If Samsung includes a 600MP camera in a smartphone

Started May 10, 2020 | Discussions thread
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Pixel2xlSnapper New Member • Posts: 10
If Samsung includes a 600MP camera in a smartphone

There are many questions that come to mind when I think about this idea:

Storage and Write speed: If a 12MP photo is around 4MB, this 600MP photo would be 150-200MB. And if we add a 10 shot HDR algorithm to this, it would have to process 2GB data and put out the photo all in 1-2 seconds.

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Lens resolving power: This is where I have a lot of doubt. It seems like smartphones today have hit the right formula for 12MP/1.4um with a lens of f1.8 (the lens ends up being around 1cm in diameter in total on the back of the phone).

Even if a sharper lens is used and the size of the lens is increased to a large square hole, it might be able to resolve 48MP at best?

But 600MP?? sounds really daft. Google pixel 3/4 phones have super-res zoom which brings sub-pixel data by moving the OIS system a little. The quality however technically improves by only a factor of 1.2x or 1.5x max.

Even if they added a large square lens + higher quality w/ finer resolving power + super res zoom kind of algos = I can imagine they'd reach 4x the current detail resolution resolving power? (being optimistic).

There is also the difference between detail resolution and color resolution. What I have spoken about here is mostly about detail resolution. It is argued that color resolution is what benefits the most from pixel binning technologies (9x9 or 4x4).

The current phones that use 48MP and 64MP sensors in their native resolutions barely capture ever so slightly better detail which I feel is fairly disappointing. These megapixel numbers are meaningless when the pixels are 0.8um and when the lens has only 1/4th the resolving power it needs for those resolutions.

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Zoom capabilities: I wonder how having a 600MP sensor vs. a 48MP sensor would benefit zoom capabilities. Theoretically speaking 600MP could give nearly 5 times the quality of the current 108MP s20 ultra. But this megapixel multiplication would likely bring diminishing returns and give around 3x the quality (optimistic). That would still be amazing in a way and almost equivalent to having a 30x point and shoot camera capability built into the phone.

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Nifty Mechanical contraptions to extract more detail: I wonder if some other nifty mechanical contraptions can be used to pull out the most detail, like the OIS moving mechanism like the super-res zoom, to extract much more detail than the lens itself is capable of.

Focusing speed: Focusing speed is a big deal when it comes to the user experience day to day. I wonder if the focus mechanisms can be made as quick as the Sony A9, along with 100s of tracking points. Focus stacking is another computational thing that could be done alongside HDR and that would ensure the whole image is in pin-sharp focus if desired.

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Depth of field issues: I had a Nexus 5 phone earlier and because of its tiny 1/2.4 aperture it could give superb sharpness across the entire photo, which was esp. noticeable in macro shots (generous planes of focus). So supposing a 1 inch sensor is used for the 600MP camera, this advantage would be lost. Variable aperture with many stops might be a good solution, maybe coupled with a separate macro camera.

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Future possibilities: Maybe a bendable sensor, flexible lens, and so on.

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Viewing photos: 4k monitors are still pretty uncommon even today. The technology has not evolved much over the past 7-8 years. Ideally to view 600MP images, you would at least need a 16K monitor of 132MP w/ 32" size along with all the other bells and whistles like HDR1000+, 240Hz refresh rate, 0.5ms response time, MLED, flicker free, and so on.

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So these are some of my thoughts and broad understandings about these aspects. I'm sure a lot of you in this forum are much more technically knowledgeable in these areas.

Please leave a comment if you liked this post, and share any insights or knowledge that you may have.

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