Five mobile phone megapixel monsters

With news from Sony Ericsson officially announcing the retail availability of the company's high spec, mulitmedia mobile, autumn double whammy due soon; we thought we'd take a look at the more specialised end of the smartphone market.

While the Aino is all about integration with the PS3, it's the 12-megapixel marriage of the Cyber-Shot and Walkman brands that's got the universal appeal for the cameraphone loving public. However, the SE way of doing things isn't quite everyone's cup of tea, so here are five other great megapixel monsters to look out for that might also tickle your fancy or leave a little more left in your wallet.

 

Samsung Pixon12

 

Resolution
12 megapixels
Flash
Xenon
Lens
28mm wide-angle
Price
Free from £35/month

 

The Pixon12, or M8910, was the world's first 12-meggy monster and still the equal biggest. It's got a 3.1-inch AMOLED screen with 10,000:1 contrast ratio, a 28mm wide angle lens and can snap a pic every 2 seconds. There's a dedicated "Camera Power Key" for one-touch access to the camera function and a nice Xenon flash too. One of the best features though is the touchscreen controlled auto-focus tracking, where users can select a focus point with the touch of a finger and the AF function will automatically follow the object, while the Smart Auto feature changes the scene and mode based on its object, background and lighting. Other specs for the quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE phone include HSUPA, Wi-Fi, GPS, an FM radio, 720 x 480 video capture at 30fps and up to 16GB memory via MicroSD for storing all your high res snaps.

 

LG Louvre

 

Resolution
12 megapixels
Flash
Xenon
Lens
Schneider-Kruznach
Price
unavailable

 

LG showed off a concept 12-megapixel camera phone called the GC990 Louvre at the Korea Products Exhibition in Warsaw a few months back and although it's not yet on the scene, it's the only other competitor to the Pixon12 and Satio in pure resolution stakes. It has autofocus and touch-focus, the ability to record 720p HD video at 30fps and an ISO up to 3200. There's also automatic geo-tagging and LG claims there'll be zero shutter lag. POIDH. Away from the camera, there's Wi-Fi, TV-Out, GPS, a 3.2-inch touchscreen 16:9 display, an accelerometer, Bluetooth, and support for DivX and Xvid video formats as seemingly standard for LG these days. Sadly, it's only a concept model and there are no official plans to bring it to market. Perhaps LG has decided that the megapixel race is very 2008.

 

Sharp Aquos Shot 933SH

 

Resolution
10 megapixels
Flash
Xenon
Lens
28mm wide-angle
Price
Japan only

 

The 10-megapixel mark hasn't been hugely popular for mobile manufacturers but a certain phone maker which has been very quiet over here has been busy with this stunner in the East. It has a 3.3-inch WVGA display which has a rotating touchscreen that brings incredibly compact camera-esque control to your mobile device. It's packet with picture taking features and scene modes and, as the name suggests, houses some of the LCD technology found in the Sharp AV units. Very nice for watching TV on the go. Yes, they do that out there.

 

Nokia N86 8MP

 

Resolution
8 megapixels
Flash
dual LEDs
Lens
28mm wide-angle Carl Zeiss Tessar
Price
Free from £20/month

 

Going with the headline "Imaging at its very best..." Nokia has designed the N86 to take the big boys as well as other 8-megapixel offerings. It's got wide-angle Carl Zeiss Tessar optics lens with a mechanical shutter, up to 1/1000 shutter speed and an f-stop range of 2.4-4.8 to suit low light conditions. It also supports geo-tagging capabilities and comes with a 3rd generation dual LED camera flash rather than a Xenon, which Nokia believes to be superior. There's 8GB of internal memory for your snaps for around 4000 images plus A-GPS, a 2.6-inch QVGA 230 x 320 screen, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.0. It's also got a scratch-resistant AMOLED display.

 

Sony Ericsson W995

 

Resolution
8.1 megapixels
Flash
Photo Flash
Lens
standard
Price
Free from £20/month

 

The other option, of course, is just an older, slightly lower spec Sony Ericsson model - the W995. It features Media Go access for all your gaming an entertainment needs and offers a 2.6-inch screen, a built-in stand, built-in stereo speakers, Wi-Fi, 3.5mm headphone jack and all the Walkman features like SensMe and TrackID as well. As for the camera, there's not a lot to get excited about aside AF, face tracking and geo-tagging and the large sensor but then, none of the others on the list come bundled with headphones as well as an 8GB memory stick.