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Coming soon: Monochrome D100! (and even D200 or D70)

Discussion in 'Nikon DX DSLR Forum' started by Joseph S. Wisniewski, Dec 19, 2005.

  1. Joseph S. Wisniewski

    Joseph S. Wisniewski

    Aug 11, 2005
    Yup, now that the D2X has settled in as my main camera, the D200 as the backup (roles reversing when I want to shed a pound), and the D70 is scheduled to be traded with a friend for modeling time, that just leaves the D100...

    So, it's "guinie pig" time: cruel and inhuman experiments:8Ball: . One of the "Christmas break" projects is to tear it down, remove the sensor board, breech the chip (pry off the cover glass) pump in hot aliaphatic solvents until the microlenses and the Bayer filters disolve totally and wash away (others who have done this report success with Toluol and Carbon Tet:eek:  , but I'm going to try MEK instead of Carbon Tet first) add a new quartz window to the chip, and put it all back together. No AA filter, because moire is so much harder to see in B&W.

    Then dcRaw decoding the raw file and feeding it into my own little image processor, to equalize the channels, apply a tone curve, and knock noise down a bit, and we're off and running. Just like the good old days...

    Based on my experiments with monochrome images from a Foveon camera, and B&W conversions on D100, D70, and D2X images, I'm expecting a 6mp monochrome D100 image to outresolve a 12mp D2X. If everything works as expected, and there's interest, I may market D70m and D200m this spring ;) 

    I'd expect d200m to outresolve anything else out there, including a 22mp Mamiya ZD medium format digital.
  2. Joseph
    OUCH! that sounds so painful! but just one thing- if your hot aliaphatic solvent can dissolve the microlens and the beyer filter, i have a horrible feeling that it might burn a hole in your sensor as well, i would never even consider doing that to my D70, it's too curel.

    And also, do you think the Raw converters would be able to cope with the un-beyered data? i thought they work by sampling neighbour pixels as well, it would be interesting to see what happens.

    Seeing as you have both a D200 and a D2X though :Shocked:, i think you might as well go for it, you've gotta try it for me!
  3. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Joe :

    Just a quick "heads-up" for the solvents - be sure to have adequate ventilation to protect your health (esp. CCl4). Aside from the chronic toxic effects of solvents, many also can act as intoxicants which can knock you flat. If you do use MEK, be darned careful of ignition sources (e.g., electrical equipment, switches, computers), as the MIE (minimum ignition energy) for MEK is much lower than a number of other solvents. Easy to ignite to a flash and/or explosion with highly undesirable results.

    And since I make my living (in part) looking at these sorts of things, I'm not talking out of my hat. Chlorinated solvents have a pile o' health effects. Heated solvent vapours are a recipe for fire and explosion without taking reasonable precautions. And we don't want to lose any Cafe members to that sort of thing. :wink: PM me if you want to actually chat about anything - I'm glad to help on this stuff.

    That aside...

    Good luck with the conversion ! I'll look forward to your photos.

    John P.
  4. Joseph S. Wisniewski

    Joseph S. Wisniewski

    Aug 11, 2005
    Malfayu, I'm not worried about that, they're entirely different types of chemistry. The sensor is inorganic, silicon crystal with silicon dioxide (glass) coating, aluminum and gold bonding pads and wires. It can take any amount of organic solvents.

    And the opposite is quite true. Things that can destroy the sensor, like nitric acid, won't bother the microlenses or Bayer filters at all. Well, the acid might bleech the filters...
    Mine can :biggrin:
  5. Joseph S. Wisniewski

    Joseph S. Wisniewski

    Aug 11, 2005
    John, thanks for the advice.

    Yup. Carbon Tet is the last resort. And I'v run into the effects you describe before. First time was around 30 years ago, when I was stripping paint on my bike. :tongue: It's a wonder I survived my childhood. My father worked in an automotive paint factory, so we always had cans of Xylene, Toluol, MEK, and Acetone around.
    Ah, you've heard of my MEK powered tennis ball canons. And you haven't lived till you've seen mhy dad start a lawnmower with it. Seriously.:wink:

    Fortunatly, I'm not that kid anymore, the fume hood fans have brushless motors and a spark arresting switch. Heating the solvents is only a last resort if I'm not getting results at room temperature.
    Thanks, and I probably will be taking you up on your offer of help. If this works, and I do more than one of them, I need to get it down to a safe and sane process with a good throughput.
  6. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Joe :

    Heard of them ? I've made a few myself. As for the lawnmower, it's not different than adding butane lighter fluid to the gas tank, especially after sitting all winter and "weathering off" all the lighter end components of the gasoline...

    Thanks for the info. It sounds like you've given this a little thought. Back when I was a fire and explosion investigator, we had a name for people who did this stuff on the spur of the moment thought - we called them statistics. Seriously.

    Drop me a PM as you get closer to the effort for this, and I'll be pleased to "consult" for you on the condition that you do explain how you go about this rather neat trick. I don't plan to compete with you, but I do have a large "bump of curiosity" on my head... :Smart:

    John P.
  7. That sounds absolutely incredible. I'd be first in line for a D200M if you're making them...looking forward to seeing the results!

  8. Very interesting

    Very interesting. Please keep us all informed.

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