The advantages of stacked structure are:
- Adopting pixel array processes specialized for superior image quality
- Faster speeds and lower power consumption by adopting the leading process for the processing circuit section
As the first step towards the commercialization of its new CMOS image sensors, Sony has developed a model with built-in signal processing functionality. Samples will be shipped from March, 2012. Accordingly, models have been developed with Sony’s unique "RGBW Coding" function, which facilitates low noise, high quality image capture even in low light condition, and the proprietary "HDR Movie" function improving color when taking pictures against bright light.
Update: JCN Network adds few more words on the "RGBW Coding" and "HDR Movie" features and product launch schedules.
"...while the individual pixels of the newly developed models are extremely minute at 1.12um, the incorporation of the "RBGW Coding" function has realized a SN ratio (signal-to-noise ratio) equivalent to that of a unit pixel size of 1.4um under conventional methods, which in turn has enables the image sensors to achieve a higher resolution at a more compact size.
The new models are also able to output signals through the conventional RGB method, thus there is no need to change the signal processing adopted in existing devices."
"HDR Movie" uses "two different exposure conditions within a single screen shooting and conducts the appropriate signal processing for the captured image information under each optimal exposure condition. This process generates an image with a broad dynamic range and enables shooting of both the background and subject matter with brilliant colors even in a bright environment."
"Upcoming product launches (plan):
- Type 1/4 Stacked CMOS Image Sensor with approx. 8.0 effective megapixels (equipped with camera signal processing function) - Sample shipments planned for March, 2012
- Type 1/3.06 Stacked CMOS Image Sensor with approx. 13.0 effective megapixels (equipped with "RGBW Coding" and "HDR Movie" functions) - Sample shipments planned for June, 2012
- Type 1/4 Stacked CMOS Image Sensor with approx. 8.0 effective megapixels (equipped with "RGBW Coding" and "HDR Movie" functions) - Sample shipments planned for August, 2012"
Update #2: Another Sony PR shows "RGBW Coding" advantage at low light and "HDR Movie" video (Youtube version):
|Comparison of Sample pictures in low-light setting (10 lux)|