Patent: Fast prime lenses for curved image sensors

Canon Rumors Guy

EOS-1D X Mark III
CR Pro
Jul 20, 2010
9,301
2,072
Canada
www.canonrumors.com
Canon has published a patent showing a series of fast prime lenses for camera bodies equipped with a curved sensor. The only way to get the advantages of a curved sensor is to have lenses dedicated to it.
Curved sensors would reduce the complexity and likely size and weight of high-performance lenses. The caveat is that supporting a curved sensor will require each lens to have its own radius to be compatible with the curved image sensor.
The following optical designs appear in patent: 2019-166711

35mm f/1.0
35mm f/1.2
35mm f/1.4
50mm f/1.0
50mm f/1.2
65mm f/1.2
85mm f/1.0
85mm f/1.2
100mm f/1.2

Can we expect a curved sensor system from Canon? Who knows at this point, but both Sony and Canon are working on it. Are there enough camera buyers to support another mount?

Continue reading...
 
Last edited:

BeenThere

EOS R
CR Pro
Sep 4, 2012
1,242
670
Eastern Shore
Can’t say I would be interested in another set of lenses, but maybe some specialty could find it worth while. Seems as though the advantages would have to be very compelling.
 

vladk

EOS M50
Mar 10, 2021
42
53
I would expect this approach to be applied to extra compact industrial applications first (surveilance, monitoring, etc.)
 

Stuart

Hi, Welcome from an ePhotozine fan, & 6D user.
Jul 22, 2010
389
128
London & Woking
www.ephotozine.com
Why would it need a new Lens mount? Isn't the curved idea about getting wavelengths to fall more evenly at sensor edges the same physical mount will still work for the centre of the sensor.

Or could movable elements within the lens focus the light according to the body attached.

Or would curved sensors be used on APS-c bodies and in that way be a whole new smaller mount system.
 

Josh Leavitt

EOS 90D
Aug 19, 2018
105
154
I'd love a trio of fixed full-frame curved sensor cameras: 24mm f/1.2, 50mm f/1.2, and 100mm f/1.2 would be my choice. The idea of curved sensors has been around for several years now, but to my knowledge the technical hurdle has been the brittleness of the silicon substrate when attempting to bend it under pneumatic or hydraulic pressure. The larger the sensor, the more likely it is to break. Hopefully Canon will find a workaround for it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Berowne

Dragon

EF 800L
May 29, 2019
518
498
With a set of (relatively) small primes that fast, I can see quite a few folks going for a system like that. The 85 f/1 and the 100 f/1.2 would be a dream come true for portrait shooters.
 

melgross

EOS RP
Nov 2, 2016
772
525
Mmm. Two series of lenses, two series of bodies. Yes, I can see by the speed of those lenses that this would be interesting, but that just seems to be breaking the line up further.

the secret of film lenses is that they (at least, almost all of them) weren’t designed quite with a flat field in mind. Pretty close, not not completely. The problem is that film is never truly flat. The corners and edges are curled a tiny bit towards the front of the film plane. Unless you have a vacuum holder, of course. Not everyone did, did they? Mostly just specialized work, and then, usually specialized lenses. I had a copy machine in my lab for reproduction work, you know, halftone dots. Pretty critical everything matches up. So vacuum holders for the original and the four big film halftone repro. True apo flatfield f9 lenses. But otherwise, nah.

use most of those lenses on digital, and often the corners, and possibly the edges, are out. Maybe not by much, but you’ll see it.

lens design is easier if flat fields aren’t required. Hence all of those f1.0 and f1.2 lenses there.
 

chik0240

EOS M50
Dec 31, 2016
48
17
I don't think curved sensor would work for a changeable lens camera, it should be better suited to fixed lens camera for great image quality with insane aperture or insane wide aperture long zoom lens with reasonable lens size.
 
Mar 20, 2021
1
0
Mmm. Two series of lenses, two series of bodies. Yes, I can see by the speed of those lenses that this would be interesting, but that just seems to be breaking the line up further.

the secret of film lenses is that they (at least, almost all of them) weren’t designed quite with a flat field in mind. Pretty close, not not completely. The problem is that film is never truly flat. The corners and edges are curled a tiny bit towards the front of the film plane. Unless you have a vacuum holder, of course. Not everyone did, did they? Mostly just specialized work, and then, usually specialized lenses. I had a copy machine in my lab for reproduction work, you know, halftone dots. Pretty critical everything matches up. So vacuum holders for the original and the four big film halftone repro. True apo flatfield f9 lenses. But otherwise, nah.

use most of those lenses on digital, and often the corners, and possibly the edges, are out. Maybe not by much, but you’ll see it.

lens design is easier if flat fields aren’t required. Hence all of those f1.0 and f1.2 lenses there.
I guess the idea is great! probably it will be easier to reach light and the same amount to the corners as well as in the center and sharpness will also bas as good at the corners. Maybe the problem with broken pixels could be helped by extra layer between the bendable back and the sensor layer, a soft one which might help not to brake the pixels.
 

Dragon

EF 800L
May 29, 2019
518
498
To achieve the degree of curvature indicated on the sensor it would have to be formed when very hot (i.e. soft). I wonder if Canon has figured out how to do this, or if the lens patents are just a hedge against the time when someone does figure out how to make a curved sensor.
 

melgross

EOS RP
Nov 2, 2016
772
525
To achieve the degree of curvature indicated on the sensor it would have to be formed when very hot (i.e. soft). I wonder if Canon has figured out how to do this, or if the lens patents are just a hedge against the time when someone does figure out how to make a curved sensor.
They could just be grinding the material into the final shape before the other operations take place. After all, lens grinding is a pretty mature technology.
 

Dragon

EF 800L
May 29, 2019
518
498
They could just be grinding the material into the final shape before the other operations take place. After all, lens grinding is a pretty mature technology.
That would translate to a huge use of purified silicon, not to mention a whole new lithography process to properly image on the curved surface. Theoretically possible, but not even remotely cost effective.
 

Jerryrigged

CANON EOS R & 5D IV
Jul 15, 2016
23
3
California
That would translate to a huge use of purified silicon, not to mention a whole new lithography process to properly image on the curved surface. Theoretically possible, but not even remotely cost effective.
Yeah, right?! Seems like a curved sensor had lots of hurdles to overcome to be economical!
 

SteveC

R5
CR Pro
Sep 3, 2019
2,470
2,336
All wrong.
You've got no idea how much mine costs me !

It's possible you misunderstood his joke...I can't be sure whether you did or not. He's assuming the driver is a chauffeur (who probably can't afford an R5 unless he eats Ramen and has no family) and the owner of the car (not the Rolls Royce company) is in the back seat.

However, I am sure a lot of Rolls Royce owners do drive their own vehicles.
 
  • Like
Reactions: David - Sydney