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Nov 17, 2014

Sony’s New 21MP Exmor RS Sensor with 4K Capabilities Revealed, Could End Up in the Xperia Z4

As we have seen not so long ago, Sony is already setting the stage for CES 2015. The Playstation’s maker Xperia Z4 lineup which is supposed to include the Xperia Z4 Tablet, whose specs just leaked online not so long ago.

Sony will be holding a press event in Las Vegas this January, where the company is expected to unveil a lot of goodies, like new cameras, TVs and more. But one of its most interesting announcements might be related to the Xperia Z4 smartphone.

Sony puts new Exmor sensor out

Why do we say that? Well, because the company has recently introduced a new Exmor sensor, which has a lot of potential for handheld photography. This smartphone camera sensor will have 21MP and use image plane phase detection, which Sony says is the first to make it into smartphone cameras. Plane phase detection autofocus is a technology you’d normally expect to find in mirrorless camera systems as the means to allow you to capture moving objects without getting too much blur in them. The same sensor will also be in charge of capturing real-time HDR video and the best part is that you’ll be able to do so in 4K too.

Sony’s new Exmor RS sensor changes the game a little bit, as it replaces the traditional back-illuminated CMOS sensor’s support substrate with a chip made up of signal processing circuits, on top of which is a pixel section made up of back-illuminated pixels for an original stacked construction. Furthermore, Sony is said to be making the 16MP version of the same sensor which will be introduced in mid-range handsets.

We might see the new sensor at work at CES 2014

For the time being, we don’t know for sure which products will end up receiving the new Sony treatment, but given Xperia’s Z4 specs which leaked a few days ago, it all might as well make sense to assume the smartphone is going to be first to take advantage of the tech. According to sources familiar with the matter, Sony’s upcoming flagship smartphone will arrive with a 5.5-inch QHD display (2560 x 1440) and 4GB of RAM. Naturally, you need to take this information with a big grain of salt, because we are a few months away from the official launch and things are bound to change.

The report also mentions that the Xperia Z4 is likely to arrive with Qi wireless charging support instead of the magnetic charging ports which are used inside the Xperia Z. The Xperia Z had well-known problems with microUSB flaps loosening all the time, which in turn ended up compromising the water resistance of the smartphone.

Sony has a new smartphone sensor out

Image plane phase detection AF function using 192 AF points

Sample using the IMX135 3.2 effective megapixels / Sample using the IMX230 21 megapixels

Sony might be working on active pixel color sampling sensor

The sensor could end up being implemented in compact high-end cameras
Images credits to Sony


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