For low-light scenarios, this means that the signal from the four pixels is combined to raise the sensitivity to that of 1.6μm pixels, making for brighter and less noisy shots with an effective 12MP pixel count. Pixels in a smartphone camera sensor are generally larger than 1 μm; the Pixel 2's sensor, for example, features 1.4-μm pixels.
In a blog post, the company went on: "These days, high-end smartphone models require even greater imaging quality from their cameras". The ultra-small pixels mean that the new image sensor comes in at just 8mm diagonal despite the impressive pixel count. A quad-Bayer filter sacrifices daytime precise detail for better low light performance, and the implementation of lossless zoom in both still and video mode will be down to the individual manufacturers using this in their phones in 2019. With that, this is why it was possible to pack in the 48MP into the 1/2 type unit and it's a flawless solution for smartphones that don't really allow as much as space a DSLR.
Recycling what works, Sony has also built its original exposure control technology and signal processing functionality into its latest image sensor.
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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. In an effort to address any noise and potential artifacts in photos, Sony will be utilizing a Quad Bayer color filter array, and it has designed the camera to allow each pixel to use the four adjacent pixels to increase light sensitivity.
The IMX586 has a range of other interesting raw specifications, like DCI 4K video recording at 90 FPS, 1920x1080 at 240 FPS, and a cropped 720p capture at 480 FPS. According to Sony, the sensor will be ready for sampling this September, and it'll cost device makers around $27 per unit.