Tag Archives: chip

Samsung ISOCELL GN2 does 480fps!

The hegemony of phone sensors has been the purview of Sony with their Exmor sensors for many years but now Samsung has started making inroads in the space with their ISOCELL chips. The latest is currently mass-produced and shipping in handsets already which is not a paper launch, but a real thing. The chip is capable of massive low light improvement compared to other sensors because it is essentially a near 1″ sensor with 1/1.12-inch measurements. This is close to what Sony RX cameras use as a main sensor, and a first for a phone.

As to how they are able to fit this sensor on phones, it is a dance between a protruding camera bump that is a little larger than usual and also a lens system that creates a full imaging circle from a minute distance. The GN2 is capable of recording 480fps in HD 720p, 4k 120fps, 30fps in 12.5MP windowed size and 10fps in 100MP mode which uses a clever algorithm and three RGB exposures to derive a 100MP image from the 50MP source. → Continue Reading Full Post ←

Nikon Stacked CMOS Sensor Will do 1000fps in 4k!

Nikon Stacked CMOS Sensor

Nikon Japan has been busy creating the next generation of 1″ stacked sensors.  The latest is a 17.84 Megapixel stacked design with hyper-fast memory interconnect that shoots up to 1000fps at 4k resolution which is no slouch. The sensor is still in development but it will be a possibility to see it in a camera that could compete head to head with the Sony RX series which now dominate prosumer P&S sales.  It was announced at ISSCC (International Solid-State Circuits Conference) held in San Francisco, February 15, 2021.

The sensor works by shooting in buckets of 16 x 16 pixels as one block, and then subsequently 264 x 264 pixel blocks (4224 x 4224 pixels) are conformed to form the final image at nearly 18MP.  It is unclear at this time if 4k video will be a windowed resolution or a supersampled then reduced final image from the full sensor.  The market for this sensor goes beyond consumer cameras as it is aimed at other applications like self-driving cars and production lines. → Continue Reading Full Post ←

iPhone Xs Slow Motion Official Apple Sample!

Apple has released a preview video showing the video capabilities of the iPhone Xs in 4k 30, 4k 60 and slow motion 1080p 240fps.  You can see in the liquid and sound part of the demo the quality delivered by the full HD slow motion but it is hard to judge per pixel sharpness and or artifacts from such a short high shutter video. We will need more real-world samples in order to see if there has been an improvement from the iPhone X of 2017.

We have isolated a part of the footage to see the slow-motion compression and we could detect aliasing in the edges, softness and compression artifacts which are typical of mobile phone high frame rates. The iPhone Xs seems to still have them to some degree. Color and motion on the codec seem to be excellent especially in 4k which looks extremely detailed and with more than acceptable dynamic range.

iPhone Xs First Shot On Footage Sample:

Shot on iPhone XS – Experiments in 4K, Slo-mo, and Time-lapse by Apple:


As you can appreciate from Apple’s cool demo movie the iPhone Xs is capable of excellent results in controlled situations and should easily achieve the best color and resolution in 4k and the rest of the video modes compared to previous iPhone releases.  4k 60p footage seems to be a clear step up from earlier attempts by Apple and the increased memory and processing along with a better codec implementation seem to be taking it one step above last year’s iPhone X and iPhone 8.

In the Frame Grab below you can see the typical softness and aliasing associated with higher frame rates on mobile devices. The iPhone Xs seems to be skipping lines and throwing away some information at the 240fps slow motion frame rate.

We will have more samples from the iPhone Xs as soon as they become available. From what we have seen so far it seems that if you are an iPhone user, you simply can’t go wrong with an iPhone Xs or Xs Max for images and video capture.

Marques Brownlee has added his initial honest review of the iPhone Xs Max which shows that the phones are just refinements and not really a big step up.

Apple iPhone Xs Review: A (S)mall Step Up! by Marques Brownlee: → Continue Reading Full Post ←

iPhone Xs Slow Motion Lacks Improvement!

iPhone Xs Slow Motion

Apple just released 3 new iPhones and a 4th generation watch.  These are all about the screen and speed and not really big new capabilities. It is all refinement and flawless execution but video fans will look at these phones as a continuation of last year’s specs with a better codec and possibly better bit rates and image quality but not much else. The iPhone X and 8 still remain relevant which is expected in an “s” upgrade cycle.

