The Mobile Industry Processor Interface Alliance (MIPI Alliance) makes its specifications available as different interfaces so that businesses can use those that best suit their needs. Other organizations are discovering they may use MIPI’s specifications to serve these applications as mobile connection spreads into other industries, such as consumer electronics, Computer, and machine-to-machine (M2M) communications, and many others. The main objective is to standardize all crucial interfaces between the mobile processor and peripherals. The Display Serial Interface (DSI) specification and the Camera Serial Interface (CSI) are two MIPI specifications.
MIPI recently announced a significant improvement to their MIPI CSI-2 interface. It allows for the development of sophisticated machine-vision applications for a variety of use cases, including mobile, augmented, and virtual reality, drones, the Internet of Things (IoT), automobiles, medical equipment, and industrial systems.
The current specifications of the MIPI CSI-2 interface were discussed in this article, however, before moving on to the specifications, let’s take a quick look at this application and its specifications on various interface standardizations.
Current MIPI Specifications
Every MIPI specification, at its fundamental level, responds to the market’s demands for three crucial features that are necessary for any successful mobile-connected devices. These characteristics include low power consumption, reduced electromagnetic interference, and high-speed data transfer. MIPI specifications provide a standardized approach to achieving these goals across different devices and platforms.
A wide range of specifications is available from the MIPI Alliance for interface chipsets and peripherals in mobile-connected devices. By adhering to these standards, device manufacturers can ensure compatibility with other devices and maximize the benefits of their products. A wide range of components, including the modem, antenna, application processor, camera, display, sensors, and other peripherals, can be interconnected using the standards. The standards are used by manufacturers to improve performance, streamline the design process, lower the costs associated with development, achieve economies of scale for their designs, and accelerate the time to market for their goods. These characteristics are achieved through specific features and protocols provided by MIPI, such as MIPI DSI for high-speed display interfaces and MIPI CSI for camera interfaces.
MIPI Specifications for Camera Interface
MIPI CSI-2 is now the most extensively used embedded camera and imaging interface in the world. This protocol helps with high-speed data transfer between cameras and image processing systems. It enables the efficient transfer of raw image data between cameras and processors, improving the overall performance of imaging systems. It supports a range of applications, such as mobile devices, automotive cameras, and surveillance systems. The Camera and Imaging Toggle Menu is a user-friendly feature that simplifies the switching between different image capture modes on a device that uses the CSI-2 interface. It enhances the user experience and streamlines the overall operation of the camera.
New features of CSI specifications
The new version expands the reach and versatility of the CSI-2 interface, enabling it to be used in a wider range of applications without incurring substantial cost or complexity. MIPI CSI-2 has traditionally been used with MIPI C-PHY and MIPI D-PHY interfaces, but the latest version v4.0 supports transmission over the low-cost two-wire I3C/I3C Basic interface. With the inclusion of the MIPI I3C/I3C Basic interface, v4.0 is a significant advancement in image frame transmission technology. The MIPI A-PHY SerDes interface allows for long-reach implementation up to 15m, making it suitable for ADAS, in-vehicle infotainment, and industrial IoT applications.
This update includes increased bandwidth and higher resolution support, as well as features like virtual channels, complex data types, and advanced power management. These advancements will allow for more efficient data transfer and better image quality in various industries and applications.
The new features are listed in the following:
- According to the organization, the Always-On Sentinel Conduit (AOSC) facilitates quite often machine vision systems that employ ultra-low-power image sensors and video signal processors (VSPs) to constantly monitor their surroundings and then come back their higher-power, host CPUs only when significant events occur. It makes it possible to stream image frames from an image sensor to a VSP more effectively and with scaling options to provide additional I3C lanes and bandwidth in accordance with the I3C specification.
- The most recent Tetra- and Nona-Cell image sensors with multi-pixel color filter arrays (CFAs) offer enhanced pixel compression because of multi-pixel compression (MPC). By compressing both multi-pixel and regular Bayer CFA images more effectively and with possibly higher quality than current techniques, the MPC feature helps reduce the high bandwidth requirements of these sensors. To aid integrators in assessing the algorithm and validating their implementations, reference code has been additionally made accessible.
- The next generation of high-dynamic-range automobile image sensors is supported by RAW28 pixel encoding for uses like those necessary for ADAS and other safety-critical applications.
These innovations have allowed for higher-resolution imaging and faster data transfer between devices, which are key components in developing advanced AI and machine vision applications. As a result, we can expect to see more immersive and intuitive interfaces that can interpret and respond to human behavior in real time. Furthermore, MIPI CSI-2 v4.0 incorporates mechanisms for raw data transfer, enabling developers to capture and analyze real-world environments more accurately. As a result, the new version promises to increase the development of intelligent, autonomous systems that can process and respond to the needs of their users.
Vadzo remains at the forefront of integration technology and can continue to offer customers the latest advancements in our solutions with the updated CSI 2 interface. Furthermore, our adherence to these specifications makes them reliable and efficient tools for any application.
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