If you have been wondering what exactly is the sensor in the intriguing new 12 MP camera unit that can be found on the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge, wonder no more, as it's actually two sensors - Samsung is using either its own S5K2L1 ISOCELL unit, or a custom-made piece by Sony, coded as IMX260.
The fact that we hadn't heard about both of these models before, vouches for the premise that they are brand new pieces, developed specifically for the S7 and its larger S7 edge sidekick. No wonder, as Sony often does custom orders for huge clients like Apple or Samsung, and then the phone makers create the optics packaging and image processing on their own, for a completely individualized experience.
This time around, Samsung uses a camera with 1/2.5" sensor size, largish 1.4-micron pixels, and wide f/1.7 aperture, allowing the company to boast that this setup can collect 95% more light than those in the Galaxy S6 or S6 edge. Moreover, Samsung has embedded a Dual Pixel system in the sensors for incredibly fast focusing times, too, so those are definitely brand new custom-made unit.
Are there any differences in photo quality from a Galaxy S7 edge with the Sony or Samsung pieces, though? Well, you be the judge, as the pics you see below are taken with two S7 edge units that have the different camera sensors in them - there are indeed subtle deviations in color saturation and contrast, but nothing really striking, it seems. Be patient, as these are the full-size unretouched photos straight outta S7 edge, so they might take some time to load.
Galaxy S7 edge with Samsung vs S7 edge with Sony camera sensors