DALLAS ( ChipWire) -- Texas Instruments Inc. here today is making its first serious foray into the digital still camera market with the introduction of a programmable chip that integrates a TSM320C500 digital signal processor and an ARM7TDMI RISC processor with an imaging coprocessor and a variable-length coder.
OEMs can design a digital still camera with the fully programmable solution, which allows the addition of such features as the recording of video clips with audio in real-time MPEG-1, MPEG-4 and motionJPEG, or the playing of MP3 music files.
Both the imaging coprocessor and the variable-length coder are designed to accelerate image processing. The chip also comes with a hardwired preview engine, SDRAM controller, video encoder and I/O block. Such an architecture makes it possible for OEMs to design a camera that's able to transfer images at 320 megabits/second, preview 30-frames/s NTSC and PAL video, and achieve real-time frame capture in burst mode to the full resolution of the 2-Mpixel image sensor.
Samples of the chip are available now, and production volumes are scheduled to become available in the fourth quarter, priced at less than $15 each in volume quantities.