Site Sponsors
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 50 of 62

Thread: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Although I'm an amateur shooting 4 x 5 film, I have a curiosity about MF sensors, particularly as used on technical cameras. Thus, I've read with great interest the positive reviews on the new Sony CMOS backs, including in the Phase One IQ250. This review, from Digital Transitions, included image comparisons among the IQ250, IQ260, and IQ280:

    Phase One IQ250 Tech Cam Testing - DT Blog

    What struck me is the different look of the CMOS and CCD sensors (technical results aside). For lack of a better description, the CCD images seemed punchier and the CMOS images flatter, or duller. Yes, I know an amateur should not be judging sophisticated tools such as MF sensors at all, or on a computer screen, and using consumer-minded attributes such as "punch." But there did seem to me a noticeable difference and I wonder whether those more knowledgeable than I am have a view on whether there is an inherently different look to the CMOS images as compared to the CCD images or whether this is just a result of this one test or of the processing selected. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Subscriber and Workshop Member MGrayson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    1,575
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    4

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Search the fora! There are lengthy and possibly inconclusive discussions of this very point.

    For example, here.

    Best,

    Matt

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Moscow
    Posts
    462
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    It's hard to isolate exactly what the reason is, maybe it's a difference you see between the IQ250 and 260, but other implements of the Sony or Kodak or Dalsa sensors have different characteristics, and these too change depending on the software you process them in.

    On the whole, I suppose your observation is close to the truth, CCD images tend to look more like the real thing out of the box, while CMOS output is very malleable, especially when it comes to shooting in anything other than ideal conditions.

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Thanks. Sorry to have missed earlier threads. Whether it's CMOS or the color profile adopted that contributes to the look is, I guess, an open question. Inasmuch as 35mm (and smaller) CMOS cameras have eliminated complaints by CCD loyalists, I imagine that the same will occur in future generations of MF sensors. That probably means the end of new generations of CCD sensors before long, though, this presupposes that the new CMOS sensors can be produced to permit usable movements against a full-frame 645 sensor despite (what I take it) is a requirement of micro lenses for CMOS (but not CCD).

  5. #5
    Super Duper
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    32° 31' 37.06" N, 111° 6' 0.9" W
    Posts
    4,334
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Personally and professionally I too prefer the "look" for lack of a better word of CCD vs CMOS. The closest I ever saw between 35 and MF was the Leica M9 then again it has the same CCD sensor. CMOS to me is the same as 35mm; while a "nice" format I nevertheless like the RAW and finished files from CMOS.

    Just my limited opinion....
    Don Libby
    Iron Creek Photography
    Blog
    Tucson AZ

  6. #6
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Nyköping Sweden
    Posts
    1,194
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Hi,

    I guess that we may mix up some things. The M9 uses a Kodak sensor, like the ones used the Pentax 645D and the older Phase backs. Leaf has been a long time user of DALSA sensors which have a different color reproduction.

    Canon cameras use Canon CMOS, with Canon's choice of CFA (Color Filter Array) properties, while Nikon uses mostly Sony sensors probably with CFA specified with Nikon.

    Sony uses pretty much the same sensors as Nikon, but probably with different CFA design.

    The next step is raw conversion, demosaicing followed by transforming the RGB signals into an internal colour space. Now, an output profile is applied on the internal colour space. That profile can contain "hue twists" and other manipulations. Here is a nice example: ChromaSoft: Visualizing DNG Camera Profiles Part 1

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by Don Libby View Post
    Personally and professionally I too prefer the "look" for lack of a better word of CCD vs CMOS. The closest I ever saw between 35 and MF was the Leica M9 then again it has the same CCD sensor. CMOS to me is the same as 35mm; while a "nice" format I nevertheless like the RAW and finished files from CMOS.

    Just my limited opinion....

  7. #7
    Super Duper
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    32° 31' 37.06" N, 111° 6' 0.9" W
    Posts
    4,334
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    I was still using the older p45 when I had the M9. Not certain how it would compare with the newer IQ sensor.
    Don Libby
    Iron Creek Photography
    Blog
    Tucson AZ

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    I guess that we may mix up some things.


    So, Erik, is the upshot of your comments that a manufacturer such as Dalsa could produce a CMOS sensor and choose a CFA to replicate what some call the CCD "look"?

    Beyond hue, the CCD look, best I can tell, if it has a technical explanation (better than "pop"), is greater micro-contrast. Are CMOS sensors inherently less able to produce micro-contrast than CCD sensors? (My guess is not, inasmuch as the original Canon 5D had the pop, or micro-contrast, favored by those who like MF CCD, and that was a CMOS sensor.) If not, then I suppose the answer to the different looks comes down to manufacturer choice, a good omen for the future, I suppose.

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Oxford
    Posts
    759
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Color is something subjective. If you fall in love with the Sony CMOS sensors when it's clearly superior in performance, and get used to the post-processing procedure with it, you just can no longer leave it. In the next few years when it gets succeeded by another technology and you cannot afford to upgrade / keep up-to-dated then you enter a status quo and insist that you prefer the color of the Sony CMOS sensor so that you still have the faith to keep using your gear.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by voidshatter View Post
    Color is something subjective. If you fall in love with the Sony CMOS sensors when it's clearly superior in performance, and get used to the post-processing procedure with it, you just can no longer leave it. In the next few years when it gets succeeded by another technology and you cannot afford to upgrade / keep up-to-dated then you enter a status quo and insist that you prefer the color of the Sony CMOS sensor so that you still have the faith to keep using your gear.
    Fair enough, and I agree entirely that color is subjective. As a hobbyist (who does not shoot products) I am not interested in accuracy as much as a pleasing look (including to skin tones). But what has been discussed here as a "CCD" look, though perhaps inaccurately, is not about color or not about color alone. The CCD library photos (at least the posted jpegs) reveal a greater distinction between objects and hues than do the CMOS photos. Look, e.g., at the pattern in the rug, which jumps out at you in the CCD images, but appears more uniform, duller, in the CMOS. I have no idea whether this is inherent in the CCD versus CMOS technology, which is why I posted the question, but there does appear to be a difference, and more importantly (because I know very little about this) experienced photographers have said the same here.

