Is there time for an interchangeable sensor DSLR?

Started Oct 19, 2012 | Discussions thread
Tony Beach Forum Pro • Posts: 11,829
Re: B&W and IR...

Joseph S Wisniewski wrote:

Tony Beach wrote:

I don't think its biggest value is price, although there would be some cost saving to buying another sensor instead of an entire new camera.  I think its biggest value would be to be able to carry multiple sensors and use them on one camera -- I would like B&W as well as IR to go with the current 36 MP BFA sensor.  Since we don't get B&W or IR cameras from Nikon, it seems to me that interchangeable sensors would make that more likely.

IR is never going to happen,

Certainly true if we only have the major camera companies to rely on.  With interchangeable sensors though there might be an opening for a sensor manufacturer to offer sensors directly to customers.

OK, a more serious, mainstream issue: B&W. It's obsolete. Not the art and craft of B&W, that's eternal and beautiful. The technology is obsolete. We did get a B&W camera from Nikon. It's called the D800. A 36mp D800 color shot, converted to B&W, outresolves an 18mp Leica M9M monochrome shot. Look at what Nokia did, a 40mp sensor in a phone camera. It doesn't deliver 40mp pictures, it delivers 8mp pictures, with the 40mp serving as "oversampling". That's the wave of the future. A 36mp color sensor, even with Bayer color filters and AA filter, extracts more information from the projected image than Leica's pure monochrome. But a 400mp sensor on an APS DSLR would extract everything that the lens had to offer. Oversample at 400mp, and knock it down to 100mp, either B&W or color, and you've got all the resolution you can expect from a real optical system (as opposed to a "synthetic" system like a stitched panorama).

The CFA reduces DR and makes the sensor less sensitive, and BFA reduces resolution -- so why not just remove them if that's possible?  Imagine how well a 36 MP B&W FX sensor could do today, versus a 72 MP or even a 100 MP BFA FX sensor might do sometime in the future.

In any case, we're moving in totally the opposite direction, towards sensors that can do more and more different missions, until we hit the point where one sensor really does it all, and there's no need to change one out.

Nonetheless, there is this patent that was mentioned, and there is a hole right now that is not filled by the yet-to-be-realized wonder-sensors.  Sure, for IR we could just slap an inefficient IR filter in front of the lens and crank up the ISO 4 stops to make up for it, and someday that will suffice, but I think even in the imagined future (and one many of us will not be around for) having the highest image quality by removing the unnecessary CFA and IR filters makes more sense than counteracting their effects after the fact.

Post (hide subjects) Posted by
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum PPrevious NNext WNext unread UUpvote SSubscribe RReply QQuote BBookmark MMy threads
Color scheme? Blue / Yellow