Motorola China’s top executive has posted the first photo from the upcoming Motorola Edge smartphone, which will be announced later this year. The new camera is powered by the Samsung ISOCELL HP1 200MP camera sensor, a higher-end version of the Samsung ISOCELL HP3 sensor we told you about last month.
The HP1 has larger pixels than the HP3 (0.64μm vs. 0.56 μm), but these pixels are still significantly smaller than 0.8 μm (microns). Such tiny pixels don’t capture photons as efficiently as larger pixels, but by how much remains to be seen. Previously, we’ve seen that going from 0.8 μm down to 0.7 μm (same Megapixel) could affect image quality by about ~10%.
You can read my entire post about the HP3 sensor, as both HP1 and HP3 sensors will share the same challenges, especially regarding low-light photo capture at full resolution. I also explain why pixel-merger (pixel binning) helps but does not equal larger pixels.
The sensor isn’t very big (1/1.22”) and is equivalent in size to the Moto X30 Pro, and we would be very curious to test both side-by-side to see what the new sensor (and software) brings to the table.
Some people have scrutinized the sample photo that was posted, and after a 1:1 crop to show its full details, they quickly spotted some sharpness issues due to what seems to be a lens aberration. Browse the full image on weibo.
If that’s a lens issue, it is worth pointing out that we don’t know if it would show up the same way on another phone because each lens is slightly different, unless it’s a design or manufacturing process flaw.
Also, we would need more photos from that specific camera to confirm that it’s a lens issue, as the problem would invariably repeat itself on that handset. I’ll stay cautious for now.
Generally, I’d expect the camera to feature higher levels of details if the “Camera” app allows users to select 200MP in “auto” mode. Very few handsets allow it, and any “HD” mode hidden deep in the camera settings will never be used.
Perhaps, the more important metric is the camera hardware potential vs. its price (= the value).