  11. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    398
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    The biggest difference I generally always see with CCD vs CMOS is that with the CMOS almost always the red channel is too saturated and lacks good detail and accuracy. I don't know why that is maybe it is part processing part the sensor but with CCD (IQ160) the reds are generally more accurate and smoother. Color differentiation is also much higher with my IQ160. It is VERY sensitive to even small color adjustments, it seems to pick up every little hint of color in a scene. Why that is? I do not know, and don't really care, I am not a sensor / camera engineer / designer!

    The discussions in this and other forums are endless on this matter.

  12. #12
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken_R View Post
    Color differentiation is also much higher with my IQ160. It is VERY sensitive to even small color adjustments, it seems to pick up every little hint of color in a scene.
    Primarily, this is what I am seeing as well. This was also my view of CCD versus CMOS sensors in smaller formats, though, but CCDs have disappeared from sub MF sensors (except the cheapest ones). My assumption is that this happened because the CMOS images caught up to the CCD in all respects that photographers cared about, including, presumably, sensitivity to color differences (an important attribute, at least to many). If that's so, then perhaps the same will occur in MF. Otherwise, it will be a shame if as technology advances options are lost.

  13. #13
    Super Duper
    Senior Member
    carstenw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Berlin, Germany
    Posts
    2,530
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    I would be surprised if there was a difference between CMOS and CCD which couldn't be equalised by a sensor manufacturer. I suppose that the CMOS advantage at high ISO is partly bought by fiddling with the CFA, just like Canon's colour have gotten thinner and thinner with the years, as they try to improve their high ISO to match the competition, while not making major updates to the underlying technology. I also suppose that the newer tech in the Sony sensor yields an improved DR, which needs to be retained partly by using a much gentler tone curve, and thus yields a "flatter" looking image.
    Carsten - Website

  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    398
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    I would be surprised if there was a difference between CMOS and CCD which couldn't be equalised by a sensor manufacturer. I suppose that the CMOS advantage at high ISO is partly bought by fiddling with the CFA, just like Canon's colour have gotten thinner and thinner with the years, as they try to improve their high ISO to match the competition, while not making major updates to the underlying technology. I also suppose that the newer tech in the Sony sensor yields an improved DR, which needs to be retained partly by using a much gentler tone curve, and thus yields a "flatter" looking image.

    Makes sense.

    The IQ160 is optimized for use at base iso (which is where I use it mostly) although it has enough dynamic range that it allows a lot of underexposure (by using higher iso) while still retaining good range and color. It also has sensor plus (pixel binning) which works great but it is unique of PhaseOne and the more recent backs so it is not a solution available in other products.

  15. #15
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken_R View Post
    Makes sense.

    The IQ160 is optimized for use at base iso (which is where I use it mostly) although it has enough dynamic range that it allows a lot of underexposure (by using higher iso) while still retaining good range and color. It also has sensor plus (pixel binning) which works great but it is unique of PhaseOne and the more recent backs so it is not a solution available in other products.
    Makes sense to me too, that the differences we are all seeing are market, not technology driven: Want a sensor that produces images at high ISO, low noise, lots of dynamic range, and lots of resolution? Pay the price in a somewhat flatter image. If this is right, then something like the current IQ CCD sensors (perhaps continuing with pixel binning technology) will still be produced as technology advances, either using CCDs or using CMOS sensors tuned to be used at low ISO for those who prefer the higher contrast and saturation to low-light capabilities, at least for some of their jobs. That would be a good solution, it seems.

  16. #16
    Super Duper
    Senior Member
    carstenw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Berlin, Germany
    Posts
    2,530
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    I think CMOS chips are simpler and cheaper to make, so I suppose they will win in the long run.
    Carsten - Website

  17. #17
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    I think CMOS chips are simpler and cheaper to make, so I suppose they will win in the long run.
    For cameras that cost more than sports cars cheapest available inputs is not a strategy likely to attract customers, particularly demanding pros (I'd think, though I'm not a pro). If CMOS wins in the long run, it will, I'd imagine (and hope) be on terms that provide options for the look the consumers demand, including the look of current CCD sensors.

  18. #18
    Senior Member darr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    North Florida
    Posts
    985
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    For cameras that cost more than sports cars cheapest available inputs is not a strategy likely to attract customers, particularly demanding pros (I'd think, though I'm not a pro). If CMOS wins in the long run, it will, I'd imagine (and hope) be on terms that provide options for the look the consumers demand, including the look of current CCD sensors.
    You sound like a CCD salesman and you say you currently shoot 4x5 film; are you familiar with digital post processing?

    I currently own both CCD and CMOS digital backs and do not see a difference in their 'look'. IMO, since they all start as black and white imaging, then have custom CFAs applied and then go further on through custom post processing, you could say a good photographic artist could give them the 'look', or whatever they want to achieve through the process. Sounds to me you are really trying to up-sell CCDs and I think its all hogwash.


