Canon New Sensor

Started Apr 28, 2012 | Discussions
ArminH
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Re: Canon New Sensor
In reply to ArminH, Apr 28, 2012

... and I even forget to mention the slow fps of the D800
and that this much megapixel may need a tripod or faster shutter speeds

ArminH wrote:

5DIII has a great sensor.
Yes, D800 has more DR at low ISO.
That's NOT important for all use cases.

1Dx Sensor? Who knows?
Lets wait and see what is improved compared to the 5DIII sensor.

Most of us invested in a SYSTEM - and this system in THIS forum is Canon.
The body is only a small part of the system the rest is glass, flash, ...
One of the main points is the different UI - some like Canon others Nikon.

I use my Leica X1 (Sony sensor) a lot - and yes, even the X1 sensor is great a low light recovery - so I am used to it.

And before buying my 5DIII I ordered a D800 - but did not like the Nikon glass - there is NOTHING close to the glass I use:

85 f1.2 - not available from Nikon
16-35 f2.8 - not available from Nikon
TS-E 24 - not even close to the Canon glass
100-400 - not available from Nikon
24-105 - not available from Nikon
100 Macro IS - I prefer the Canon one

Most new Nikon glass feels like toys - and I hate the sign 'Made in China' on all the new Nikon glass.

Other D800 points:
-36 MP are hard to handle - beside large files - slow pp
-Live view is a joke in the D800
-ISO switch on the left side(!)
-Inbuilt HDR only with jpg
-High ISO performance better in 5DIII
-Color cast on the D800 display
-I love the new radio controlled Canon Speedlite's - nothing close from Nikon
(beside a pop up flash)
-5DIII feels much better in my big hands than D800
-AF seams to be better in 5DIII
-The silent video control on the 5DIII is great
-Silent shutter much better in the 5DIII - works not only for single shoots

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bronxbombers
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don't know baout 1dx yet
In reply to Ramesh, Apr 28, 2012

to be fair, we don't know aboutthe 1DX

it'll likely never match D800 for low ISO DR but, if we are lucky, it'll match the D4 there and at high iso too (d4 doesn't use exmor patents but does improve low iso noticeably even if still a ways off of the d3x and d800)

would be a mega shame if they left the new stuff out of the 5D3 sensor though, especially since the more landscape cam is the one that had the greater need for low iso dr (something that would be lost on Canon)

Ramesh wrote:

Since the best Canon cameras at present (1D X & 5D III) decidedly fall short of comparable Nikon models particularly in low ISO performance, will Canon incorporate a better sensor in the forthcoming lesser models? From the discussions it is obvious that Canon is still using sensors developed at its old Fab. Will Canon be bold enough to introduce upgraded sensors in lesser models?
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nofumble
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When will we see back lit sensor in DSLR?
In reply to Ramesh, Apr 28, 2012
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Press Correspondent
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Re: High ISO
In reply to Taikonaut, Apr 28, 2012

I am afraid most of this is but a wishful thinking and excuses of a Canon user. See below. However, I need to upgrade from 5D1 and there are good arguments for both, 5D3 and D800, so I am stuck at the moment. The arguments for D800 are unbeatable. The arguments for 5D3 are convincing, but not unbeatable. As many reviews have pointed out, 5D3 is a great camera. In the absence of D800 it would be a no brainier. But D800 is a revolutionary camera leaping ahead into the 21st century. And it does not even cost more. So do I want to settle for the technology that is likely to become obsolete in a year or so? Do I want to pay $3,500 and face another upgrade next year or lose my investment? Or do I want to switch to Chinese made Nikkor optics? Hmmm...

Taikonaut wrote:

Pity D800 AWB

Are you shooting JPG? Why do I care?

speed

A natural price for more megapixels. More than on my 5D1. I don't shoot sports anyway.

AF accuracy

What I hear is that AF tracking is better on D800. Overall, the AF performance is similar with no clear winner. If you are convinced otherwise, could you provide your sources?

ergonomics

No personal comment, but Nikon users seem to think exactly the opposite. So it seems more of a subjective "having gotten used to" presented as an imaginary advantage.

LCD

What are the specifics there? Any affect on the image quality?

high ISO is not a match on the 5DIII.

Completely untrue and misleading as already discussed below.

It is like putting a Ferrari engine inside a crapped out Skoda and expect it to run well.

Wishful thinking again. More like Mercedes vs. BMW, a personal preference.

