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Thread: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

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    New Member jonbrisbincreative's Avatar
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    If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    I'm not trying to be provocative here, honestly. It's an honest question that I can't for the life of me find any answers to.

    If CMOS sensors are capable of rendering an image just like a CCD and the only difference is some color curve that was pre-programmed into the CCD sensor, then it should at least be theoretically possible to create a luminance and color curve that, when applied to a CMOS image, produces a CCD-like look. I have tried to find examples of how to do this but I can't find any.

    Maybe I'm not using the right search terms or reading the right posts or something. Maybe someone here that's gone down this road can point me to a discussion of how to take CMOS images and, applying some magic sauce, make them look like older CCD images?

    This also leads me to wonder how one goes about analyzing an image for things like luminance curves? I know you can create a histogram from image samples we find on the internet but I'm wondering how you go about figuring out what to adjust if you have a CCD image that you're comparing a CMOS image to. I know there's going to be differences when the image is different. I'm not into creating a lab where I shoot test targets, etc... I'm interested in the real-world differences. Can I take an image sample I find online at some review site and analyze it for what makes it look the way it does, then apply that knowledge to a "similar" CMOS image to approximate the look?

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Noone has succeeded in defining what the CCD look is, and thus it's hard to analyse in an objective manner and even harder to replicate.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    It doesn't need to be defined. Those who know it will recognize it.

    That Pentax 645D/ 645Z comparison posted in lula shows this very well. Plasticky skin on the Z while the one from the D has a certain "Pop".

    You may or may not notice this for landscapes, but for portraiture, it's there. As I said on lula again, Frank Doorhof's samples from the credo 50 looks the closest and it could be a combination of the Leaf profiles and Frank's post processing skills.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonbrisbincreative View Post
    I'm not trying to be provocative here, honestly. It's an honest question that I can't for the life of me find any answers to.

    If CMOS sensors are capable of rendering an image just like a CCD and the only difference is some color curve that was pre-programmed into the CCD sensor, then it should at least be theoretically possible to create a luminance and color curve that, when applied to a CMOS image, produces a CCD-like look. I have tried to find examples of how to do this but I can't find any.

    Maybe I'm not using the right search terms or reading the right posts or something. Maybe someone here that's gone down this road can point me to a discussion of how to take CMOS images and, applying some magic sauce, make them look like older CCD images?

    This also leads me to wonder how one goes about analyzing an image for things like luminance curves? I know you can create a histogram from image samples we find on the internet but I'm wondering how you go about figuring out what to adjust if you have a CCD image that you're comparing a CMOS image to. I know there's going to be differences when the image is different. I'm not into creating a lab where I shoot test targets, etc... I'm interested in the real-world differences. Can I take an image sample I find online at some review site and analyze it for what makes it look the way it does, then apply that knowledge to a "similar" CMOS image to approximate the look?
    Doesn't happen. CCD has it's own look and so does CMOS. I've been hearing that story since the Leica M was released after the M9 and I still haven't seen convincing evidence. The closest I've seen to date was the Sony A7 series to replicating CCD like rendering and color. It's still different though.
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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    The problem is applying a standard set of adjustments to achieve the CCD color and luminance from a CMOS file . If you take a photograph of a color chart (Passport color checker for example ) with a Leica M9 and Leica M 240 using the same lens and a custom white balance for each …you can easily see the differences in both color and the tone curve .

    The first step to matching color is to create a custom camera profile ….if you wanted a Leica M 9 look you would need a color chart that matched the rendering from a M9 . No different that what they do with the film emulation presets . I chose to match both the M9 and the M 240 to a standard passport color checker . This to some extent neutralizes the color differences .

    But the tone curves are significantly different ….because the M9 CCD has a narrow DR …Leica has set the out of the camera tone curve to the right …..few steps in the lights ,highlights . The M 240 CMOS has a flatter tone curve with additional steps in the lights highlights . This gives the appearance of a flatter less brilliant file …because it is that way out of the camera .

    The problem I have found is making a consistent set of adjustments ..given a single file and with care in establishing profiles etc …I can make an M9 file and an M 240 file look similar …..but I haven t been able to match the CCD look consistently across a broad range of light .

    It is also easier to make the M9 and the M240 look similar than it is to make the M240 look like an M9 file .

    Sorry for a long winded explanation but my conclusion for now is that to get a CCD look I need a CCD sensor .
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Define the "look." Not much a discussion unless you can do that.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Hi,

    An engineer at Phase One told Michael Reichmann (founder of Luminious Landscape) that CCD color vs. CMOS colour is just a myth.

    When I got my P45+, I was not happy with the colours, but I was affected by Tim Parkins article: The Myth of Universal Colour

    At a stage I made a small investigation of the accuracy of colour rendition.

    P45+ colour rendition

    The findings are not very clear, but I would say they indicate that profiles and profiling play a very important role.

    The P45+, with Capture One's own linear profile was very accurate on the IT 8 chart I used, almost as good as the Adobe Standard profile for my Sony SLT 99.

    Quite a few real world samples in that article, BTW.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Define the "look." Not much a discussion unless you can do that.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Hi,

    The one I guess you refer to was based on JPEGs from camera.

    But you perhaps have a link to raw files?