    I think Erik's comment quoting Michael Reichmann and an industry expert says it very well: "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." READ it here.

    The reality is today you can purchase a new 50 megapixel CMOS back for $15,000 or less with excellent Live View and high ISO performance or purchase the newest and greatest CCD back in upwards of $50,000. When photographers are on a budget or make financial decisions based on needs and not emotion, what do you think the educated photographer will pay? The PhaseOne IQ 250 has the same CMOS sensor and 50 megapixels as the $15,500 Hasselblad CFV-50c, but it costs $35,000. So the value of a 'look' IMO will evaporate when it comes to good business sense.

    EDIT: I edited this post because I had a suspicion the OP may be trolling the forum up-selling CCD over CMOS, and my apologies if I am wrong, but the OP's timing could not have happened any quicker than after the CFV-50c hit the market as a win-win for photographers and for Hasselblad.
    Last edited by darr; 29th December 2014 at 23:25.
    "Creativity takes courage." ~ Henri Matisse
    Darlene Almeda, photoscapes.com
    Likes 2 Member(s) liked this post

  19. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Oxford
    Posts
    759
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    Fair enough, and I agree entirely that color is subjective. As a hobbyist (who does not shoot products) I am not interested in accuracy as much as a pleasing look (including to skin tones). But what has been discussed here as a "CCD" look, though perhaps inaccurately, is not about color or not about color alone. The CCD library photos (at least the posted jpegs) reveal a greater distinction between objects and hues than do the CMOS photos. Look, e.g., at the pattern in the rug, which jumps out at you in the CCD images, but appears more uniform, duller, in the CMOS. I have no idea whether this is inherent in the CCD versus CMOS technology, which is why I posted the question, but there does appear to be a difference, and more importantly (because I know very little about this) experienced photographers have said the same here.
    I started learning post-processing with the Nikon D800E (Sony CMOS), so when I switched to the IQ260 (Dalsa CCD) I was very frustrated with the color and the look of the CCD. When I switched to the IQ250 (Sony CMOS) I immediately liked the color and the look.

    "Experienced photographers" usually means people who started with a Canon 5D or a Leica M9, which had out-dated dynamic range / SNR and the color / look in that era. In my opinion today's "CMOS vs CCD" is just like yesterday's "CCD vs film", period. If I keep using Sony CMOS sensors for years I will also find it difficult to accept the next generation of technology (e.g. organic sensors, back-illuminated sensors etc)

  20. #20
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Moscow
    Posts
    462
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    I think CMOS chips are simpler and cheaper to make, so I suppose they will win in the long run.
    As Leica has shown us with the S 007? even though the only real change was a move to a mature sensor design they've been selling for years now? or the price differential between the Phase, Hassy and Pentax variants on the same sensor?

    Let's not be fooled into thinking that just because CMOS technology is somehow easier to manufacture, companies won't take advantage of the fact to improve profit margins. A typical pro DSLR body with sensor and all costs around $3500, or up to $6000 for those with a vertical grip, so Pentax isn't being unreasonable with their offer, a sensor that's 1.8x as large needs a like increase in camera size, and the price scales to reflect that. (Although the 645Z body could in theory support up to a full-size sensor meaning that it's bigger still than it needs to be.

  21. #21
    Super Duper
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Royal Oak, MI and Palm Harbor, FL
    Posts
    8,498
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    44

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Welcome to the forum Lobalobo! You sure picked a hotly debated subject for your first post It isn't a settled discussion by any measure, and there are those who are firmly in one camp or another.

    Some swear that they can not see a difference … and if they can see it initially, usually feel that the differences can be mitigated through digital post processing. This may well be true, and is a valid point for those who wish to achieve a certain look through post work.

    Personally, I'm in the camp that desires an out-of-camera response that is initially closer to my own image criteria … and have even chosen between different CMOS cameras to achieve that, let alone CMOS verses CCD MFD cameras.

    My current MFD system is CCD, and was selected for many of the attributes that you mentioned, and others here have commented on.

    However, attributes like expanded DR and higher ISO performance are of less importance to me than they are to others. I use MFD in fat light, either natural or by means of lighting. In fact probably 75% of my MFD work involves strobe work where ISO and DR are less of an issue because I control both through placement, quantity and quality of the light.

    We have to remember that the beginnings of digital backs were aimed at studio shooters as the digital age crashed down on them and all media abruptly went digital. My first digital back provided any ISO as long as it was 100 … and required being tethered to a computer or a giant battery. Hardly "field friendly".

    I can fully understand why a natural landscape photographer using a field camera would hunger for all the attributes that a CMOS back would provide … and then expertly work on hard earned key images in post no matter how much time it may take.

    - Marc

  22. #22
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Oxford
    Posts
    759
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors



    Likes 5 Member(s) liked this post

  23. #23
    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Nyköping Sweden
    Posts
    1,194
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Hi,

    I wouldn't say CMOS is simpler to make, but it is the dominating process for photographics sensors now, so most effort is going there.

    CMOS has a few key advantages above CCD

    • More electronics can be integrated on the chip
    • Each pixel can be read directly, with CCD the pixels are popped from pixel to pixel several thousands times before readout
    • CMOS allows for columnwise analogue digital conversion, this is what gives Sony sensors their DR advantage.


    CMOS is probably more expensive to produce but readout can be made on the sensor itself, so there is no need for an analogue readout board. Also, DSLR sensors is just a very tiny bit of the CMOS sensor market (a few % by volume), so much of the development is driven by small devices.

    Basically, the CCD is a very simple device, but a lot of design effort seems to be needed to make it work really well.

