Since the starting of this year, we have seen Samsung and Sony pushing the limits in terms of the megapixel count of their sensors. With the Samsung GM1 Samsung achieved a sensor which could generate 48MP images albeit with pixel binning. But Sony really changed the game with their IMX 586 sensor. It was a true 48MP sensor. We have seen it till now on the likes of Honor v20, Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro and this sensor is expected to come to a lot of other flagships like the OnePlus 7 Pro in the near future! Recently Samsung announced their Samsung GW1 sensor which has a resolution of 64MP. Times are indeed exciting for smartphone photography enthusiasts.
Samsung GW1 64MP sensor: The lowdown!
Huawei’s P20 series of mobile phones released last year used the 40 million-pixel custom Sony IMX600 sensor. Sony and Samsung also launched the 48-megapixel IMX586 and GM1 sensors last year and applied them to the next-generation Android phones released from the end of last year to this year. The advent of the 48-megapixel sensor means that smartphones have re-entered the era of pixel wars. Today, Samsung has released a 64-megapixel ISOCELL Bright GW1 sensor that approximates the HDR dynamic range of the human eye.
The 48-megapixel sensor launched by Samsung last year was the ISOCELL Bright GM1. The pixel size for that one was 0.8um. ??The new product is still from the 0.8um family. The upgraded version of the 48-megapixel sensor is ISOCELL Bright GM2. And then there’s the ISOCELL Bright GW1, which is 64 million pixels and is the highest resolution product in the Samsung 0.8um sensor family.
The GW1 sensor uses the same pixel-binning Tetra cell technology and re-mosaic algorithm as the previous GM1. It can shoot 64MP in good light and 16 million pixels in low light. 4 in 1 pixel binning improves the overall light sensitivity. The processing method is the same as the current 48 megapixel sensor.
The GW1 sensor supports up to 100DB HDR high dynamic range, which is higher than the 60DB of the conventional image sensor, while the human eye’s HDR limit range is about 120DB, which means that the Samsung GW1 sensor is approaching the human eye limit and things can be better. Maybe soon we would have sensors which can exactly replicate the limits up to which human eye can see!
In addition, the GW1 sensor also supports DCG double conversion gain technology, which optimizes the FWC to make more efficient use of the light captured by the sensor, especially in bright environments.
The SuperPD phase focusing technology also provides sharper image effects, and the GW1 also supports 480fps slow-motion video capture. The resolution at which it can do this is not clear yet. But most probably it can do so at resolutions higher than normal HD.
As for the upgraded version of the GM2 sensor, although it is still 48MP, it also supports DCG and SuperPD focusing technology.
At present, Samsung’s ISOCELL Bright GW1 and GM2 sensors are being sampled. Mass production will be carried out in the second half of this year. It is very much possible to see these sensors on upcoming flagship smartphones by the end of this year!
So guys what do you think about the Samsung GW1 sensor? Though it’s not a true 64MP sensor it does come close! Do let us know what you think in the comments section below!
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