Amplitude Control (e.g., Automatic Gain Control) Patents (Class 348/255)
  • Patent number: 10425591
    Abstract: There is a demand for increasing the dynamic range of an imaging unit. Provided is an imaging unit comprising a pixel section that outputs a pixel signal corresponding to a reset potential after a reset and a signal potential after charge accumulation; an amplifying section that amplifies the pixel signal with a first amplification ratio or a second amplification ratio that is different from the first amplification ratio; and a control section that causes the amplifying section to amplify the pixel signal corresponding to a change from the reset potential to the signal potential with the first amplification ratio, and then causes the amplifying section to amplify the pixel signal corresponding to a change from the signal potential to the reset potential with the second amplification ratio.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 25, 2014
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2019
    Assignee: NIKON CORPORATION
    Inventor: Wataru Funamizu
  • Patent number: 10389956
    Abstract: Provided are image sensors. An image sensor includes a pixel array comprising pixels configured to output signal voltages, each of the pixels comprising first and second photodiodes, first and second transfer transistors connected to the first and second photodiodes, respectively, and a floating diffusion node to which the first and second transfer transistors are connected; a ramp voltage generator configured to generate a ramp voltage that decreases with a slope according to a ramp clock to have a first gain; a correlation double sampler (CDS) configured to compare the ramp voltage with the signal voltages to output a comparison signal; a counter configured to count the comparison signal according to a counter clock to output a digital signal; and a digital scaling unit configured to scale the digital signal to have a second gain.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 17, 2018
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2019
    Assignee: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Moo Young Kim, Kyoung Min Koh, Woong Joo, Mi Ra Lee
  • Patent number: 9936105
    Abstract: An image processing apparatus and an image processing method capable of discriminating with good precision a cause of image degradation that occurs in a value of a pixel adjacent to a focusing pixel, and of appropriately performing correction. When correcting a value of an imaging pixel adjacent to a focusing pixel, it is determined whether the value of the correction target pixel is influenced by flare based on a value of an imaging pixel adjacent to the focusing pixel that exists in a vicinity of a correction target pixel, and values of a plurality of imaging pixels that exist in a vicinity and are not adjacent to the focusing pixel. An appropriate method for correcting the influence of flare is used if it is determined that the value of the correction target pixel is influenced by flare.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2015
    Date of Patent: April 3, 2018
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Kohei Furuya
  • Patent number: 9735749
    Abstract: A radio frequency receiver and an automatic gain control method of the radio frequency receiver is presented. The radio frequency receiver includes an automatic gain control apparatus, a radio frequency component, and an analog to digital converter, where the automatic gain control apparatus further includes: an intensity calculator configured to calculate a relationship between an intensity representation parameter of digital data and a preset intensity threshold within a preset calculation time; and an automatic gain controller configured to compare the relationship calculated by the intensity calculator with a preset relationship threshold, and adjust a gain of the radio frequency component on radio frequency data according to a comparison result, so that an amplitude of the radio frequency data obtained after the gain adjustment is within a receiving range of the analog to digital converter.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 20, 2015
    Date of Patent: August 15, 2017
    Inventor: Xinxin Pei
  • Patent number: 9370077
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a method of controlling a dimmable luminaire co-arranged with a light sensor at a first level of a room and illuminating a second level of the room, comprising: determining an output path parameter representing a relation between the amount of light emitted from the luminaire and a luminaire illumination value at the second level, which results from the emitted amount of light; and repeatedly: determining an external illumination value at the second level, which external illumination value represents illumination by other sources than the luminaire, by means of values of the presently emitted amount of light, the output path parameter, and light information originating from the light sensor; and controlling the dimming level of the luminaire on basis of the external illumination value in order to meet a predetermined illumination condition for the total illumination at the second level.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 14, 2016
    Assignee: KONINKLIJKE PHILIPS N.V.
    Inventors: Ronald Rietman, Lorenzo Feri, Michel Cornelis Josephus Marie Vissenberg, Willem Franke Pasveer
  • Patent number: 9025055
    Abstract: An image processing apparatus for a radiation image obtains radiation image data obtained using a radiation detector, and dark current data based on a signal obtained from the radiation detector while no radiation is being emitted from the radiation generator. The image processing apparatus generates correction data by changing a ratio of frequency components based on the dark current data, and corrects the radiation image data based on the generated correction data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 5, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 5, 2015
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Tsuyoshi Kobayashi
  • Patent number: 9013594
    Abstract: Distortions in digital image data, for example, radial falloff and improper white balance, are corrected without introducing artifacts in saturated regions or causing near-saturated regions to become saturated. The approach avoids pushing near-saturated colors into saturation by assuring that the total gain applied to a pixel channel is always less than 1. A spatially adaptive clamp threshold is used to clamp color values for a pixel after the color channel color values have been gain-adjusted. In this manner, saturated pixel color values that have been shifted-down into non-saturated regions are clamped to a maximum valid value and are presented as white in images generated from the gain-adjusted image data. One example embodiment may calculate an adaptive clamp threshold for each pixel in the image data. Another example embodiment may calculate an adaptive clamp threshold for each pixel in a row of pixels in the image data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 22, 2014
    Date of Patent: April 21, 2015
    Assignee: Marvell International Ltd.