    Weather CMOS or CCD, the devices do absorbs photons (quanta of light) and convert them to electron charges stored in capacitors. The major difference between CCD and CMOS is the ways the stored electrons are counted.

    CMOS can read pixel values in a nondestructive way, so they implement something called correlated double sampling (CDS). Essentially reading the sensor pixels pre and post exposure. CDS and the lower readout noise on modern CMOS sensors gives images that have far less noise than CCD.

    Canon sensors to CDS but have analogue readout, that is the reason that they don't achieve high DR at base ISO.

    The present generation of CMOS used in MFDs has on sensor analogue digital conversion, with sensor coming from Sony or using the CMOSIS design on the Leica S (Type 007).

    CFA designs and microlenses differ between different makers of sensors.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by Kolor-Pikker View Post
    As Leica has shown us with the S 007? even though the only real change was a move to a mature sensor design they've been selling for years now? or the price differential between the Phase, Hassy and Pentax variants on the same sensor?

    Let's not be fooled into thinking that just because CMOS technology is somehow easier to manufacture, companies won't take advantage of the fact to improve profit margins. A typical pro DSLR body with sensor and all costs around $3500, or up to $6000 for those with a vertical grip, so Pentax isn't being unreasonable with their offer, a sensor that's 1.8x as large needs a like increase in camera size, and the price scales to reflect that. (Although the 645Z body could in theory support up to a full-size sensor meaning that it's bigger still than it needs to be.

  24. #24
    Super Duper
    Senior Member
    carstenw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Berlin, Germany
    Posts
    2,530
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    For cameras that cost more than sports cars cheapest available inputs is not a strategy likely to attract customers, particularly demanding pros (I'd think, though I'm not a pro). If CMOS wins in the long run, it will, I'd imagine (and hope) be on terms that provide options for the look the consumers demand, including the look of current CCD sensors.
    I don't think the consumers are demanding the CCD look in CMOS sensor, which is likely why we don't have it already. Consumers are demanding high FPS, high ISO, high MP, Live View, and all sorts of other things, but very, very, very few people are really interested in subtle colour differences, sadly.

    Going back to your original question, I think all the information is there in the new CMOS sensors, but you have to be a lot better at post-processing to pull it out, whereas with CCDs with older-style "fat" CFAs, the look is already pleasing. The M9 vs. M240 is another example of this difference. The M240 files have more meat on them, but they come out flatter looking and need some tweaking.

    If you want great images out of the camera, then get a CFV-16 II or something like that. If you want the most information possible in the file, then get one of the newest backs with CMOS sensors, but make sure you brush up on your post-processing skills first.
    Carsten - Website

  25. #25
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by darr View Post
    You sound like a CCD salesman and you say you currently shoot 4x5 film; are you familiar with digital post processing?

    EDIT: I edited this post because I had a suspicion the OP may be trolling the forum up-selling CCD over CMOS, and my apologies if I am wrong, but the OP's timing could not have happened any quicker than after the CFV-50c hit the market as a win-win for photographers and for Hasselblad.
    Wow. That's quite a response. I am an amateur who shoots 4 x 5 film and scans on an old Epson 1680, then has the product printed at a commercial shop. I am an academic, a law professor, but it's good to know that I could have a future as a CCD salesman, though I'm not sure for whom I'd work, as it seems quite clear that CMOS is the future. My interest was purely academic (an occupational hazard) as it seemed that technology might have been moving backwards in one respect to move forward in another, a surprising move, but am glad to hear that this is not the case (glad for the day I might splurge for a divorce-risking purchase of a digital back).

    What most amazes me about the venom in your post is that I've repeatedly in this thread that I know little and am seeking information from those who know more. Not much of a sale pitch.
    Likes 2 Member(s) liked this post

  26. #26
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    I don't think the consumers are demanding the CCD look in CMOS sensor, which is likely why we don't have it already. Consumers are demanding high FPS, high ISO, high MP, Live View, and all sorts of other things, but very, very, very few people are really interested in subtle colour differences, sadly.

    Going back to your original question, I think all the information is there in the new CMOS sensors, but you have to be a lot better at post-processing to pull it out, whereas with CCDs with older-style "fat" CFAs, the look is already pleasing. The M9 vs. M240 is another example of this difference. The M240 files have more meat on them, but they come out flatter looking and need some tweaking.

    If you want great images out of the camera, then get a CFV-16 II or something like that. If you want the most information possible in the file, then get one of the newest backs with CMOS sensors, but make sure you brush up on your post-processing skills first.
    Interesting, and if you don't mind offering a bit more education to the ignorant, I am curious about the metaphor "fat" versus "thin" CFAs. Does "fat" refer to higher contrast, or is it something more? Thanks.

  27. #27
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    63
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    "If you want great images out of the camera, then get a CFV-16 II or something like that."
    *****
    I recently started using my CFV-16 again after it had spent about 2 1/2 years in storage. There is just "something" about the "fat" pixel files that is special but difficult to describe. The biggest downside of the CFV-16 for general use, IMO, isn't resolution but low ISO. Since I hadn't used it for a significant period of time, I was considering selling it. I changed my mind about that.

    Steve
    Likes 4 Member(s) liked this post

  28. #28
    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    2,416
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    819

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    Interesting, and if you don't mind offering a bit more education to the ignorant, I am curious about the metaphor "fat" versus "thin" CFAs. Does "fat" refer to higher contrast, or is it something more? Thanks.
    The reference to "fat" pixels is to sensors/backs with photo sites in the 9 micron range, such as the Hasselblad CFV-16, Phase One P20/25, Leaf Aptus II 5 and several others from that generation of medium format digital backs. Most have resolutions in the 16-22 megapixel range.

