Newly developed image processing engine
Electric circuitry design chief Toshiaki Nakahira reassembled the image processing engine from the bottom-up. He reworked and redesigned each circuit one at a time to determine how the electric signals input by the CCD would be processed. On top of that, he was tasked with delivering the "same quality simultaneous with noise reduction in high sensitivity shooting." Nakahira says, "In general, the point to gaining good quality at high sensitivity is how high we can get the S/N ratio *, but we felt that merely pursuing a specific value was not what was expected from this camera. We went about designing picture quality without ever forgetting to ask whether this quality was suited for the GR."
"I'm confident that the quality we designed is convincing," boasts Nakahira. "It was a major theme, but yet one that we accomplished."
- *S/N ratio: Ratio of noise (N) to signal (S)
For a more beautiful GR blue
Takuro Naito worked on quality design with Toshiaki Nakahira. In his words, "Everyday, I took pictures outdoors with prototypes to see if the sky blue users referred to as 'GR blue' was coming out like with the GR DIGITAL. Pursuing just the sky will cause the colors of buildings and flowers to come out strange, so it was all trial and error to find the parameters for the best image processing. I was elated when the GR ENGINE II was competed and I was able to take high quality pictures!"
Layout design for high picture quality
Along with the image processing engine, the camera's internal layout design contributed to enhanced picture quality. "We added a mechanism to reposition the CCD for higher picture quality. This mechanism more accurately forms the image carried on the light from the lens, on the CCD. These changes brought out the high potential of the GR lens even more," explains Yusuke Suzuki, who was in charge of barrel mechanism design. We worked carefully to shorten the distance from the CCD to the image engine. When this distance is long, data is affected by electrical influences along the way, which comes out as noise," tells Suzuki.