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2nd 12 Megapixel Samsung Phone Unveiled

Gordon Kelly


2nd 12 Megapixel Samsung Phone Unveiled

I have barely cooled down from my rant about the pointlessness of 12 megapixel cameraphones than Samsung has followed up the Pixon12 with yet another unnecessary double digiter...

The Samsung 'M8920' shows that underpowered over resolution-ed handsets are just the tip of the iceberg as it proves the desire for high file size/disproportionately low quality photography which cannot possibly be done justice by its underpowered lens is alive and well.

Little is known about the M8920 - other than its completely unnecessary megapixel rating - with this rear view image all we have seen and 3x optical zoom, Xenon flash, HSDPA, WiFi and GPS the other notable (if expected) highlights. Shots of the front remain unavailable at present but we hear a touchscreen display has made the line-up while onboard memory is said to be minimal with microSD providing the heavy hitting. Global network deals are set to bring the M8920 to a variety of networks around the globe within the next few months.

Is 12 megapixel the new eight? Sadly it seems so. Personally give me 3.2/5MP any day and decent image processing. The public at large will wise up eventually...


via Mobil.cz


June 5, 2009, 3:18 pm

3.2MP is the best quality now? Why? Because the Iphone has a awfully poor camera and we wouldnt want to highlight that? No doubt and no surprise to see this written here.

A good camera should be more like 6MP and its not really image processing magic that is needed at this stage in camera phoes - rather it is better lenses and sensors.


June 5, 2009, 4:03 pm

A 6MP sensor in a mobile phone chassis is probably overkill. Personally I think Gordon got this one right, 3.2MP is about the right sweet spot of image size versus cost and the savings can be pumped into improving the optics. But that's not the only reason that IN A PHONE anything above that is kinda pointless.

No matter what photos taken off phones are never going to be high enough quality to do justice to, let's say for arguments sake, 6MP images. You're simply not going to need that size of image for the quality you can get out of a lens and sensor that small. Now consider what cameras on mobilephones are going to be used for and you'll see a growing shift towards uploading on-the-fly to web services. In that case you don't want the larger file size associated with the larger sensors as it just slows everything down.


June 5, 2009, 4:24 pm

@ Kanu.

But image quality is directly related to the sensor size and MP count. It has nothing to do with the iPhone, you alone made that comparison.

I think the point that Gordon was trying to make was that given the size of the sensors used in these phones, the 3.2-5 MP resolution would be the most sensible resolution to use in terms of optimal image quality.

Given that even most dedicated compact cameras struggle to cope with 12MP resolutions, I don't have high expectations of this phone.


June 5, 2009, 4:42 pm

I think the point he is trying to make is that no phone really has the lens or image processing abilities to deal with pictures much over 3.2 or 5 megapixel, which I most definately agree with.

I even see it in cheap compact cameras, at night or in the clubs (which is the only place my 3 year old 6megax pixel camera really gets use) it takes better pictures at 6 megapixel than my friends new sony takes at 10.

Quality over quantity as they say.

Geoff Richards

June 5, 2009, 4:53 pm

@smc - you're missing the third side of the Quality Triangle - the lens. Nobody will question that it's megapixels that sell product, but at the end of the day pretty much all of these "cameras" are trying to capture light through what is effectively a pin-hole!

You can have the juiciest sensor in the world but the light has to get to it in the first place. When you've got coin-sized glass up against a pinhead-sized bit of plastic, there isn't much comparision, regardless of the sensor on the other side.

Tarik Bos

June 5, 2009, 5:26 pm

finally a freakin phone wich looks to have decent specs with optical zoom and they make it 12 MP... just give me the sensor of the k800i slap a optical zoom on it than mount it on a decent phone(iphone anyone?) and i'm happy


June 5, 2009, 5:30 pm

@all - excellent points and an extremely useful addition Geoff. As everyone has pointed out this has nothing to do with the iPhone (Kanu?! Surprise, surprise...) which has a 2MP resolution anyway. 3.2/5MP FTW!


June 6, 2009, 7:57 am

Everyone and their cousin knows that the new Iphone is creeping up to 3.2MP. So no surprise that 3.2MP is now the "okay" resolution. I guess cut and past is probably now okay in phones too.....

As for the cameras, well as someone above said the light starts with the lens - and the lens in these things is an cheap, nasty plastic pinhole. Improve that and improve the sensor and you will have a platform that you can create 5-6 good megapixels on.

But I guess when the iphone gets around to this in aabout a decade, certain people will then agree that it is right for phones. In fact they will demand that all phones do as the iphone. Of course by then many of them, including Samusng, will be on about 100 megapixels, but that is another story.


June 6, 2009, 2:15 pm

this is like the old Mhz race on the CPUs.... no one cared about anything but the raw clock speed of the CPU, just like most people only look for uber MP counts on their new cameras.....

Whats the point in a massive pixel count if the image is still blurry, full of noise and distorted?


June 6, 2009, 8:38 pm

I say bring on the mega megapixles but only when the image processing is up to scratch, the phone companies are only just starting to get 8megapixles right. personally I cant wait to see what the N86 is like.

there were some deacent 3.2MP phones like the K800i and I dont think the iphone has anything to do with it (which is no doubt only going to be held up because of its software come monday (and the wow/novelty factor) - but I guess we'll see)

Tony Gentry

June 7, 2009, 4:29 am

Gordon, perhaps an article comparing the images from a range of phones and camera at various resolutions could clarify and demostrate the differences between pixel count and optics. A standardised set of images from each device should clearly show what is acheiveable and reset readers expectations.


June 7, 2009, 5:03 pm

I'm not really sure that the general public will ever get that more megapixels are not always best, that processing and lens are important. I think the pubic have been sold a simple message:

"but it goes up to 11"


June 7, 2009, 9:14 pm

@Tony - good idea Tony, I've proposed it to the reviews team ;)


June 8, 2009, 3:38 am

That article wouldnt be a new idea or revolutionary at all. In fact the phone website, AllAboutSymbian, already did and extensive series of articles on phone cameras, using a handful of models to pick apart what matters, what doesnt and why.

It was a 10 part series, and is probably THE definitive series on phone cameras. Was done between Sept 2008 and Dec 2008. The first one is here:


The last one is here:



June 8, 2009, 3:56 am

@Kanu - then it would only be THE definitive series on phone cameras up until December 2008 - a lifetime away in the mobile phone industry. Omissions include the Pixon, Renoir, Arena, Cybershot C905, etc etc.

Yes, 10 parts - but each part is just one page. I'd also consider the Nokia domination considering the author is AllAboutSymbian.com. That said, it's a good try at a worthy topic.

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