Video — September 15, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Camera upgrades on iPhone 5

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A new image signal processor is built into the iPhone 5’s new A6 chip, and Apple says that the camera is 40 percent faster than its predecesso

Apple’s new iPhone 5 sports a better, faster iSight camera with enhanced still and video capabilities and improved low-light performance. Many of the improvements are software-based, according to a Techhive review.

The camera is still 8 megapixels, like the previous 4S model, with a resolution of 3264-by-2448. There’s still backside illumination, a hybrid IR filter, a five-element lens, and a fast f/2.4 aperture. A new dynamic low-light mode can sense dim light and boost the aperture by up to two stops.

A new optical system includes precision lens alignment, which Apple says is measured down to the micron level. For the first time, a sapphire crystal lens promises to make images clearer and sharper. The company says the ability to take macro and close-up photos has also improved.

A new image signal processor is built into the iPhone 5’s new A6 chip, and Apple says that the camera is 40 percent faster than its predecessor. Spatial noise reduction removes noise via a smart filter that looks at images and figures out which areas should be of uniform color or texture. That improves low-light performance, overall.

Techhive notes the new phone also sports video improvements. Alongside the 1080p HD video recording, which is the same as the 4S model, there’s improved video stabilization, face detection for up to ten faces, plus you can shoot still photos while recording video.

The biggest boost comes to the front-facing camera, which is now designated “FaceTime HD” and shoots 720p with backside illumination as opposed to VGA. FaceTime over cellular promises better quality conversations, if your carrier allows it.

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