Press Correspondent wrote:

Birdman7 wrote:

Canon sensors have better DR & noise control at high ISO

Not true. There are numerous references that D800 normalized to 22mp exceeds 5D3 in DR at high ISO. Using the DXOmark data, D800 theoretically beats 5D3 at ISO 25,600 by 0.1 stop of DR. Using the SNR data gives a similarly small advantage to Canon. Either way the difference is within the margin of error and cannot be consistently observed on many posted test shots. The bottom line is that the notion that Canon has any advantage at high ISO is no longer true. Sony and Nikon have managed to pull the resolution and low ISO DR trick without surrendering the high ISO to Canon.

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mgrum
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Re: Low ISO, the 'new' reference standard?
In reply to Taikonaut, Apr 28, 2012

Taikonaut wrote:

Truth of the matter is DR is already high enough at low ISO but were DR is really needed most is high ISO dealing with low light were DR decreases on all cameras.

DR is not high enough currently, there are still scenes which require multiple exposures to capture the full range.

DR at high ISO is limited by photon noise, which is unavoidable. Even if you had a sensoe with 100% quantum efficiency and infinite precision ADC you would have noise and limited dynamic range.

Low ISO DR is limited by the electrical noise on the sensor which is an area which can still be improved upon.

Rickuz wrote:

I hope that Canon's failure on improving the low ISO DR, has hit them pretty hard - like a hard slap in their face. I also hope this face slap woke them up, and that they are now doing their best to bring something to the table that can compete with Nikon's (Sony's) new sensor.

Yesterday CR reported that there are 5 new sensors being tested right now, and that we might se a new FF camera by the end of 2012. Hopefully one with at least 14 stops of DR.

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rwbaron
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Re: Patent restrictions
In reply to Press Correspondent, Apr 28, 2012

Press Correspondent wrote:

There is no new sensor. While Canon is like the second or third highest patent company in the world (after IBM), they totally missed the boat on this one. There are only a couple ways to read the sensor data. One is pixel by pixel, the other is row by row yielding a much lower read noise. (Or something like this.) The latter was patented by Sony, so Canon simply may not have an technical option there to compete.

My understanding is the latter was patented by IBM and Sony bought the rights or a license to use the architecture. Sony has since done considerable development to get the technology where it is today.

Bob

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madzazulu
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Re: Canon New Sensor
In reply to Ramesh, Apr 28, 2012

It's like asking: Ramesh since your brain is worse than a monkey should you get a brain transplant from a pig :).

Ramesh wrote:

Since the best Canon cameras at present (1D X & 5D III) decidedly fall short of comparable Nikon models particularly in low ISO performance, will Canon incorporate a better sensor in the forthcoming lesser models? From the discussions it is obvious that Canon is still using sensors developed at its old Fab. Will Canon be bold enough to introduce upgraded sensors in lesser models?
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John Sheehy
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Re: Low ISO, the 'new' reference standard?
In reply to Birdman7, Apr 28, 2012

Birdman7 wrote:

Pre-D800, the onus was on high ISO performance as a a reference for a sensor performance, now its low ISO and DR.

Canon sensors have better DR & noise control at high ISO and Nikons seems to have better DR and shadow recovery at low ISO.

DR at high ISOs is ultimately meaningless, in and of itself. The only reason that high-ISO DxOMark DR is important is that it is normalized in such a way that it indirectly tells us the absolute read noise in most cases.

Take the same shot, one on Canon 5D3 at ISO 3200, and one on a D800 with the same absolute exposure (same Av and Tv), but set it to ISO 100, and push in the converter. The D800 shot will have only a tiny amount more noise, but 5 stops more highlights that you can pull down if you want. Do the same with the 5D3, and you will have a noise-fest. Low-ISO DR is not just for low ISOs! It is for high DR at high ISOs, too; it just shifts it more towards the highlights, which is really where most people want to see increased DR, anyway..

Trying to conceptualize potential based on your past practices is not very productive.

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gdanmitchell
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Re: Canon New Sensor
In reply to Ramesh, Apr 28, 2012

Oh, come on. Canon constantly improves and updates their sensors, just like Nikon and Sony and others do. The question is, frankly, a silly one.

