Samsung has released details of the new Isocell GNK image sensor featuring Dual Pixel Pro technology, as well as new advanced HDR capabilities .
The new 50-megapixel sensor measures 1/1.3-inch and has a pixel size of 1.2 microns. It supports photography at 24 fps with a resolution of 50 megapixels and up to 90 fps with a resolution of 12.5 megapixels, and also supports shooting 8K video at up to 30 fps and 4K at 120 fps. It also supports step mode HDR, Smart-ISO Pro.
The Isocell GNK is likely the successor to the discontinued Isocell GN1, and promises “enhanced autofocus capabilities, bright and true-to-life images, and excellent low-light performance . ”
The promised autofocus is based on the aforementioned Dual Pixel Pro technology. Samsung says this allows the sensor to quickly focus on moving objects regardless of their location in the frame. To recap, Dual Pixel Pro was first used in the Isocell GN2 sensor in 2021, and the Korean concept is very similar to the Dual Pixel implementation in Canon sensors.
“Vivid, true-to-life images” are achieved thanks to what it calls “Step HDR technology,” which uses three different ISO modes to enhance HDR performance and produce photos with up to 102dB of dynamic range.
“Single-frame Smart-ISO Pro also improves dynamic range while minimizing motion artifacts, producing images with up to 14-bit color depth ,” the company says.
The result of all these innovations and the development of new ones was the emergence of a sensor with a wider dynamic range and less noise.
Isocell GNK promises excellent low light performance. Continuing Samsung’s past approach to solving low-light shooting problems, GNK, when it detects darkness, can combine four adjacent pixels into a larger 2.4-micron pixel, allowing for higher light sensitivity. But this is not a new technology, it has been implemented in previous sensors such as the Isocell HP3.
“Based on mosaic technology, Isocell GNK maximizes the benefits of Tetrapixel in bright environments, producing 50MP images of exceptional quality ,” says Samsung.
This sensor is also capable of shooting 8K video up to 30 fps with “minimal loss of field of view.” It will also be able to shoot 1080p video at speeds up to 240 fps.
As 9to5Google notes, this sensor is most likely installed in the new Google Pixel 8 Pro. Google has been tight-lipped about details about its smartphone’s camera sensor, so it’s currently impossible to know for sure whether it uses Samsung’s new GNK. It seems likely though, and if it is, then the Pixel 8 Pro is a great example of what to expect from the new sensor.