CMOS vs. CCD

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by HawaiiMacAddict, May 30, 2007.

  1. HawaiiMacAddict macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    Aloha everyone,

    I am a photog newbie, having used mainly the point-and-shoot cameras. That being said, I would like to actually learn how to properly set up and shoot a great picture. To that end, I am in the market for a digital SLR and have been considering the Canon EOS Digital Rebel XTi, but noticed that it uses CMOS instead of CCD. I've read that CCDs are inherently better than CMOS, but would like to hear what actual photographers have to say on the subject.

    Is there really that much of a difference, in print quality, between pictures from a CMOS camera, as opposed to a CCD camera? Keep in mind that my intended uses are not large prints, but 8x10 or smaller. This is a camera I will be most likely keeping for several years, and I'm reasonably sure that this camera will do a very nice job, but would like to request any information on personal choice on CMOS vs. CCD, and why that choice was made.

    Mahalo in advance for your responses,

    :apple:HawaiiMacAddict
     
  2. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

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    Northern/Central VA
    #2
    There's essentially no difference, my customers can't tell the difference between 8x10s shot with a Fuji FinePix S2Pro CCD and a Nikon D2x CMOS sensor. CMOS and LBCAST are actually a little easier to work with engineering-wise since they're more active than a CCD. It's one of the last criteria I'd use for choosing a camera *unless* ultra-long exposures were going to be the norm- but outside of that, there's no real reason to use it as a selection criteria.

    The Rebel XTi will be good for prints at least up to 11x14.
     
  3. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #3
    Yeah, CCDs are inherently better than CMOS. I do "play" with MOS quite a bit. I really can't explain at MR why CMOS sensors are not as good, but it really isn't and will show as time goes by.

    And besides, when you consider the fact that a MOS-based sensor is cheaper to produce than a CCD (or at least CMOS sensors SHOULD be cheaper.....), you wonder why everyone still uses CCD if MOS was actually better. ;) In fact, Sony produces both, and uses a CMOS in their DSC-R1 camera, which is a "bridging" camera that's more expensive than a base model DSLR. When they decided to make the Sony Alpha-100 DSLR, they went with CCD.

    Right now, the photo quality from the two sensors is very close. You can tell just by comparing RAW output from two 10 MP cameras (eg: Nikon D80 and Canon 400D/XTi). You'd be happy with a DSLR using either sensor.
     
  4. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

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    Northern/Central VA
    #4
    For some things, like DR they are, for other things like blooming they're not.

    Overall they tend to have more advantages than disadvantages except for point things like high-speed crop mode where CMOS is the one true way. Power and heat issues are easier to tame with CMOS, noise and sensitivity on CCD.

    Some links:

    http://www.dalsa.com/shared/content/Photonics_Spectra_CCDvsCMOS_Litwiller.pdf
    http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/question362.htm

    Having actively shot with both though, I'll say that if I put two pictures side-by-side you couldn't tell which was with a CCD camera and which was with CMOS.
     
  5. HawaiiMacAddict thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    Aloha compuwar and Abstract,

    This was exactly what I wanted to see - honest opinions from real users, not some tech writer whose bias I can't determine. I'm leaning towards the XTi as it will most definitely suit my needs, and I think it will probably last me a good long while.

    Mahalo again for your comments and links,

    :apple:HawaiiMacAddict
     
  6. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #6
    If you can, try one against one or two competitive models- depending on the type of shooting you do, ergonomics will play a part in how happy you are with a particular body. However, unless you plan on routinely printing above 11x14, the XTi should work well for you. The times I've shot with Canon XT and XTi bodies, I've had no issues with image quality. Expect 4-5 years of good service from a digital body and 8-15 years from your lenses.
     

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