If you’ve seen a digitally-projected movie in the theater, then chances are you’ve seen the work of Texas Instruments’ DLP projection system. With a resolution of 1920 x 1080p, DLP’s exceptionally sharp, clear picture has made it a favorite of the film industry. Soon, that same high-end technology will be available on consumer cameras.
Last week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Texas Instruments DLP unveiled a camcorder that utilizes the DLP Pico projection system (“Pico” is a generic term for small-scale video projection). This is not the first consumer product to feature DLP Pico, as it has already made its way into the Samsung Show mobile phone. The camcorder itself was developed by Asia Optical, a digital camera manufacturer that supplies various major brands with their products. The projected image has a maximum size of 60 inches, in dark conditions.
The DLP chip contains an array of two million fast-switching microscopic mirrors, resulting in a projected image with minimal gaps between the pixels. That quality was one of the reasons that Asia Optical chose to go with it. “Following an extensive comparison of all pico technology options, we selected DLP Pico as the most compelling solution [...] due to its superior image quality, small form factor and energy delivering efficiency,” said Robert Lai, CEO of Asia Optical. The DLP Pico module should start showing up commercially in cameras from Asia Optical’s corporate customer base, by the second half of this year.