    There are examples here:
    http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...tal-backs.html

    Gary
    Likes 1 Member(s) liked this post

  29. #29
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    The reference to "fat" pixels is to sensors/backs with photo sites in the 9 micron range, such as the Hasselblad CFV-16, Phase One P20/25, Leaf Aptus II 5 and several others from that generation of medium format digital backs. Most have resolutions in the 16-22 megapixel range.

    Gary
    Actually, the quote I asked about was about fat "CFA"s, not fat pixels. Another matter, I think.

    As for fat pixels, that's another hot-button topic, right? DPReview used to include pixel density as a specification for cameras on the theory that too many pixels on a sensor degrade image quality because small pixels clip highlights too readily and because of noise. This created a fire storm of protest by technically-minded photographers who said that clipping can be avoided either through technique (with blocked shadows rescued in software) or pixel binning and that while noise was a theoretical issue, density in practice is nowhere near high enough to be a problem. The consensus was, I thought, that while sensor size matters (more total info for the image) pixel density does not. This was for smaller sensors, of course, but the principles should be the same, no (cross-talk issues with movements aside)?

    I have to say, my uninformed prejudices were to support both theories: that CCD looked different from (and to my eye better than) CMOS and that large pixels looked different (richer, more saturated) than small pixel-images; that is, my subjective belief that there was a price to pay both for high ISO performance and extra resolution and that if shooting at base ISO where huge prints were not going to be made, it was hard to beat a CCD sensor with large pixels. But the people who know the technical truths say otherwise, mostly. Perhaps, though, others disagree.

  30. #30
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Although I had read it before, I realize that I neglected something in Doug Peterson's excellent LuLa article "CMOS Fully Realized". Doug said this:

    As one example [of a tradeoff], the selection of a CFA, the color pattern put in front of the sensor, is a choice between quality of color, and ISO performance. If the CFA allows each pixel to see a broader spectrum of color (e.g. for the green pixels to see a bit further into yellow) a camera’s ISO range can be modestly increased. The resulting loss in color quality is subtle – subtle variations in color are missed and a handful of specific colors become difficult to photograph.
    Perhaps the answer is just simply that the Sony CMOS backs are catering to those who care about higher ISO capabilities and so the CFA has been designed to be just slightly less favorable to color subtleties (such as appear in the Morgan Library images). This would be sensible as those who care more about color subtleties than ISO can now choose a CCD back. If that's right, when the CCD backs disappear, there may be different flavors of CMOS backs, some of which emphasize higher ISO, some of which favor color subtleties. That would be a good result and would be particularly great if CMOS brought the cost down, for pros and for hobbyists (like me) who might spend $10,000 on a digital back but could not spend five times that.

    All this said, there is something else to note about Doug's LuLa article: it contains samples with spectacularly beautiful but natural looking colors, at least on a computer screen (a big "at least" I know):

    The Phase One IQ250 CMOS Fully Realized

    This does indeed support Doug's conclusion in the article that at least the Phase One version of the Sony CMOS colors are awfully good even from the perspective of those who care enough about small detail and subtlety to spend a small fortune on a camera back.

    All in all, seems easy to see why there is a debate here, over what is ultimately a subjective judgment. Glad those who know are willing to share their views.
    Last edited by Lobalobo; 30th December 2014 at 13:45.

  31. #31
    Senior Member darr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    North Florida
    Posts
    985
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    Wow. That's quite a response. I am an amateur who shoots 4 x 5 film and scans on an old Epson 1680, then has the product printed at a commercial shop. I am an academic, a law professor, but it's good to know that I could have a future as a CCD salesman, though I'm not sure for whom I'd work, as it seems quite clear that CMOS is the future. My interest was purely academic (an occupational hazard) as it seemed that technology might have been moving backwards in one respect to move forward in another, a surprising move, but am glad to hear that this is not the case (glad for the day I might splurge for a divorce-risking purchase of a digital back).

    What most amazes me about the venom in your post is that I've repeatedly in this thread that I know little and am seeking information from those who know more. Not much of a sale pitch.
    No venom intended. I am just a little tired of sales pitches to the uninformed, but you cleared that up, and again, my apologies.

    What is your current post processing workflow once you scan your 4x5" film?
    "Creativity takes courage." ~ Henri Matisse
    Darlene Almeda, photoscapes.com

  32. #32
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by darr View Post
    No venom intended. I am just a little tired of sales pitches to the uninformed, but you cleared that up, and again, my apologies.

    What is your current post processing workflow once you scan your 4x5" film?
    No offense taken. (And by the way, your Hasselblad 50c images are beautiful, the lighthouse at sunset in particular.)

    To answer your question, my workflow has changed. I used to scan (typically Provia 100) on the Epson 1680 with Silverfast to JPEG, working hard to fine-tune the image with that software then making minor adjustments in some rudimentary processor such as PaintShop Pro. I've shifted though away from fine-tuning on the scanner, using VueScan at basic settings, again creating a JPEG (or occasionally a TIFF), then ultimately adjusting in Paintshop, frequently with an assist from Topaz.

    Not high tech at all in either case, and I hope to increase my Post Processing skills along with my other skills. Of course, Lightroom or Photoshop or both would be a good start, but shooting film, my approach has been to try and get it right in the camera then replicate the film with a scan.

  33. #33
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    455
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    The sensor manufacturers will move to CMOS and in fact have mostly done so already. So even if there is a "look," it's like bemoaning the passing of Ektachrome or Kodachrome.

