DxO ISP: DSC still and video image quality silicon IP for mobile phones
End user demand is to get DSC quality out of a smaller size phone. The camera ISP is more and more implemented on the baseband or application processor in the phone, in order to benefit from the state of the art 40nm or 28nm manufacturing process used in these chips which reduces silicon cost compared to discrete chip or less dense sensor process.
However, new sensor technologies which are updated every year require changes in the ISP to keep the required image quality by adapting to the new pixels characteristics. Also new imaging features are needed at an increasing pace to meet user demand and differentiate on the competitive smartphone market.
However, the time between the specification freeze of the baseband and application processor and its availability in a phone can be several years. The ability to change features without silicon respin is therefore mandatory. A fully hardwired ISP does not meet the end user requirements under these circumstances.
The computing power needed to process 1080p video in real time at 30fps or 60fps is one to two orders of magnitude higher than what the main ARM processor, a DSP or a GPU can deliver. A dedicated low power scalable image processing architecture compatible with HD video recording is therefore required.
DxO ISP is an ISP focused on delivering high-quality images even in very low light, using cameraphone low-cost sensors and optics. It does this by a combination of noise reduction techniques, similar to those present in DxO Optics Pro. DxO ISP includes additional processing steps specially designed to work with small pixels such as those in cameraphone sensors. DxO ISP also includes adaptive real-time control of the exposure, focus, and white balance to deliver consistent colors, contrast and details—whatever the lighting conditions.
DxO ISP benefits
DxO ISP provides the best image quality:
- Video and still algorithms are based on DxO Optics Pro best-in-class technology
- Updates for new pixels fill the gap between the long go to market cycle of application processors or baseband and rapidly-evolving sensors
DxO ISP safeguards the silicon investment:
- DxO provides post-silicon ISP algorithm updates to support new pixels
- DxO DOP, DxO DPP, DxO EIS and DxO AFSU can be added post-silicon
- Third-party features can be added post-silicon
DxO ISP reduces the integration cost and time to market for new devices:
- Updates for new pixels allow support for new sensors right away
- Calibration and tuning productivity tools use DxO Analyzer technology developed to test a larger number of cameras rapidly and accurately
DxO ISP implementation in silicon
DxO Labs delivers:
- A configurable, scalable, and programmable SIMD silicon IP core, optimized for image processing
- Micro-coded video and still ISP algorithms running on the above-mentioned processor; these can be completely modified after the silicon is available
- Calibration and tuning tools for faster camera module integration in the device
- Programming tools to allow our customers to develop differentiated features
Since the programmable core is configurable and scalable, it can be sized for low-cost or high-end performance while keeping the interfaces unchanged.