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A sensor is the digital camera's equivalent to film. It contains millions of tiny light-detecting areas called photosites, which convert light into an electric charge. After exposing the sensor to light, this charge is read from each pixel and converted into a digital image.

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18
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2answers
637 views

What are the basic workings of the Lytro light-field camera?

lytro.com describes their new light field camera as being able to capture the entire light field, rather than just one plane of light, thereby allowing for a whole new set of post-processing ...
19
votes
8answers
6k views

How can I photograph welding?

My partner is creating a sculptural work using MIG welding and has asked me to document the process. I have a few questions regarding how to photograph it? Looking at the arc can damage your ...
5
votes
1answer
818 views

Does this look like a sensor problem?

I have these tiny dots in a lot of my pictures. They look like tiny stars. On this Nikon D60 I've tried cleaning the area where the shutter is (what's this called?) with a hand pumping duster, but ...
2
votes
1answer
632 views

Why does my Nikon D90 make a strange sound during built-in sensor cleaning, when my friend's D90 doesn't?

I noticed a quiet sound (like squeaking) when using the built-in sensor cleaning of my Nikon D90. In some forums I read about many people having this behavior with the Nikon D700 and some Canon ...
2
votes
1answer
333 views

Why might my camera show spots in video mode?

I own a Canon Rebel T1i, and when I try to record video, there are two dark spots on the screen. These do not appear when I take photos. Video (spots in center and right center): Photo: Does ...
26
votes
6answers
11k views

Why does a bigger sensor lead to a shallower depth of field?

It has been mentioned at a few places that a larger sensor results in images with a shallower depth of field. Example image: APS-C Canon 30D left, FF Canon 5D right, same lens, same composition, ...
21
votes
2answers
2k views

Why use a small aperture when trying to see sensor dust?

Here and there I read of people who set their lens to a small aperture while testing their sensor cleanness, supposedly to get the best image of dust speckles. However, the image of the on-sensor dust ...
13
votes
4answers
2k views

Is it risky or difficult to wet clean an image sensor?

I've discovered spots on the image sensor of my DSLR camera that cannot be cleaned using a blower bulb, so I would like to know the risk of problems, such as further image deterioration or damage to ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

How many bits of data are typically actually captured by a digital camera sensor?

In a comment on this question someone suggested that camera sensors typically only output 12-14 bits of data. I was surprised because that would mean that 24 bits of color is only useful for doing ...
11
votes
1answer
355 views

What is the statistical distribution of sensor noise?

Sensor noise is a random variation in pixel values, but what kind of random is it? Does it follow a normal distribution, one of the gamma distributions, or something funky like an F distribution? ...
8
votes
2answers
903 views

Why are sensors less sensitive to blue light?

This is a followup question to Why is the blue channel the noisiest?. The simple answer to that question is that sensors are less sensitive to blue, and therefore require more amplification, which ...
17
votes
4answers
1k views

Does the dpi number reported by camera in JPG have any meaning?

I have two cameras, a 6mpix Panasonic FZ8, and 14mpix Canon A2200. When I compare shots from two cameras, one of differences I notice is dpi number that camera reports in JPG info: FZ8 reports ...
6
votes
3answers
543 views

How do I get rid of these different spots after sensor cleaning?

I've just cleaned sensor on my Nikon D40x for the first time using sensor swabs and Eclipse solution. Here is a picture taken before cleaning and after . Dark spots on the first photo do not appear ...
12
votes
4answers
483 views

Are the sensors of newer DSLRs better beyond just having more MP?

I have a Canon Rebel XTI now, and am considering upgrading my camera body at some point. Aside from the increase in megapixels have there been other improvements to the CMOS sensors of the newer ...
9
votes
1answer
920 views

Can the slant edge SFR method measure lens resolution greater than the Nyquist limit for the camera sensor?

The slant edge SFR method has become the standard for measuring resolution of lenses and camera systems. It works by scanning a five degree slanted edge to calculate a line spread function. This is ...
15
votes
3answers
5k views

What is the Nyquist Limit and what is its significance to photographers?

