Thursday, August 30, 2012

Sony Announces New Imagers, ISPs

Sony Cx-News Vol. 69 mostly consists of image sensor announcements. The most interesting one is the high-speed 12.4MP 1/1.7-inch IMX144CQJ BSI CMOS sensor. The sensor is based on 1.85um pixels and delivers 35fps at full resolution. It also has a 4K video mode (4096H x 2160V) at 60fps.

The new sensor is said to have 1.3 times the sensitivity and 1.9 times the saturation signal level of the previous generation Sony product, IMX078CQK based on a smaller 1.55um pixel:

The angular light acceptance has also been improved over the 1.55um pixel:

Another new announcement is three HD video sensors for industrial applications, based on 2.8um and 3.75um pixels and having MIPI interface:


  • 1/4-inch, 2.8um pixel, 1.43MP resolution
  • Frame rate: 60 fps


  • 1/3-inch, 3.75um pixel 1.37MP resolution
  • Frame rate: 120 fps


  • 1/2.8-inch, 2.8um pixel, 2.38MP resolution
  • Frame rate: 60 fps

ICX693AQA (RGB version) and ICX693AKA (CMYG version) CCDs has SVGA (800 x 600) resolution and 50fps speed in 1/3-inch format. The new CCDs have 6um pixels. Comparing to a previous generation VGA CCDs, even though their unit cell area is approximately 34% smaller, their sensitivity is 2.4 times (+7.7 dB) greater, saturation signal level is 2.6 times (+8.3 dB) better and smear characteristics are approximately -15 dB, all of which add up to a significant boost in improvement.

Other than image sensors, Sony announced a new ISP + H.264 Encoder chip series called "Xarina" and targeting next generation of IP Surveillance cameras. The CXD4135GG (chip) and CXD4235 (chip+DRAM module) support WDR imaging, motion detection, face detection, noise reduction (3D-NR/2D-NR), digital image stabilization, and other intelligent functions. H.264 and Motion JPEG video encoding support video streaming at up to 1920 x 1080p at 60 fps.


  1. Wow! They are releasing so many products this year. looks like they are going to give other companies lots of headaches...

  2. The IMX144CQJ seems to be a "obvious" replacement for the CCD ICX685CQZ in "enthusiast compacts" like the Nikon P7700 and the Samsung EX2F. These seem to take advantage of the wider acceptance anlge with half stop faster lenses.

    But from reading the specs I'm having problems comparing it to the previous ICX685CQZ. Especially noise and SN characteristics.

    In the cameras images a rough eyeballing suggests it's perhaps a stop more senstive (at higher ISOs) with perhaps a similar read noise.

    Any ideas?


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