Bright idea: Panasonic’s new sensor tech promises better low light photos (VIDEO)


posted Thursday, March 28, 2013 at 2:45 PM EST


Last month we told you about some intriguing new imaging tech from Panasonic that uses micro color splitters rather than a traditional Bayer color filter array over the image sensor to capture shots with twice the brightness than previously possible. We were impressed by what we saw, noting that if Panasonic's technology lived up to the hype, the company "could hold quite a trump card over its rivals."

Well, there's a new video out from DigInfo TV about Panasonic's color filtering technology, and while it doesn't offer much additional information on the subject, it does a good job of explaining it. (We've posted the video below.)

As the video points out, the traditional Bayer method of putting red, green, and blue filters over each pixel on a sensor to produce color ends up filtering out 50-70% of the light. With the new Panasonic technology, micro color splitters (in the form of red and blue deflectors) are arranged diagonally over the sensor, and spread the light across the entire chip. The result, according to Panasonic, is that 100% of the incoming light hits the surface of the sensor, producing images with twice the brightness.


"Here, color filters aren't used. So light can be captured without loss, which enables us to achieve approximately double the sensitivity," a Panasonic scientist says in the clip. "What's more, this technology can be used regardless of whether the sensor is a CCD, CMOS, or BSI type. The device can also be manufactured using current semiconductor fabrication processes. It doesn't use special materials or processes."

For photographers who like shooting in dark conditions without a flash, this new technology could be the vertible light at the end of the tunnel. Check out the video below and tell us what you think.

(Via Gizmodo)