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DxO ONE is a 20MP DSLR-Quality Camera That’s Used with Your iPhone

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DxO Labs, the French software company known for photo software and gear tests, made a huge announcement today by unveiling a camera of its own. Called the DxO ONE, it’s a pocket-sized 20.2 megapixel camera that aims to combine DSLR-quality with the convenience of smartphone photography.

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Inside the camera is a 1-inch CMOS BSI sensor — the same size used by Nikon 1 mirrorless cameras — and on the front of the camera is a 32mm-equivalent f/1.8 lens with a 6-blade iris. Those specs are crammed into a 2.65-inch (6.9cm) tall camera that weighs just 3.8oz (108g) and fits comfortably in your palm and pocket.

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One of the reasons it can be so compact is that it’s essentially a modular camera that lacks a main LCD screen for composing and reviewing shots — it’s designed to pair with an iPhone or iPad to form a complete camera via a Lightning connector. Once connected, the camera can swivel in each direction 60 degrees.

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Using the free companion iOS app, photographers can control the settings of the DxO camera, including aperture (f/1.8 to f/11), shutter speed (15s to 1/8000s), ISO (100 to 51200), and capture modes (Scene, Speed, Aperture Priority, or Full Manual).

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DxOMark did its standard test on the DxO ONE sensor, and the camera achieved a score of 70, which is “on par with full frame DSLRs and dramatically higher than any smartphone,” the company says. It scores up to 85 when a ‘SuperRAW’ feature is activated — this feature captures 4 RAW frames in rapid succession and then merges them together for a better-quality image.

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Other features of the camera include 1080p/30fps and 720p/120fps video recording, dual RAW+JPEG capture, a built-in microSD card, and file storage on the iOS camera roll.

Here are some sample photographs captured with the DxO ONE (you can find more in this album):

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The DxO ONE should begin shipping in September 2015, and pre-orders can be placed on the DxO website for $599.

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