    More significantly, Michael Reichmann stated that he was told by an MFD back designer that the rendition difference between CCD and CMOS was just a myth. My guess that MFD back designers are educated on he issue. (May be a lot of effort to find the link, though)

    Update: here is the link: http://www.luminous-landscape.com/fo...6396#msg726396

    It says:
    "Thanks for your input Eric. I was told by a senior MF back designer a few years ago that CCDs and CMOS don't differ re colour. As you say, it's the CFA and other factors.

    Time to put that myth to bed.

    Michael"


    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by synn View Post
    It doesn't need to be defined. Those who know it will recognize it.

    That Pentax 645D/ 645Z comparison posted in lula shows this very well. Plasticky skin on the Z while the one from the D has a certain "Pop".

    You may or may not notice this for landscapes, but for portraiture, it's there. As I said on lula again, Frank Doorhof's samples from the credo 50 looks the closest and it could be a combination of the Leaf profiles and Frank's post processing skills.
    Last edited by ErikKaffehr; 17th October 2014 at 11:46.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Have you read my essay on CMOS development at P1?

    The Phase One IQ250 CMOS Fully Realized

    Anyone who tries to boil any camera system down to one factor is underestimating the number of factors involved in producing the final look and feel of a given camera system.

    A partial list of the Image Quality Chain is below:
    [Lens coating > Lens elements/design > Aperture blade design > internal body coating > microlens size/shape > Anti aliasing filter > IR filter thickness, rolloff and cutoff characteristics > CFA design > sensor photo well size/design > sensor read-out (heat-sinking and/or active cooling very important here) > A/D converter type/quality > A/D converter control parameters > (read-out of black calibration file from sensor recorded as adjunct to the image) > debayering algorithm > color profile > deconvolution / detail finding algorithm, noise reduction based on black calibration file > noise reduction based on image data > sharpening.]
    Last edited by dougpeterson; 17th October 2014 at 16:02.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    If you're looking for meaningful answers here, the only real path to them is to get hands on with the relevant gear. There are numerous opprutunities to do this via rental, rental towards purchase, leasing, purchase, borrowing, begging, stealing, workshops, trainings, open houses, etc.

    As one example you could do a lot of testing (if pre-arranged with us, the show floor itself is pretty awful for real world testing) while in town for the Photo Expo.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Hi Doug,

    A fascinating article. I feel readers often don't appreciate the work involved with the development of the tools we have. As it happens, I just have posted a link to your article on LuLa a short while ago.

    As a small point, I think that there are some characteristics of sensor CFA's system developers can do little about. One of those areas is red/green/yellow separation. In this area CFA-s may differ a bit, but gradient on reds seems to be very steep.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by dougpeterson View Post
    Have you read my essay on CMOS development at CCD?

    The Phase One IQ250 CMOS Fully Realized

    Anyone who tries to boil any camera system down to one factor is underestimating the number of factors involved in producing the final look and feel of a given camera system.

    A partial list of the Image Quality Chain is below:
    [Lens coating > Lens elements/design > Aperture blade design > internal body coating > microlens size/shape > Anti aliasing filter > IR filter thickness, rolloff and cutoff characteristics > CFA design > sensor photo well size/design > sensor read-out (heat-sinking and/or active cooling very important here) > A/D converter type/quality > A/D converter control parameters > (read-out of black calibration file from sensor recorded as adjunct to the image) > debayering algorithm > color profile > deconvolution / detail finding algorithm, noise reduction based on black calibration file > noise reduction based on image data > sharpening.]

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by synn View Post
    It doesn't need to be defined. Those who know it will recognize it.
    See that's part of the problem. You know what it looks like, but can't describe it. That makes it very hard to duplicate. I do know what you mean though. People talk about DR, but it isn't DR. It's more color depth and purity. I only spent a few minutes with an IQ250, but it is the closest that I have personally used. Not quite there, but there is so much else that is great about the back.


    ... Frank Doorhof's samples from the credo 50 looks the closest and it could be a combination of the Leaf profiles and Frank's post processing skills.
    I think very highly of Frank, but I think his image samples are best overlooked and just go with his words. The man is a magician and can do more with a Kodak Instamatic and cheap flashlight than most can do with all the cool gear in the world.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by synn View Post
    It doesn't need to be defined. Those who know it will recognize it.
    I'm not convinced . . I can tell the difference between M9 pictures and M(240) pictures (and pretty much any other pair of cameras you choose). . . . but I can't tell a CCD from a CMOS image.

    I think the Sony A7s is rather the clincher in this - lovely "CCD like" files. The reduced DR of a smaller pixel count combined with the big juicy pixels . . .

    The fact that one can tell the difference between the images from a camera with a CCD sensor from a camera with a CMOS sensor does NOT mean one can tell the difference between CCD and CMOS sensors.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Define the "look." Not much a discussion unless you can do that.

    Some might not like me saying this, but I agree. And honestly, I find it tiresome when CCD or CMOS "looks" are discussed and not defined. Some of you guys are worse than shopkeepers! Why such a mystery? "You know it when you see it" doesn't pass the muster to me. Define it if you feel there's a difference.


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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    The problem is applying a standard set of adjustments to achieve the CCD color and luminance from a CMOS file . If you take a photograph of a color chart (Passport color checker for example ) with a Leica M9 and Leica M 240 using the same lens and a custom white balance for each …you can easily see the differences in both color and the tone curve .

