AltaSens announces new CMOS imagers

from an Altasens, Inc. press release

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — CMOS sensor pioneer AltaSens, Inc., today announced production availability of its 1/3-inch ProCamHD 2460 and 2462 sensors for deployment in the latest high definition video HDV camcorders and HD cameras. Both 1.3 megapixel sensors generate crystal-clear progressive 12-bit digital video at uncompromised 1280 by 720 resolution and 75 MHz rate. The result is perfectly smooth 720/60p HDV or 50 Hz SXGA.

ProCamHD technology uses elegant CMOS imaging system-on-chip (iSoC) integration to enable noise-free megapixel video and rapid-fire snapshots, even under non-optimum lighting conditions. Other CCD and CMOS sensor manufacturers instead reduce HD video sensor resolution to cut noise and attempt to recover lost resolution via increasingly complex back-end processing.

Les Kozlowski, CTO and Founder, remarked, "Consumers can now have affordable HDV camcorders that deliver life-like video while finally eliminating the blurring caused by old-fashioned interlacing and yesterday’s frame rates. AltaSens’ ProCamHD 2462 sensor uniquely delivers minimum SNR of 47 dB at only 500 lux and cost-effective f2.8 aperture while recording at 60 Hz. This beats even high-end 3-CCD cameras that yield lower resolution at slower frame rates and require an excessively expensive lens."


The 2462 sensor supports single-chip cameras with the latest RGB color filter and microlens technology. Its maximum power dissipation of 350 mW lengthens battery life. The 2460 is the monochrome counterpart sensor with advanced microlens array for low-power 3-CMOS cameras. Both deliver low noise via tapered reset, a patented technique for greatly reducing noise and maximizing dynamic range. While film-like with respect to exposure latitude, each sensor’s 60 Hz frame rate largely prevents cinema-like smearing.

Patrick Quinn, AltaSens President and CEO, added, "We are pleased to see our ground-breaking CMOS innovations continue to shape the market for high-end sensors. Our customers’ reception to the 246X series of image sensors, with wide-ranging interest from Tier 1 camcorder, video conferencing, document, and security camera manufacturers, is a testament to that fact."

AltaSens is supporting 246X sensor evaluation and initial setup via a comprehensive evaluation kit and AltaSens’ ProCEED Software Package. The evaluation kit comes with Megapixel-quality lens, cabling, and frame capture board for use in a PC. The ProCEED software simplifies sensor programming while enabling real-time PC-based imaging and extensive sensor characterization.

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