Tag Archives: isocell

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 ←

Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra Slow Motion Mode 1920fps Fake?

Xiaomi has surprised this year with now the Mi 11 Ultra phone which is a big step up from the Mi 11 released earlier this year. The huge difference lies in the size of the sensor which is close to a 1″ camera sensor like those found on the Sony RX camera series for example. The phone has two 48MP sensors and a main 50MP sensor for the main camera with a highly protruding camera bump that really screams for a case to be able to balance well on a flat surface.

The slow motion modes on the phone are rumored to be the garden variety with 120fps/240fps 1080p, 60fps 4k, and also a selfie camera that does 720p 120fps which is becoming commonplace. What is really peaking our interest is the 1920fps slow motion mode that is touted by some reviews. It is unclear what the phone is capable time-wise as the specs are still not all there. The samples we have seen show detail loss and the clear signs of interpolation. → Continue Reading Full Post ←

SONY IMX586 Stacked Sensor 48MP and High Frame Rates!

SONY IMX586 Stacked Sensor

Sony has released specs for a new IMX Cellphone oriented sensor that has a whopping 48 Megapixel photosite grid with a new Bayer altered pattern of quad pixel colors that aims to quadruple the dynamic range of the signal and increase detail retention significantly by supersampling every photosite and creating a final 12MP image with excellent characteristics.

As far as frame rates go we were glad to see very high-end read-out speeds for this sensor as full 4k video can max out at 90fps and other high fps settings include 1080p 240fps full area downsampling and 720p 480fps but with a cropped windowed frame extraction.  At 48MP or 12 regular De-Bayered then we expect the crop to be quite extreme at the 720p mode unless they do a 4 or 6MP downsample.

Sony IMX586 Stacked Sensor Frame Rates:

  • Full Sensor Read-out at 48MP  30fps
  • 4K(4096×2160) : 90fps
  • 1080p : 240fps
  • 720p : 480fps(w/crop)

We do not expect this sensor to be the best match for high-speed imaging, more related to high-end still image quality.  Other Sony IMX Sensors capable of 960fps at full HD 1080p should be available in phone designs going forward as in the Xperia XZ2.

Some experts expect the Sony Xperia XZ3 or XZ4 to feature the first use of this sensor to have a real upper hand on the image quality front.  Now that supersampling is a clear direction for phone sensors due to hitting an upper limit on what traditional pixel sensors can do, we expect to see this technique used in more CMOS designs as phones evolve.  Looking at the image data and samples below you can clearly see that the detail may even rival professional cameras when it comes to dynamic range and detail in good light.

The following data is a direct quote from the official Sony site for the IMX586 here: https://www.sony.net/SonyInfo/News/Press/201807/18-060E/index.html 

Sony IMX586 Stacked Sensor Main Features:

1.World’s first*3 0.8 μm ultra-compact pixel size enables industry’s highest*1 pixel count at 48 effective megapixels*2

Generally, miniaturization of pixels results in poor light collecting efficiency per pixel, accompanied by a drop in sensitivity and volume of saturation signal. This product was designed and manufactured with techniques that improve light collection efficiency and photoelectric conversion efficiency over conventional products, resulting in the world’s first*3 0.8 μm pixel size, with both high sensitivity and high saturation signal level.
This smaller pixel size allows the new product to deliver 48 effective megapixels*2 on a compact unit with 8.0 mm diagonal, which can be fitted on many smartphones. The increased pixel count enables high-definition imaging even on smartphones which use digital zoom. → Continue Reading Full Post ←

Galaxy Note 9 Could Be Best Slow Motion Phone Yet!

With the Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ on the running for the best slow motion smartphone of 2018, recent leaks if confirmed could make the Note 9 an even better proposition for high frame rate enthusiasts.  As with all rumored and leaked info, it could be false or inaccurate when compared to the final specs.  However, this phone is scheduled for an August 9th, 2018 reveal at a special event.

The most encouraging info on the new Phone will be the use of a new ISOCELL sensor capable of full HD recording at 960fps. Which will be a big improvement from the Galaxy S9’s 720p 960fps. That phone only records 0.24sec worth of 960p video so it would be ideal if the Note 9 was able to at least double that time but at full HD resolution.  The phone is expected to cost at least $960 based on the Note 8 price so it will not be cheap to get this kind of performance.