The Nyquist Limit is frequently mentioned in the context of lens and sensor resolution. What is it and what is its significance to photographers? Here is an example of it being used by DPReview.com ...
10
votes
6answers
2k views

What happened to Foveon sensors?

It seems like the Foveon sensor should be able to produce better images, because it's not dependent on the separate red, green, and blue pixels as exist on most digital cameras. However, cameras ...
8
votes
4answers
6k views

How effective are in-camera integrated sensor cleaning systems, and have they improved?

Few years ago, Canon introduced some sort of internal sensor cleaning system that (as far as I understand it) shakes the sensor off any dust it collected during use. This shake is very high frequency. ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

Loss of image quality after sensor cleaning?

I use a 550D for photography. I got dust in my sensor few days ago while I was doing reverse macro and cleaned it from Canon Service Center. After cleaning I checked my sensor (taking picture of blue ...
7
votes
1answer
307 views

Are there bad effects of frequent pixel-mapping?

I read on two different sites that pixel mapping should be done once or twice a year. But sometimes I end up doing it once a month. Will it have adverse effect on the CMOS image sensor?
10
votes
3answers
3k views

Should I clean my camera sensor, or take it to a professional?

Possible Duplicate: Best way to clean the sensor on a digital SLR? Can anyone offer me advice on how to clean my camera's sensor? Should I do this myself, or take the camera to a ...
5
votes
2answers
4k views

GoPro Hero HD field of view is larger at lower resolutions, how is that?

How is it that the FOV can be greater for the smaller resolutions in their camera, which has no zoom? I would expect a greater FOV when more of the sensor is used. From: ...
7
votes
1answer
3k views

OEM Camera Sensors for a computer project

First off I'm not sure if this is the place for this question, but it seems to be the closest fit. I want to buy a small camera sensor (like for netbooks/phones), from what I have read on wikipedia ...
33
votes
4answers
8k views

What's the difference between CCD and CMOS image sensors?

I keep reading articles about CCD vs CMOS image sensors. What is the difference between these two types? What exactly do these sensors do in terms of photography? Is a CCD-based camera going to be ...
13
votes
7answers
2k views

Is there a difference in the sensor technology in entry level cameras vs. that in pro or semi-pro DSLRs?

Obviously there are differences in everything, both optics-wise and mechanism-wise, but I would like to know: Are the materials used to construct sensors (disregarding sensor size) different at any ...
6
votes
5answers
458 views

What companies offer an IR camera filter?

I'm planning on converting a Nikon D50 to dedicated infrared, replacing the internal IR cut filter with one that will block visible light, and pass infrared. Google has turned up a couple sites, and ...
3
votes
4answers
3k views

Sony NEX5: Why do I have a dark spot in my images?

When I look through the display, I see always a small grey circle at the same place. Also in the picture it's the same circle. When I change the lens, the circle is still there. So I assume it's ...
8
votes
7answers
1k views

Why has no one invented a 4:5 aspect ratio APS-C/35mm-sized DSLR?

People keep inventing different form factors and formats for cameras, but none seems to have hit on what seems (to me) like an obvious one. Why doesn't somebody build a camera with a sensor that has a ...
9
votes
0answers
362 views

What does expanded ISO mean?

Especially with regards to image quality. I am particularly interested in when you expand to a lower ISO, say 50 rather than 100. Generally the standard high ISO is too noisy, with the expanded ISO ...
6
votes
3answers
502 views

Fancy technology cropped vs old technology full frame - Which will give better images?

After selling my 1Dmk2 last year the time has come to get myself a new body, all along I'd decided that I wanted to do more "wow" pictures, big landscapes and do some more portait photography (up ...
11
votes
3answers
863 views

What are differences between Bayer mosaic and Foveon 3 layer sensor?

To filling my appetite on camera things hunger I've came across to Sigma website and found this 3 layer sensor stuff. Can anyone really explain this based on their experience or research about this? ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Is it sensor damage? Or dust?

