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I was looking for a processor to interface to the DVP port of a 5MP CMOS camera module.

I could possibly write the software for doing this but I've heard that many processors have a hardware camera interface port that makes the job much efficient.

What would like to do is capture frames from this camera and store it in external ram for some processing later.

Any idea how could I get around doing this? I just a small enough processor about 44pins or 64pins or so that has a camera interface port and external memory interface.

Edit: I think a small enough processor isn't going to be available, I'd be lucky if someone finds some most of the processor pointed out in the answers have 200+ pins. So feel free to point to processors without the "pins" limitation.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Alas, the only "digital video port" I know about has 100 pins, and so is impossible to directly connect to the processors I am familiar with (which generally have less than 100 pins). Since you seem to think your DVP can directly connect to a 44 pin processor, perhaps your DVP is different? I know several processors that have an efficient way to accept parallel data, with a "sample" signal separate from 8 data bits. Does your module have such a "sample" signal? Perhaps chiphacker.com/questions/4363/what-is-a-digital-video-port is a good place to go into more detail. \$\endgroup\$ – davidcary Sep 11 '10 at 19:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ By DVP meant the camera's parallel port, typically a cam module would have a 8bit Y bus and a 8 bit UV bus. Higher mp camera modules would probably have a wider bus. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Boyd Sep 13 '10 at 10:47
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kevin, What is the exact part number of the 5MP CMOS camera module you are trying to interface with? \$\endgroup\$ – tcrosley Oct 1 '10 at 7:47
  • \$\begingroup\$ I haven't got the module part number but the image sensor is omnivision, OV5642. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Boyd Oct 1 '10 at 11:38
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    \$\begingroup\$ OMAP35x does not solve your problem? \$\endgroup\$ – Daniel Grillo Oct 1 '10 at 11:54
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Have you looked at the Gumstix Overo COMs? COM = Computer On Module. They have a dedicated camera interface (J5). Beagleboard may have this as well, as it is the same OMAP35xx series processor.

If you want to roll your own, there are many, many microprocessors with camera interfaces. Freescales i.MX series of devices (i.MX31, i.MX51, etc.), the OMAP processors I mentioned above, Atmel has the AT91SAM series... What other features do you need?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ +1 Good leads, I haven't looked into Gumstix, I think Beagleboard doesn't have access to the camera interface you can only connect a camera via USB(correct me if I'm wrong here). OMAP35xx yes! good one it fits the bill, even the i.Mx series would. The Atmel ones I think does not have support over 3MP or so. Features, I want to capture the images to external ram and then do lots of image processing on them, so the more suited the processor and more hardware support the better for. What's your opinion? \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Boyd Oct 1 '10 at 13:42
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    \$\begingroup\$ I was about to offer up the Gumstix. There are several articles that explain how to use a camera with the Gumstix. I personally have not used them, but I have used the Gumstix with a USB camera and was able to do RTDSP on it. \$\endgroup\$ – Kellenjb Oct 1 '10 at 14:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ OMAP sounds like it'd work; just make sure that the amount of memory and memory technology (SDR, DDR, etc.) match what you are expecting. I also know that you have some advantage with OMAP in the sense that there is a DSP core there you can do some work with as well, although I have not personally used it. \$\endgroup\$ – akohlsmith Oct 1 '10 at 14:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ OMAP vs DaVinci what would be more suitable for image processing? Another name that I have recently come across is Analog Devices' Blackfin family. I also see that all these are in Bga, so I wonder how to start prototyping? Is a starterkit /EDK only way out. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Boyd Oct 3 '10 at 10:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ I've done work with Blackfin as well, but never in a video capture capacity. They do come in TQFP packages which would be more accessible to someone doing the soldering themselves. I don't know much about DaVinci, sorry. \$\endgroup\$ – akohlsmith Oct 4 '10 at 10:56
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The COTS chip-scale cameras I've worked with have either used discrete GPIO, Address-data-busses, and/or I2C to create closed-circuit-tv-quality output.

Potential camera vendor: OmniVision

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I was looking more for a processor that can serve for image processing rather than a camera technology. However +1 for introducing something new. \$\endgroup\$ – Kevin Boyd Oct 3 '10 at 10:06

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