Galaxy Note 9 leaked specs:

  • 6GB of RAM/ 128GB of storage  Standard
  • 8GB/256GB and 8GB/512GB As Pricier Options
  • Samsung ISOCELL technology Camera Module 15% improvement in low light.
  • Full HD Super Slow Motion Feature! (As opposed to HD only on the Galaxy S9) Stacked ISOCELL Sensor
  • Snapdragon 845 For America & South Korea Exynos SoC for the rest of the globe.
  • 4000mAh or 3,850mAh Battery Module
  • Bluetooth Pen with Wireless Control of Phone features like playback, song skip, unlock, timers…
  • 5 Colors Gray, Lavender, Black, Brown & Blue
  • Improved screen for sunlight visibility
  • Design near identical to Note 8- Fingerprint reader moved on the back below the camera module to avoid smudges.
  • Price: Starting at £869 Pounds MSRP


“With advanced PDAF (Phase Detecting Auto Focus), such as Dual Pixel and Super PD sensor, ISOCELL Fast sensors identify the distance of fast-moving objects even in low light for faster and accurate autofocusing. The 3-stack FRS (Fast Readout Sensor) enables high-speed captures at Full HD video.

So given the information out there and the fact that Samsung will be making most of their own imaging sensors going forward in order to take that business away from Sony, our educated guess will be that the Note 9 will sport the 3-stack ISOCELL Fast 2L3. The 1.4-micrometer (μm) 12-megapixel (Mp) image sensor which is an outstanding spec part and capable of massive read-out speeds needed for true full slow-motion video capture.

The S5K2L3 sensor is already in mass production which bodes well for including it in the Note 9.  If Samsung is able to really deliver the 960fps frame rate at full HD 1080p resolution then it could easily take the crown as the best slow motion capable smartphone ever released.  We are still unsure about the recording time and if it will be improved at all from the Galaxy S9’s pitiful 0.24 seconds at 960p but it is an encouraging sign to see Samsung really stepping up their game when it comes to slow motion capture.  We will know the real full specs after the August 9th reveal. Stay Tuned. -HSC

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ZTE Axon 7 Phone Joins the 240fps club!


The Chinese Smartphone Maker ZTE has released the Axon 7 handset with some impressive camera features like a newly released 20MP Samsung ISOCELL sensor,  F1.8 lens aperture, sapphire glass lens front element for scratch-proof and flare resistance, optical image stabilization in the lens elements and dual pixel on-sensor phase detection auto-focus; not to mention a handy dual LED Flash.

Other phone specs compete well with other more well known brand flagship devices like the Galaxy S7. such as a 5.5-inch AMOLED panel  2560 x 1440 Quad-HD resolution with 2.5D curved Gorilla Glass 4 and a powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chipset.

Two models will be released 4GB RAM and 64GB storage or a 6GB RAM plus 128GB storage in the high end range.  microSD card slot is also included; 3140 mAh battery with  Quick-charge 3.0 standard, fingerprint reader and a USB Type-C connector. Android 6 Marshmallow will be the OS included with some modifications.

Slow motion spec?

There is no doubt that this phone is a top contender for features ounce by ounce. The only real caveat we have is that the slow motion mode while great at 240fps 720p HD; tops out at 1080p 30fps “Yes not even 60fps” which is the same in 4k at 30p.

CAMERA Specs Sensor + Features 20 MP, f/1.8, phase detection autofocus, OIS, dual-LED (dual tone) flash
Other Geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, panorama, HDR
Video 2160p@30fps, 1080p@30fps, 720p@240fps
Secondary 8 MP Front Selfie Camera

ZTE Axon 7 Slowmotion Camera Test 240fps 720p by Mobilegeeks.de:

The video above being one of the few available at this time shows ok resolution with a bit of aliasing as it’s common at these fast frame rates on either Samsung or Apple smartphones. There still seems to be line skipping to some degree but a clear preference for aliasing instead of color moire.   The ZTE Axon 7 joins a small club of phones that do 240fps but is not at the high end here for ignoring higher resolutions like 1080p 120fps.

It is still good news to see more manufacturers pushing fast frame rates.

Launch is expected to be in China first during the month of July and other parts of the world by August.

MSRP: Axon 7 will be $449 USD  and or €409 Euros in Europe,Fully Unlocked!

ZTE Axon 7 Hands On by SRS Exclusives: → Continue Reading Full Post ←