NEC announced today the development of technologies for digital cameras in movie mode that suppress the noise produced by motors and other mechanisms used for optical zooming and that these technologies are featured on system LSI for the EXILIM EX-ZR10 digital camera by Casio Computer Co., Ltd.
Conventionally, the sound generated by lens drivers for digital cameras in movie mode is recorded as noise by microphones. These new technologies suppress noise through a method that records and saves the core characteristics of sounds created by a camera lens’ driving mechanisms, then subtracts this information from signals that are recorded by microphones. Furthermore, these technologies automatically adapt to lens and microphone characteristics among different products, which eliminates the need for customized product adjustment. Moreover, real-time processing is achieved while recording movies as a result of optimizing the number of calculations for noise suppression.
Use of these technologies also makes it possible to preserve ambient environmental sound, while only suppressing the noise generated by a camera’s motor. Digital cameras equipped with these technologies can operate motors at a high speed, which achieves smoother zoom operation and creates a user friendly filming experience similar to the use of a dedicated video camera.
In order for conventional digital cameras to minimize noise levels while shooting video, such measures as expensive low noise level motors, motors with limited speed and filters that prevent the passage of strong motor noise frequencies were adopted. This gave rise to a number of problems that include a camera’s lack of ability to take fast moving sports footage, and sound distortion due to filters that suppress ambient sound.
NEC’s new technologies resolve these problems and have already been adopted by a popular commercial product.
Looking forward, NEC will continue to develop noise suppression technologies and to deploy them throughout the digital camera and video camera markets.