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Samsung Galaxy S11 Said to Boast 108-Megapixel Camera and 5x Telephoto Lens

Azeroth1

macrumors regular
Apr 20, 2010
229
457
There is no need for that. Professional DSLRs don’t go that high and working with files that large is not fun in post processing. I’m all for better technology, but this seems like a gimmick.
 
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Sasparilla

macrumors 68000
Jul 6, 2012
1,506
2,422
I'm surprised that none of the big players has developed an own android branch of the OS that is integrated with their hardware and is robust and solid and guarantees OS updates for several years similar to iOS...

This comes down to a couple of things, from what I understand, over in Androidville. The 1st one is Qualcomm doesn't give updated kernal / driver support beyond 3 years (I believe) for their CPU's which are at the heart of virtually all U.S. Android devices. Then nearly all U.S. smartphone sales are still out of carrier stores with the carriers having custom Android OS loads for each phone they sell (updates from say Samsung go to them then they get to choose whether to integrate that update and deploy it or not)...normally 2 years of updates (extra costs for the carriers) is the tops for them. Very ugly compared to iOS.

Guessing we'd need govt regulation demanding supplier and provider support for all smartphones and components for x number of years to break this logjam, but with lobbyists firmly in control of all non social issue legislation in the U.S. at the Federal Level (either party), such a thing doesn't seem likely.
 
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Hodar1

macrumors regular
A photon only has a certain quantum amount of energy. It's pretty much understood, and fixed, and doesn't change, or care what brand or material it hits - whether it's carbon based, silica, germanium or from the planet Vulcan.

When you pack more and more sensors on a fixed area, you run the gamut of background switching noise of nearby sensors, creating "ghosts" on nearby sensors - if you make them too sensitive. So, too sensitive of a sensor is "bad".

A sensor that is not sensitive, won't work well in dim lighting - this is bad too.

You have a limited surface area, to pack as many sensors as you can; so you are faced with the quandry of size vs sensitivity of the sensor array vs sensor density.

That's why you see 12Megapixels are a common consumer number, but SLR's using MUCH larger arrays and bumping the resolution into the 20+ Megapixel range. Remember about 7 years ago, when everyone else was at 12 Megapixels and the Windows Phone launched with 42 Megapixels? The immediate assumption was ~4x more pixels means ~4x better photo; but the result was generally a worse camera experience.

What do you imagine jumping from 16 Megapixels to 100 Megapixels will be? I'm going to predict - minor, if any improvement at all.
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WBRacing

macrumors 65816
Nov 19, 2012
1,290
2,884
UK
Do people seriously switch hardware year over year from Samsung to Apple? Are people actually going to stop using 12 years of iOS, iCloud storage, Apple Pay, Apple Music and all of our purchased apps and switch to Samsung over a 100 megapixel camera? With extreme lock-in each platform has now with services, I simply don't have time to spend a week setting up a phone and finding apps for another platform only to switch back to iOS next year.

Apart from the purchased apps, it's really not difficult.
 
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Piggie

macrumors G3
Feb 23, 2010
8,574
3,024
All I will say is that we should all consider ourselves lucky that we have multiple companies trying to push forward and create better products (camera's) for us, the customers.
Whoever does it, you should be happy.
If someone comes up with something that works better than what we already have and is successful due to it, then this will be copied in some way by other companies raising the standard for everyone to enjoy.
Just think how bad phones would be today, if only 1 company made them with no competition.

I look forward to all improvements, and so should we all. :)
 
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adamjackson

macrumors 68000
Jul 9, 2008
1,821
2,958
Many of my friends switch phones each year. They mostly use free apps, don't sync things to their computers aside from transfering photos/music and aren't tech fans. These people just buy the phone they think looks the coolest, and to them I think a 108 MP camera would probably sound like a good enough reason to switch to Samsung.

Makes me wonder how many apple fanboys actually still exist in the world relative to the install base of apple products globally.
 
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NickName99

macrumors 6502a
Nov 8, 2018
946
2,743
Does it even use HEIC format or is it stuck with JPEG? I’m curious how big those picture files are going to be. On my iPhone XS, pictures are typically 1.5MB to 2.5MB, using HEIC format.
 
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GrumpyMom

macrumors G3
Sep 11, 2014
9,195
13,198
Do people seriously switch hardware year over year from Samsung to Apple? Are people actually going to stop using 12 years of iOS, iCloud storage, Apple Pay, Apple Music and all of our purchased apps and switch to Samsung over a 100 megapixel camera? With extreme lock-in each platform has now with services, I simply don't have time to spend a week setting up a phone and finding apps for another platform only to switch back to iOS next year.
I have tried to make the switch. I’ve gotten close on a couple of phones. At most I can only get as far as keeping two phones on two lines and one large Note 10+ on WiFi as sort of a portable desktop and home entertainment setup.

iOS has some key features that I can’t part with. The ease of connecting with fellow iPhone users and sharing photos and videos with them in iMessage is hard to give up.

