Camera Revolution: organic photoconductive film CMOS sensor

Every year there is something to get excited about, as camera makers release their new and improved models. However, Panasonic’s recent announcement of the development of an organic photoconductive film (OPF) CMOS sensor takes excitement to a new level, as it promises to revolutionize the camera technology.

In their press release, Panasonic has a technical description of their new image sensor. Here, I only outline the main points of this breakthrough advance.

  • the new sensor employs the organic photoconductive film (OPF) on top of the CMOS sensor
  • it will have a dynamic range 100 times wider than the conventional CMOS sensor (with the same sensor size), making it easy to shoot in high- and low-light conditions
  • it improves sensitivity by a factor of 1.2, allowing to shoot with less light
  • it captures the image simultaneously, rather than line by line, allowing for a global shutter
  • it increases the incident light range from 35-40 degrees to 60 degrees; this should result in smaller and more affordable lenses

Now, those are the promises and no camera with OPF CMOS sensor has been scheduled for a release. It might be a few years before the first model arrives on the market. Still, it is great to see that camera makers, such as Panasonic, are working on significant advances in camera technology. Too many companies and industries limit their efforts to incremental improvements and marketing campaigns.

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