    The first step to matching color is to create a custom camera profile ….if you wanted a Leica M 9 look you would need a color chart that matched the rendering from a M9 . No different that what they do with the film emulation presets . I chose to match both the M9 and the M 240 to a standard passport color checker . This to some extent neutralizes the color differences .

    But the tone curves are significantly different ….because the M9 CCD has a narrow DR …Leica has set the out of the camera tone curve to the right …..few steps in the lights ,highlights . The M 240 CMOS has a flatter tone curve with additional steps in the lights highlights . This gives the appearance of a flatter less brilliant file …because it is that way out of the camera .

    The problem I have found is making a consistent set of adjustments ..given a single file and with care in establishing profiles etc …I can make an M9 file and an M 240 file look similar …..but I haven t been able to match the CCD look consistently across a broad range of light .

    It is also easier to make the M9 and the M240 look similar than it is to make the M240 look like an M9 file .

    Sorry for a long winded explanation but my conclusion for now is that to get a CCD look I need a CCD sensor .
    I have a similar take on the subject Roger.

    It isn't that something can't be made approximate the look of something else … it is the consistent response in widely variable conditions that seems difficult.

    Asking for a quantifiable response as to "what that look and feel may be" seems valid, yet we are dealing with aesthetics … that which we respond to in a right brain manner … thus the "I know it when I see it" … not unlike Justice Stewart's response when asked to quantify what constitutes Pornography

    Most people would be hard pressed to explain why they personally like one color over the other, or one flavor over another, or most any other "preference"… let alone something as complex as this subject.

    "Look and feel" leads to a preference not a scientific fact. It is an experience based response to visual stimulus and how we emotionally memorize it. In the extreme, we are intuitively drawn to some things and repelled by others.

    Science wants everything all tidy and methodical … yet art and aesthetics is a messy business rampant with randomness, subjectivity, intuitive wanderings, feelings, and a predilection toward looking at the "whole" of something and ignoring the parts.

    Way to many variables in the hardware, software, and the human response to the results, for me to sort out.

    So, my conclusion is if I like something, I don't work my rear off trying to make something else be like it … I just choose the original … and that is currently CCD cameras like my S.

    I had the same tug of war from film to digital … and since the handwriting is on the wall regarding CCD vs CMOS, it'll probably be a moot point soon enough. I'll just have to get used to it.

    But not quite yet

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    The difference in "look" isn't just down to the CFA. It's not even the most important factor. After all, there is a plethora of different CCD CFA spectral resonses, so even though they don't constitute a uniform family, they are somehow supposed to be very much distinct from the equally non-uniform family of CMOS CFAs? Hardly.

    No-one has mentioned this, but the signal to noise curve output by the hardware is also a huge factor in the "look".

    BTW, about three quarters of Doug's list of imaging chain factors don't apply to this question. Chop it just before the CFA design, and again after the A/D stuff.

    Ray

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonbrisbincreative View Post
    This also leads me to wonder how one goes about analyzing an image for things like luminance curves? I know you can create a histogram from image samples we find on the internet but I'm wondering how you go about figuring out what to adjust if you have a CCD image that you're comparing a CMOS image to. I know there's going to be differences when the image is different. I'm not into creating a lab where I shoot test targets, etc... I'm interested in the real-world differences. C
    I understand your reluctance to shoot test targets, but I don't see a more practical way of doing it. And while they may not seem "real-world", the calibration info they yield is what makes real-world photos look good.

    Ray

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonbrisbincreative View Post
    If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?
    Before someone answers that, I'd appreciate if someone would answer this:

    If CCD rendering can be achieved with CCD, where are the examples?

    I'd like to see an image achieved with CCD that has this special rendering.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Science does not want anything in particular, messy, tidy, or otherwise. The CCDS/CMOS problem could simple be confirmation bias, and you can test for that. If there is a "look," that can be tested as well. If the science can actually create the machines and get them to work it really tight tolerances, it can be used to analyse the same machines. Naturally, there are a whole bunch of variables that would be more a factor in this question than just the sensor architecture.

    Now, I can imagine that someone could have a preference for a camera and the look from that camera or even cameras, and there may appear to be a correlation to sensor type. But I have yet to find any real analysis to find out why or to even define the qualities associated with it--and they can be quantified.

    I actually find this a really interesting question. I am wondering with the seemingly endless question for DR, for example, we as photographers are not considering the significance on the aesthetics. If you had an image with a DR of infinity, it would look horrible. I am not saying a limit to camera DR is needed, it is not so simple, but rather as we process those images, how do we maintain a "natural" look? It seems the conversation leads to that point that one camera look "digital" (unnatural) and one looks "film-like" (natural). Ironically, film was not that "natural." I also have a feeling that the folks see this are not all seeing the same thing, which makes the "look" hard to narrow down.

    BTW, my favorite camera sports a CCD. But I think that is more to do with the brilliance of Kodak and Pentax.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Test targets actually exist in the real world. The light hitting a test target is real world light.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Hi,

    Several good points.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    I actually find this a really interesting question. I am wondering with the seemingly endless question for DR, for example, we as photographers are not considering the significance on the aesthetics. If you had an image with a DR of infinity, it would look horrible. I am not saying a limit to camera DR is needed, it is not so simple, but rather as we process those images, how do we maintain a "natural" look? It seems the conversation leads to that point that one camera look "digital" (unnatural) and one looks "film-like" (natural). Ironically, film was not that "natural." I also have a feeling that the folks see this are not all seeing the same thing, which makes the "look" hard to narrow down.

