Now that the new iPad is finding its way into the hands of lucky buyers across the globe, we are beginning to hear reports of first impressions and as always, teardowns. One such teardown has come courtesy of Chipworks.

As we already knew, the new iPad comes packed to the gills with technology, and that battery is as massive as we expected – you’ve got to power that 4G somehow! – but Chipworks has also taken a closer look at the two cameras that Apple has used this time around.

Perhaps predictably, it appears that Apple has chosen to re-use parts from its existing product lines for the new iPad, which while not necessarily a bad thing, is certainly worth a mention…

Take that rear camera for example. Certainly much better than the poor camera we all had to endure in the iPad 2, the new 5-megapixel shooter is apparently the same part that Apple used in the iPhone 4. We all rated that particular camera very highly here at iDB, and it was only beaten by the even more impressive iPhone 4S camera. The news that it has been repurposed for the new iPad is certainly no disappointment. What we do find interesting though, is the video specification.

Think back to the iPhone 4 and you will remember that the camera used was, and still is, capable of shooting video at 720p. What’s interesting is that same part is now capable of hitting the dizzy heights of 1080p. We can only assume the difference is the extra processing power inside the iPad. We’ve got a lot to thank that extra CPU core for, apparently.

The new iPad’s front camera is also one we have seen before. In fact, it’s just been carried over from the iPad 2, and owners of the old camera-toting iPod nano have also been using the same part for a good while, too.

We’re not surprised that Apple is re-using parts – it makes good business sense – but it’s interesting stuff nonetheless.

Have you been taking pictures with your new iPad yet?


  • Anonymous

    Still can’t tell if this is a good thing or a bad thing. Heh, doesn’t matter, it’s not like I’m going to take panoramic views with the thing or anything.

  • But why not use the 4S’s camera?

    • Likely to keep costs down.

    • Anonymous

      also known as ‘built-in obsolescence’ – Apple probably already have the 4S camera lined up for use in the next iPad, if they’d put the 4S camera into this model how could they improve on it for the next? 🙂

      • I’m inclined to agree with this theory. There’s really no excuse for omitting it.

    • cause apple is really sneaky! they keep the iphone 4s camera to the new iPad 2 or the ipad 4!
      its like asking why they didn’t put the iphone 4 camera on the ipad 2, they had the tech they just knew that if they will upgrade ipads and iphones slowly then they will get more money.

  • Eduardo Malheiros

    Wait a minute, what about the “five-element lens” that only came out on the 4S and is being advertised for the new iPad’s rear camera?

    • ya precisely what im thinking too… has apple been deliberately hiding or lying to us about the ipad camera and previous iphone 4 camera?… ….

  • So the iPhone 4’s Camera is capable of 1080p, but is limited to 720p by Apple. That goes the same with the iPhone 3GS camera. Its capable of 720p video, but limited to 480p by Apple. This restriction can be removed through a Jailbreak Tweak.

    • It can??? What tweak? My iPhone 4 wants to know. 😉

  • hmmm wonder if you could put the 4s camera in there hehe

  • It’s a shame they didn’t improve the front-facing camera a little at least, but it’s not really shocking and as mentioned it helps keep costs down I’m sure.

  • But still the ipad 3 is one of the best products in the market that takes pics like their were taken on a professional camera

  • Anonymous

    Honestly, for me, when I do get to use my iPad 2 (technically it is mine, but my wife keeps stealing it form me!!! LOL!!!)… Anyways, when both my wife and I use MY iPad 2, we really only use the front camera for SKYPE and the occasional FaceTime calls.

    If we need to take pictures, we use our iPhone 4, which as iDB has reported is a great little 5-megapixel camera when we don’t have our regular Nikon handy!