    "Oh well."

  34. #34
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    455
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    ...I've shifted though away from fine-tuning on the scanner, using VueScan at basic settings, again creating a JPEG (or occasionally a TIFF), then ultimately adjusting in Paintshop, frequently with an assist from Topaz.
    ..
    Save it as TIFF. JPG loses some quality. With 4x5 Provia scans, unless you have to fight to lift shadow details, just a few tweaks will get you incredible images.

    Oh, get the V700/750 or the new 800/850, or if you are on a budget, the old 4990 in used market. I have made 24x32" prints from 4x5 with a V700 that looks quite good.

  35. #35
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by richardman View Post
    Save it as TIFF. JPG loses some quality. With 4x5 Provia scans, unless you have to fight to lift shadow details, just a few tweaks will get you incredible images.

    Oh, get the V700/750 or the new 800/850, or if you are on a budget, the old 4990 in used market. I have made 24x32" prints from 4x5 with a V700 that looks quite good.
    You are right, of course, regarding JPEG versus TIFF, but for 11 x 14 prints (as large as I generally print) I have not noticed the difference so I sometimes cut that corner. (If I were printing larger, I'd likely pay for a drum scan anyway.) Also, I agree that few tweaks are needed, which has been my experience and why I've stopped fiddling so much with Silverfast. What will make a difference, I believe, is the Epson 800 scanner, which is on my buy list (once I come to grips with the fact that I'm not likely to buy a MF system, at least not until my kids are out of college). The improvement I expect from the new scanner is not so much from the new light source but from the fact that it is designed to be used with a provided 4 x 5 film holder that flattens the film between glass, which is advertised to work without causing Newton rings. We'll see.

  36. #36
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by richardman View Post
    The sensor manufacturers will move to CMOS and in fact have mostly done so already. So even if there is a "look," it's like bemoaning the passing of Ektachrome or Kodachrome.

    "Oh well."
    Yes, but the Kodachrome look, e.g., is still available in digital (with a CCD sensor anyway ). The hope is that options are not eliminated, just shifted to newer technologies.

  37. #37
    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    2,416
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    819

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    Actually, the quote I asked about was about fat "CFA"s, not fat pixels. Another matter, I think.

    As for fat pixels, that's another hot-button topic, right?
    Wow, for a newby, you sure know a lot more than I do. Admitedly, I'm just an amateur with too much gear.

    I had never heard the term "fat CFAs". How are backs with fat color filter arrays different from backs with "fat pixels"?

    Gary

  38. #38
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    Wow, for a newby, you sure know a lot more than I do. Admitedly, I'm just an amateur with too much gear.

    I had never heard the term "fat CFAs". How are backs with fat color filter arrays different from backs with "fat pixels"?

    Gary
    Just to be clear, I don't know what "fat CFAs" means, either, which is why I asked. An earlier post used that term. So maybe we'll both find out. I think, having done some further research, that the poster probably meant by "fat" purer colors (fat within the color spectrum rather than at the thin ends of that color) but I could have that entirely wrong.

  39. #39
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    455
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    4x5 film are thick and quite flat even in the standard Epson holder. I have tested it against the Better Scanning glass "holder" and the difference is minor. Silverfast is great if you are scanning color negs. For color pos and B&W, Vuescan is great.

    I used a fat pixel P25+ for a few months, and it's definitely quite nice. Not where near 4x5 nice, but better than M9 nice.

    If anyone wants to throw away their ANCIENT CCD back, let me know and I will properly dispose it for you XD.

  40. #40
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    455
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Ben, you know where to send your obsolete Pentax 645D and other useless gears :-)

  41. #41
    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    2,416
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    819

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Richard,

    LOL. As you know, my collection of unused gear isn't useless.....I'm just not putting it to the good use it really deserves!

    I hope that someday, perhaps when I retire, I'll be able to make use of all this gear. Regardless of what the future holds (60+ megapixel sensors in phone sized cameras?), I'm sure my CFV-16 will still produce decent images on the day I retire. Long live "fat pixels" (or fat CFAs)!

    The 645D is ok too.

    Gary

  42. #42
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Moscow
    Posts
    462
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    Just to be clear, I don't know what "fat CFAs" means, either, which is why I asked. An earlier post used that term. So maybe we'll both find out. I think, having done some further research, that the poster probably meant by "fat" purer colors (fat within the color spectrum rather than at the thin ends of that color) but I could have that entirely wrong.
    It could be he meant fat pixels, which refers to a low-count, large size sensor. 40MP on a 36x24mm is a much higher density of pixels than 40MP on 33x44mm and in turn higher than 40MP 54x40mm (assuming such a sensor ever gets made). By maximizing the size of the pixels, you get better per-pixel performance; for instance the 645Z has 51MP, but in terms of density, it's equivalent to 30MP if you cropped it down to 36x24, meaning it has larger pixels than the A7R or D810, and in turn better performance.

    "Fat CFA" on the other hand, could refer to a high-purity color filter being used in front of the sensor. Each pixel on a sensor captures only light intensity, but to assign each pixel a "color", a filter is used to only allow a narrow spectrum of light to reach each one. In other words, to get a blue pixel, you need to filter out all incoming red and green light, but it may not always be beneficial, if even possible, to have 100% color purity for each pixel.
    For starters, besides losing an increasingly large amount of light due to absorption, there actually needs to be enough cross-over between colors in order to render certain types of light a more pleasant color, especially fluorescent which has spikes in it's blue-green spectrum. Your average DLSR is often tuned for shooting under available artificial lighting, because more often than not that's how it'll be used, or so the manufacturer assumes - it's better to be safe and get good-enough looking skin tones in poor lighting, than optimizing for color reproduction and then facing a backlash from people who took photos of people under bad light and got zombies.
    I was once trying out an IQ180 at a local photo store, and took a photo of my sister under the store's indoor lighting, needless to say I've never shown her the image.