    BTW, my favorite camera sports a CCD. But I think that is more to do with the brilliance of Kodak and Pentax.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Hi Ray,

    Elaborate please, my understanding is that noise is dominated by photon statistics (shot noise) mostly, except in darkest areas.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by ondebanks View Post
    No-one has mentioned this, but the signal to noise curve output by the hardware is also a huge factor in the "look".

    Ray

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    I haven't read the entire thread, but my opinion is that the noise pattern of CCD is more random and often results in a subjectively nicer "look" in that it presents as a kind of grain structure, even at base ISO. Sometimes, like with film grain, this can result in a bit more of a feel of organic structure to otherwise flat areas of tone.
    Anyone else agree?

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Hi,

    Midtone noise is essentially shot noise, that is photon statistics, so that would be identical for CMOS and CCD. Modern CMOS (read Sony) has less readout noise than CCD. Readout noise is quite ugly usually, more like salt and pepper.

    The two samples below were taken with a P45+ and Sony Alpha 99, the closes I get to a CMOS/CCD comparison with the stuff I have. They were exposed almost identically (ETTR) according to RawDigger, but the shadows are brighter on the Sony, which I attribute to more veiling flare in the more complex Sony lens. Both images were pushed +4EV in raw conversion.

    Phase One P45+


    Sony Alpha 99


    Best regards
    Erik




    Quote Originally Posted by tjv View Post
    I haven't read the entire thread, but my opinion is that the noise pattern of CCD is more random and often results in a subjectively nicer "look" in that it presents as a kind of grain structure, even at base ISO. Sometimes, like with film grain, this can result in a bit more of a feel of organic structure to otherwise flat areas of tone.
    Anyone else agree?

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Sure there are a lot of factors that effect the resulting raw file regardless of the sensor (CCD verse CMOS) . in general CMOS files tend to be flatter and have greater DR . Each manufacture creates there own proprietary look thru the firmware used to create the raw file from the sensor capture . Nikon for example opens the shadows and compresses the mid tones (generalization ) this creates superior high ISO performance . Sony does the opposite which creates the high contrast deep saturation at the expense of higher ISO .

    Its easiest to see the differences in the comparison of the M9 and M 240 ..because you have the same lens and the same manufacture . The look is created by higher contrast and compressed lights and highlights . This is where the brilliance comes from .

    Color is also not the same right from the sensor …the CMOS files tend toward yellow green and the CCD files tend toward magenta blue . Peach verse Pink skin tones . These get corrected thru the camera profiles (look at a before and after file rendering ) or thru an embedded profile created by the camera firmware . This is of course greatly affected by the cameras white balance settings …so if you are looking at this you need to either do a custom white balance or establish a standard like 5000K (which may not be consistent ).

    Now consider that this is all holding the light constant . If you enjoy the aesthetic of the files right out of the camera ( like a film type you enjoyed) …then its much easier to avoid all the calibration and profiling required to achieve your desired aesthetic .

    Personally I very much needed the increased ISO performance (need ISO1600) for street and travel work ….so as much as I preferred the M9 files ..I moved to the M 240 . Its more work and aesthetic will never be exact …so I will build over time a new aesthetic that starts with a better file .

    For slower work with MF ..I stuck with the S 006 /S2 …for me ..MF is about maximum IQ and frequently tripod work . The S2 files have been tuned to an aesthetic I enjoy and I can get it out of LR with a straightforward profile .
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    This thread on LuLa discusses a comparison made by Doug Peterson just when the IQ-250 arrived. Doug compared IQ-250 (CMOS) with IQ-260 and IQ-280 (CCD). The best comparison between CMOS and CCD I have seen so far.

    This image tells the story on shadow noise (IQ-260 to the left)


    Best regards
    Erik

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Hi,

    All indications I have ever seen is that raw files, out of camera, are quite linear. So camera firmware doesn't do the kind of manipulation you suggest.

    Out of camera JPEGs are of course a different thing.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by glenerrolrd View Post
    Nikon for example opens the shadows and compresses the mid tones (generalization ) this creates superior high ISO performance . Sony does the opposite which creates the high contrast deep saturation at the expense of higher ISO .
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Science does not want anything in particular, messy, tidy, or otherwise. The CCDS/CMOS problem could simple be confirmation bias, and you can test for that. If there is a "look," that can be tested as well. If the science can actually create the machines and get them to work it really tight tolerances, it can be used to analyse the same machines. Naturally, there are a whole bunch of variables that would be more a factor in this question than just the sensor architecture.

    Now, I can imagine that someone could have a preference for a camera and the look from that camera or even cameras, and there may appear to be a correlation to sensor type. But I have yet to find any real analysis to find out why or to even define the qualities associated with it--and they can be quantified.

