Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

Started Jun 12, 2019 | Discussions
(unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 975
Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

Google confirms that the Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras: https://mobile.twitter.com/madebygoogle/status/1138876305158500353

So after Google indirectly demonstrated the advantage of having up to 5 cameras ( https://ai.googleblog.com/2018/11/learning-to-predict-depth-on-pixel-3.html ) they finally use more than one camera.

I hope for a tele camera, but as Google considered giving the Pixel 3 an ultra wide angle rear camera ( https://techcrunch.com/2018/10/09/google-pixels-product-directors-on-single-cameras-and-notches/ ), it's likely that the second camera will be an ultra wide angle camera unless they changed their opinion. In this case only a sensor with a higher resolution would be able to improve their tele performance, so I hope that the main camera will have a larger sensor with more pixels.

AOC
AOC Regular Member • Posts: 423
Re: Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

It's disappointing there will be only 2 cameras. I've been hoping for 5.

Wayne Larmon Forum Pro • Posts: 10,633
Re: Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

AOC wrote:

It's disappointing there will be only 2 cameras. I've been hoping for 5.

I was hoping for one of those 5X periscope tele modules.  I can do ultra-wide just fine on my Pixel 2 with my Moment Wide lens.

But any built-in tele will be appreciated.  Along with, I'm sure, more tweaks in computational photography.

Wayne

Pixel2xlSnapper New Member • Posts: 18
Re: Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

I'm pretty excited to see how Pixel 4 would improve on Pixel 3/2.

I'm guessing the primary rear camera would be a 48MP IMX 586 1/2" sensor with maybe 78 deg fov

And the secondary rear camera would be a UWA 12/16MP IMX 363 (something in that range) 1/2.55" sensor with 117 deg fov.

With the 48MP primary rear cam, I think the super res zoom would work a lot better since it would have a lot more information to work out of.

So a 2x to 3x digital zoom might really look very close to a 3x optical zoom.

Along with this, the wide angle camera would also probably have the best processing in terms of removing the distortion that naturally comes with UWA.

I also feel, they might come up with an upgrade for night sight, maybe "night sight v2", which would fully utilize the new 48mp sensor along with other improvements.

OP (unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 975
Re: Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

Pixel2xlSnapper wrote:

I'm pretty excited to see how Pixel 4 would improve on Pixel 3/2.

I'm guessing the primary rear camera would be a 48MP IMX 586 1/2" sensor with maybe 78 deg fov

And the secondary rear camera would be a UWA 12/16MP IMX 363 (something in that range) 1/2.55" sensor with 117 deg fov.

With the 48MP primary rear cam, I think the super res zoom would work a lot better since it would have a lot more information to work out of.

So a 2x to 3x digital zoom might really look very close to a 3x optical zoom.

Along with this, the wide angle camera would also probably have the best processing in terms of removing the distortion that naturally comes with UWA.

I also feel, they might come up with an upgrade for night sight, maybe "night sight v2", which would fully utilize the new 48mp sensor along with other improvements.

A 48 megapixel sensor would be very nice, but sadly I don't think that this will happen. Sony's 48 megapixel sensor doesn't have dual pixel autofocus and Google is obsessed with dual pixel autofocus (although Huawei and Apple don't have a dual pixel sensor). Just a few weeks ago Google's camera team mentioned the advantages of a dual pixel sensor in an interview. Though Sony's sensor has phase detection autofocus pixels, which can be used for (worse) depth maps as well (iPhone XR).

RUcrAZ
RUcrAZ Veteran Member • Posts: 6,844
Re: Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

Thank you for the update. Unfortunately, whatever it will be, will be. The design is surely "fixed" by now, in time for production. It's too bad that this forum in particular did not send much in a way of "hints" to Google, when time was ripe to sensitize the designers. I have been watching this forum for discussions on Pixel 3, but it was like a parched desert. Too late now.

