Samsung Unveils Its First 200MP Smartphone Sensor, the ISOCELL HP2

Two weeks from now, Samsung will host its biggest event of the year, where we will finally see what the company has been working on for the past twelve months. There have been several rumors that the series will see many hardware upgrades; however, based on the price plan we saw earlier, it appears that the majority of the new features will be focused on the “Ultra” model.

The S23 Ultra is widely believed to be the device that will house Samsung’s first 200MP camera sensor in a smartphone this year. Today, Samsung unveiled the 200MP ISOCELL HP2, a sensor that improves image quality while also allowing manufacturers to incorporate high-resolution photographs without raising the camera bump (not pointing fingers toward Xiaomi here…)

Ice Universe, a well-known insider, first mentioned that the ISOCELL HP2 sensor could be included in the Galaxy S23 Ultra last year. Several sources have since suggested that the phone will feature a 200-megapixel camera. There hasn’t been a significant upgrade to Samsung’s flagship series’ cameras in years, but if the S23 Ultra receives the newly released 200MP ISOCELL HP2 sensor, it will be the first time in a long time. 

In terms of specifications, the Samsung ISOCELL HP2 features 200 million 0.6-micrometer pixels spread across a 1/1.3-inch optical format. As mentioned earlier, although the sensor is extremely powerful, it is quite small, eliminating the need for the bulky camera bumps of the past. Using pixel binning, the sensor is able to create high-quality photographs at 50MP and 12.5MP, and it can record 8K video at 30 frames per second, which is just a little better than the Galaxy S22 Ultra from last year, which could only record 8K video at 24 frames per second.

Although 8K displays are remarkable in theory, their practical applications have been limited. It will be interesting to see how much progress has been made in resolution since last year. The 200-megapixel sensor can record 4K video at 60 frames per second with HDR on when operating at peak performance. Dual Vertical Transfer Gate (D-VTG) technology is another feature Samsung highlights, as it claims it will improve the sensor’s ability to retain color accuracy in high-contrast settings.

At this time, almost everyone is aware of the fact that more megapixels don’t always translate to better-quality photos, and that is what companies need to keep in mind, however for a lot of companies, this strategy is great to market and sell their upcoming phones. We have been hearing about 200MP coming to Samsung devices, but if the company really wants to compete in this competitive market, it will have to up its game against the likes of Google and Apple in terms of software too.

Consider the Xiaomi 12T Pro, which initially launched with a 200MP camera but produced results that were not “very superior” to those produced by a device like Apple’s flagship at the time (13 Pro Max, with a 12MP sensor). In low light, however, when a larger sensor almost always shoots better images, Samsung is marketing a feature that is both real and not a gimmick. They are able to achieve this because of their Super QPD technology, which they have previously mentioned.

All of the sensor’s pixels are equipped with autofocusing capabilities. In addition, Super QPD uses a single lens over four-adjacent pixels to detect the phase differences in both horizontal and vertical directions. This paves way for a more accurate and quicker autofocusing for smartphone camera users.”

As for this sensor, the company says that ISOCELL HP2’s Super QPD allows for quicker and more consistent autofocus in dim light. For this new autofocus system, each of the two hundred million pixels is put to work in the focusing process. Even in extremely low light, such as on the moon (about 1 lux), which is 100 times lower than indoor circumstances, the sensor can distinguish horizontal and vertical pattern changes by grouping together four neighboring pixels.

However, it’s worth noting that Samsung hasn’t provided us with any samples, which further implies that the company may be planning to fully introduce it at Samsung Unpacked, alongside its new lineup of phones, who knows. Leave your opinions on this new sensor below, and we’ll keep you posted as more information becomes available.


Muhammad Qasim

Qasim's deep love for technology and gaming drives him to not only stay up-to-date on the latest developments but also to share his informed perspectives with others through his writing. Whether through this or other endeavors, he is committed to sharing his expertise and making a meaningful contribution to the world of tech and gaming.
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