OmniVision has just let loose its OV10810, hailed as the first native 16:9 CMOS image sensor to enable simultaneous 1080p HD video recording and ten megapixel image captures. The chip is built upon the company's 1.4-micron OmniBSI pixel architecture, and it's obviously aimed at digicams, camcorders and higher-end smartphones. Generally speaking, any camcorder that can snag stills on the side does so at a terribly low resolution, but this bantam slab of silicon would obviously serve as a solution. The technobabble's there after the break if you're interested, and you can commence waiting for this to make it to your favorite smartphone / camera maker... now.
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OmniVision's OV10810 -- First Native 16:9 CMOS Image Sensor to Enable Simultaneous 1080p HD Video Recording and 10-Megapixel Image Capture

Native 16:9 Aspect Ratio Designed to Support Full Screen Photo and Video Sharing

SANTA CLARA, Calif., Jan. 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- OmniVision Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq: OVTI), a leading developer of advanced digital imaging solutions, today introduced the OV10810, a 10-megapixel CMOS image sensor built on OmniVision's highly optimized 1.4-micron OmniBSI™ pixel architecture. The 1/2.5-inch OV10810 is designed to offer complete convergence between high-resolution still photography and full high-definition (HD) video by combining 10-megapixel burst photography at 30 frames per second (fps) with full 1080p HD video in a native 16:9 aspect ratio. This makes the OV10810 an ideal choice for digital still and video camera (DSC/DVC) hybrids and high-end smart phones.

"The OV10810 is a 10-megapixel image sensor that allows the simultaneous capture of full-frame, 10-megapixel still images and 1080p HD video at 30 frames per second, a unique feature that is exclusive to CMOS technology," said Devang Patel, senior product marketing manager at OmniVision. "Allowing users to take pictures even while they are recording video is a key feature that bridges the gap between DSC and DVC, giving users the ultimate camera experience. Additionally, the sensor's 16:9 aspect ratio reflects the increasing popularity of HDTV by capturing photos and video that align with the wide screen displays used in most of today's TVs, notebooks and smart phones, further enhancing the user experience."

Optimized to meet the performance specifications of next generation DSC/DVC applications, the OV10810 is outfitted with improved pixel and system architectures. The enhanced 1.4-micron OmniBSI pixel features significantly improved low-light sensitivity and full well capacity, as well as higher dynamic range and signal-to-noise ratio, making it the highest performing pixel in its class.

As a RAW sensor, the OV10810's integrated programmable scaler enables either 1080p or 720p HD video capture at 30 fps while maintaining full field of view (FOV). At 2.6-megapixel resolution, the sensor operates at 60 fps with pixel binning, maintaining full FOV while offering significantly improved low-light sensitivity. At 5.3-megapixel resolution with cropping, the OV10810 runs at 60 fps. High frame rates enable a number of key benefits, including: slow motion photography, no image lag for shutter-less designs, continuous shooting, minimized rolling shutter effect, and real-time still image and video capture without changing resolutions.

The OV10810 features a 2 x 2 binning functionality to improve low-light sensitivity, and a post-binning re-sampling filter that minimizes spatial artifacts and removes image artifacts around edges to deliver clean, crisp color images. The OV10810 supports up to 8-lane LVDS or MIPI interfaces for high data transfer rates, and is compatible with a wide range of custom and merchant ISPs. The OV10810 comes in a CSP3 or RW package and is currently available for sampling.

About OmniVision

OmniVision Technologies (Nasdaq: OVTI) is a leading developer of advanced digital imaging solutions. Its award-winning CMOS imaging technology enables superior image quality in many of today's consumer and commercial applications, including mobile phones, notebooks and webcams, digital still and video cameras, security and surveillance, entertainment devices, automotive and medical imaging systems. Find out more at http://www.ovt.com.