The newly announced Samsung ISOCELL HP2 sensor is a 200MP camera sensor for “tomorrow’s premium smartphones,” according to the official release.
The ISOCELL HP2 sensor has a whopping 200 million 0.6-micrometer (m) pixels in a 1/1.3″ optical format, which is commonly used in camera phones with a 108MP main camera.
And the timing of this announcement couldn’t be better. In a few weeks, on February 1st, 2023, Samsung will unveil a new Samsung phone(opens in new tab) at its Galaxy Unpacked event, which we believe will be the Galaxy S23 Ultra. The ISOCELL HP2’s specifications match those of the Galaxy S23 Ultra, so we can almost certainly expect the new sensor to be included in Samsung’s latest and greatest flagship phone.
JoonSeo Yim is the Executive Vice President of Samsung Electronics’ Sensor Business Team. “The Samsung ISOCELL HP2 harnesses Samsung’s cutting-edge high-resolution image sensor technologies and know-how for epic details,” he says. “Our leadership is based on innovative pixel technologies that enable our sensors to go beyond the number and size of pixels. We will continue to expand our horizons and strengthen our position in the rapidly expanding ultra-high-resolution sensor market.”
“Pixel binning refers to the process of treating a group of four adjacent ‘pixels’ (arranged in a 2 x 2 quad) on a camera’s image sensor as one large’super’ pixel. This is done to improve image quality and reduce noise in the image (grain). It explains why your 64MP or 108MP camera phone almost always produces 16MP or 27MP images, as combining four pixels into one results in an image that’s one-quarter the size.”
With this new sensor, it’s not just about epic resolution. Samsung claims that its “Tetra2pixel” technology will bring advanced pixel-binning technology to smartphones as well. But what exactly is pixel binning? According to Digital Camera’s lab manager:
The ISOCELL HP2 will be able to simulate different pixel sizes based on the ambient light levels. “In low-light conditions, the sensor transforms into either a 1.2m 50MP or a 2.4m 12.5MP image sensor by binding four to 16 neighbouring pixels.”
Samsung not only manufactures sensors for its own phones, but also for brands such as Realme and Xiaomi. It is now thought to be the world’s second-largest producer of smartphone sensors, after Sony.
So the ISOCELL HP2 sensor is big news for the smartphone industry, and especially for photographers who use their smartphones every day. However, we won’t know for certain how it performs in practise until we get our hands on the Galaxy S23. Source