    Inventor: Hongxin Li
  • Patent number: 8994857
    Abstract: Techniques are generally described for an image capture system that may include an image sensor, a flash for providing illumination, a data storage, and a processor operatively associated with the data storage. The processor may be adapted to execute computer implemented instructions to pre-store one or more image capture device characteristics in the data storage, acquire data in a pre-capture phase, model shadow effects based on either or both of the pre-stored data and the acquired data, modify one or more image capture device settings based on the modeled shadow effects, and record image data with the image sensor. Illumination may be provided substantially coincident with recording of the image data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 23, 2013
    Date of Patent: March 31, 2015
    Assignee: Empire Technology Development LLC
    Inventors: Andrew Wolfe, Thomas Martin Conte
  • Patent number: 8982252
    Abstract: An image sensing apparatus has a plurality of pixels arranged two dimensionally, each pixel containing a photoelectric converter that outputs a photoelectrically converted signal in response to a quantity of received light, an output unit containing a clamping circuit, a signal supply circuit that outputs a reference signal to the clamping circuit, a control unit that controls to clamp the reference signal prior to outputting the photoelectrically converted signal from the pixel to the clamping circuit, output the photoelectrically converted signal to the clamping circuit, and then output a noise signal from the pixel to the clamping circuit, and a differential circuit that subtracts the noise signal from the photoelectrically converted signal processed by the clamping circuit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 26, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2015
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Takafumi Kishi
  • Patent number: 8952795
    Abstract: A circuit for providing signal amplification with reduced fixed pattern noise. In an embodiment, the circuit includes an amplifier and a plurality of legs coupled in parallel with one another between a first node for an input of the amplifier and a second node for an output of the amplifier. Control logic selects a first combination of the plurality of legs for a first configuration of the circuit to provide a first loop gain with the amplifier. In another embodiment, the control logic further selects a second combination of the plurality of legs for a second configuration of the circuit to provide a second loop gain with the amplifier, wherein the first loop gain is substantially equal to the second loop gain.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 6, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 10, 2015
    Assignee: OmniVision Technologies
    Inventors: Zhihao Xu, Guangbin Zhang
  • Patent number: 8928789
    Abstract: A solid-state imaging apparatus comprising a plurality of pixels generating a photoelectric conversion signal, a column amplifying unit corresponding to columns of the pixels, for outputting a first and second signals generated by amplifying the photoelectric conversion signal at a smaller first gain and larger second gain respectively, an analog to digital converter (21) for converting the first and second signals from an analog signal to a digital signal, a comparing unit (224) for inputting the digital signal from the analog to digital converter, level-shifting into the same gain level the first and second signals converted by the analog to digital converter, and thereafter detecting a gain error between the level-shifted first and second signals, and a correction unit (226) for correcting the first and second signals based on the gain error.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 6, 2015
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Seiji Hashimoto, Kazuyuki Shigeta
  • Patent number: 8896733
    Abstract: An image sensor may include an image pixel array. The image sensor may be provided with automatic conversion gain selection on a pixel-by-pixel basis to produce a high-dynamic-range image. Each image pixel may include a capacitor and a conversion gain transistor coupled in series between a power supply line and a floating diffusion node. The conversion gain transistor may be coupled to a control line through a gating transistor. The gating transistor may have a gate connected to a row select line. The image pixel may have an output line that is coupled to a column amplifier and a comparator. The column amplifier may generate a difference voltage based on reset and image signals. The comparator may compare the difference voltage with a predetermined threshold to determine whether to place the selected pixel in a high or low conversion gain mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 11, 2011
    Date of Patent: November 25, 2014
    Assignee: Aptina Imaging Corporation
    Inventor: Johannes Solhusvik
  • Patent number: 8854513
    Abstract: According to an embodiment, an imaging device includes a first CCD which converts a first color component into a first electric signal, a second CCD which converts a second color component different from the first color component into a second electric signal, a third CCD which converts a third color component different from the first and second color components into a third electric signal, and a heat sink having first to third radiators which radiate heat from the first to third CODs. The first to third radiators are maintained at the same temperature by the function of the heat sink.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 20, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2014
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba
    Inventors: Masatoshi Ookubo, Tetsuo Sakurai
  • Patent number: 8854512
    Abstract: In the technical field of video cameras gamma correction is an often used technique to compensate the non-linear effects of the CRT (cathode ray tube), in order to enhance visibility in images to be displayed. Gamma correction is—by way of example—expressed by the gamma function: A process for enhancing detail visibility in an input image comprising a step of applying a first transfer function (11) to the input image, thereby generating an intermediate image; a step of performing a statistical measurement (12), Mmt (2) on the intermediate image; a step of applying a second transfer function (14) to the intermediate image, thereby generating an output image; a step of performing a statistical measurement (15), Mmt (3) on the output image, a step of determining gain parameters gg, gk for the first and the second transfer function (11, 14) on basis of the statistical measurement results (8, 12, 15), Mmt (1), Mmt (2), Mmt (3) is proposed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 24, 2006
    Date of Patent: October 7, 2014
    Assignee: Robert Bosch GmbH
    Inventors: Jan Klijn, Helios Jellema, Sacha Cvetkovic
  • Publication number: 20140267841
    Abstract: An image processing apparatus capable of reducing processing load by determining whether or not to perform gradation correction, according to a difference or a ratio between feature values of object areas, and generating an excellent image by performing gradation correction. An image dividing section divides an input image into a plurality of predetermined object areas. A feature value calculation section and a determination section compare the feature values indicative of features of the respective object areas, obtain a luminance level difference, and determine whether or not the difference is within a predetermined range. When the difference is within the predetermined range, an image processing section and a system controller perform area-by-area tone mapping on respective images of the areas to form a synthesized image.
