want lower megapixels and better processing mechanism for better sensor readout, no banding and aliasing? We give you more Megapixels. You want better ergonomics? We give you more Megapixels AND Direct Print Button".

Canon, please fire your whole Marketing Department - they definitely are paid by Nikon too. Please also fire every your employee who pronounces the "Megapixel" word in vain!

Off topic: Canon says that this 120Mpix sensor can give 9.5 frames per second, for which one would need approximately 10 Digic IV processors, am I right?

Cyrax

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2010, 08:57:12 AM »
Logic would dictate that a sensor with an MP of this density would be on about the same playing field as the 5200mm f/14 lens (remember that thing?).  I'm sure I'll be proven wrong in 10 years time, but I don't see any logical use for this outside of what NASA or scientific institutes might need it for.

Until then, we've got our 400mm f/2.8's and a Gigapan. ;-)

gkreis

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2010, 09:06:04 AM »
Well, who can fathom this?  At first I thought it was an April Fool's joked delivered early. You have that many places where you can pull a 1:1 HD image? As someone said, would that be how you would apply software IS to video?

Concerning still imagines, imagine the computer resources to deal with such images! What about the memory card storage?  Now what if they actually gave you the option for several different resolutions, and when using reduced ones, they applied software IS as well for images?  If not, perhaps binning of the pixels?

Surely at this resolution, we could see the benefit of back illumination, right? This thing has got to rely on lots of what Canon has learned in P&S sensors. The immediate reaction is what happens to dynamic range at this point?  The P&S sensors are NOTORIOUS for poor DR.

Here is an idea. What if you could selectively make pixels more or less sensitive? Then you could bin pixels of differing sensitivity to cover a greater DR, at a reduced resolution.

As Ricky would say, someone has some splainin to do....  ;-)

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2010, 09:06:04 AM »

kufucius

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2010, 09:53:30 AM »
There must be good reasons why Canon made this announcement.

Firstly is that Canon 1D mark IV is behind Nikon D3s in almost every aspect (except maybe... availability :). As a result the pros who for instance need better highISO pictures may switch to Nikon.

Secondly there are always rumors that Canon will leave APS-H sensors, which is another potential reason for people to avoid buying 1Ds.

Can we interpret that message from Canon in following way: "Folks, don't give up! Stay with us! There is something more exciting yet to come! You want better high-ISO performance? We give you more Megapixels. You want better dynamic range? We give you more Megapixels. You want lower megapixels and better processing mechanism for better sensor readout, no banding and aliasing? We give you more Megapixels. You want better ergonomics? We give you more Megapixels AND Direct Print Button".

Canon, please fire your whole Marketing Department - they definitely are paid by Nikon too. Please also fire every your employee who pronounces the "Megapixel" word in vain!

Off topic: Canon says that this 120Mpix sensor can give 9.5 frames per second, for which one would need approximately 10 Digic IV processors, am I right?

Ha ha that's so funny :)
amen to all the above ^O^

arakawa

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2010, 10:01:13 AM »
Or they could make a Plenoptic Camera with a decent resolution.

Waleed Essam

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #9 on: August 24, 2010, 10:29:55 AM »
There must be good reasons why Canon made this announcement.

Firstly is that Canon 1D mark IV is behind Nikon D3s in almost every aspect (except maybe... availability :). As a result the pros who for instance need better highISO pictures may switch to Nikon.


Yeah right, that's why in every major sports event -Worldcup for example- you still can see 80% white lenses. D3s only bests the 1DIV in high ISO (6400+) IQ, which for most photographers who make any sense is only used MAX 10% of the time.

unruled

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #10 on: August 24, 2010, 10:34:50 AM »
There must be good reasons why Canon made this announcement.

Firstly is that Canon 1D mark IV is behind Nikon D3s in almost every aspect (except maybe... availability :). As a result the pros who for instance need better highISO pictures may switch to Nikon.


Yeah right, that's why in every major sports event -Worldcup for example- you still can see 80% white lenses. D3s only bests the 1DIV in high ISO (6400+) IQ, which for most photographers who make any sense is only used MAX 10% of the time.
I wholeheartedly agree. The internet (ie. message boards) put the D3s and 1d mk iv against each other as direct competitors -- which really, they are not. Yes the Nikon is better at high ISO. The Canon is better at sports photography. They are different camera's for different purposes!

Nough said.

ELK

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #11 on: August 24, 2010, 10:40:01 AM »
Maybe it's because white lenses are easier to count than the black ones? Especially in low light conditions.

pierlux

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2010, 10:46:45 AM »
Canon probably succeded in developing a backlit 120 MP sensor which can perform an in-sensor pre-processing of the photosites' output, i.e. more or less what happens in the eye's retina which sends to the optical nerve an already processed signal (neuroanatomist, chime in and tell us something more  ;)). A 2x2 binning could yield a 30 MP output which could be easily processed by the next generation of DIGIC V-based chipset. A 4x4 binning could yield a 7.5 MP image having, at iso 12800, the image quality of today's sensors at iso 100. And, who knows, maybe Canon developed some workaround for getting around the DLA problem... This would indeed sound to me as a really amazing revolution! But I might be completely wrong, although the matter is that this sensor is not a rumor, but an official announcement, hence a fact: it exists. But, why APS-H? Well, probably because APS-H is the largest sensors that can be imaged in one pass using cutting edge semiconductor manufacturing technology with today's steppers. Anybody whith a degree in physics or electronics that can comment on this?
« Last Edit: August 25, 2010, 06:47:23 AM by pierlux »

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2010, 10:46:45 AM »

ELK

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2010, 10:59:04 AM »
Sorry, where is made the decision from that 1D mark IV is good for sports and D3s isn't? Canon's 10 fps vs. Nikon's  9? Canon's 45 AF sensors vs. Nikon 51?
Excerpts from DPReview are self-explanatory:
"The increased buffer of the D3S compared to the D3 means that not only can images be taken in lower light, more pictures can be taken in a burst. This will be good news for sports and action photographers"
"A lot has already been said about the 1D Mark IV, both by people who have tested it and those who have tried to weigh it up against the D3S and that kind of nit-picking makes it easy to overlook what an astonishing camera it is. And looked at from a neutral perspective, both it and the Nikon are unmistakably the best sports cameras that modern technology allows."
My point is that both cameras excel at sports, but D3s excels at something else too.

KitH

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #14 on: August 24, 2010, 12:17:39 PM »
Let's just speculate for a moment what Canon is up to here... 

(Following Sebastian's line of thought), Canon think it's important that a Full HD frame fits on a one-sixtieth sized section of the sensor - 63 in an array 7 wide by 9 high (with a tiny bit of overlap).  What's it for then? 

This link points to NHK's Super High Vision demonstration coming up at IBC 2010 next month in Amsterdam. 
http://www.ibc.org/page.cfm/EMSLinkClick=450_148_140_2839486_192058_1197
It's sixteen Full HD joined up in a 4x4 array to give 4320p.  I've seen this before and it's astonishingly lovely.    Perhaps the new Canon sensor is announced now to stake their claim at the table in the "What's Beyond HD?" debate, which is kicking off around now.
 
I like "Pierlux's" comment about using the extra pixels for pre-processing like a retina does.  David Marr's work on the neuroanatomy of vision explains this in detail, but I can't help thinking Canon engineers know that stuff too and there's a lot of it going on already in today's sensors. 
« Last Edit: August 24, 2010, 02:28:42 PM by KitH »

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Re: Canon's 120mp APS-H Sensor
« Reply #14 on: August 24, 2010, 12:17:39 PM »