Gone are the big leaps of frame rates and Apple is capping at 1080p 240fps while completely ignoring rivals like the Galaxy S9, OnePlus 6 and Sony Xperia XZ series when it comes to super slow motion video. Apple was at the forefront of these technologies with the iPhone 6 but now have really rested on their laurels while the competition leapfrogs in video capabilities when it comes to frame rates. Others will point out that even when the high speed is restricted you will now get better quality footage in all modes which is certainly an upgrade.

iPhone Xs Video Recording:

  • 4K video recording at 24 fps, 30 fps, or 60 fps
  • 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps or 60 fps
  • 720p HD video recording at 30 fps
  • Extended dynamic range for video up to 30 fps
  • Optical image stabilization for video
  • 2x optical zoom; digital zoom up to 6x
  • Quad-LED True Tone flash
  • Slo‑mo video support for 1080p at 120 fps or 240 fps
  • Time‑lapse video with stabilization
  • Cinematic video stabilization (1080p and 720p)
  • Continuous autofocus video
  • Take 8MP still photos while recording 4K video
  • Playback zoom
  • Video geotagging
  • Video formats recorded: HEVC and H.264
  • Stereo recording
  • A12 Bionic chip
  • Next-generation Neural Engine

Introducing iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR — by Apple:


iPhone Xs Camera Specs:

  • Dual 12MP wide-angle and telephoto cameras
  • Wide-angle: ƒ/1.8 aperture
  • Telephoto: ƒ/2.4 aperture
  • 2x optical zoom; digital zoom up to 10x
  • Portrait mode with advanced bokeh and Depth Control
  • Portrait Lighting with five effects (Natural, Studio, Contour, Stage, Stage Mono)
  • Dual optical image stabilization
  • Six‑element lens
  • Quad-LED True Tone flash with Slow Sync
  • Panorama (up to 63MP)
  • Sapphire crystal lens cover
  • Backside illumination sensor
  • Hybrid IR filter
  • Autofocus with Focus Pixels
  • Tap to focus with Focus Pixels
  • Smart HDR for photos
  • Wide color capture for photos and Live Photos
  • Local tone mapping
  • Advanced red-eye correction
  • Exposure control
  • Auto image stabilization
  • Burst mode
  • Timer mode
  • Photo geotagging
  • Image formats captured: HEIF and JPEG

iPhone Xs TrueDepth Camera:

  • 7MP camera
  • ƒ/2.2 aperture
  • Portrait mode with advanced bokeh and Depth Control
  • Portrait Lighting with five effects (Natural, Studio, Contour, Stage, Stage Mono)
  • Animoji and Memoji
  • 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps or 60 fps
  • Smart HDR for photos
  • Extended dynamic range for video at 30 fps
  • Cinematic video stabilization (1080p and 720p)
  • Wide color capture for photos and Live Photos
  • Retina Flash
  • Backside illumination sensor
  • Auto image stabilization
  • Burst mode
  • Exposure control
  • Timer mode

The cameras on all three phones share the same frame rates which go from 120fps 1080p to 240fps at the same resolution. 4k footage still shoots at a maximum of 60fps but now has the ability to shoot in extended dynamic range mode at 30p which is similar to what the Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ3 series of phones do. We may see the iPhone as the go-to phone for the best quality 4k footage on a handset with Sony being similar or a close second.

iPhone Xs 2018 Pricing:

  • iPhone Xs from $999
  • iPhone Xs Max from $1,099
  • iPhone XR from $749

The OLED panels on the Xs and the Xs Max are similar to what we see on the Sony XZ3  but with a much more expensive entry point. There is no denying that these are the best iPhones released by the company as they are refined super-fast systems with an excellent design but they are not a reason to upgrade even from the still very capable iPhone 8 plus.

5 things that are smaller than the screen on Apple’s new iPhone Xs Max by Washington Post: → Continue Reading Full Post ←

iPad Pro Refresh Matches iPhone Slowmo Specs!

iPad Pro

The newly released iPad Pro 2017 refresh in both 10.5 and 12.9 inches share a new camera module that really is a direct transfer from the iPhone 7.  It makes sense for Apple to offer their best camera yet in the best iPad they have ever built when it comes to performance.  However, you will not get anything in the camera department that makes the iPad Pro a leap forward in frame rates or other imaging specs.

The dual camera setup of the iPhone 7 Plus is not included in the iPad Pro so that is one aspect where the iPhone is still ahead.  The new tablets are for all intents and purposes a refinement with speed and software productivity capabilities as the two main goals for the line. They want to be a laptop replacement and they are aiming at the crowd who is fed up with the weight and bulk of traditional laptops.

