Is sensor shift (eg IBIS) helpful to improve color accuracy?

I’ve read about cameras such as Pentax that have a Pixel Shift aka sensor shift feature (IBIS) which allows the sensor to be shifted by 1 pixel in all directions to capture 4 or 6 images and combine those into a super resolution image.
(See [this article]( for example)
The added benefit of this feature is that it allows the Bayer matrix interpolation to be bypassed which results in superior image quality and color accuracy.
As long as the camera and the scene remain static, the improvement in image details and color are supposedly very noticeable.
It sounds like something that should be very helpful when digitizing negatives?
I tried searching for similar topics here but couldn’t find anything. Has anyone tried this?


I haven’t tried it, but it’s always been a thing of mine that if I were to switch from a dedicated scanner to using a mirrorless camera for digitizing film, I would want to do it with a camera which has lens shift hi-res for this very reason. Film captures true colour information, so why throw that away with a bayer sensor? Also, it would negate the reason for shooting multiple shots and stitching, unless shooting large format, so it’s another benefit.

I have tried this with my Olympus camera. While I’ve found it useful for getting an image with a higher pixel count (not really beneficial for 35mm-size negatives, but helpful for 120 size and larger) I can’t say I’ve noticed any difference in color accuracy. If your photos often include highly detailed subjects with very specific colors, it certainly might be worth experimenting with this technique… but don’t be surprised if what you discover is what a lot of others have already discovered, which is that Bryce Bayer was really smart! The colors of film images are only chemical approximations of real subject colors anyway, so it’s possible to waste a lot of bandwidth digitizing the inaccurate portion of the data without improving the accurate portion of the data.


I cannot comment on the value of a sensor using pixel shift to digitize negatives. But my understanding is that Pixel Shift and IBIS are not the same thing. Aren’t there some cameras which offer IBIS (In Body Image Stabilization, for the purpose of reducing camera shake) - but which do not offer Pixel Shift (which is for the purpose of increasing resolution)?

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Yes, IBIS is not Sensor Shift multi-shot - some cameras with IBIS don’t offer this feature. However, IBIS is a prerequisite for SSMS as this is how the camera moves the sensor in sub-pixel increments to build up a true-colour and high-res image.

With my Panasonic S1R I definitely notice a big difference when shooting and downsampling a pixel shifted frame vs a standard one.

It is a good idea to do pixel shift with Pentax K1 when digitalizing film. Needs 25 seconds to process.