New CMOS CameraChip for security and surveillance applications targets competing CCD solutions

JULY 29--OmniVision Technologies Inc. (Sunnyvale, CA; www.ovt.com) has released the first of its next-generation OV7400 series black-and-white CameraChips tailored for both commercial and household security and surveillance applications.

JULY 29--OmniVision Technologies Inc. (Sunnyvale, CA; www.ovt.com), an independent supplier of single CameraChip solutions for high-volume imaging applications, has released the first of its next-generation OV7400 series black-and-white CameraChips tailored for both commercial and household security and surveillance applications. The OV7431 is an NTSC-only CameraChip designed to enable low-cost, single-chip solutions in applications where performance in low-light conditions is paramount.

"By improving the CameraChip's low-light capabilities, we have produced a cost-effective solution capable of competing in the security-and-surveillance market against more-expensive and complex CCD technologies," said John Lynch, vice president of sales and marketing for OmniVision. "With this offering, camera manufacturers can produce high-sensitivity camera solutions with all of the cost and power benefits of CMOS imaging technologies."

The OV7431 operates at 0.05 lux. (Operation at less than 0.1 lux is generally considered the threshold for low-light security applications.) The low lux level of the OV7421 means that the imaging device can produce a quality image with extremely low light, a feature considered beneficial to mass security applications.

Designed for EIA (the black and white equivalent of NTSC, the 510 x 492-pixel video standard in the United States and Canada), the OV7431 delivers composite video capable of directly driving a display device, such as a television or monitor. The OV7431 offers an image array in a standard 1/3-inch format and provides real-time frame rates for video and other imaging applications. Functions incorporated in the OV7431 CameraChip include automatic gain control, automatic exposure control, gamma correction, automatic level control, and automatic black level calibration.


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