Dan

Ramesh wrote:

Since the best Canon cameras at present (1D X & 5D III) decidedly fall short of comparable Nikon models particularly in low ISO performance, will Canon incorporate a better sensor in the forthcoming lesser models? From the discussions it is obvious that Canon is still using sensors developed at its old Fab. Will Canon be bold enough to introduce upgraded sensors in lesser models?
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jdavis37
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Re: Low ISO, the 'new' reference standard?
In reply to Rickuz, Apr 29, 2012

What about those who never shoot below ISO400 or 800? Just a thought... seems 5D3 is on same playing field at > = ISO800 and actually a bit better at the realy high end. Both are great though but if you want 6 fps at FF then... point here being neither camera/sensor is better at every single thing. My guess is Canon sales will meet expectations and Canon will do just fine. Me? I would welcome greater DR at lower ISO and at higher ISO.. i like improvements. Just not sure the published DR gains in general are going to drive the average user one way or the other. Just my 3 cents worth before getting a long overdue meal here!

Rickuz wrote:

I hope that Canon's failure on improving the low ISO DR, has hit them pretty hard - like a hard slap in their face. I also hope this face slap woke them up, and that they are now doing their best to bring something to the table that can compete with Nikon's (Sony's) new sensor.

Yesterday CR reported that there are 5 new sensors being tested right now, and that we might se a new FF camera by the end of 2012. Hopefully one with at least 14 stops of DR.

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joema1
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Re: Canon New Sensor
In reply to Ramesh, Apr 29, 2012

Ramesh wrote:

Since the best Canon cameras at present (1D X & 5D III) decidedly fall short of comparable Nikon models particularly in low ISO performance...it is obvious that Canon is still using sensors developed at its old Fab.

The Nikon D4 has at least one stop worse low ISO performance than the D800. Does that mean the D4 sensor is produced on Nikon's (or Sony's) old fab?

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dosdan
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Re: Low ISO, the 'new' reference standard?
In reply to John Sheehy, Apr 29, 2012

John Sheehy wrote:

DR at high ISOs is ultimately meaningless, in and of itself.

The voice of reason!

Interesting concept: "High ISO DR". This seems popular with Canon users, presumeably due to the presence of high read noise.

Consider the wondrous 14.7 stops "sensor" DR that Roger Clark reports for the 5DII

http://www.clarkvision.com/articles/digital.sensor.performance.summary/#dynamic_range

When I saw this a couple of years ago, it had me confused, until I realised he was talking about sensor DR, not camera DR. Why consider sensor DR? The Canon 5DII sensor is very low noise, but not so what ends up inside the ADC.

Due to the high read noise, you get a DxO measurement of 11.16 stops (pixel) or 11.86 stops (normalised) at base ISO for this camera. But Clark's interested in Astro-photography. So he "liberates" the sensor from limitations of the noisy EM environment/electronics by looking at the sensor's output at high ISOs after the PGA has boosted the output above the ADC's input-referenced noise floor. Of course, this reduces the DR since the sensel's FWC is never reached. But it allows him to see what the sensor's DR is, by itself.

Really, it's a bit strange now, in this modern era of Exmor sensors, reading about using a high ISO/high PGA gain to overcome read noise. Unfortunately, operating that way increases the proportion of shot noise due to the much reduced saturation capacity at high ISOs.

Look at sensorgen's figure for the 5DII DR at ISO3200, which seems to be the ISO where the min. input-referenced read noise occurs : 9.3 stops. And from ISO100 (base ISO) to ISO3200 = 5 stops. So 9.3 + 5 = 14.3 stops. This is approx. the figure that Clark claims.

So it's what the sensor could achieve it it was followed by an ADC that had enough bits at high gain levels to not limit the sensor itself. Since this is not possible in the real world, it's not that interesting to me. It may be of some interest if you stack a lot of images.

Dan.

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John Sheehy
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Re: Canon New Sensor
In reply to oscarvdvelde, Apr 29, 2012

oscarvdvelde wrote:

Pedro Moreira wrote:

Do you have a 1Dx?

I'm curious about that sensor too. It is even mentioned in its announcement that it has a larger dynamic range.

There have already been 1Dx RAWs posted, and the read noise levels at low ISOs don't look too promising for significant DR improvement. I'd say 1/3 stop more, at best, if at all, but the samples I have are not a full set of ISOs so I can't say exactly how much.

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John Sheehy
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Re: Low ISO, the 'new' reference standard?
In reply to meland, Apr 29, 2012

meland wrote:

Only 14 stops DR? And how long will that satisfy you for?

DR is not just DR. DR is a benefit of having less read noise at base ISO. Once read noise gets below a certain level at base ISO, it also means less noise at high ISOs, too.

