MIPI upgrades camera interface specificiation

February 19, 2015 // By Peter Clarke
MIPI Alliance Inc. (Piscataway, New Jersey), an open membership organization that develops interface specifications for mobile equipment, has introduced an update to its Camera Serial Interface specification.

MIPI CSI-2 has been adopted in smartphones and version 1.3 provides compatibility with earlier versions of the specification so vendors can continue to use their existing product development infrastructure. It allows users to chose between two physical layer specifications from the MIPI Alliance: MIPI D-PHYSM, which CSI-2 has used traditionally, as well as MIPI C-PHYSM, a new PHY that MIPI Alliance released as v1.0 in September 2014.

MIPI C-PHY uses 3-phase symbol encoding of about 2.28 bits per symbol to transmit data symbols on 3-wire lanes, or “trios,” with embedded clocking, facilitating longer trace reach and maximizing camera port configurations on mobile platforms. MIPI CSI-2 v1.3 with C-PHY provides performance gains, increased bandwidth delivery of 22.7 Gbps over four lanes at 2.5 Gsps (Giga-symbols per second) for realizing higher resolution, better color depth, and higher frame rates on image sensors while providing pin compatibility with MIPI D-PHY. Popular imaging formats including 4K video at 30 FPS (frames per second) using 12 BPP (bits per pixel) may be delivered using a single MIPI C-PHY lane.

Products implementing CSI-2 and D-PHY v1.2 can achieve a peak transmission rate of 2.5Gbps over a single lane or 10Gbps over four lanes. A 12 BPP, 30 FPS 4K video can be transmitted using two data lanes.

Version 1.3 of MIPI CSI-2 is also suitable for use with camera sensors in wearable, surveillance, automotive and other applications.

Related links and articles:


News articles:

I3C sensor interface set to superset I2C, SPI

MIPI forms sensors working group

Envelope tracking reinforced by MIPI Alliance

Lattice supports new MIPI BIF standard