3 Tricks to leverage new CMOS technology and upgrade from CCD

Posted by Gretchen Alper on Mon, Apr 11, 2016

We have talked about the move from CCD to CMOS in global security systems with the increase in low light performance (better NIR sensitivity and lower noise) of the latest CMOS global shutter image sensors. 

But upgrades are not just about improving performance. If many of the other components need to be changed as aTMX50_52_side_view.jpg result, the costs to upgrade may not be justified.

Here are a few things to consider that can make the upgrade from CCD cameras to the latest CMOS cameras easier:


  1. No change required for optics and displays – forget about pixel size

There is now a way for any new camera to fit on existing optics and on the existing interface/displays; for example, using a state-of-the-art Quad HD CMOS image sensor to replace an older VGA CCD with larger pixels on VGA displays.

Adimec’s proprietary Adaptive Resolution™ provides the option to emulate the original optical format using programmable digital image down-scaling. Adaptive Resolution (Adimec proprietary) allows the system architect or designer to select a new CMOS image sensor without changing optics and losing dynamic range. 

Adaptive Resolution can be used with a CMOS image sensor with more pixels and with the same (or larger) optical format than the existing cameras. Advanced interpolation algorithms for cropping and scaling in the camera create virtual pixels of the required size (same image format at output).


  1. No space envelope concerns

Fewer parts are required in a CMOS-based cameras allowing for a smaller, lighter outline than CCD cameras of the same or lower resolution.  Smaller and lighter cameras allow for higher resolution, digital cameras to fit within the envelope of existing systems.

Because of the level of integration, CMOS sensors allow for lower power camera designs.   These cameras have higher performance without requiring more space or power from the system.


  1. Reuse existing system cabling

Many legacy global security systems are using older generation interfaces. With the latest CMOS cameras use the CoaXPress interface, this is not an issue. Not only does CoaXPress offer a one flexible cable solution (includes power over cable), but it is also backward compatibly with 75 Ohm Coaxial cable (HD-SDI or even analog). CoaXPress offers very high bandwidth capability moving to 12 Gbps per cable so will also support future upgrades.



And additional benefits with the upgrade from a CCD to CMOS based camera:

  • Get digital zoom capabilities (enabled by Adaptive Resolution)
  • Lower SWaP
  • Improved imaging capabilities for increased identification capability.
  • Easy future upgrades


Related Posts:

CCD vs CMOS see smaller details with CMOS cameras


CCD versus CMOS in global security applications


CCD versus CMOS update 2015


CCD vs. CMOS modulation transfer function MTF in NIR


Comparison of CMOS IMX174 cameras

Topics: CCD vs. CMOS

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