Mehul DasJun 24, 2022 13:07:33 IST
Samsung officially unveiled a new smartphone camera sensor that has a resolution of 200MP. The new sensor is actually the third generation of their ISOCELL HP sensor.
The first sensor in this series, the ISOCELL HP1, was actually the first smartphone camera sensor that was 200MP, but it was never shipped in official phones. However, a Motorola phone is in the pipeline with the ISOCELL HP1.
Samsung has already started shipping samples to vendors and other smartphone manufacturers, and they plan to start mass production and shipping these sensors by the end of this year.
Currently, Sony dominates the smartphone camera market. Leading smartphone manufacturers from all around the world have been using sensors from Sony, and this includes Samsung, as well as Apple. Samsung is looking to disrupt Sony’s stronghold over the market.
Samsung’s first generation ISOCELL HP1 200MP sensor will first appear in a Motorola phone. Samsung had decided that the ISOCELL HP1 sensor did not meet their requirements so they decided to keep improving on it.
The ISOCELL HP3 is that it features 0.56-micron pixels, allowing Samsung to produce a smaller 1/1.14-inch camera sensor format, while its predecessor, the ISOCELL HP2 offered 0.64-micron pixels that paved the way for a 1/1.22–inch sensor profile.
The advantage that the HP3 has over HP2 is that the smaller sensor surface area takes up less space, which means other manufacturers won’t have much trouble keeping their phones slim despite equipping them with a 200MP camera sensor.
Samsung recently showcased the chops of its latest camera sensor by taking cat pictures and printing out a giant canvas that was bigger than the size of a basketball court. The goal was to showcase the terrific levels of detail that the camera can capture.
The ISOCELL HP3 also comes with a number of software tweaks for better results. For example it uses Tetra2 (or Tetra Square) pixel-binning technology that merges 16 adjacent pixels to create a larger pixel capable of absorbing more light data to produce brighter and more detailed photos, especially in challenging situations.
Samsung is also levelling up the auto-focusing game with the ISOCELL HP3 sensor. Samsung’s camera division adopted the new Super QPD tech that arms each pixel with auto-focusing capabilities and relies on a system that puts a single lens over four-adjacent pixels to detect the phase differences in both horizontal and vertical directions.
The end results are more accurate colours and a faster focus lock experience. Samsung is also shifting to an upgraded Smart ISO Pro feature for HDR imaging. Instead of a dual-ISO approach that combines two images captured at high and low ISO settings to produce the final HDR shot, the new version relies on a triple-shot approach for taking a trio of images at three different ISO levels (low, mid, and high) to produce an even wider dynamic range.
Samsung also increased the 10-bit and 12-bit capture all the way up to 14-bit RAW capture. For video recording, the new Samsung sensor is capable of native 8K recording without any cropping, while 4K videos can be shot at a frame rate of up to 120fps. Full-HD slo-mo videos at 480fps.
The new 200MP sensor from Samsung likely won’t appear in a Samsung Galaxy phone this year, as camera upgrades are usually reserved for Galaxy S flagships. The most obvious bet would be the Galaxy S23 Ultra, which will likely break cover in Q1 2023. In all likelihood, Samsung’s new ISOCELL HP3 may be seen in Chinese brands like Vivo and Oppo, in their Find X series and X Series flagships.