Is The 645Z Another Case Where CCD Outperforms CMOS?

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Trevor G
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Is The 645Z Another Case Where CCD Outperforms CMOS?
4 months ago

I'm interested for several reasons, one being that I could shortly be in the market for either one of the 645 DSLRs.

I'm quite satisfied that, under certain well-light or appropriately-lit conditions, CCD sensors render images with a stronger sense of detail, resulting in a more vivid picture.

I'm also well aware that CCD seems to be limited to about ISO1600, at which it still performs well if you don't need full-size images.  It seems well-established that this difference is probably due to stronger CFAs being used in CCD, which then results in better discrimination between shades of colour, or more tonal ranges being readily visible.

The studio shots from I-R are very useful in showing the differences - I am indebted to Nikon poster fPrime for first drawing our attention to these.

Look closely at the wrappers just below the tapered tip of each crayon.  Some of them are clearly more obvious (as to what their real colour is) than others - it's the CCD ones which show up better.  The difference is also visible when comparing the CCD Nikon D200 with its CMOS upgrade, the D300.

Here's another view.

Something different again:

Note that in the above shot, while the CCD pulls out more detail from the vegetable inside the bottle, the CMOS camera shows more detail in some of the coloured fabric.

It's the infamous red swatch which throws me - this (like all the other shots) is at ISO100.  The CMOS sensor on this very expensive camera is left struggling, while the CCD sails right through.

What's happening?

These are all RAW files viewed side-by-side in Silkypix 6 with matched default settings.

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Cheers
Trevor G
Silkypix tutorials at: http://photo.computerwyse.com

Pentax 645Z
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