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Canon patent on a hybrid pellicle mirror SLR
In the past we have found patents dealing with hybrid viewfinders to allow the use of the main image sensor and optical viewfinder on the same camera body.
One of the advantages of mirrorless (and thus, a hyrbid solution) is to allow the image sensor do the AF operation. This removes any possible alignment errors between the traditional AF sensor and SLR sub-mirror to the image sensor.
However, SLR's are not really built for that so the solutions are complex.
This solution uses a semi transparent mirror for the "SLR" operation allowing some light to hit the image sensor for AF operations, while also allowing light to enter in the optical viewfinder assembly at the same time. Similar to what the Sony SLT's do. However, with a twist.
If the camera detects the user isn't using the optical viewfinder it simply flips the pellicle mirror out of the way since it's not needed. it also flips it out of the way when taking an image.
This is a darn easy and nice way of allowing for on sensor AF with an optical viewfinder and also allowing for ease of flipping in between optical viewfinder and LCD viewing at the back of the camera.
Japan Patent Application 2017-161671
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