  43. #43
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Kolor-Pikker View Post
    It could be he meant fat pixels, which refers to a low-count, large size sensor. 40MP on a 36x24mm is a much higher density of pixels than 40MP on 33x44mm and in turn higher than 40MP 54x40mm (assuming such a sensor ever gets made). By maximizing the size of the pixels, you get better per-pixel performance; for instance the 645Z has 51MP, but in terms of density, it's equivalent to 30MP if you cropped it down to 36x24, meaning it has larger pixels than the A7R or D810, and in turn better performance.

    "Fat CFA" on the other hand, could refer to a high-purity color filter being used in front of the sensor. Each pixel on a sensor captures only light intensity, but to assign each pixel a "color", a filter is used to only allow a narrow spectrum of light to reach each one. In other words, to get a blue pixel, you need to filter out all incoming red and green light, but it may not always be beneficial, if even possible, to have 100% color purity for each pixel.
    For starters, besides losing an increasingly large amount of light due to absorption, there actually needs to be enough cross-over between colors in order to render certain types of light a more pleasant color, especially fluorescent which has spikes in it's blue-green spectrum. Your average DLSR is often tuned for shooting under available artificial lighting, because more often than not that's how it'll be used, or so the manufacturer assumes - it's better to be safe and get good-enough looking skin tones in poor lighting, than optimizing for color reproduction and then facing a backlash from people who took photos of people under bad light and got zombies.
    I was once trying out an IQ180 at a local photo store, and took a photo of my sister under the store's indoor lighting, needless to say I've never shown her the image.
    Right. As I mention above, I think "fat" CFA refers to purity, as in Doug's article.

  44. #44
    Senior Member darr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    North Florida
    Posts
    985
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    No offense taken. (And by the way, your Hasselblad 50c images are beautiful, the lighthouse at sunset in particular.)
    Thank you for the compliments. The lighthouse picture was made at 800 ASA and could not have been made with my P45 under the conditions as they were. It was dark and the alligators were close by as well as other habitat that live in the NWR, but I had opened the box with the 50c that arrived from Japan an hour before, and I wanted to test its higher ASA performance. The P45 would have taken at least four times or more longer to make the shot, and that was not an option I would have taken.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lobalobo View Post
    To answer your question, my workflow has changed. I used to scan (typically Provia 100) on the Epson 1680 with Silverfast to JPEG, working hard to fine-tune the image with that software then making minor adjustments in some rudimentary processor such as PaintShop Pro. I've shifted though away from fine-tuning on the scanner, using VueScan at basic settings, again creating a JPEG (or occasionally a TIFF), then ultimately adjusting in Paintshop, frequently with an assist from Topaz.

    Not high tech at all in either case, and I hope to increase my Post Processing skills along with my other skills. Of course, Lightroom or Photoshop or both would be a good start, but shooting film, my approach has been to try and get it right in the camera then replicate the film with a scan.
    I am familiar with SilverFast from a few years ago, but not VueScan or Paintshop. (I shot 4x5" for many years as a commercial product/food photographer, and it took me a while to make the digital transition which for me started in 2005.) I understand your approach and getting it right on film would be my approach as well. I grew tired rather quickly of the scanning process, and my last financial contribution into the scanning technique was purchasing a Better Scanning film holder, which only made me feel like I wasted hard-earned money and I even made a post about it on the Large Format Photography Forum at the time. As you can tell from my earlier post, I detest a lot of the financial business of photography as I have seen many students (I am a teacher as well) and photography friends get taken advantage of by unscrupulous sales people. This is not to say they are all bad, but when they are, I tend to campaign against them.

    I ask about your digital workflow because a lot of the beauty of digital photography IMO, can be found in post processing. This is not to say one can shoot a really bad exposure and make magic out of it, but all the wet darkroom techniques I used from way back when, is much more streamlined and cleaner in the dry darkroom using digital tools. My raw files be they CCD, CMOS or Foveon are just a baseline I work from. When I used SilverFast for my film files, it was not the same as digging into a first generation sensor file. I understand and appreciate all the engineering knowledge you have thus far read and comprehend, but user experience IMO can present a different set of results that engineering reports might display as off the chart or not so good. I remember back in my earliest film days in photography school class 101 and being taught to bracket my Kodachrome exposures. I found art in the film that was exposed a little too dark or a little too light from what the light meter said; it was magic to my eyes! If I had not learned to deviate from the norm, I would have gotten frustrated with photography and stayed as a working artist in advertising which I was not happy with.

    If you do not already have a small digital camera to play with the raw files, I would highly recommend that before buying into MF digital. I am a MF shooter because of my love for the glass, and if I can have the best glass, I want the best camera for that glass and for me that is a technical camera. From there the chain goes to the digital back which I equate to film, and I want my film to have the largest latitude that is available within my budget. The 50c IMO is going to help change how MFD photographers shoot, and how they spend their money!

