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I see a few questions here casually mention that image sensor modules have a "standard parallel digital video port (DVP) or ... MIPI high-speed serial interface"

Is there a specific digital video port (DVP) interface standard? Is there a specific MIPI standard? If so, where can I get the details on the signals, standard connectors, etc.? Or is "DVP" merely a generic term that includes a variety of interfaces such as DVI, DMP, HDMI, SDI, UDI, DVB-ASI, FireWire, i.LINK, DisplayPort, etc.? Is there maybe more than one interface standard that (confusingly) has the same "DVP" initialism? In particular, some people seem to think that it's possible to directly connect a 44 pin processor a DVP interface, so apparently they are not talking about the 100 wire SGI DVP interface -- are they perhaps some other DVP interface, or is this merely a typo for one of the above specific interfaces?

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Looks like the MIPI specs are only available to MIPI members.

http://www.mipi.org/specifications/camera-interface

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes that is true. \$\endgroup\$ – mazurnification Jun 20 '11 at 18:52
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As far as I know, there is no DVP spec but the pinout seems to be something of a de facto standard, even though part manufacturers doesn't always call it DVP. That is, there is a pixel clock, some sort of horizontal sync, some sort of vertical sync, and however many data lines. It is similar to VGA signals, really.

MIPI, on the other hand, is a standard which other answers provide links to. You have to pay money to see the spec but if you search around you can find bits and pieces that indicate what the actual signals look like.

For cameras, there is the CSI-1, CSI-2, and CSI-4 specs. CSI-1 is older and deprecated. CSI-2 and CSI-4 are newer and consist of differential pairs for the clock and 2 or 4 pairs of data lines. CSI-4 is just CSI-2 but with more available throughput.

So that you're not thrown off, there is also MIPI DSI which is a serial interface for displays that uses differential signalling (I assume it is a lot like HDMI).

You'll also come across the physical layer terms; D-PHY, M-PHY, and C-PHY. From what I understand, C-PHY is the most common.

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MIPI (Mobile Industry Processor Interface) is a standard org. more info here

DVP is just a parallel bus interface. They are meant to interface with a MCU.

Of course, if you're interested in using their product, contact them for a datasheet.

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    \$\begingroup\$ The link you gave is a nice overview that confirms that yes, MIPI is a specific standard. Alas, it doesn't give any details -- such as, how many wires does this interface need? What kind of connector does it use? -- nor does it link to any other web pages that give this information. By "just a parallel bus interface", are you claiming that any digital interface that carries video is a kind of DVP, or are you saying that DVP is some specific standardized interface? \$\endgroup\$ – davidcary Sep 25 '10 at 4:11
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    \$\begingroup\$ MIPI is not a standard, it's a standardization organization just like ISO. \$\endgroup\$ – user3528438 Oct 25 '17 at 15:48
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Ok so MIPI is off the table. But we can run (e.x. ov5647) sensor over DVP. It's basically a parallel data port that outputs all bits of (10 bits for ov5647) red, blue, white color, probably in that order, on each clock pulse. So for each clock signal, module outputs, first pixels 10-bits for red, 10 bits for green, 10 bits for blue, than second pixels 10 bits of red and so on. Each line start is read trough V_SYNC pulses. After each frame completed, a 2 dimensional data matrix is received, which is something like a bmp file.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Where can I get the details on the signals, standard connectors, etc.? Are you talking about the OV5647 used in the Raspberry Pi Camera Module -- Raspberry Pi Camera Module ? \$\endgroup\$ – davidcary May 31 '17 at 16:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes thats the module i'm talking about. On ov5647 datasheet p.66 there is a timing diagram for "DVP". Also i found this page, its a diffrent sensor (ov7670) but same interface, it could give you an idea. Here: link Also you can check ov7670 datasheet there may be some more diagrams. \$\endgroup\$ – Konur Jun 1 '17 at 17:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ Also this pdf's section 2.1.2 briefly describes port operation: link \$\endgroup\$ – Konur Jun 1 '17 at 17:24

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