Main Camera:
  • 12-megapixel camera
  • ƒ/1.8 aperture
  • Digital zoom up to 5x
  • Optical image stabilization
  • Six‑element lens
  • Quad-LED True Tone flash (Finally)
  • Panorama (up to 63 megapixels)
  • Sapphire crystal lens cover
  • Backside illumination sensor
  • Hybrid IR filter
  • Autofocus with Focus Pixels
  • Tap to focus with Focus Pixels
  • Live Photos with stabilization
  • Wide color capture for photos and Live Photos
  • Improved local tone mapping
  • Body and face detection
  • Exposure control
  • Noise reduction
  • Auto HDR for photos
  • Auto image stabilization
  • Burst mode
  • Timer mode
  • Photo geotagging
Video Recording Specs:
  • 4K video recording at 30 fps
  • 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps or 60 fps
  • 720p HD video recording at 30 fps
  • Optical image stabilization for video
  • Optical zoom at 2x
  • Quad-LED True Tone flash
  • Slo‑mo video support for 1080p at 120 fps and 720p at 240 fps!
  • Time‑lapse video with stabilization
  • Cinematic video stabilization (1080p and 720p)
  • Continuous autofocus video
  • Body and face detection
  • Noise reduction
  • Take 8-megapixel still photos while recording 4K video
  • Playback zoom
  • Video geotagging

The new iPad Pro 10.5 and 12.9 || Apple WWDC 2017 Keynote by Apple /Panagiotis K. Tsioufis


FaceTime HD Camera:

  • 7-megapixel photos
  • 1080p HD video recording
  • Retina Flash
  • ƒ/2.2 aperture
  • Wide color capture for photos and Live Photos
  • Auto HDR
  • Backside illumination sensor
  • Body and face detection
  • Auto image stabilization
  • Burst mode
  • Exposure control
  • Timer mode

The Microsoft Surface tablets are class segment leaders when it comes to taking work on the road and the new iPad Pro refresh aims to steal that thunder from those sales. We are still not convinced it will make sense for the majority of content producers like video, image editing, and audio producers to dump their laptops in exchange for an iPad Pro.  The

The Surface, for example, allows for full applications like the Adobe creative suite to be installed and used with a mouse and keyboard. The iPad Pro is not going to be able to run your favorite desktop applications. However, the trend of having your mobile device be it a phone or tablet be your primary computing platform will make it possible to transfer your workload to a portable device that can dock to a larger display at work or home to continue working.

The PC and Mac installed base continues to dwindle, it will still be possible to buy such devices in the future but you will have more portable options in tablet / phone form to contend for your productivity needs.

Slow Motion on iPad Pro:

So what has been gained from the 2016 iPad Pro when it comes to slow motion? in a word… nothing!

The 2016 iPad Pro had 240fps 720p and 120fps at 1080p the exact same specs.  The camera is however improved in the lens and sensor module which will yield better compression, better low light and dynamic range along with a slightly brighter f1.8 vs f2.2 lens aperture which is always good to have for higher shutter speeds.

If you already own an iPad Pro and you are thinking of upgrading for the camera module, then it makes sense if you need slightly improved image quality but not for gaining frame rates. You will end up with overall better compression and artifact handling but no new frame rates.  It would have been ideal to have a 240fps 1080p spec thrown in as a differentiator.   You do get a flash module which was absent in the original iPad pro which made no sense. This is a step in the right direction!

Mobile slow motion macro video with iPhone / iPad 2016 by Makro Dünyası:

You may say the 2017 refresh while important in speed, display and memory makes little difference and shows Apple to be playing it safe with the design and specs of the tablet.  Many people love the iPad Pro first gen and will probably also absorb a 2017 iPad Pro refresh if in need for a new tablet or exchanging it for the last model. We see no need to upgrade but it should factor in as a consideration if buying a new device.  Apple has always done well with the slow motion specs even while pegging the performance to 240fps 720p at the maximum.

Apple has always done a good job with the slow motion specs even while pegging the performance to 240fps 720p at the maximum.   It is kind of a good enough spec and they will probably refrain from updating until forced to do it.  The Sony Xperia phone with 720p at 960fps may do just that and force Apple to adopt the Sony Stacked sensor design for offering competitive video features. We can only sit and wait for that to happen.  If you are going for slow motion alone the Sony Xperia XZ and XZ Premium make more sense even with the time and resolution limitations.

SLOW MOTION WITH IPAD PRO by iPad Pro 9.7 Videos:

We will have new samples from the slow motion capabilities of the iPad Pro 2017 when they are shipping and available. The videos above do show teh 2016 model’s capabilities which will be sligtly improved upon on the 2017 model when it comes to compression and artifacts. -HSC

 Pricing and Availability:

The iPad Pro 2017 will be available by the end of June 2017 in a first come first serve pre-order basis.

  • 10.5″ 2017 Model From: $649 USD
  • 12.9″ 2017 Model From: $799 USD

One thing about Apple announcing new device replacements is that the older models go on sale quickly. If you are content with a 2016 iPad Pro this is the time to get one.  From $419 at Amazon.com for example!