    I actually find this a really interesting question. I am wondering with the seemingly endless question for DR, for example, we as photographers are not considering the significance on the aesthetics. If you had an image with a DR of infinity, it would look horrible. I am not saying a limit to camera DR is needed, it is not so simple, but rather as we process those images, how do we maintain a "natural" look? It seems the conversation leads to that point that one camera look "digital" (unnatural) and one looks "film-like" (natural). Ironically, film was not that "natural." I also have a feeling that the folks see this are not all seeing the same thing, which makes the "look" hard to narrow down.

    BTW, my favorite camera sports a CCD. But I think that is more to do with the brilliance of Kodak and Pentax.
    Thanks for this. I can't get my "Like" button to work, but I do find this thinking to reveal many excellent points to ponder.

    Your notion that we look for some improved characteristic in sensor/architecture response, but when we get it are possibly faced with changes in other characteristics that alters our perception of the results … negative biased or otherwise (Roger's M9 vs M240 experiences).

    This isn't limited to perceptions of CCD vs CMOS … it just as easily can be found in CMOS vs CMOS, (FF 24 meg Sony chip used in the Nikon D3X vs Sony A900 being an oft used example).

    This "show me" type thread has come to the forefront here because of the move to CMOS in MFD. The CMOS train in smaller formats left the station years ago.

    The promise of CMOS in MFD is expanded functionality not easily implemented with CCD, if at all. However, if one has been working with CCD MFD for any length of time, the understanding of the results is already there and expectations are formed by a longer experiential base and evolution of CCD over some years … often in very defined applicational circumstances.

    It is exceedingly difficult to not be influenced by initial response of anything new that deviates from a longer term experience from something else one has come to "subjectively" prefer. After all, continuity of a photographer's aesthetic style, or whatever we call it, can be in part due to the preferred choice of tools from the camera to optics and how they approach PP (or how skilled they may be or want to be in PP).

    That folks "aren't seeing the same thing" could be THE core issue. It suggests we all look for something different even if it is hard to define … and when found to be intuitively expressive of one's subjective aesthetic tastes then becomes the standard one measures everything else against.

    Frankly, who rationally wouldn't want the added functionality that CMOS provides? The initial question then becomes "at what aesthetic expense"? Even IF it could be analyzed and quantified (which I do not doubt), is it worth the effort? Is it essential in the big picture because (IMO) it's inevitable that CMOS is the future of MFD if it is to survive.

    In the interim, we have choice … it is one I recently struggled with when Leica announced the CMOS S(007) … and I chose to secure the CCD S(006) to replace my S2P. I'll wait and see how others fare with the new camera over the coming years. Meanwhile I've preserved my continuity without all the angst associated with yet another variable and associated learning curve … which is just another interruption in the day to day task of making images and securing enough work to pay for all this stuff

    - Marc
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    Senior Member yaya's Avatar
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    One area mentioned by Doug and that has been discussed before is related to the sensor's design, the shape of the pixels and the gaps between them.

    Dalsa CCD's are known for having relatively small gaps between the pixels, smaller than in Kodak CCDs and smaller than in CMOS sensors. In certain scenes and on certain subjects this translates to higher levels of sharpness and micro-contrast and also to smoother colour gradations (the latter is also affected by DR, A/D conversion and RAW processing pipeline).

    Over the years this has always been one of the strong selling points for Leaf backs when compared to Kodak-chipped backs, especially when using the backs on technical or view cameras with movements as the smaller gaps and shallower pixels lead to smaller amounts of sharpness and luminance falloff and overall "rounder" images.

    Also, until the D800E came out, the majority of CMOS chipped cameras employed AA filters, "contributing" to softer looking images that had to be sharpened more and creating that plasticky look.

    BR

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    There's really only one CMOS sensor in MF, it's the first shot. I'd expect that it will improve from here.

    I think the CCD vs CMOS is more about MF companies vs 135 companies in terms of how they prefer to design look rather than technology. There's lot of hand-tuning of the color profiles. Even if a sensor is technically worse at separating colors a hand-tuned color profile with deliberate increase of separation in some color range can make it appear to be better than the other.

    When MF companies get used to working with the CMOS technology and any differences there might be they will be able to produce their look. Some think they've already succeeded.

    I don't feel I'm capabable of judging that sort of thing as I've never been able to sort out which is which. I like the results of the CCDs but I also like the results of the CMOS.

    I think CCD is dead also in MF but it doesn't really know it yet. In three MF generations from now I don't think there will be any CCD backs left, except possibly for some narrow speciality system. So if there is a difference lets hope they sort it out before then.

    With CMOS I think the future of MF looks bright now, and Pentax is part of it. CMOS provides the feature set that makes it attractive to a wider audience, with that you can succed with a volume product which I think Pentax 645Z is becoming. With volume there will be some business for Sony and others to actually make CMOS sensors of this size and the format will not need to lag behind in technology.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    FWIW, I find the "look" of the Canon 1D (CCD) closer to the Canon 1DsII (CMOS) than either is to the Oly EM-5. I'll go further and put down my totally subjective and unscientific CCD/CMOS look scale.

    --IQ,M9-----1D-1DsII-----------EM-5----------------------------- iPhone--

    ,

    Matt

    PS. I think this is just how much I like them.... (No, I don't prefer the iPhone to the IQ backs...)

    PPS. I know a professional portrait photographer who happily switches between an S2 and an M(240) without ever noticing or mentioning a difference in the look. They're just tools and he uses them. The look of his work is much more distinctive than any of the differences above.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by yaya View Post
    One area mentioned by Doug and that has been discussed before is related to the sensor's design, the shape of the pixels and the gaps between them.

    Dalsa CCD's are known for having relatively small gaps between the pixels, smaller than in Kodak CCDs and smaller than in CMOS sensors. In certain scenes and on certain subjects this translates to higher levels of sharpness and micro-contrast and also to smoother colour gradations (the latter is also affected by DR, A/D conversion and RAW processing pipeline).

    Over the years this has always been one of the strong selling points for Leaf backs when compared to Kodak-chipped backs, especially when using the backs on technical or view cameras with movements as the smaller gaps and shallower pixels lead to smaller amounts of sharpness and luminance falloff and overall "rounder" images.

    Also, until the D800E came out, the majority of CMOS chipped cameras employed AA filters, "contributing" to softer looking images that had to be sharpened more and creating that plasticky look.

    BR

    Yair
    Interesting to hear from the "source"!

    I was thinking that gap-less microlenses is "old" in CMOS. Even with a smaller photo diode what counts should be what the microlens manages to collect?

    I was actually thinking it would be the other way around that CCDs usually had larger gaps, and that would separate adjacent pixels more as they sample a smaller point, and thus increase micro contrast (at the cost of aliasing). The Kodaks (with a few exceptions) don't have microlenses at all, and also have light shields as they happen to care about suppressing crosstalk and thus they do get a bit small window into the photo diode.

    In any case it seems like we're talking about pixel-peeping now, differences only visible at peeping level should not be meaningful to many, right? Just kidding, actually I think people choose based on pixel-peeping a lot more than they dare to say

    I also was of the impression that Kodak sensors have lower stack height than the Dalsa? At least if looking at the 6um technology, but perhaps it was different with the 7.2um Dalsa vs 6.8um Kodak technology (ie Aptus 75 vs P45). With Dalsa 6um having microlenses on top and Kodak 6um none it will surely be lower with Kodak? The Kodak does have pixel vignetting in tech cams, but I rather have pixel vignetting than crosstalk, microlens ripple and tiling like with the Dalsa. That's why I'm more and more looking at Hasselblad with a 50 megapixel Kodak chip as my next back to my tech cam.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Hi,

    What Anders Torger writes makes some sense. Point sampling will increase aliasing while area sampling reduces it.

    This was very obvious in Doug Petersons library shots, where the IQ-250 had much less aliasing than the IQ-260 and the IQ-280 shot at the same time.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by torger View Post
    Interesting to hear from the "source"!

    I was thinking that gap-less microlenses is "old" in CMOS. Even with a smaller photo diode what counts should be what the microlens manages to collect?

    I was actually thinking it would be the other way around that CCDs usually had larger gaps, and that would separate adjacent pixels more as they sample a smaller point, and thus increase micro contrast (at the cost of aliasing). The Kodaks (with a few exceptions) don't have microlenses at all, and also have light shields as they happen to care about suppressing crosstalk and thus they do get a bit small window into the photo diode.

    In any case it seems like we're talking about pixel-peeping now, differences only visible at peeping level should not be meaningful to many, right? Just kidding, actually I think people choose based on pixel-peeping a lot more than they dare to say

    I also was of the impression that Kodak sensors have lower stack height than the Dalsa? At least if looking at the 6um technology, but perhaps it was different with the 7.2um Dalsa vs 6.8um Kodak technology (ie Aptus 75 vs P45). With Dalsa 6um having microlenses on top and Kodak 6um none it will surely be lower with Kodak? The Kodak does have pixel vignetting in tech cams, but I rather have pixel vignetting than crosstalk, microlens ripple and tiling like with the Dalsa. That's why I'm more and more looking at Hasselblad with a 50 megapixel Kodak chip as my next back to my tech cam.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Torger, I can only suggest that before you make the move that you try your Aptus 75 alongside the 50MP as you might opt to save a packet and stay with the Aptus...just forget the specsheets for a moment and take some real world pictures.

    Two things to remember are that Kodak 6nm sensors offer dual readouts (potential centrrfolding and that some of them (40MP) also have "trafitional" microlenses making them less suitable for movements with LF lenses.

    And in my experience with 9nm and 7.2/6.8nm sensors, the Dalsas always performed better in terms of colour uniformity.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    i prefer the colors from my Aptus 22 over my DM33 (still quite similar)
    i prefer the colors from my DM33 over a P45+ (kodak)
    i've just test a credo 60, and sometimes it's even better than my Aptus 22... it depends on light... Flare, lenses, exposure time...
    From a recent trip in Japan, i was surprise to see how good was the D800 in some pics... in some pics only...
    So, an example of CCD vs CMOS won't tell you all the story !
    You can obtain perfect images from a P45+, but it requires more work than a Dalsa's sensor !

    Anyway, i'm dreaming of a real live view with my RM3D... with long exposure capabilities as good as P45+, Colors of the P25+, completely usable from 25iso to 1600, friendly with technical camera... and all if that for cheap... ;-)
    And on the top, if we can have the support of really nice people as Yaya, Doug, Steve... it will be a real plus ;-)

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by yaya View Post
    Torger, I can only suggest that before you make the move that you try your Aptus 75 alongside the 50MP as you might opt to save a packet and stay with the Aptus...just forget the specsheets for a moment and take some real world pictures.

    Two things to remember are that Kodak 6nm sensors offer dual readouts (potential centrrfolding and that some of them (40MP) also have "trafitional" microlenses making them less suitable for movements with LF lenses.

    And in my experience with 9nm and 7.2/6.8nm sensors, the Dalsas always performed better in terms of colour uniformity.
    While I do study spec sheets (which generally don't document tech wide performance that well by the way, the angular response graph if available don't say that much), I have lots of real-world shots too, with the lens line I own, with Leaf, Phase One and Hasselblad products. As developer of raw software I've looked at quite many pictures in general. I totally agree that 6um Dalsa is the better performer in many aspects, and my own 7.2um has some pretty strong aspects too. The gap is not huge as I see it though.

    The Hasselblad 50 megapixel backs don't have the centerfolds or tiling, at least not the models I have good analysis material for. Probably only one read-out channel. I don't think they ever made a microlens version of that sensor, Hasselblad don't have one. I'm not going to get a P30+

    I'm not the typical customer though. It's not all about maximum image quality under ideal conditions.

    To me it matters to have good performance with the SK wides with large shifts. It also matters that the files have good archivability and to me that means that the files should not contain any special artifacts that require sensor-specific algorithms to clean up. Capture One is almost as good as my own Lumariver HDR at cleaning up Dalsa 6um wide angle artifacts, but I'm not sure if either of those softwares will exist in say 30 years. I'm sure that generic flat-field correction will exist in mainstream software though so I'm not worried about normal LCC. I also find it valuable to be able to use generic software with my files today and thus prefer not to be dependent on software that has special artifact removal algorithms.

    That's pretty odd requirements I know, but they're important for me. They matter to me more than 0.5 stop more dynamic range or a tiny bit better tonality.

    The weakest part of the Hasselblad's is however their screens and I've kind of got used to having a 100% focus check with my (nowadays) trusty Aptus 75... so it's not end of story, I might end up with that Aptus-II 10 in the end anyway... I do like the Aptus series in many ways.

    And a another scenario is to stay as long as I can with the Aptus 75 I have now (which gives good results!) and hope for a new generation of CMOS backs that actually support the SK wides, and that there will be an economical option like today with the CFV-50c. Had the CFV-50c supported the SK wides I would probably have bought it within a year or so together with an SK28 to compensate the loss in sensor size (my widest today is SK35).

    I do struggle a bit with color currently. I don't want to use the default looks provided with the default converter. I like following and controlling the process according to my own taste and ideals as close as I can from raw to print. I use own profiles, and I'd like to develop my technique there a lot more than I have today. It's is an interesting endeavour, and I think with better technique in that area the choice of sensor will matter less in terms of color.
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    Workshop Member Wayne Fox's Avatar
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    I am wondering with the seemingly endless question for DR, for example, we as photographers are not considering the significance on the aesthetics. If you had an image with a DR of infinity, it would look horrible. I am not saying a limit to camera DR is needed, it is not so simple, but rather as we process those images, how do we maintain a "natural" look? It seems the conversation leads to that point that one camera look "digital" (unnatural) and one looks "film-like" (natural). Ironically, film was not that "natural."
    agreed, I don’t see film as “natural” - and I don’t mean that in a negative way. remarkable engineering, each film has/had a different look based on the engineering priorities, and the reason for so many types of film was to offer different renderings because there was no ability to do it after capture. Personally I always thought Astia was fuji’s most “natural” film type yet it’s gone, but we still have the over saturated colors of Velvia.

    As far as dynamic range, a real challenge. Because we look at a scene much differently than we look at a photograph of the scene, dynamic range becomes an issue. As we look at the original scene we “build” the scene by moving our eyes quickly over it, with our eyes adapting to the luminance level of the area of the scene we are looking at. Shadows rarely go totally black in the scene to our eyes yet frequently do so when captured. So how do we achieve this balance when creating an image?

    Personally I think it’s easier using a high dynamic range sensor (ala a phase back or a nikon d800) and then pulling the shadows up and highlights down. I think LR does a pretty fair job of pulling up the shadows yet keeping the colors a little muted, similar to what we would see. HDR software seems to miss this point and personally I think LR is a little better at it than C1 (although 8 is better than 7).

    As far as the “look” of CCD, I better not go there, because I’m pretty happy with what I get out of my d800, a7r and my IQ180. For me the choice is about the glass/focal lengths/resolution I’m after. Maybe it’s because I do only landscapes but I don’t see that much difference.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    I thought my old D70s had horrible DR and was craving for more headroom back in the day.

    That is, until I re-acquainted myself with film and started shooting Velvia 50. Shooting slide makes one think smarter when shooting digital, IMO. I now see the DR of my D800 and Credo as a bonus, not a necessity.
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    Member GregMO's Avatar
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by synn View Post
    That is, until I re-acquainted myself with film and started shooting Velvia 50. Shooting slide makes one think smarter when shooting digital, IMO. I now see the DR of my D800 and Credo as a bonus, not a necessity.
    Everything is just a rendering more or less & comes down to our own personal subjective taste to determine what we each use.

    With Velvia, just being off by 1/3-1/2 stop makes a big difference. For scenes that require more range, I find Ektar 100 can handle everything I photograph with a single shot. Portra has more DR then I need.
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    I think it doesnt mind.
    One has to shoot a camera and look at the results, colors, tonality etc. and decide if one likes it or if one doesnt like it.
    Personally I couldnt make up my mind between the M9 and the M240 color and have the luxury to be able to keep both. The M9 sometimes shines but sometimes it seems really of. I am leaning toward the M because it seems more consistent.
    I find the Oly EM1 to deliver more consistent and better color than bothe the M9 and M, and also better than the Sony A7 series...even though the Oly is CMOS.
    I like the color from the S a lot but it doesnt look allways neutral.

    So no, I cant see the difference between ccd and cmos, I have my preference which cams output I do like though.
    However it seems that there are few if any ccd cameras where I dont like the output....mmhhh?
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    What a wonderful thread, with so many fine and intelligent arguments.
    I don't have much to contribute, except for two things
    Firstly, it takes time to get to grips with a new sensor and its colour (be it CMOS or CCDS), and as one gets to grips with it one learns to maximise its advantages and minimise its disadvantages.
    Secondly, with modern sensors, differences between sensors are never a hundredth as important as differences between style and content.

    Angels dancing on the heads of pins.

    Still fascinating though

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    The definitive sign that this thread has "Jumped The Shark"

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Well, I tried and failed to match the scene colors between both sensor types in either Sony IDC or LR5. Very different results between these converters by the way.
    I still shoot with Sony a100 (CCD) and a850 (CMOS). I'd prefer a100 colors for portraits when developing RAW in LR since red channel is more accurate in a100 compared to an over saturated one in a850 (Adobe Standard profile). I barely feel any need in color adjustment for skin tones with a100, but almost every single file from a850 requires it.
    I have neither CCD nor CMOS medium format experience though. Sony's MF sensor looks promising based on the 645Z RAW files. I'm surprised there're no direct CCD vs CMOS comparisons between Phase or Hasselblad backs with RAW files available for download...

    If anyone has time to play with CCD/CMOS color balancing, here are two RAW files, shot with the same lens, on a100 and a850 in a crop mode. Click on the image to download a RAW.


    CCD



    CMOS

    I think we need to bring more image samples to this discussion.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by Malina DZ View Post
    Well, I tried and failed to match the scene colors between both sensor types in either Sony IDC or LR5. Very different results between these converters by the way.


    If anyone has time to play with CCD/CMOS color balancing, here are two RAW files, shot with the same lens, on a100 and a850 in a crop mode.[/url]

    Well
    I don't think it's very easy to match the colour between any two cameras. Whatever their sensor type; so that your inability to match the colours between these two says nothing about the difference between CCD and CMOS just that those cameras are different.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    ... okay we need so see sample: Enclosed four pictures, some CCD, some CMOS. Now, which is what, what's your guess? (only two cameras/sensors)
    I tried to match as well as possible the skin tone in acr, I took the pics within half an hour at quite the same light.
    I kept the files in ProPhotoRGB for good gamut/skin tone reproduction, be aware that your browser must be able to show this profile correctly.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    What I have seen is that the more controlled the conditions are the less differences I see.

    Generate a colour profile for each sensor, include a grey card for white balance and little difference I will see.

    Best regards
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Well
    I don't think it's very easy to match the colour between any two cameras. Whatever their sensor type; so that your inability to match the colours between these two says nothing about the difference between CCD and CMOS just that those cameras are different.

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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Actually I am wondering why the sensor type should have anything to do with the color precision/quality of the picture because both CCD and CMOS sensors only "see" the amount of light, no colors. The colors come from the Bayer pattern RGB filter in front of the sensor, so that filter should be the only color effecting part of the sensor, or am I wrong?

    Btw, samples 1+3 = Fuji X-T1 + XF 56f1.2 @ f2, samples 2+3 = Contax 645 + IQ180 + 140f2.8 @*f2.8.

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    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Thanks for the nice demo and the info.

    Best regards
    Erik

  49. #49
    Member Jay Emm's Avatar
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    There's a word missing in this thread. The C-word actually.

    I've never had a CUSTOMER won or lost (to my knowledge) on my use of CCD over CMOS, or vice versa.
    Likes 1 Member(s) liked this post

  50. #50
    Workshop Member Wayne Fox's Avatar
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    Re: If CCD rendering can be achieved with CMOS where are the examples?

    Quote Originally Posted by chrismuc View Post
    Actually I am wondering why the sensor type should have anything to do with the color precision/quality of the picture because both CCD and CMOS sensors only "see" the amount of light, no colors. The colors come from the Bayer pattern RGB filter in front of the sensor, so that filter should be the only color effecting part of the sensor, or am I wrong?

    Btw, samples 1+3 = Fuji X-T1 + XF 56f1.2 @ f2, samples 2+3 = Contax 645 + IQ180 + 140f2.8 @*f2.8.
    I think it's a little more complicated, because the dyes used to create the filters in front of each sensel affect rendering. So yes, the basic electronics just measure photon count, but which photon's get through which filter can be quite different between sensors based on the dyes and the density of the dyes.

    (prob not a ccd vs cmos thing though)
    Last edited by Wayne Fox; 26th October 2014 at 15:22.
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