Stands for "Charged Coupled Device." CCDs are sensors used in digital cameras and video cameras to record still and moving images. The CCD captures light and converts it to digital data that is recorded by the camera. For this reason, a CCD is often considered the digital version of film.

The quality of an image captured by a CCD depends on the resolution of the sensor. In digital cameras, the resolution is measured in Megapixels (or thousands of or pixels. Therefore, an 8MP digital camera can capture twice as much information as a 4MP camera. The result is a larger photo with more detail.

CCDs in video cameras are usually measured by physical size. For example, most consumer digital cameras use a CCD around 1/6 or 1/5 of an inch in size. More expensive cameras may have CCDs 1/3 of an inch in size or larger. The larger the sensor, the more light it can capture, meaning it will produce better video in low light settings. Professional digital video cameras often have three sensors, referred to as "3CCD," which use separate CCDs for capturing red, green, and blue hues.

Updated 2006

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