OP (unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 975
Re: Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

If Google really chooses an ultra-wide angle camera (I am still hoping for a tele camera), I hope that at least the quality is good. Samsung's ultra wide angle camera seems to be too wide. It suffers from extreme distortion, which can be corrected optionally, but of course image quality suffers from such corrections. Interestingly the ultra wide angle camera of the Xperia 1 is significantly sharper although the field of view is about the same. I think I would prefer 16mm or 17mm instead of 10mm.

Smartphone ultra wide angle cameras usually have smaller sensors, slower lenses, no OIS and no autofocus. If the sensor is small and the lens not fast, it should at least have OIS and autofocus. With OIS an ultra wide angle camera could deliver good image quality in extreme low-light conditions despite a small sensor and slow lens.

OP (unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 975
Re: Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

The Pixel 3a portrait mode uses 2x digital zoom whereas the Pixel 3 uses 1.5x digital zoom in portrait mode. I guess Google did this in order to make the Pixel 3a worse than the Pixel 3. Another reason (but this is nothing more than speculation) could be that also the Pixel 4 could take portrait photos at the 2x zoom setting. Then the Pixel 4 would likely have either a ≈50mm camera or a 48 megapixel main camera.

RUcrAZ
RUcrAZ Veteran Member • Posts: 6,844
Re: Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

Thanks for the updates - I wonder, is there a reasonably good expectation as to the date that the Pixel 4 (or whatever they call it) will go on sale in the US?

OP (unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 975
Pixel 4 might have a tele camera

https://www.xda-developers.com/google-pixel-4-telephoto-lens-google-camera/

Though of course it's possible that Google just wants to trick us.

Pixel2xlSnapper New Member • Posts: 18
Re: Pixel 4 might have a tele camera

I wonder how they would push the bar with the new telephoto lens (if that is true).

The super-res room was already providing around 1.5-2x of lossless zoom (of sort)?

I suppose, with the extra information from the 16mp tele sensor, they could push it to 4-5x lossless zoom?

Also if they used a primary cam with 48mp IMX586 sensor, then 5x seems totally possible with the help of the additional tele lens + super res zoom from primary lens.

Sony's 48 megapixel sensor doesn't have dual pixel autofocus. But since there is an additional tele lens, that could probably be used for the depth map.

OP (unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 975
Re: Pixel 4 might have a tele camera

Pixel2xlSnapper wrote:

I wonder how they would push the bar with the new telephoto lens (if that is true).

The super-res room was already providing around 1.5-2x of lossless zoom (of sort)?

I suppose, with the extra information from the 16mp tele sensor, they could push it to 4-5x lossless zoom?

Also if they used a primary cam with 48mp IMX586 sensor, then 5x seems totally possible with the help of the additional tele lens + super res zoom from primary lens.

Sony's 48 megapixel sensor doesn't have dual pixel autofocus. But since there is an additional tele lens, that could probably be used for the depth map.

Google's super resolution zoom was basically just marketing, I compared many posted sample images (and also looked at dpreview's studio Night Sight jpg) and I also tested it in the store and my conclusion is that you likely don't get much more than 1.1x lossless zoom. At 1.5x it's already obviously not lossless, 1.3x also doesn't look completely lossless. In low-light conditions it can compete better because the noise performance is better than competitors.

We don't know which aperture diameter the tele camera will have, so diffraction could be an issue possibly. We also don't know which field of view it will have: 80mm? 60mm? 50mm? Or maybe just 40mm. Other smartphones don't have a 16 megapixel "tele" camera, so it's possible that Google does something unusual and gives us a 40mm or 45mm camera with a slightly larger sensor than the sensor of other 50mm smartphone cameras. Why a larger sensor? A small sensor combined with pixels smaller than 1.0 micrometers could be too bad in low-light conditions / shadow regions, so I don't think that the pixel size is smaller than the 1.0micrometers of competitors, which would mean that the sensor is larger than the iPhone Xs/Galaxy S10+ tele camera sensor. This would be surprising, so I guess that it will be a 45mm camera. A 51.5mm crop (Apple's field of view) of a 16megapixel (1.0 micrometer pixel size) 45mm camera would give you 12.2 megapixels and also the same effective sensor area as Apple's 51.5mm camera.

