Incense

by Bart Arondson

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11

The Bayer sensor used by the vast majority of cameras is basically a two-by-two grid of sensors with 1 blue, 1 red, and 2 green sensors known as a Bayer filter named after the Kodak Labs scientist that came up with it. The data from such a sensor then must go through a demosaicing process that converts the 4 data points into a pixel giving the result of the ...


8

What happened is that Sigma bought Foveon and put a lot of pressure on them to produce a sensor that is actually capable of competing with standard DSLR sensors. Now that Sigma is building the whole camera and sensor, there is a lot more focus on producing a compelling end-product. Last year Sigma announced the SD1 which uses an APS-C (1.5X crop) sensor ...


7

I have been shooting Sigma DSLR's for a number of years, since the SD-9. I got into the system when I was moving out of film SLRs into digital and did a lot of research before I made the leap. I too came across the the Foveon chip and the design of it struck me as much more sound than the Bayer design on a conceptual level; plus I really liked the images I ...


6

It comes down to this: at least for most people, spatial resolution (especially in green range of colors) is much more important than color resolution, especially in the reds and blues. The color response curve I included in a previous answer gives at least some notion of the reason for this. This is particularly relevant when the vast majority of pictures ...


5

I have lots of praise for Sigma for trying something different and innovative, and on paper the Foveon sensor is a very good idea. However I disagree with the way Sigma refer to their current model with 4.6 million photosites (each of which is sensitive to colour as well as intensity) as have a 14 megapixel sensor! Multiplying the number of photosites by ...


4

Capturing three colours per photosites is in principle far superior to capturing one colour and interpolation. So much so that a three colour sensor will produce an image with equivalent detail to a one colour sensor with twice as many total pixels. Why not three times as many? Well the colour channels in an image are not independent but correlated with ...


3

The X3 sensor records three colour values per photosite instead of one. This reduces ambiguity in rendering fine detail compared to Bayer or other one-colour-per-photosite sensors, reducing the need for an anti aliasing filter (which blurs the image so that light falls across more than one photosite). This results in great per pixel sharpness and very ...


3

What happened to the Foveon sensor is that Sigma adopted the technology early on, but other camera companies were reluctant to do so. That state continues to this day. Sigma continues to evolve cameras, currently offering an SD-15 DSLR, and the fixed-focal length large sensor compact cameras DP-1 and DP-2. However recently Foveon technology seems to have ...


3

Foveon sensors are great in theory, but in practice they aren't a compelling choice. They're generally much lower resolution and can only compete by counting the 3 sensors at each pixel position to be individual pixels. Sigma still produces cameras with Foveon sensors: ...


3

There are two issues which have been problematic for Foveon sensors other than the problem of spatial resolution. These are both inherent to Foveon's key concept: using the spectral absorption of different depths of silicon to separate colors. With a Bayer array, the different filters are created with dyes carefully selected to match the chosen red, green, ...


1

The biggest reason "nobody" uses Foveon, I think, has little to do with Foveon and a lot to do with Sigma. Had Canon or Sony bought up the tech instead of Sigma, it would be mainstream by now, the basic idea is a good one. Sigma is a bit-player in this field, too small to do it all by themselves, and Sigma cameras are something of an acquired taste.



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