Old writing back in 1998 - may not apply now.
An CCD sensor used in the Rollei DSP 104 Digital Scan Back
Charge-Coupled Device (CCD) sensor
CCDs (Charge Coupled Devices) a solid-state chip containing a series of tiny, light-sensitive photosites and was originally developed by Honeywell (and it won a legal case took against ALL major camera makers including Minolta, who first popularizing autofocus camera with the original Maxxum, and other major makers like Canon, Nikon, Pentax in which have performed a out of court settlement with infringement of the copyrights a few years ago). It forms like the heart of all electronic and digital cameras. CCD's can be thought of as film for electronic cameras, but they are also found in video cameras and desktop scanners. CCDs consist of thousands or even millions of cells, each of which is light-sensitive and capable of producing varying amounts of charge in response to the amount of light they receive.
Similar to a video camera, digital camera use the lens which focuses the image onto a Charge Coupled Device (CCD), which then converts the image into electrical pulses. These pulses are then saved into memory In short, Just as the film in a conventional camera records an image when light hits it, the CCD records the image electronically The photosites convert light into electrons. The electrons pass through an analog-to-digital converter, which produces a file of encoded digital information in which bits represent the color and tonal values of a subject. CCD's are usually arranged as either a line of cells or a rectangular (a square is also a type of rectangle) array of cells. Both types of sensors can be used in digital imaging backs and cameras. Sensors employing video technology have rectangular pixels, while sensors with square pixels were created specifically for use on computerThe performance of a CCD is often measured by its output resolution, which in turn is a function of the number of photosites on the CCD's surface. The CCD employ in the top of the line Kodak DCS-460 digital camera has 3060 photosites on its horizontal axis and 2036 photosites on its vertical axis (that's how it reads in the advertisement they put Megapixel CCD (3060 x 2060 pixels) ). On output, the photo sites deliver an effective resolution of six million pixels.
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