Sony's 48-megapixel sensor could super-charge smartphone cameras of the future

Sony's 48-megapixel sensor could super-charge smartphone cameras of the future

Sony's 48-megapixel sensor could super-charge smartphone cameras of the future

In many cases, higher resolution sensors are created to enable digital zoom and that's one of the functions that Sony is pushing with its new IMX586 sensor.

The new sensor boasts 48 effective megapixels which the Japanese manufacturer is labelling the "highest pixel count" in the industry. It beats the current highest-resolution sensors, used in the Huawei P20 Pro and Nokia Lumia 1020's - 40-megapixel and 41-megapixel respectively.

Sony has announced a new smartphone image sensor that promises to produce some seriously impressive camera specifications for some future smartphones. Of course, comparing a DSLR sensor to an eight-millimeter-diagonal smartphone sensor isn't an entirely straightforward comparison, and the IMX586 is no exception. Sony's advanced filter features adjacent 2x2 pixels in the same color which means it can merge four pixels into one for use in low light situations. The sensor features 48 effective megapixels, the highest available. It sports Sony's exposure control technology and signal processing functionality enabling a dynamic range that is claimed to be four times greater than conventional products.

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Sony says this allows even scenes with both bright and dark areas can be captured with minimal highlight blowout or loss of detail in shadows.

Pixel size is only 0.8μm, which makes it possible for Sony to include 48 million.

Sony will begin shipping out samples this September, and these new IMX586 sensors should find their way into new phones beginning in 2019. The latest sensor utilizes a Quad Bayer colour filter array, where adjacent 2 x 2 pixels come in the same colour allowing for higher sensitivity shooting. This will enable you to capture bright, low-noise photos and videos. Perhaps the novelty of the sensor will be enough for DxOMark to actually put Sony's flagships to the test for the world to see where high-end Xperia phones truly stand.

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