Polaroid Brings Foveon Sensor to Point-and-Shoot Consumers

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November 1, 2004 – Last week, Polaroid announced a digital camera that uses Foveon sensors to measure colors at each pixel position. The Polaroid x530 is the first consumer point-and-shoot camera to utilize the Foveon CMOS sensor, although some Sigma digital SLRs currently use the sensors. Announced in February 2004, the Polaroid x530 is now available in the United Kingdom.

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While the camera is the first to include this technology on an entry-level model, the Polaroid x530 has only 1.5 megapixels. Although it does have 4.5 million photo sensors because there are three sensors stacked on each pixel. Most digital cameras use a RGB filter that measures one color at each pixel location, then estimates what the colors should be based on surrounding pixel colors.

This camera is a product of collaboration from various manufacturers. The Polaroid x530 sports a 3x optical zoom made by Ricoh. The body was manufactured by Hong Kong-based World Wide Licenses Ltd. The camera has a 2-inch color LCD display, JPEG or RAW files modes, manual and automatic white balance, four flash modes and a 30 frame per second movie mode. The Polaroid x530 records to SD cards and can download through USB or AV-out cables. The digital camera will sell for about £300 or US $550.

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