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carlk
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Re: Patent restrictions
In reply to Press Correspondent, Apr 29, 2012

The so called back illuminated technology in Sony's Exmor sensor is also used in new cell phone sensors (e.g. Omnivision's 1um pixel sensor). I don't know who owns the patten or the license situation but that should not be a road block if Canon really want it. At least they can buy from Sony or other contract manufacturers who have the right to use it.

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carlk
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Re: Low ISO, the 'new' reference standard?
In reply to jdavis37, Apr 29, 2012

The point you people who put (undeserved) high value on high ISO DR missed is high ISO is always a compomise. It's nothing but amplify the signal and noise together and clipping the highs in the process. A sensor always performs the best at base ISO which is the standard it should be measured at. Incidentally a photographer should also try use lowest ISO by any means possible if the best IQ is the ultimate goal.

jdavis37 wrote:

What about those who never shoot below ISO400 or 800? Just a thought... seems 5D3 is on same playing field at > = ISO800 and actually a bit better at the realy high end. Both are great though but if you want 6 fps at FF then... point here being neither camera/sensor is better at every single thing. My guess is Canon sales will meet expectations and Canon will do just fine. Me? I would welcome greater DR at lower ISO and at higher ISO.. i like improvements. Just not sure the published DR gains in general are going to drive the average user one way or the other. Just my 3 cents worth before getting a long overdue meal here!

Rickuz wrote:

I hope that Canon's failure on improving the low ISO DR, has hit them pretty hard - like a hard slap in their face. I also hope this face slap woke them up, and that they are now doing their best to bring something to the table that can compete with Nikon's (Sony's) new sensor.

Yesterday CR reported that there are 5 new sensors being tested right now, and that we might se a new FF camera by the end of 2012. Hopefully one with at least 14 stops of DR.

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Keith Z Leonard
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Re: Canon New Sensor
In reply to Ramesh, Apr 30, 2012

Eventually Canon will release new sensors on a new platform, I'm sure, but they'll need market reasons to do so and thus far they are doing just fine. Nikon, btw, are using Sony sensors, Canon could do the same, really, but don't want to defer the $$$ to Sony.

I wouldn't be shocked if Canon has much better sensors already in house but are either holding back (like Intel used to) or just don't want/can't afford to rework the fab line.

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Daniel Clune
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Yes and no
In reply to Ramesh, Apr 30, 2012

Iam sure canon will hopefully improve the lower end cameras but they wont be better than the 5D3 or 1Dx. But they hopefully will be better than the 7D/60D sensor. But not better than the 5D3 or 1Dx sensors. The FF sensors have always been better and I think will stay that way. Since the jpg engine has been improved on the 5D3 over 5D2 iam sure they will strive for something like that. Lower end cameras many people only shoot jpg any way. Not all so no need to get upset about that.
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alien3333
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Re: Canon New Sensor
In reply to Ramesh, Apr 30, 2012

Ramesh wrote:

Since the best Canon cameras at present (1D X & 5D III) decidedly fall short of comparable Nikon models particularly in low ISO performance, will Canon incorporate a better sensor in the forthcoming lesser models? From the discussions it is obvious that Canon is still using sensors developed at its old Fab. Will Canon be bold enough to introduce upgraded sensors in lesser models?
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David Hull
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Re: Patent restrictions
In reply to Press Correspondent, Apr 30, 2012

Press Correspondent wrote:

There is no new sensor. While Canon is like the second or third highest patent company in the world (after IBM), they totally missed the boat on this one. There are only a couple ways to read the sensor data. One is pixel by pixel, the other is row by row yielding a much lower read noise. (Or something like this.) The latter was patented by Sony, so Canon simply may not have an technical option there to compete.

They have several viable options. The easiest one is to work with Sony to develop sensors like Nikon does. This will cost them more; Sony probably gets 50 points of margin on their sensors (particularly since they seem to have a monopoly on the best ones). On the other hand, the Sony sensor includes the AFE so they eliminate a couple chips from their signal chain (probably $2 to $3 bucks per camera body), probably enough to cover the increased cost of the Sony sensor. The stuff I work on sells in the tens of millions where $2 is a HUGE deal, I don't think Cameras are anywhere close to that. From the DR perspective which seems to concern so many here, I think the only option is Sony – I don’t think that the other guys are any better than Canon.

I think that the real problem for Canon is that they own a FAB facility and they need to figure out what to do with it if they don't make their own sensors. It probably makes more sense at this point to sell it off and go FAB-less (like Nikon) but that is a big step. Most moderately sized semiconductor houses are FAB-less these days.

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