Sony announces upcoming release of a 127.69 MP Large Format CMOS Image Sensor with a Global Shutter

Screen Shot 2021 03 09 at 15 19 31

Sony has issued a press release stating that they are officially announcing the upcoming release of a large format 56.73mm diagonal CMOS image sensor.

The IMX661 features a global shutter and an effective pixel count of 127.68 megapixels. It has a pixel size of 3.45 μm

Now, before you get too excited this sensor is being targeted for use with industrial equipment and it is not something that is going to be used for any type of still or video camera. There will be both color and black and white versions of this sensor available.

While this is a sensor that has been designed for industrial applications, it may well give us a glimpse at what a potential Sony Large Format sensor for video and still applications could look like.

Image sensor optical size (imaging area) comparison

The sensor’s pixel count yields an optical size that is nearly 10 times larger than a common 1.1-type image sensor that is used with industrial equipment cameras that utilize a C mount. The IMX661 also features Sony’s original global shutter pixel technology “Pregius”, which Sony claims enables the capture of motion distortion-free images. Sony’s interface technology also enables high-speed image readout at a data rate nearly four times faster than conventional products.

Generally, increased pixel count means increased signal processing volume, which causes issues such as a drop in frame rate and longer readout times. In order to realize a high-speed readout, it is necessary to improve the processing functionality of the AD converter which converts the analog signal output from the pixel to digital signals, and at the same time, increases the speed of the output interface.

Device configuration using chip-on-wafer process
Device configuration using chip-on-wafer process

This product features Sony’s original device configuration employing a chip-on-wafer process where chips with certain functions are stacked on top of the pixel wafer, allowing for optimal positioning of the AD converter. This design improves AD converter processing functionality without increasing the size.

The new sensor also employs the Scalable Low Voltage Signaling with Embedded Clock (SLVS-EC) high-speed interface standard developed by Sony. This enables 127.68 megapixels, in 10bit up to 21.8fps.

Sony expects the sensor to be used in industrial equipment cameras for a wide variety of applications such as inspection processes for the production of displays and electronic substrates, wide-area monitoring, and aerial photography.

The color sensor will start shipping in April 2021, and the black and white version in May.

Key Specifications

Model nameIMX661 (color, black and white)
Unit cell size3.45 μm x 3.45 μm (H x V)
Effective pixels13,400 x 9,528 (H x V), 127.68 megapixels
Image sizeDiagonal 56.73 mm (3.6-type)
Active area46.2 mm x 32.9 mm (H x V)
PackageCeramic LGA
Micro lensEPD -100mm (CRA 15.8 degrees)
Power supplyAnalog: 3.3V
Digital: 1.2V
Interface: 1.8V
Output4.7Gbps/lane SLVS-EC 16/8/4 lane
891Mbps/lane SLVS 16 lane
Frame rate14 bit: 12.9 fps
12 bit: 19.6 fps
10 bit: 21.8 fps
Main functionsGlobal shutter, trigger synchronization, ROI, gradation compression, multi-exposure, short exposure, pixel binning readout

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