A few years ago, some Leica M9 cameras were affected by sensor corrosion. If you haven’t replaced them by now – well, now it’s officially too late. Leica has discontinued the M9’s CCD sensor and you can no longer replace a sensor in your camera. Instead, you can only buy a new one.
A lot of us modify our gear to make things better suit the tasks we need them to perform. Sometimes we do it just to speed up workflow a little. Rarely, however, are the modifications quite as extreme as the Nikon D5500a from Primaluce Lab. Based on a Nikon D5500 this camera has had the stock CMOS sensor switched out for a CCD. They also added a pretty hardcore cooling system.
The reason for this is astrophotography. It’s a pretty common fact that CCD sensors tend to do much better than CMOS sensors for this type of photography. But, the big problem with CCD sensors for long exposures is the build up of noise over time due to heat. I used to see this in my old Nikon D100 bodies which used CCD sensors. Anything exposures over about 10-15 seconds were packed full of noise.
Sensors are not as trivial a film. At least for me the simplicity of chemistry was always simpler than the magic of electronics.
Vimeo user Raymond Siri created two quick, yet informative animations for Canon that illustrate how CCD and CMOS sensors work.
The movies show how the light is filtered accumulated and then they show the difference in how the data is sent for storage.