Dynamic range and RAW file "bit depth"

Started Jan 25, 2014 | Questions thread
GordonBGood Veteran Member • Posts: 6,308
Re: Dynamic range and RAW file "bit depth"

completelyrandomstuff wrote:

this is an interesting though. The sensors do not record linearly. There is more data represented in highlights than in the shadows. That's why cameras with higher bit-depth resolve better in the deep shadows.

However, your ideas about the signal from a sensor not generally being linear, as in output of a value whether digital or analogue which varies directly with the intensity of "light flux" striking the sensor per unit area, which is true for all current sensors until they approach saturation of the electron density in the substrate.

The "more codes per stop of light intensity at the bright end is just a natural consequence of digitization of signal and is not an indication of linearity as defined above.  However, it is this surplus of codes in the bright tones of an image that we are not able to see or use that allows us to apply tone response curves to the linear data in order to get better storage efficiency as well as RGB images that we can directly view on our monitors by viewing the recorded colour levels directly.

Regards, GordonBGood

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