Panchromatic pixels in sensor arrays

Sat 16 June 2007

A friend pointed me to a Kodak announcement about new filter-array patterns for digital camera sensors. In short, what they do is to add panchromatic pixels to the filter array patterns.

I don’t see a breakthrough because adding specialized pixels (for luminosity in this case) is an obvious evolution when you have increased pixel densities in sensors and lower prices. Previously, in contrast, a lot of thought had to go into designing filter array patterns to capture both luminosity and color resolution with many less pixels.

Today one can have 16 mega pixels in a 35mm sensor, which is the resolution of 35mm film. Each additional mega pixel can be used to capture more and more specific information, and nothing prevents manufacturers from using sensors lager than 35mm.

The days of film as the paradigm of captured image quality are over.