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13Mpx camera sensor to boost image quality in smartphones

08 Oct 2014

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OmniVision Technologies Inc. has unveiled what it describes as a 13MP camera solution that enhances the image quality of next generation premium smartphones. The 1/2.6in PureCel-S OV13860 image sensor uses 1.3um pixels and leverages the company'stacked die technology to offer excellent low-light performance while meeting the design constraints of low z-height camera modules, the company stated.

The stacked die technology separates the imaging array from the image sensor processing pipeline into a stacked die structure. This allows for additional functionality to be implemented on the sensor while providing for a much smaller footprint when compared with non-stacked sensors, thus enabling smaller module sizes for larger optical format sensors, OmniVision indicated.

The OV13860 also features autofocus contrast calculation at 120fps while imaging at full 13MP resolution to enable a fast autofocus camera system. When paired with a high-speed actuator, the OV13860 can provide for nearly instant autofocus by delivering contrast statistics at up to four times faster than traditional single frame-based contrast calculations, boasted the company. The OV13860 also supports alternate row dual-exposure high dynamic range (HDR) timing mode for delivering HDR video in challenging lighting scenes.

The OV13860's 1.3um pixels enable dramatically improved high- and low-light performance as a result of higher sensitivity, signal-to-noise ratio and full-well capacity when compared to products of similar or higher resolution with 1.12um pixels, the company noted. The OV13860 can capture full-resolution 13MP still images at 30fps or record ultra-high resolution 4K2K video at 30fps, 1080p full HD at 60fps, or 720p HD at 120fps. Each video output format includes additional pixels to support electronic image stabilization (EIS), added OmniVision.

The OV13860 is sampling and is expected to enter volume production in 4Q14.

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