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  • Updated: December 17, 2021

Sony Unveils New Smartphone Camera Sensor

Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation, Sony has unveiled a new type of stacked CMOS sensor that uses "two-layer transistor pixels" to double the light gathering capability.

Sony said that the new design puts the photodiodes on top and the pixel transistors below, "approximately doubling saturation signal levels." The normal image sensors have light-sensitive photodiodes and pixel transistors that control and amplify the signal on the same layer.

This latest sensor uses a similar idea but packs the pixel transistors onto a separate substrate underneath the photodiode layer.

This indicates that each layer of the new sensor could be optimised, allowing Sony to double the sensor's light saturation (well depth), or the amount of charge each pixel can hold. It also allows for faster readout speeds and thus rapid burst shooting and reduced rolling shutter (jello effect) on cameras and smartphones.

The doubled sensor’s light saturation allows for around double the light-capturing capability.

According to Sony, the transistor pixels sit on a separate layer and this enables the amplifier transistor to boost in size and a bigger signal boost that reduces noise when shooting nighttime or other images in dark locations.

The increased dynamic range will allow for "high-quality, low-noise images even in low-light."

The tech will allow for higher-quality smartphone photography, with double the light gathering capability and it will allow for much-improved light sensitivity even in relatively small, high-megapixel sensors, Sony said.

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