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Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra teardown shows off the phone’s huge 108-megapixel sensor

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It’s about double the surface area of the iPhone 11 Pro’s main sensor

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Image: iFixit

iFixit has posted its teardown of Samsung’s new Galaxy S20 Ultra, and it reveals that the 108-megapixel camera sensor is, as you might expect, really big.

You can get an idea of just how large the sensor is when you compare it to the iPhone 11 Pro’s 12-megapixel primary camera sensor, which iFixit did in the below photo:

Image: iFixit

As iFixit rightly points out, though, a bigger sensor and more pixels doesn’t necessarily translate to better images. A 108-megapixel sensor means there are 108 million pixels packed into the S20 Ultra’s 9.5mm by 7.3mm sensor, and that many pixels packed into that small of space can sometimes produce noisy images, especially in low-light situations. And in his review of the S20 Ultra, my colleague Dieter Bohn found that he never took a photo that looked better as a 108-megapixel photo than as a 12-megapixel one.

iFixit also shared a look at the housing for the 100X zoom sensor, which is pretty cool, in my opinion. The housing itself is turned sideways so that it can sit under the S20’s other cameras. And instead of having light hit the sensor directly, the housing is designed so that light first goes through a prism, is bounced sideways at a 90-degree angle, then goes through the zoom lenses, and then hits the sensor.

Image: iFixit

The teardown also confirms the S20 Ultra has a 5,000mAh battery (though it’s glued into the phone, which makes it harder to replace). Here’s a look at the whole phone taken apart, if you were curious:

Image: iFixit

Correction: In the original version of this article, we mistakenly identified the housing for the 100X zoom lens as the housing for the 108-megapixel lens. We regret the error.