I like many aspects of Android better. The level of customization and versatility, on my Note especially, adds an ease to my day I don’t quite get on iOS. But it is an OS that puts marketing as a centerpiece to what it does. I’m not always comfortable with that.

Right now Android is a bit more stable overall as an OS but the individual apps are not. On iOS I find the overall OS still needs a lot of work but the individual apps that I use are generally of higher quality and stability.

If I can have only one, it would still be iOS and I do think very highly of my iPhone 11 Pro. I’m actually really content with it, to a level I haven’t been with a phone since my 2 years on an iPhone 4. I may actually stick with this one for 2 years. The photos I’m getting are already exactly the quality I’ve been wanting for years.
 
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jona2125

macrumors 6502a
Jul 12, 2010
780
648
I wonder if it's truly a 108 megapixel sensor or like a pixel shift/stitch from multiple sensor to provide a combined amount of data. I have an A7R IV and have taken a few 240 MP photos and they really are something remarkable. Not for everyone at all but I have to imagine that's what Samsung is going to be doing with this phone. I'm definitely intrigued either way.
 
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Appleman3546

macrumors 6502
May 13, 2019
253
474
Does this article mean 18 megapixels, because 108 will be so much memory per photo that a user who regularly takes photos would need a 1 terabyte SD card
 
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PickUrPoison

macrumors G3
Sep 12, 2017
8,022
10,430
Sunnyvale, CA
There is no need for that. Professional DSLRs don’t go that high and working with files that large is not fun in post processing. I’m all for better technology, but this seems like a gimmick.
What? A Samsung feature that's just a gimmick? That can’t be right... :)

PS That’s an awesome camera bump. Or does everyone here on MR still hate them?
 
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falainber

macrumors 68020
Mar 16, 2016
2,252
2,755
Wild West
Still not interested, but I wonder how it will chew up the “disk space”.
Remember, Samsung phones have more storage than iPhones (they can take memory cards up to 1TB).
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So we are back to the megapixel wars, even after it’s been shown to not be that important (e.g. dropping from 21MP to 12MP a few years ago). Essentially this 108MP sensor is only a 27MP sensor nearly all the time. And it hasn’t been shown to be much better than a good 12MP sensor. Especially anywhere that is not in full sun.
In 27MP mode, the sensor uses four sensor pixels to calculate one image pixel. Xiaomi Mi CC9 Pro, that uses this sensor, currently has the best DXO score in smartphone category (for what it's worth).
 
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Mr. Awesome

macrumors 6502a
Feb 24, 2016
640
1,269
Idaho, USA
It’s always good to see the biggest competitor pushing the boundaries. Pixel counts are nowadays pronounced more as marketing, but 108 megapixel is 108 megapixel.

To paraphrase an Apple keynote speaker (I don't remember who... probably Phil Schiller): It's not about the quantity of pixels, but the quality.

If all the pixels are bleeding into each other because you tried to cram a 108 megapixel camera into such a small space, then it's not going to look much better than 12 megapixel.
 
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NickName99

macrumors 6502a
Nov 8, 2018
946
2,743
Remember, Samsung phones have more storage than iPhones (they can take memory cards up to 1TB).
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In 27MP mode, the sensor uses four sensor pixels to calculate one image pixel. Xiaomi Mi CC9 Pro, that uses this sensor, currently has the best DXO score in smartphone category (for what it's worth).

I found one site posting full size 27MP JPEG pictures taken with the CC9 Pro, they’re around 12MB each. iPhone 12MP HEIC pictures are around 2MB. If your pictures take up 6x more space, I wonder what capacity will make sense? 512GB minimum? It will be interesting to see pricing on that.
 
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dannyyankou

macrumors G3
Mar 2, 2012
9,769
17,772
Westchester, NY
The 5x telephoto lens seems cool to me.

I don’t care about the gazillion megapixels. That game has been tried already and didn’t really catch on.
 
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Ultramove69

macrumors regular
Dec 23, 2017
106
293
Columbus Ohio, USA
Not sure how this plays into services. So let’s take social networking, uploaded media is scaled down significantly reducing the advantage of crazy resolutions. With that out of the way now examine cloud archiving. More android (and possibly some iPhone) users rely on Google Photos. The free version scales back to 16MP. Although file sizes haven’t been announced anything 100MP will be incredibly large before compression. If you’re willing to start compressing your images now you’re back down to 16MP quality. So unless you pay for cloud storage or direct connect your device to a traditional computer the advantage is lost. Yes, the same could be said for iOS but our images are 12MP, which is under the scaling limit of most free cloud services. Just seems like a wasted spec to tout.
 
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Jandalf

macrumors member
Oct 27, 2016
42
41
Will probably come with the option to downscale to save time saving to memory and make handling easier. Standard toogle in preferences will be 10.8 MP... (and Photos will look quite the same ?)
But you could, you could - and that counts... ?
 
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