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I've been trying to learn more about my spy-cam. I opened it up, and found that it has a Anyka AK1120Q IC. I found a datasheet for the: AK3671B but it took a lot of searching.

  1. Why is it so hard to find information on these IC's?
  2. Is there an alternate IC I can use if I wish to rig up my own camera from scratch (low cost). I'd like 720p video as well. Maybe get it to stream to my laptop..
  3. I found a Broadcom BCM2727 chip but as usual the datasheet was hard to find - i found lots of marketing crud. Also, ebay doesn't seem to be selling these IC's loose. In fact I couldn't find a single web-site actually selling any of these IC's but I can find plenty on the IC555. Why is this? Am I googling for the wrong thing? What do I google for?
  4. Are there any books/resources (besides the wiki) on this subject that I should check out first?

Basically i'm trying to figure out what I need to know in order to build my own Camera (with the help of modern chips[for a reasonable cost] - i'm not dead keen on reinventing the wheel just yet - i know reading from a CCD is quite difficult)

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The Anyka and Broadcom chips fall into a classification of device known as "system on (a) chip" or SoC. Generally speaking, these devices contain a relatively powerful CPU and several high-level peripherals, including flash and SDRAM controllers, network, video and audio interfaces, etc.

Such devices require a great deal of support from the manufacturer in order to use them effectively, so their distribution — and the distribution of detailed specifications and design data — is limited to "serious" (i.e., high-volume) customers, for whom the return-on-investment (the up-front cost of design support) for the manufacturer is realized on the subsequent sales of devices.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ i'm not entirely sure I follow - could you elaborate on what you mean by 'support'. For the 555, you just look at the datasheet; surely all they are doing is providing a datasheet as 'support'? This is what I found:chenbingdom.com/docfile/201211101054434460.pdf; all you need is that and some guy mailing the processors from China and posting on ebay.. so.. what other support is provided \$\endgroup\$ – user41067 Jun 3 '14 at 0:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ By "support," I mean things like reference designs, software libraries and development tools and general applications engineering. The "datasheet" for one of these devices fills several books. It's impossible for a single engineer to bring a product based on one of these chips to market in a reasonable amount of time without this kind of support. If you don't beleive me, by all means, knock yourself out! \$\endgroup\$ – Dave Tweed Jun 3 '14 at 4:38

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