The XL1 maximizes the capability of the DV format by using a 3CCD system with a separate CCD for each primary color (red, green, blue). A beam-splitting prism precisely separates the light passing through the lens into individual color components, and each is sent to its own CCD. This process achieves outstanding detail with highly accurate color reproduction suitable for the demands of the high-end production field - wide dynamic range, low color noise, natural color resolution and low aliasing.
Vertical Smear Reduction:
Shooting subjects in high light areas is handled up to professional standards with the XL1. Vertical white streaks from bright light sources are greatly reduced.
Canon solves common shooting dilemmas with a larger pixel size and the process of Pixel Shift, which gives wider dynamic range, better low light, reduced vertical smears, and high quality still images without sacrificing the highest resolution.
The Process of Pixel Shift
The green component of a video signal contains 60% of the picture detail whereas the red and blue components comprise only 40%. We physically shifted the green CCD the equivalent distance of 1/2 pixel horizontally from the red and blue CCD, then electronically shifted the green signal 1/2 pixel vertically.
Why has Canon done this?
Shifting the green CCD increases the sampling points, resulting in a rival for 410K pixel CCD systems in terms of resolution, while providing numerous advantages. It responds to the demands for the highest DV picture quality, combined with exceptional low light, wider dynamic range, minimal vertical smear and superior digital still images.
Super High Resolution and Super Low Light
The XL1 incorporates 1/3-inch 3CCD image sensors, each with 270,000 pixels, specifically designed for freedom when shooting under extremely low light conditions. The size of each pixel is 72 square microns. That's 150% larger than the pixel-size on comparable models. The result is an overall 4dB improvement (approx.) in sensitivity.