In the present work, we describe innovative approaches and properties that can be added to the already popular thin film optically variable devices (OVD) used on banknotes. We show two practical examples of OVDs, namely (i) a pair of metameric filters offering a hidden image effect as a function of the angle of observation as well as a specific spectral property permitting automatic note readability, and (ii) multi-material filters offering a side-dependent color shift. We first describe the design approach of these new devices followed by their sensitivity to deposition errors especially in the case of the metameric filters where slight thickness variations have a significant effect on the obtained colors. The performance of prototype filters prepared by dual ion beam sputtering (DIBS) is shown.© (2006) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.