Thanks to our more experienced readers we can share some additional info on the Sony patent describing a set of medium format camera lenses designed for a curved sensor:
1) The patent describes a broad use for this camera: “is applied to a telescope, a digital camera, etc.“. This is usual on patents because you want to cover as much areas of use as possible. An example is that on any camera patent Sony writes the camera could have a CCD or CMOS sensor even if all their new cameras keep using CMOS sensor only.
But that this is unlikely a pure astronomical camera is somehow proved by the fact that the patent also shows non-telephoto lenses which certainly are not ideal for industrial astronomy use (example is the 50mm FF equivalent lens which makes much more sense on classic photo cameras).
2) These are the five lenses patented for a 645 medium format camera with curved sensor. But first another important note: Sony Patents almost always have unusual focal length specs that will be rounded up once the lens gets produced (a 84mm lens will become 85mm or 258mm can become 250mm or 260mm). Also be aware that those are focal lengths on a 645 and not an FF camera. A 85mm lens is actually a 50mm lens (0.62 crop). So here are the patented lens specs:
- 387mm f/2.8 (lens length: 679mm) – in Full Frame terms this is a 240mm f/1.7 (using online calculator)
- 323mm f/2.8 (lens length: 576mm) – in Full Frame terms this is a 200mm f/1.7
- 258mm f/2.8 (lens length: 380mm) – in Full Frame terms this is a 160mm f/1.7
- 161mm f/2.8 – in Full Frame terms this is a 100mm f/1.7
- 84mm f/2.9 (lens length: 123mm) – in Full Frame terms this is a 52mm f/1.7 (it would be 2cm longer than the Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 FE)
Mistral shared to use these drawings from the patent and added the lens specs info (Thanks):
What’s clear form the patent is:
- that these lenses do have a very simple design (thanks to the curved sensor)
- that they are big lenses but also very fast (f/1.7 FF equivalent)
- made for high Resolution sensors (thanksto their very high MTF)
No consumer available camera on the market so far could compete against this beast.