Fujitsu's next-gen Milbeaut image processor does single-chip Hi-Vision video, 20MP stills

Fujitsu's latest image processor, the Milbeaut MB91696AM, has a new bag of tricks on tap, and it's fixing to unload them in April. The new Milbeaut sports ARM processors and a "newly-developed" Full HD H.264 codec engine, making for 14-megapixel shooting at 8fps (or about 20 megapixels at 5.5fps) and low-noise Hi-Vision video recording at 1920 x 1080. So the processor, in its sixth iteration, sports high resolution photos and HD video all on the same chip, and features continuous photography speeds up to five times faster than its predecessors. Fujitsu's got plans to show off Milbeaut's mobile solutions at MWC next week, and we wouldn't be surprised to see the MB91696AM make its debut in Barcelona as well. Either way, samples of the new processor is scheduled to ship starting in April for ¥3,000 (right around $36) a pop, which means new Milbeaut-equipped cameras won't shouldn't be far behind. Full PR after the jump.

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Fujitsu Releases 6th Generation of Milbeaut Imaging Processors

Realizes high-speed continuous shooting at 8 frames per second and high-resolution Full Hi-Vision movies (1920 X 1080 pixels) -

Yokohama, Japan, February 8, 2011 - Fujitsu Semiconductor Limited today announced the development of MB91696AM, the newest model in the Milbeaut series of advanced imaging processors. Samples of the new model will begin shipping in April 2011.

MB91696AM represents the sixth generation of the Milbeaut image processing algorithm, which has been widely adopted due to its high reliability, allowing both high-speed continuous shooting at 8 frames per second (at a 14 megapixel resolution) and higher video quality. Furthermore, MB91696AM is equipped with a newly-developed Full HD H.264 codec engine, enabling clear, low-noise recording of high-resolution Full Hi-Vision movies (1920 X 1080 pixels).

By advancing the development of these proprietary technologies, Fujitsu has been able to achieve a balance between quality and speed for both high-resolution video and still photography, thereby enabling camera solutions to be developed using a single chip.

In recent years, the shift toward high-definition technology in the market for AV devices, including digital cameras, mobile phone cameras, and digital camcorders, has been accompanied by heightened demand for increasingly higher resolutions for capturing high-speed photographs and HD movies. Using conventional technology, however, it still remains a challenge to quickly handle dramatically-increased processing volumes of high-resolution images.

Fujitsu Semiconductor has responded to these challenges by enhancing its proprietary Milbeaut image processing algorithm and H.264 Full HD codec engine, thereby meeting the high-resolution needs of users, from still images to HD movies, using a single chip.

MB91696AM represents the sixth generation of the Milbeaut image processing algorithm. Milbeaut is an image processor that has been widely adopted in digital cameras, mobile phone cameras and other devices since its release in 2000. MB91696AM features a significantly-improved image processing algorithm that enables higher image quality and processing performance. At the same time, the processor is equipped with two ARM® processors, an industry-standard CPU core, and features continuous photography performance approximately five times that of previous Fujitsu products.

In addition, Fujitsu Semiconductor has performed a complete optimization of its Full HD H.264 codec engine. The new engine enables the capturing of high-resolution images through a proprietary image processing algorithm, which was developed in collaboration with Fujitsu Laboratories Limited. In addition, with an architecture that significantly reduces data-transfer volumes, the processor reduces energy consumption.

In the future, Fujitsu Semiconductor plans to bring the product to the global market while continuing to develop high-resolution, high-performance, and energy-efficient products.

This product was jointly developed by Fujitsu VLSI Limited, Fujitsu Microelectronics Solutions Limited, and Fujitsu Laboratories Limited.