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QPAF (quad pixel) sensor patent application
Canon over the past 1-2 years has done several quad pixel patents, or some of the patent application embodiments for dual pixel sensors have also included quad arrays (or even more pixels as well. I think there was an Octa-Pixel patent as well)
One of the problems with dual pixel is that it's less sensitive in the portrait direction because now at least, all the split pixels are aligned vertically.
Quad pixel helps eliminate that by having the pixel split into 4 allowing for sensitivity in both horizonal and vertical directions.
Another way of doing this is to alternate the direction of the pixels, however I would imagine that computationally that may be more difficult.
This patent has to do with improving the highlight headroom or in reality, DR of a quad pixel design.
To increase the subject brightness measurable in other direction, even if sacrificing distance accuracy somewhat in one direction parallel with the imaging surface, when performing distance measurement processing by using a microlens and a plurality of photoelectric conversion elements, in an imaging apparatus.
Japan Patent Application 2017-162985
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