Cameras

Sony Announces 24.81-Megapixel SLR Sensor

Sony Japan has just announced the development of a 35mm film negative-sized 24.81 effective megapixel sensor designed for SLR cameras that can capture up to 6 frames per second (fps).

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Jan. 29, 2008 – Sony Japan has just announced the development of a 35mm film negative-sized 24.81 effective megapixel sensor designed for SLR cameras that can capture up to 6 frames per second (fps). 

Because it is the same size as a 35mm negative, the new unnamed sensor would allow an SLR to capture 24-megapixel images with no lens multiplier factor: the focal length of the lens would be the same as on a 35mm film camera. This is especially important for wide-angle lenses; the multiplier most digital SLRs impose (which is caused by the fact that most image sensors are smaller than a 35mm negative) means wide angle lenses offer a smaller field of view than they do on a conventional film SLR. With an SLR built around this new sensor, the field of view would be the same as on a 35mm film camera.

The sensor can also capture images very quickly; Sony claims it can capture and download 6.3 fps at the full resolution, as much of the circuitry that captures and converts the image ready for processing is built into the chip itself. Most existing digital SLRs can only manage 2 or 3 fps at the full resolution (although some can capture more by lowering the resolution).

The sensor is based on CMOS (Complimentary Metal Oxide Semiconductor) technology; some other manufacturers use sensors based on the rival CCD (Charge Coupled Device) technology. Sony did not announce any pricing details for the new sensor, or if any manufacturers have committed to using it yet. Several of the major manufacturers use Sony image Sensors in their SLRs.  We would expect to see it in high-end SLRs later this year.

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