LONG BEACH, Calif. -- Colorado MicroDisplay Inc., at the Society of Information Displays show here, today unveiled what it claimed is the lowest power-highest performance QVGA microdisplay chip set available, operating on approximately 15 milliwatts and delivers up to 24-bit color depth (16.7 million colors).
The QVGA (320 by 240 pixels) microdisplay is based on CMD's Dynamic Nematic Liquid Crystal on Silicon technology. This provides refresh rates of up to 120 Hz (360 colors per second) for "rock solid" still images and full-motion video.
The small physical package and 4.8-mm diagonal active display area is designed to deliver large images in increasingly smaller mobile communications products and digital still cameras.
Its large reflective pixels overcome the pixelization, high power consumption, and low optical efficiency found in transmissive microdisplays, the company said, allowing virtually seamless images while consuming less power.
The CMD3X2A operates on a single standard supply voltage and drives the liquid -rystal material with lower voltages than competitive transmissive microdisplays. This reduces display power consumption by as much as four times compared to competing microdisplays, CMD said. In addition, because of the greater efficiency of CMD's reflective display technology (optical throughput), much lower illumination power is required to achieve the same brightness level offered by transmissive microdisplays.
The CMD3X2A microdisplay chip set also includes a next-generation Illumination Controller, the CMD3XLB. This ASIC manages the RGB light-emitting diodes (LEDs) to optimize system performance and image quality. It accepts commands that are synchronized with pixel data, and translates them into signals to control LED timing and duty cycle. Some of the performance parameters controlled are brightness, color balance, and power down operation.
"The mobile internet device, mobile communication and digital imaging markets are currently underserved in terms of a low cost, low power, high performance display solution," said Jordan Watters, vice president of sales and marketing at CMD. "Consumers want access to the rich content, images, and video that is currently available to them at home but not yet available in mobile products. CMD's new QVGA microdisplay combined with our existing SVGA microdisplay, allows CMD to address the complete market opportunity and enable all the products and services that can use microdisplay solutions to deliver high quality content."
The comes CMD3XLB comes in a space-saving 24-pin TSSOP package. A complete optical module consisting of the CMD3X2A display, CMD3XLB illumination controller, and third party RGB LED illuminator can deliver brightness levels in excess of 30 foot-lamberts (fL) and a contrast ratio of 100:1.
CMD3XLB Illumination Controller samples are shipping now. The QVGA microdisplay will sample in the third quarter, with volume production to begin in the first quarter of 2001. The CMD3X2A and CMD3XLB chip set price estimated at less than $25 in OEM volumes
To support OEMs in the design-in process, CMD is offering the CMD3X2A QVGA microdisplay system evaluation kit. Orders for the kits, price at $2,500, are being taken now.