I have been trying to shoot partial solar eclipse today with my Nikon D3100, and later noticed this spot on images: http://pix.academ.org/img/2011/01/04/70baea815d1557594f096a82ab05704f.png I do not ...
6
votes
1answer
5k views

What effect does UV filter provide?

I know that I should always use a filter on my lens to protect the camera lens, however, exactly what impact to the picture does using a UV filter have since that is the one most often used? Do I ...
17
votes
3answers
1k views

How can dynamic-range be larger than sensor bit-depth?

Found something that confused me and so I thought the crowd here can probably answer this one since its camera-related and technical at the same time. How can dynamic-range be larger than sensor ...
10
votes
2answers
9k views

What is the Chief Ray Angle (CRA)?

I want to select image sensors for a particular application. One term that I have come across regularly in their datasheets is the CRA. I was comparing 2 image sensors and although they were of ...
41
votes
8answers
17k views

What does “expanded ISO” mean?

The ISO specification for the Canon EOS 7D reads as follows: High ISO For handheld shooting in low light, the EOS 7D offers ISO speeds of up to 6400. Expandable to ISO 12800, for low light ...
49
votes
7answers
35k views

Can the sun damage the camera sensor? Under what conditions?

I want to experiment taking photos where the sun appears. I'm afraid of what might happen if I take one with a narrower angle (where sun would be bigger). Can the lens act as a magnifying glass and ...
79
votes
7answers
34k views

When do the differences between APS-C and full frame sensors matter, and why?

I'm trying to decide on a higher-end digital SLR, and I'm down to choosing between an APS-C model and a full-frame model. I understand that the sensors are of different sizes, and as such have an ...
6
votes
1answer
269 views

Why does my sensor flip up slow on live view?

I have noticed some strange behavior on my 450D tonight. I was shooting some macro on Live-view(couldn't get low enough using the viewfinder) and I noticed that after my shots(approx. 2-second shutter ...
14
votes
5answers
589 views

Does it matter which way the camera is orientated for the sensor cleaning to work?

With the advent of sensor cleaning in newer bodies - does it matter which way up you hold the camera whilst it is cleaning? I understand that the sensor cleaning works by vibrating the sensor to knock ...
14
votes
4answers
5k views

When shooting in mRAW or sRAW, how does the camera generate smaller files?

Most mid- and high-end DLSRs offer two or three sizes for RAW capture. When the camera is generating the medium or small sized RAW files, how does it make them smaller? Does it capture less ...
19
votes
3answers
4k views

What is meant by the “native ISO” when talking about DSLRs?

The new Nikon D7000 is out, and a lot of previews has touted the "native iso" of D7000 to be 100. What does this actually mean? I'm assuming it means it performs at its best at iso 100, which means ...
16
votes
3answers
8k views

Are digital sensors sensitive to UV?

Is there any way, shape, or form that ultraviolet light is recorded by a digital sensor? Ideally, this question is related strictly to the sensor, without even a glass lens in between which could cut ...
8
votes
1answer
5k views

How to fix an image sensor damaged by long sun exposures?

I took a number of shots of the sun during mid-afternoon and now all my images have pink spot where the sun was. Is there anyway to fix this, or is it permanently damaged? The camera was pointed at ...
15
votes
4answers
7k views

Can a laser pointer damage the sensor in a digital camera?

I once experimented with standing in a dark room and directing a laser pointer towards my digital camera with a long shutter speed while moving the two about. I made a few images that way; one was ...
20
votes
6answers
4k views

How many stops can a digital camera capture?

How many stops can a digital camera capture? Additionally, does anybody know what the dynamic range is for negative and positive film, the human eye, computer monitor, the television, etc...
26
votes
11answers
2k views

What is the best way to clean the sensor on a digital SLR?

I've got a couple of spots of dust on the sensor of my Canon 20D - a rocket blower isn't shifting them, and I'm ridiculously scared of some of the more direct methods for cleaning sensors -- what ...