Sony unveils 48 effective megapixel smartphone camera CMOS image sensor

Mobile / Photography

By using a built-in array conversion, the chip is able to get 48 effective megapixels (8000×6000) in real time,

While Sony may be struggling with actual smartphones, one area they are excelling in is providing their CMOS image sensors for other smartphone OEMs. Sony has just announced the IMX586 stacked CMOS image sensor for smartphones which provides the industry’s highest 48 effective megapixels.

While smartphone cameras have been vastly improving over the past couple of years, there is still definitely room for improvement. With the new 48 megapixel IMX586, Sony has managed to achieve this with an ultra-compact pixel size of 0.8 μm. The compact size, translating into an 8mm diagonal unit, will allow for smartphone OEMs to enhance the imaging component on their smartphones.

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. During low light shooting, the signals from the four adjacent pixels are added, raising the sensitivity to a level equivalent to that of 1.6 μm pixels (12 megapixels), resulting in bright, low noise images.

The aforementioned Quad Bayer color filter array enables high sensitivity for low light and high resolution for bright scenes. By using a built-in array conversion, the chip is thus able to get 48 effective megapixels (8000×6000) in real time. As far as video is concerned, the new sensor is capable of [email protected], [email protected], and [email protected] (w/crop).

Sony-IMX586-48MP-image-sensor-detail

Comparison of a conventional 12 effective megapixel image (left) and the new IMX586 image with 48 effective megapixels.

What do you think about Sony’s new IMX586 CMOS image sensor for smartphone cameras? Let us know in the comments below or on Google+, Twitter, or Facebook.

  Source: Sony
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