Sunnyvale, Calif. Marking a new step in making high-end digital photography available to more mobile devices, OmniVision Technologies, Inc. has launched its new OV3630, a high performance 3.2-megapixel CMOS image sensor for digital still image and video/still camera products. Incorporating the company's new 2.2 micron OmniPixel2 technology, the new imager, with a lens format of 1/3.2 inches, enables a very compact auto focus and zoom camera module size, making it possible to bring 3-megapixel camera phones into the mainstream handset market.
The OV3630 is the first product to employ OmniVision's new OmniPixel2 technology with a pixel size of 2.2 x 2.2 microns, which is less than half the size of the first generation OmniPixel structures, as well as one of the industry's smallest pixel sizes. Key advances include a 40% increase in the fill factor, and improvements to the pixel's dynamic range, which measures performance in extreme bright and dark environments.
The new OmniPixel2 sensors are also designed with a zero-gap micro-lens that eliminates the space between the lenses placed over each pixel to more efficiently direct the light to the pixel's active area. The result: pixels capture over 20% more light to more effectively use the smaller pixel's active area.
The OmniPixel2-based OV3630 incorporates a 2048 x 1536 pixel array and an on-chip 10-bit A/D converter capable of operating up to 15 frames per second (fps) in full resolution mode and 30 fps during LCD preview mode while consuming minimal power. The OV3630 supports both a standard 10-bit parallel interface and a high-speed serial interface compliant with the second generation compact camera port interface standard (CCP2).
The OV3630 also features built-in OmniQSP technology which provides high-quality picture processing and features traditionally only found in digital still cameras, according to the company. Other features include control registers and a programming toolset that allow for flexible control of timing, polarity and camera-chip operation, and manipulation of automatic exposure control. It also features automatic gain control, automatic white balance, windowing and auto black level calibration.
The company also notes that the 15 fps at full resolution enables the use of an electronic shutter instead of a traditional mechanical shutter. "Eliminating the mechanical shutter saves cost, but more importantly for the camera phone makers, it reduces the mechanical envelope needed, giving early adopters of this technology a competitive edge in their quest for thinner and sleeker phones," said Jess Lee, vice president of the Mainstream Products Business Unit at OmniVision, in a statement.
OV3630 samples are available at a starting price of $20.
OmniVision Technologies, Inc. 1-408-542-3000, www.ovt.com