SuperDuper CCD?

Started Oct 21, 1999 | Discussions thread
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Peter iNova
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SuperDuper CCD?
Oct 21, 1999

If I were Fuji and had a new pixel arrangement, I would be looking for every single buzz word I could find.

I would call my new pixels Super, I would call them Stupendous, I would call them the most revolutionary concept since Gutenberg (man of the millennium in some circles).

I would compare their fabulous newness to the Human Retina and in the same breath would never mention that the human retina is the only self-evident vision system with built-in optical illusions.

The press releases are quite adamantly doing just this. But what are the geometric possibilites that fit the descriptions? There aren't an infinite number, especially since the one thing that keeps showing up is 'octagonal'. 8-sided. No sensor pixel is mentioned as being any other shape.

Here's how this could be of great usefulness. Standard checkerboard pattern sensor arrays look like this in the ideal:

The gold dingus in the corner is a bit of necessesary circuitry.

To the camera and focused image, the effective area is a bit less than ideal and the image is being analyzed by sensors that effectively look more like this:

Obviously, lots of wasted space. With OCTAGONAL sensors of about 1.6 times the square sensor's area per each, the layout could look like this if equal numbers of RGB sensors were arrayed:

The above scheme tends to create stripes of color. The pattern of color can be tipped 45 degrees or 90 degrees without effectively changing sensor sharpness or resolution. Note that the tiny square that always arises between octagon tiles is useful as the circuit center. When you view this from a distance, it may become more obvious that the color sensors overlap somewhat thus effectively blending their contribution to sharpness. No matter what the shape of the sensors, the Photoshop pixels that arise from them will be a checkerboard arrangement.

Nothing in the press release that I remember seems to indicate a pure RGB ratio, so how would a benefit arise from the GRGB scheme? Here's a SuperPixel version of GRGB:

Now the old scheme has shown up again but the encroachment of blue and red pixels into interlocking areas where green is active gives some opportunities for tighter, better integrated color.

In order to scale the effective pixelization of these octagons with the checker pattern of today's sensors, the images here would have to be about 25% smaller than they are shown.

All of this isn't guaranteed to reveal the truer story of the Fuji pixel, but it does cut through some logic that might be a part of the story. Fuji apparently were showing a diagram, but it just didn't make it to their web page. Somehow this post is easier to pepper with images than a world wide press release.

In the near future, we will know more. I'm hoping that they came up with something I couldn't even imagine. That kind of newness is the greatest fun.

What confuses me is the octagon basis. It works because the little square tiles between octagons equal the octagon count. But why not truly "honeycombed" hexagons? As others have speculated nearby, that would truly integrate an RGB array of big, optimized sensors.

-iNova

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