More information and full specs about the new iPad Pro at Apple: https://www.apple.com/ipad/

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Samsung Exynos 9 8895 Series 4k 120fps Capable!

Samsung Exynos 9 8895

The new Samsung  Exynos 9 Series 8895 Chipset for smartphones has impressive new specs.  It claims the most advanced 3D and general processing performance for use in flagship smartphones. What interests us a lot is the direct claim that the chip can handle both recording and playback of 4k video at 120fps.

The UHD 4k resolution is 3,840 by 2,160 pixels or 8,294,400 pixels rounded up to 8.3MP per frame.  At 120fps this equates to 995 Megapixels /sec or near one Gigapixel.  This translates exactly to 480fps at 1080p full HD resolution or 1080fps at 720p.  This is quite astounding for bandwidth specs for a phone and opens the door wide open for real super slow motion on Samsung Tablets and Smartphones.

What does it all mean?

Sony is already touting 960fps in their latest Xperia XZ Celphone so it is not out of reality that 4k at 120fps and 1080p 480, 720p 1000fps could be in the cards for a Samsung product this year.  If they implement this chip in the Note 8 or Galaxy S 8 which would be their premium handsets there is a strong chance of impressive video specs on these phones.

The subsystem however will need extreme memory specs as well with several gigabytes dedicated to image sensor acquisition.  Furthermore the frame buffer should be deep enough for at least a couple of seconds of capture. We somehow think that the first implementation of the 4k frame rates will be in step fashion.  That means 4k at 60fps as a start with continuous recording.

We somehow think 480fps at 1080p will not be included anytime soon even when Sony seems to be at the vanguard of frame rates. One thing is clear however and that is the undeniable fact that higher frame rates in ever increasing resolution and quantity will be incorporated more and more in mainstream hardware.   We will continue to cover this chipset as releases evolve.  More information at Samsung here!– HSC

BTW: If you want to see what 120fps at 4k looks like see this RED Epic video. However do not expect this kind of quality from a phone.

Football – Receiving Touchdowns – 4K 120FPS With RED EPIC by virginiaathletics:

Full Exynos 9 – 8895 Samsung Press Release Below:

Seoul, Korea, February 23, 2017 – Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., a world leader in advanced semiconductor technology, today announced the launch of its latest premium application processor (AP), the Exynos 9 Series 8895. This is Samsung’s first processor chipset to take advantage of the most advanced and industry leading 10-nanometer (nm) FinFET process technology with improved 3D transistor structure, which allows up to 27% higher performance while consuming 40% less power when compared to 14nm technology.

The new Exynos 9 Series 8895 is the first processor of its kind to embed a gigabit LTE modem that supports five carrier aggregation, or 5CA. It delivers fast and stable data throughput at max.1Gbps (Cat.16) downlink with 5CA and 150Mbps (Cat.13) uplink with 2CA.

The Exynos 8895 is an octa-core processor, comprising of four of Samsung’s 2nd generation custom designed CPU cores for improved performance and power efficiency in addition to four Cortex®-A53 cores. With Samsung Coherent Interconnect (SCI) technology, the latest processor integrates a heterogeneous system architecture that allows faster computing for a wide range of applications such as artificial intelligence, and deep learning.

The Exynos 8895 also delivers unsurpassed multimedia experience with its powerful GPU and multi-format codec (MFC) as well as next level 3D graphic performance that minimizes latency for 4K UHD VR and gaming experience with ARM®’s latest Mali™-G71 GPU.

“In addition, with its advanced MFC, the processor supports video recording and playback at a maximum resolution of 4K UHD at 120fps.”

It also comes with video processing technology that enables a higher quality experience by enhancing the image quality; for example, for VR(Virtual Reality) applications, the Exynos 8895 delivers a realistic and immersive VR video experience at 4K resolution.

The Exynos 8895 has a separate processing unit for enhanced security solutions required for mobile payments that use iris or fingerprint recognition as well as an embedded Vision Processing Unit (VPU) that can recognize and analyze items or movements for improved video tracking, panoramic image processing, and machine vision technology.

“In addition to being built on the most advanced 10nm FinFET process technology, the new Exynos 9 Series 8895 incorporates Samsung’s cutting-edge technologies including a 2nd generation custom CPU, gigabit LTE modem, and more” said Ben Hur, Vice President of System LSI marketing at Samsung Electronics. “With industry leading technologies like VPU, the Exynos 8895 will drive the innovation of next generation smartphones, VR headsets, and automotive infotainment system.”

The Exynos 9 Series 8895 is currently in mass production.

For more information about Samsung’s Exynos products, please visit www.samsung.com/exynos