Sony’s Cyber-Shot DSC-F828, an 8-megapixel camera, was launched in 2003. It featured a four-color CCD sensor which it claimed would improve color accuracy. This was the last camera to use this technology.

The RGBE Filter Sensor

The RGBE was developed by Sony to replace the Bayer sensor’s color filter array (RBG). It uses the same pixel filter mosaic in red, green and blue but adds an “emerald” pixel filter. This sensor was designed to produce more colors than other sensors that are closer to human vision.

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828

Sony has only ever created one sensor using this technology, the Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828.

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828

Matt Parson, a YouTuber and photographer, recently discovered a classic Sony camera to experience the difference this sensor makes.

There are two color modes for the camera: “Standard”, and “Real.” The default setting is Standard, which Sony claims makes the photo look “easier to see” and gives the image a lower contrast, brightness, saturation, and contrast. Sony stated that this mode is more suitable if the intention was to edit the image on a computer.

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828

Parson tested the “Real”, mode and found that it produced photos with a significantly better color accuracy than those taken in “Standard.”

Sony F828 real vs standard modes
Sony F828 real vs standard modes
Sony F828 real vs standard modes

He says, “The greens seem more green… The reds, blues, you see there is some kind of color shift taking place here.”
“Whether it’s better or more enjoyable is up to you.

Parson claims that he noticed a green shift in skin tones in photos taken in Standard, which was not occurring in Real.

Sony F828 real vs standard modes
Sony F828 real vs standard modes
Sony F828 real vs standard modes
Sony F828 real vs standard modes

He says, “In Real it just looks more natural.”

Parson encountered more strangeness when he shot RAW. First, he couldn’t find any modern program that could open the files. He noticed that the colors it produced were completely different from the colors he was seeing when he shot in RAW.

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example

Sony’s original CD-based software, which can be used for processing the images, is a saving grace. Parson claims that this software can convert RAW files to look exactly like the original. This is despite not intending to use RAW because the camera records RAW files at a slow speed (up to 10 seconds per image).

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example

But are photos that much better?

This camera’s idea and technology sound fantastic on paper. Parson also took photos with it that look great even in the light of 20-year-old expectations.

However, the Cyber-Shot DSC-828 by Sony was not able to stand out enough from the rest of the pack. It was also not a camera that was highly recommended. Sony dropped the RGBE sensor.

Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example
Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-F828 example

Parson plans to compare the F828 with its contemporaries in future videos, but reviews at the time point out that the F828 has higher levels of noise than its competitors. Many reviewers were also disappointed in the F828’s purple fringing.

In 2005, two years after its release, the camera was retired.