I also thought that Google might be able to achieve good results with the Sony Imx 586. But currently not a single phone is able to achieve a 52mm performance (by cropping the Imx 586) that is as good as the iPhone Xs 52mm camera. Demosaicing seems to be more difficult due to the Quad Bayer sensor. Furthermore a 2x cropped Imx 586 is equivalent to a 37% smaller sensor than the iPhone Xs camera sensor. The pixels are smaller, too. Moreover it might be hard to make a lens that offers such a high resolution in the center of the frame (though I think the lens of the 48 megapixel Huawei Honor View 20 is sharp enough).

OP (unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 975
Re: Pixel 4 might have a tele camera

noisephotographer wrote:

Pixel2xlSnapper wrote:

I wonder how they would push the bar with the new telephoto lens (if that is true).

The super-res room was already providing around 1.5-2x of lossless zoom (of sort)?

I suppose, with the extra information from the 16mp tele sensor, they could push it to 4-5x lossless zoom?

Also if they used a primary cam with 48mp IMX586 sensor, then 5x seems totally possible with the help of the additional tele lens + super res zoom from primary lens.

Sony's 48 megapixel sensor doesn't have dual pixel autofocus. But since there is an additional tele lens, that could probably be used for the depth map.

Google's super resolution zoom was basically just marketing, I compared many posted sample images (and also looked at dpreview's studio Night Sight jpg) and I also tested it in the store and my conclusion is that you likely don't get much more than 1.1x lossless zoom. At 1.5x it's already obviously not lossless, 1.3x also doesn't look completely lossless. In low-light conditions it can compete better because the noise performance is better than competitors.

We don't know which aperture diameter the tele camera will have, so diffraction could be an issue possibly. We also don't know which field of view it will have: 80mm? 60mm? 50mm? Or maybe just 40mm. Other smartphones don't have a 16 megapixel "tele" camera, so it's possible that Google does something unusual and gives us a 40mm or 45mm camera with a slightly larger sensor than the sensor of other 50mm smartphone cameras. Why a larger sensor? A small sensor combined with pixels smaller than 1.0 micrometers could be too bad in low-light conditions / shadow regions, so I don't think that the pixel size is smaller than the 1.0micrometers of competitors, which would mean that the sensor is larger than the iPhone Xs/Galaxy S10+ tele camera sensor. This would be surprising, so I guess that it will be a 45mm camera. A 51.5mm crop (Apple's field of view) of a 16megapixel (1.0 micrometer pixel size) 45mm camera would give you 12.2 megapixels and also the same effective sensor area as Apple's 51.5mm camera.

Another idea would be a 16 megapixel sensor with 0.9 micrometer pixel size (but 0.9 micrometer pixel size isn't common at all). Then the sensor would have the same size as the 13 megapixel portrait camera sensor of the Oneplus 7 Pro (13mm²) and would be only slightly larger than the portrait camera sensor of the Xs /S10+ (12.2mm²). Then the field of view could be (for example) the same as Oneplus 7 Pro's portrait mode, which has a field of view of ≈58mm.

If the pixel size of the 16 megapixel sensor is just 0.8 micrometer, then a faster lens than f/2.4 could be a solution, but a fast lens wouldn't help in base Iso high dynamic range scenes, which would suffer from the small pixel size due to so called read noise.

bloodlmt Regular Member • Posts: 236
Re: Pixel 4 might have a tele camera

Pixel 4 is rumored to have 2nd telephoto lens. I think the focal length is only 50mm - 56mm.

the problem with telephoto lens on smartphone is most of them has mediocre sensor. i don't think there telephoto sensor with phase detect af right now. so not ideal for tracking moving subjects and only usable for static image and for fake bokeh

in my opinion, google should put ultra-wide angle similar to S10+ with ~12mm FF equivalent lens this year in Pixel 4 and add huawei p30 pro-periscope lens next year in Pixel 5

OP (unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 975
Re: Pixel 4 might have a tele camera

bloodlmt wrote:

add huawei p30 pro-periscope lens next year in Pixel 5

I guess, I also would have preferred a periscope camera. But then the image quality is worse at 55mm, so one needs to have 55mm as well as 125mm.

