Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Fujifilm Announces X-Trans CMOS Sensor

Fujifilm announced X-Pro1 interchangeable lens camera featuring 16MP APS-C size X-Trans CMOS sensor. The sensor's color filter array "paves the way for an ideal sensor that does not need an optical low-pass filter. While the optical low-pass filter is indispensable for the reduction of moiré and false color generated by conventional sensors, it also degrades resolution.

Fujifilm has developed a new color filter array that is inspired by the random arrangement of fine film grain, removing the need for an optical low-pass filter to solve moiré and false color issues. In the array, RGB pixels are arranged in 6 × 6 pixel sets with high aperiodicity (randomness). Increasing the degree of randomness eliminates the fundamental cause of moiré and false colors — a problem that occurs in conventional arrays when shooting stripes and other repeating patterns. The presence of an R, G and B pixel in every vertical and horizontal pixel series minimizes the generation of false colors and delivers higher color reproduction

Bayer patter repeats itself
in 2 x 2 pixel units.
Higher degree of randomness with
an array of 6 x 6 pixel units. Without
using an optical low-pass filter, moire
and false colors are eliminated while
 realizing high resolution.

"Moire is tackled at its root cause by the revolutionary X-Trans CMOS sensor's color filter array. By enhancing aperiodicity (randomness) in the array arrangement, the color filter minimizes generation of both moire and false colors, eliminating the necessity for an optical low-pass filter in the lens and enabling X-Trans CMOS sensor to capture full “unfiltered” lens performance."

To process the new color filter data, Fujifilm also developed EXR Processor Pro image processor.


  1. Removing Moire ??? I would say : "Reducing Moire". As I mentioned earlier, we did some tests with an 8x8 semi-randomized CFA pattern, and we still had some Moire left.
    Other observation : you will get two reds, two blues and maybe up to four greens. But these days processing power and memory are coming for free ... ;-)

  2. There are 20 green pixels out of 36 - slightly more than in Bayer. One can expect a better luminance SNR, all things being equal with Bayer.

    When it comes to the shading and crosstalk correction across the area, there are 9 different greens that need to be brought to the exact same level, so that the eye does not perceive the difference between them as a noise. Doing it across the range of different lenses might be challenging (it's an interchangeable lens camera). Not to talk about 4 different reds and 4 blues.

  3. Are all 6x6 arrays identical ?

  4. Vladimir, you are even more pessimistic than I was in counting the number of colours ...

  5. Long ago we used a similar tick to reduce audio aliasing (dithering the time base slightly).

  6. The chip itself seems to be Sony's 16Mp sensor. Or at least it appears to have identical looks.

    1. It's a Fuji sensor according to Fuji:


      "One of the representatives confirmed to me that the new X-Trans CMOS sensor is made by Fuji."

    2. The actual photos of the sensor show that it is identical in appearance the Sony sensor inside D7000, K-5 et al. It is a Sony sensor.

    3. Yeah so the fact the RGB is completely different means nothing at all.

  7. So Fuji claiming Sony sensor as theirs and Nikon claiming Aptina sensor as theirs. All the meanwhile, Canon is laughing. Nha..ha...ha!

    1. Hey!! Canonist "anonymous":
      Learn a little!

      Now Sony, Nikon, Pentax and Fujifilm are laughing. Nha..ha...ha!

      Sony made base sensors and is a very huge CMOS maker. Then others brand customized to Sony their desings under the base Sony's sensor...nothing new. Canon still losing the most important race in CMOS sensors: "Dinamic Range"

  8. No, x-trans is not a Sony sensor. It is a Toshiba base, HXM4-229393 is the model/serial to be precise. Fuji and Toshiba have been working closely of late, so has Nikon and Toshiba. Sony are falling back considerably due to serious lack of finances. Sony make the best 12MP sensor base ever made in my book, but x-trans no way.

  9. Most of us within the industry know Toshiba and Fujifilm colaborate to deliver the X-Trans. The Fuji buy in to Toshiba four years ago was the first hint that something was in the wings. Nikon are busy dumping Sony in favour of Toshiba too. The D7100 is their latest Toshiba based sensor camera. Seems Toshiba is on the up but only because they have demonstrated extreme quality with their sensor fabs.


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