Is there time for an interchangeable sensor DSLR?

Started Oct 19, 2012 | Discussions thread
Joseph S Wisniewski Forum Pro • Posts: 34,136
Re: More B&W and IR...

Tony Beach wrote:

Joseph S Wisniewski wrote:

Problem is that the camera companies are probably smart enough to realize this, or read it here, and the Sony lesson will kick in, and they'll quash their interchangeable sensor plans.

Yet another example of our best interests not being served by their best interests.

Well "they" (the camera companies) have a lot of "us's" to deal with.

  • There's the "us" that wants easier IR and UV photography and possibly a user removable AA filter or an h-alpha filter (Canon actually makes a camera like that, the 60Da, with the "a" for "astronomy).
  • There's the "us" that smashes and burns "x-ray" cameras used by "perverts". Not my "us", I'm not a smash and burn sort of person'
  • There's the "us" that wants the camera to be some combination of smaller, lighter, cheaper, more ergonomic, or more reliable, all things that are hurt by interchangeable sensor concepts. I'm also part of that "us".

So, the camera companies get to go crazy, trying to figure out how to please as many of us as possible, while angering as few as possible.

The CFA reduces DR

Actually, it increases it by 1-2 stops.

Interesting.  It still strikes me as counterintuitive since I gain DR by suppressing the blue and green channels with a magenta filter.

Struck me that way, too. The magenta filter trick (Bernes and Taplin, I go back a long way with this sort of stuff) actually decreases dynamic range. It also decreases the workload on the software, because all the channels tend to blow at the same time, so the algorithms that reconstruct a blown channel from the remaining ones don't cut in as often.

and makes the sensor less sensitive,

Now that is true. Even though my monochrome cameras have no microlenses (which lost them a stop of sensitivity) they still outperform the color cameras.

With microlenses the advantages here could be rather significant.

No argument there.

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.

The 72mp CFA will win. I don't have to imagine, I've tested monochrome and color sensors.

At a cost though, the cost of moving twice as much data around.

That's not that much an issue. Processor power, RAM, and hard disk storage are all growing at a considerably faster rate than megapixel counts.

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,

More like 10 stops, for modern IR blocking filters. That's why there's such a cottage industry grown around removing them. And yes, user interchangeable sensors will make that much easier.

Once again, I stand corrected.

Happens to us all, from time to time.

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 [snip] IR filter rather than counteracting [its] effect after the fact [will be preferable].

Infrared will always be a case of working better if someone pulls the filters out, but that is not something that requires an interchangeable sensor.

Not required, but still preferable.

Agreed. A sensor cartridge makes so many things easier.

I just don't see camera companies doing it. Everything that I want to do with one is a "side effect" of having one, but not a reason to do one, from a camera company's POV.

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Rahon Klavanian 1912-2008. Armenian genocide survivor, amazing cook, scrabble master, and loving grandmother. You will be missed. Ciao! Joseph

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