Sigma buys sensor developer Foveon
Camera and lens maker Sigma has bought Foveon, the sensor technology company that develops the sensors it uses. Foveon's technology uses three photosensitive layers to detect red, green and blue light at each pixel. Sigma says owning the company will allow the development of new types of sensors and improved integration between the sensors and its lenses.
Kawasaki, Japan, November 11th, 2008 - Sigma Corporation (Location: Kawasaki, Japan) has acquired 100% of the stock of the company that developed the original three-layer image sensor, Foveon Inc. Foveon will continue its sensor development operations in San Jose, CA, USA.
Foveon made history when it developed and patented the world's first three-layer image capture technology, placing a stack of RGB pixels in each pixel location. As a result, Foveon sensors detect all three primary colors in every pixel location, producing images that are sharper and have significantly reduced image artifacts compared to competing image sensor technologies.
Since Sigma first worked with Foveon in 2000, both companies have enjoyed a cooperative working relationship directed toward developing highly-efficient DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras and compact digital cameras which take the best advantage of the X3 sensor technology. Sigma Corporation has employed Foveon's technology in its entire digital camera line, producing images which are acclaimed by both amateur and professional photographers all over the world for their high resolution and for their three-dimensional look. Both the latest DLSR, the SD14, and the compact DP1 camera - which packs the full spec of a DSLR into a compact camera - have met with similar acclaim. Two additional Sigma camera products based on Foveon's image sensor technology have been announced for 2009.
The acquisition of Foveon will not only enhance the development of new types of image sensors for high quality digital cameras, but will also create a synergistic effect with Sigma's camera and lens business by improving the integration between the camera and sensor. This will result in camera products which will uniquely meet the widely ranging functional and image quality needs of demanding photographers.
As the digital camera market continues to expand, Foveon and Sigma will continuously evolve and improve the X3 sensor technology, thus expanding the company's photography-related business. In addition, Sigma remains firmly committed to preserving and nurturing the culture of photography.