    Kind regards,
    Darr
    Last edited by darr; 31st December 2014 at 09:28.
    "Creativity takes courage." ~ Henri Matisse
    Darlene Almeda, photoscapes.com

  45. #45
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by richardman View Post
    4x5 film are thick and quite flat even in the standard Epson holder. I have tested it against the Better Scanning glass "holder" and the difference is minor.
    Fair enough, but then what is the advantage of the newer scanner? The Epson 1680 was in its day a high-end flatbed art scanner, and I've been told that I'd be unlikely to see noticeable differences with the V700. When the V800 came out, an Epson salesman told me that the key benefits are the LED, which eliminates the need for warmup, and the glass holders. If you are right, and the glass holders don't matter for 4 x 5, which is flat anyway, then I wonder whether the LED will improve image quality (as I don't care about warmup time).


    Quote Originally Posted by richardman View Post
    Silverfast is great if you are scanning color negs. For color pos and B&W, Vuescan is great.
    Exactly where I came out. I've given up with negative color film inasmuch as I prefer the high contrast of positive film and lack the patience or skill (or both) to get a color negative scan right. And for positives (or B&W negatives), as you say, Vuescan seems just as good. Of course, this approach leaves me little latitude for exposure error, a particular problem when shooting film, which lacks instant feedback. All the more reason I hope MF digital back prices come down to Pentax 645 price levels, or that I win the lottery.

  46. #46
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by darr View Post
    If you do not already have a small digital camera to play with the raw files, I would highly recommend that before buying into MF digital. I am a MF shooter because of my love for the glass, and if I can have the best glass, I want the best camera for that glass and for me that is a technical camera. From there the chain goes to the digital back which I equate to film, and I want my film to have the largest latitude that is available within my budget. The 50c IMO is going to help change how MFD photographers spend their money!
    Thanks for the thoughtful comments, which I read beyond those excerpted above. As for the excerpted portion, I shoot RAW almost exclusively on my small sensor cameras--including a travel camera that slips into my shirt pocket--because I prefer to apply my own profiles to conversion. So I'm a kindred spirit, on this point. That said, I confess that I do not fine-tune RAW images before conversion, making individual adjustments from the batch conversion only after an image is in jpeg. I know this is not the best approach and before I were to invest in a MF digital system, I'd learn a better one; in fact doing so, is one of the attractions to me of a MF system and workflow. For small sensor cameras (micro 4/3 or smaller in my case), I'm not sure there would be a payoff in ultimate image quality. (And as you say in another portion of your post, working on a scanned image from my 4x5 film is not the same thing.)
    Likes 1 Member(s) liked this post

  47. #47
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    455
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    If you head over to the GetDPI Large Format Camera forum, I have a boatload of my photos there. I feel lonely, please add your photos :-) For years I have avoided the color negs, opting to shoot B&W and slides, but now a committed color negs user - you get the benefits of HUGE dynamic range (that equals or best most MFDB). As you can see from my samples, I am still tweaking the process, but the results are encouraging.

    As for scanners, the 1680 is ancient technology. If you worry about the minutia of CCD vs. CMOS, don't even ask the question and just move to 4990 for low budget, and a V700 for medium budget and the latest and greatest V850 if you have ~$800. If you are asking questions about a $12K-$30K back, it makes no sense to talk about a sub $200 scanner vs. $500+ scanner.

    The V850 has some advantage over the V700, but the worst way to get info is from a salesman. Just do some googling read the reviews critically (i.e. is the reviewer reading off specs or are they comparing real samples etc.)

  48. #48
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by richardman View Post
    As for scanners, the 1680 is ancient technology. If you worry about the minutia of CCD vs. CMOS, don't even ask the question and just move to 4990 for low budget, and a V700 for medium budget and the latest and greatest V850 if you have ~$800.)
    Just to be clear, I never suggested that my own work was at a level of refinement to warrant an analysis of distinctions as subtle as CCD versus CMOS. So it's not quite correct to say I "worry" about such a distinction, only that I noticed the distinction, or thought I did, and was curious about it because I know that others' work is sufficiently refined to trouble over such a distinction.

    As for scanner choice, yes I can afford an $800 scanner and will spend the money if I think I will see the difference; you suggest that I will and if that's true I will go forward. (I do get some pleasure creating decent images with older technology, I also shoot and scan photos taken on a 1950s Brownie, but if there is a noticeable difference, then it's foolish for me to wait.) As for posting the images to keep you company, I'll certainly think about it (below is a scanned pinhole I took a few years back), and will surely look at yours.

  49. #49
    Super Duper
    Senior Member
    carstenw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Berlin, Germany
    Posts
    2,530
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Hello again, sorry for leaving an ambiguous comment, and then not responding for a while. Yes, "fat pixels" mean large sensor combined with low pixel count, so the pixel diameter is relatively large, which gives more subtle gradations.

    "Fat CFA" on the other hand is, as in Doug's article, a reference to "thicker" or "denser" colour filters, designed for the best possible colour accuracy, as the expense of cutting some light and thus performing less well at high ISO. This was an older design strategy, which has now fallen out of favour, and I suspect this is the real reason for the "CCD look".

    When you make the CFA thinner, you get better high ISO, but less accurate colour, and also more metamerism, i.e. indistinguishable colours.
    Carsten - Website

  50. #50
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    68
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: CMOS Look, CCD Look in MF Sensors

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    "Fat CFA" on the other hand is, as in Doug's article, a reference to "thicker" or "denser" colour filters, designed for the best possible colour accuracy, as the expense of cutting some light and thus performing less well at high ISO. This was an older design strategy, which has now fallen out of favour, and I suspect this is the real reason for the "CCD look".
    Wonder whether the fat CFA will come back into style, at least as an option on some CMOS sensors, when CCD sensors are no longer being manufactured, inasmuch as at least a minority of photographers prefer the look.

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •