Samsung’s new sensor takes better photos with fewer megapixels

The new ISOCELL GN2 has bigger pixels to take better photos even in low light conditions: we'll see it soon on an ultra smartphone.

Samsung has announced, and is already producing, the new 50 MP ISOCELL GN2 photo sensor. This is the second generation of this sensor line (the first one dates back to May 2020) and according to a well-known leaker on Twitter it will be integrated in the new top-of-the-line Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra as the main sensor, replacing the 108 MP HM2 one present on the base Mi 11.

In spite of being a sensor with less than half the resolution, in fact, according to Samsung it will offer the performance expected from a high-end smartphone camera. The secret lies in the size of the pixels and the sensor itself: 1.4 micrometers per pixel, 1/1.12 inches in total. By merging more pixels, the new sensor can simulate a 100 MegaPixel resolution, but with a higher brightness because the larger the sensor, the more light it can hit the pixels. Which are also larger, so they capture more. In other words: better photos, despite the lower resolution, even in low light.

What the Samsung GN2 sensor can do

The ISOCELL GN2 is Samsung's first sensor with Dual Pixel Pro technology, which allows for faster and more precise focusing. It's obviously compatible with HDR, a system that allows you to take photos with much more vivid colors, but it reduces power consumption by up to 24%.

Making the switch from photos to video, however, Samsung ISOCELL GN2 allows you to record video at 4K up to 120 frames per second, or in HD up to 480 frames per second. It is not, however, capable of recording at 8K resolution.

We'll see it on Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra

Xiaomi has always been loyal to Samsung when it comes to choosing the photo sensor for its top-of-the-line smartphones and even with the upcoming Mi 11 Ultra, anabolized version of the Mi 11 already on the market, it will not be an exception.

According to the usually reliable leaker Ice Universe, the new GN2 sensor will be the main one on the new Chinese flagship. The Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra, then, promises to be a very interesting smartphone for photography enthusiasts thanks to the 50 MP GN2 main sensor, a 48 MP telephoto with 5X periscope zoom, and a 48 MP wide-angle lens.