FTDI Chip's embedded HMI package moves to higher resolution and image quality

February 26, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
High-resolution EVE (embedded video engine) products can now deliver faster upload speeds, greater colour depth and improved video playback for next generation HMIs; the use of 7-in. graphics panels in industrial and consumer product designs is a particular target.

The EVE range of products for human machine interface (HMI) implementation gains four new ICs - the FT81xQ series. These EVE devices support higher maximum screen resolutions than previously possible - increasing from the 512 x 512 pixels of the company’s FT800Q/801Q offering up to 800 x 600 pixels, in order to address larger displays (7-inches and above).

The FT810Q has 18-bit RGB interfacing and resistive touch functionality, while the FT811Q has 18-bit RGB interfacing and is designed for capacitive touchscreen implementation (with provision for 5-point touch detection). These are complemented by the FT812Q and FT813Q for use respectively with resistive and capacitive touchscreens, but each with 24-bit RGB.

As a direct result of algorithm enhancements, the devices in the FT81xQ series have much smoother video playback. Screen rotation through 90° is far easier to achieve, permitting both landscape and portrait orientations - a clear benefit when these ICs are utilised in handheld designs. Rotation is now a single command – previously, the designer had to rotate each object (EVE is an object-oriented graphics environment) individually. The memory capacity has also been increased from 256 kBytes up to 1 Mbytes and a quad SPI interface accelerates data transfer rates. Multiple palettes are supported, covering 16-bit and 32-bit colours with transparency. Extra-large ROM fonts have also been added so that there is greater scope when it comes to using different text options.

These features result in major performance improvements, with JPEG loading being 500 to 1000 times faster than previously possible and the ability to draw up to 16 pixels within every clock cycle (compared with 4 for the FT800/801 offering). Firmware memory operations (such as copy, fill and CRC) are 2 to 4 times faster due to the tuned inner loops that have been employed, while the CMD SNAPSHOT function is now hundreds of times faster. An analogue pin allows the input of external audio, temperature or light sensor data