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Presented is a new method for implementing sensor arrays for in vitro recording of neural action potentials. A key feature of the system is that it is divided into two parts, i.e. neural activity detection and neural recording, which softens key design trade-offs such as noise, power, sensor pitch, and observability. The term observability is defined as the percentage of the total sensors that can be monitored in real time. This system should provide high observability, low noise, low power and reasonable pitch with all these key specifications within acceptable limits compared to the state-of-the-art work where at least one of these key specifications is severely sacrificed in the pursuit of others. A 16×16 sub-array system for in vitro neural front-end recording has been implemented in 0.35 m CMOS and electrical measurement results are presented.