Sony integrates hybrid AF, 3-axis electronic stabilization into new 22.5-megapixel image sensor

By Shawn Knight ยท 4 replies
Feb 16, 2016
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  1. Sony has revealed a new Exmor RS image sensor for smartphones that improves on earlier models in virtually every category.

    The new sensor, which Sony is calling IMX318, is a type 1/2.6 stacked CMOS image sensor that outputs images at 22.5 megapixels. Sony says the sensor offers higher performance and greater image quality while boasting a more compact size, attributes that'll certainly make it attractive for smartphone makers looking to churn out increasingly thinner handsets.

    Interestingly enough, the sensor uses a hybrid autofocus system that combines phase detection and contrast detection autofocus technology. While this has been done before, Sony says it required a separate application processor. With the IMX318, hybrid autofocus has been built directly into the sensor's internal signal processor which is said to help it lock focus in just 0.03 seconds (in high light conditions) and 0.017 seconds when shooting video at 60fps.

    It doesn't stop there, however, as Sony has also managed to cram a 3-axis (pitch, yaw and roll) electronic image stabilization system into the internal signal processor that also corrects lens distortion. Processing within the hardware of the image sensor also reduces power consumption as an external application processor isn't needed.

    Sony said it plans to sample the new image sensor in May which means we could see it show up in select smartphones by the end of the year.

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  2. Technician

    Technician TS Addict Posts: 677   +114

    Unfortunately phone cameras are inherently unimpressive. It all comes down to the glass in front, superior glass will give you a superior image.
    No amount of digital manipulation can compensate for that.
    The ONLY good thing about them is that they are always in reach of most people.
    p51d007 likes this.

    IAMTHESTIG TS Evangelist Posts: 1,258   +455

    This is true.... but having a camera so easily accessible at all times is pretty nice. I'd also like to see Sony make a true 4K sensor for video applications such as vehicle dash cams, body cams, etc. The market for video documentation is increasing rapidly and 1080p just isn't enough for a lot of scenarios.
    mosu likes this.
  4. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    Naturally. How can you expect to get the same quality pic from a phone that you can from a DSLR? Smartphone cameras are really little more than a major selling point for a smart device but they do come in handy.
  5. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,310   +651

    Better photos DO NOT come by adding more photo sensors. About all the good they are for, is for crop/zooming. If you want a better photo, ditch the PINHOLE sensor, and move up to an APS-C sensor
    and put in LARGER sensors, along with GLASS on the front. Bokeh, DOF, sharpness are MUCH better
    the larger the sensor, not the number of TINY sensors.

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