Nokia has reportedly been dreaming of PureView phones with 4K video; as of today, OmniVision is walking the walk quite a bit earlier. The 16-megapixel resolution of the OV16820 and OV16825 is something we've seen before, but it now has a massive amount of headroom for video. If your smartphone or camcorder has the processing grunt to handle it, either of the sensors can record 4K (3840 x 2160, to be exact) video at a super-smooth 60 fps, or at the camera's full 4608 x 3456 if you're willing to putt along at 30 fps. The pair of backside-illuminated CMOS sensors can burst-shoot still photos at the bigger size, too, and can handle up to 12-bit RAW. Impressive stuff, but if you were hoping for OmniVision to name devices, you'll be disappointed: it's typically quiet about the customer list, and mass production isn't due for either version until the fall. On the upside, it could be next year that we're feeding our 4K projectors with Mr. Blurrycam smartphone videos.
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OmniVision Launches 16-Megapixel CameraChip™ Sensors For DSC/DVC and High-End Smartphone Applications
OV16820 and OV16825 Provide 16-Megapixel Burst Photography, Support Emerging 4K2K Standard in High Resolution Recording
SANTA CLARA, Calif., May 22, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- OmniVision Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: OVTI), a leading developer of advanced digital imaging solutions, today announced the OV16820 and OV16825, two 16-megapixel CameraChip sensors that support 16-megapixel burst photography and can capture 4K2K video, or Quad Full High Definition (QFHD), at 60 frames per second (FPS). Built on the high-performance 1.34-micron OmniBSI-2™ pixel architecture, the OV16820 and OV16825 were developed by OmniVision to support emerging standards in high-resolution video recording for the digital still and video camera (DSC/DVC) markets and the high-end smartphone market, respectively.
"It was an industry-wide assumption that smartphones would cut into DSC/DVC sales; but at higher resolutions, we're seeing a very distinct divide between the two markets and both remain strong," said Devang Patel, senior product marketing manager at OmniVision. "Industry experts have observed that mainstream DSC products are shifting to 16-megapixel resolutions and are offering improved image quality and optics. The OV16820 supports such offerings, allowing DSC/DVC manufacturers to provide consumers a high-resolution, feature-rich point and shoot photography experience, while the OV16825 provides top-tier imaging and video recording capabilities for flagship smartphones."
The 1/2.3-inch OV16820 and OV16825 image sensors are capable of operating in full resolution (4608 x 3456) video at 30 FPS, 4K2K (3840 x 2160) video at 60 FPS, and 1080p HD video at 60 FPS with extra pixels for electronic image stabilization (EIS). Additionally, the sensors enable full resolution 16-megapixel burst photography, a critical feature for DSC applications. All required image processing functions, including defective pixel and noise canceling, RAW scaling, image size, frame rate, exposure, gain, cropping and orientation are programmable through the serial camera control bus (SCCB) interface.
The sensors are offered with industry-standard connectivity, including up to 8-lane MIPI and LVDS output interfaces for high data transfer rates. The OV16820 is available for sampling in a ceramic land grid array (CLGA) package while the OV16825 will be available in die form (RW/COB). Both are expected to enter volume production by the fourth quarter of 2012.