A few days ago Samsung dropped some jaws with the announcement of their new flagship NX1, a camera headlined by an impressive ‘industry first’ 28 megapixel BSI APS-C sensor. Today, Samsung shared the tech behind their BSI (Back-Side Illuminated) APS-C sensor that serves as the base for the NX1.
First, let’s talk about what sets this sensor apart from an industry standard image sensor. The sensor in the NX1, called the S5KVB2, features BSI or back-side illuminated technology. Other sensors in the industry utilize FSI or front-side illuminated technology. The main difference between these two technologies?
According to Samsung, the BSI structure moves the metal layers to the rear side of the photodiode to reduce the loss of light. Thanks to the BSI pixel technology, Samsung’s new sensor improves the light sensitivity of each pixel, increasing light absorption in peripheral areas by approximately 30 percent, resulting in – according to them – crisper, sharper images compared to a FSI pixel-based image sensor.
Samsung didn’t stop there though either. They also implemented a new 65nm low-power copper process, quite a bit ahead of the 180nm aluminium process, generally used in the camera sensor industry. The result is an image sensor that uses less power and puts off less heat, two big advantages for mirrorless cameras.
Samsung also says that their new process reduces random noise from the sensor significantly.
Overall, it sounds like some interesting tech. I am even more interested in getting my hands on the NX1 now so I can see if this sensor is really anything to write home about. A lot of people are saying they are not impressed by the sample images. The ones I saw didn’t blow me away or anything, but they were not bad by any stretch. I will withhold judgement though until I can use it myself.
If you are interested in giving it a try yourself, you can pre-order the NX1 now over on B&H.
What are your thoughts on this new sensor tech from Samsung? Do you think that it will be able to hold up against popular sensors from Sony, Canon and Fuji? Leave a comment below!