Samsung introduces new camera sensors

Samsung brings four new camera sensors to the market in one fell swoop, including the ISOCELL HM2 108 MP. All sensors are more compact due to the pixel size of only 0.7 micrometers.

samsung isocell 0.7 micrometer camera sensors hm2

Samsung ISOCELL HM2 and other camera sensors

This morning, Samsung announced a new generation of its ISOCELL camera sensors. These sensors all use 0.7 micrometer pixels. This allows the new sensors to be smaller and thinner than their respective predecessors.

Of course, smaller pixels are not automatically good for the quality of the photos you can take with the sensors. After all, they collect less light because of the smaller surface. Samsung compensates for this by using two of its own gadgets: ISOCELL Plus and Smart ISO.

ISOCELL Plus is the marketing name for the reflective "walls" that surround each pixel, which bounce more light towards the sensor than, strictly speaking, the surface itself. And Smart ISO is a way to optimize the ISO value "smartly".

Of course, the South Koreans also use both tricks in previous sensors, so to what extent they really compensate for the smaller sensor will have to be shown later in practice.

The sensors in a row

The new sensors that Samsung unveiled today have different resolutions:

ISOCELL HM2 – this is a 108 megapixel sensor, and the direct successor to the HM1 that is in the Galaxy S20 Ultra and Galaxy Note 20 Ultra. A significant detail is that the HM2 does have "Super phase detection autofocus (AF)", but no dual pixel AF. The sensor again has "nonacell pixel binning", where nine pixels are merged into one large pixel.
ISOCELL GW3 – the renewed 64 MP sensor, which is about the same size as the previous generation 48 MP sensor due to its 0.7 micrometer pixels. The sensor supports 4K video at 60 fps.
ISOCELL GM5 – the "next-gen" 48 MP sensor. We will soon encounter these in, among other things, 'periscope lenses' in high-end telephones. Due to the smaller sensor size, such cameras can become more compact.
ISOCELL JD1 – this is the smallest 32 MP sensor on the market. That makes it ideal for future front-camera applications, including a camera below the screen, or for pop-up applications.

It may be clear that we will encounter most of the above sensors in all kinds of Samsung phones in 2021 – from the top models such as the alleged Galaxy S21, to cheaper devices in the A-series.

Samsung Isocell Hm2 GW3 GM5 JD1 Specifications

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