Published: Wed, July 25, 2018
IT | By Jonathon Greene

Sony IMX586 image sensor for smartphones announced

Sony IMX586 image sensor for smartphones announced

'The new Sony sensor features 48 effective megapixels, *2 a pixel count which rivals that of high-performance SLR cameras, making it possible to capture lovely, high-resolution images even with a smartphone'.

One of the "world's first" claims on the new sensor is that it has the smallest pixels - at 0.8µm.

"The increased pixel count enables high-definition imaging even on smartphones which use digital zoom", notes Sony. The ultra-small pixels mean that the new image sensor comes in at just 8mm diagonal despite the impressive pixel count.

With the new revelation, Sony has raised the smartphone camera standards to a whole new level. But today, the Japanese company has successfully revolutionalized the smartphone camera industry.

The new sensor uses the Quad Bayer color filter array, where adjacent 2×2 pixels come in the same color, making high-sensitivity shooting possible.

Quad Bayer is not a completely novel addition. In fact, more megapixels can actually work against photos taken in low light. When shooting in low light, the data from these 4-pixel grids are combined and interpreted as 1.6μm pixels with double the size, allowing bright, low-noise 12-megapixel photos to be captured.

Sony will start shipping samples of the IMX586 camera sensor in September 2018, which means that the first smartphones sporting this sensor are expected to ship in early 2019.

Finally, Sony says that this sensor is better placed for HDR capture because it has a four times great dynamic range than other sensors.

The IMX586 sensor has dethroned the Nokia Lumia 1020's 41MP camera, which in itself beat the Huawei P20 Pro's 40MP sensor earlier this year.

Before we forget, the sensor is also capable of recording 4K footage at an outstanding 90 frames second, 1080p video at 240 frames per second and 720p clips at 480 frames per second.

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