Wayne Larmon Forum Pro • Posts: 10,633
Zoomable periscope lens?

noisephotographer wrote:

bloodlmt wrote:

add huawei p30 pro-periscope lens next year in Pixel 5

I guess, I also would have preferred a periscope camera. But then the image quality is worse at 55mm, so one needs to have 55mm as well as 125mm.

My wife has an old Nikon CoolPix S50 P&S

that has a 3X periscope lens that is optically zoomable.  If there is a smartphone periscope lens then why can't it be zoomable like the S50 is?  (The whole point of that Nikon camera was to make a shirt pocket camera with purely internal optical zoom.)

Wayne

OP (unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 975
Re: Zoomable periscope lens?

Wayne Larmon wrote:

noisephotographer wrote:

bloodlmt wrote:

add huawei p30 pro-periscope lens next year in Pixel 5

I guess, I also would have preferred a periscope camera. But then the image quality is worse at 55mm, so one needs to have 55mm as well as 125mm.

My wife has an old Nikon CoolPix S50 P&S

that has a 3X periscope lens that is optically zoomable. If there is a smartphone periscope lens then why can't it be zoomable like the S50 is? (The whole point of that Nikon camera was to make a shirt pocket camera with purely internal optical zoom.)

Wayne

There is a smartphone with a periscope zoom camera. It's the Asus Zenfone Zoom, released in ≈2015. https://www.asus.com/Phone/ZenFone-Zoom-ZX551ML/PixelMaster/

The lens had very small aperture diameters, so it is worse than smartphone tele prime lens cameras.

Wayne Larmon Forum Pro • Posts: 10,633
Asus Zenfone Zoomable periscope lens

noisephotographer wrote:

Wayne Larmon wrote:

If there is a smartphone periscope lens then why can't it be zoomable like the S50 is? (The whole point of that Nikon camera was to make a shirt pocket camera with purely internal optical zoom.)

Wayne

There is a smartphone with a periscope zoom camera. It's the Asus Zenfone Zoom, released in ≈2015. https://www.asus.com/Phone/ZenFone-Zoom-ZX551ML/PixelMaster/

Wow! That is an impressive lens/sensor module.

The lens had very small aperture diameters, so it is worse than smartphone tele prime lens cameras.

Too bad the implementation fell short. I wonder if this is really a dead end or if the idea was just ahead of its time? (It does look intrinsically expensive, though. Compared to camera modules that don't zoom.)

Our Nikon S50's lens wasn't bad but it probably was worse than conventional zooms. Probably why periscope zooms died out.

Here are a few photos I shot with the S50 in 2007 of Les Paul playing at the Iridium in NYC. Natural light shot from our table. Most of them are noisy because I shot at ISO 1600. I shot a few at ISO 400 but that got me to the .1 sec shutter speed range. In retrospect, I should have shotgunned more at ISO 400. (I didn't know until showtime that no-flash still photos were allowed. If I did, I would have brought my Canon G7.)

Wayne

Van Nostrand Regular Member • Posts: 461
Re: Google confirms that Pixel 4 will have at least two rear cameras

LG has been doing the dual camera w/ultrawide lens since the LG G5 some years ago.  A developer even got Google camera  to work on the WIDE camera to do multiple exposure with RAW.   It's cool and all but IMO themultiple camera effort is better spent on longer reach or improved photographic quality things

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