    Type: Application
    Filed: March 10, 2014
    Publication date: September 18, 2014
    Applicant: CANON KABUSHIKI KAISHA
    Inventor: Takashi Sasaki
  • Patent number: 8836322
    Abstract: Embodiments of the invention described herein provide a magnetic sensor interface capable of adjusting signal conditioning dynamically using a speed signal of a target such that the true positive and negative peaks of the input signal are maintained for the given target across its entire speed range (0-Max rpm), therefore increasing the signal to noise ratio at low speeds and avoiding clipping or distortion at high speeds. In one aspect, a method comprises receiving an alternating differential voltage signal from a sensor. The differential voltage signal has an amplitude that changes relative to a change in speed of a target. The alternating differential voltage signal is converted to an attenuated single-ended voltage signal that can be dynamically scaled. The attenuated single-ended voltage signal can be scaled by multiplying the attenuated single-ended voltage signal by a scaling factor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 16, 2014
    Assignee: General Electric Company
    Inventors: James Merrill Roylance, Daniel Zahi Abawi, Biplab Deb
  • Patent number: 8830349
    Abstract: An object of this invention is to perform, for a photographed image, image processing which reflects the intention of the user without photographing again. In order to achieve this object, photographing data from an image sensor is temporarily stored in a memory, and an image of the photographing data as a result of digital development processing is displayed. When it is determined from the displayed image that the parameters of various image processes in digital development processing are not proper for the photographed image, the parameter settings are corrected again. Then, operation of reading out photographing data from the memory and performing digital development processing again is executed a necessary number of times. When an image quality intended by the photographer is obtained, the photographing data is recorded on a recording medium.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2014
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Yoshitaka Takeuchi
  • Patent number: 8830227
    Abstract: A method for depth mapping includes capturing an electronic image of a scene using an imaging device. The electronic image is processed to generate depth data with respect to the scene. The gain of the imaging device is set responsively to the depth data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: September 9, 2014
    Assignee: Primesense Ltd.
    Inventors: Dmitry Rais, Daniel Cohen, Erez Sali
  • Patent number: 8823830
    Abstract: A method for digital image eye artifact detection and correction include identifying one or more candidate red-eye defect regions in an acquired image. For one or more candidate red-eye regions, a seed pixels and/or a region of pixels having a high intensity value in the vicinity of the candidate red-eye region is identified. The shape, roundness or other eye-related characteristic of a combined hybrid region including the candidate red-eye region and the region of high intensity pixels is analyzed. Based on the analysis of the eye-related characteristic of the combined hybrid region, it is determined whether to apply flash artifact correction, including red eye correction of the candidate red-eye region and/or correction of the region of high intensity pixels.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 23, 2012
    Date of Patent: September 2, 2014
    Assignee: DigitalOptics Corporation Europe Limited
    Inventors: Mihai Ciuc, Adrian Capata, Florin Nanu, Eran Steinberg, Peter Corcoran
  • Patent number: 8817195
    Abstract: An embodiment of the present invention provides a method for digital television demodulation, comprising using adjacent-channel power dependent automatic gain control (AGC) for the digital television demodulation, wherein an AGC technique takes into account a total power as well as power of adjacent channels to control gain of a gain control amplifier.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 2013
    Date of Patent: August 26, 2014
    Assignee: Intel Corporation
    Inventors: Parveen K. Shukla, Bernard Arambepola, Thushara Hewavithana, Sahan Gamage
  • Patent number: 8817138
    Abstract: A viewfinder of an electronic camera includes a color display monitor that is adapted to display a scene captured by an image sensor arrangement of the camera. The color temperature of the viewfinder is continuously variable adjustable between a minimum and a maximum value. The color temperature adjustment of the viewfinder does not affect the color temperature of a video signal produced by the camera that is recorded or transmitted.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2011
    Date of Patent: August 26, 2014
    Assignee: GVBB Holdings S.A.R.L.
    Inventors: John Hommel, Aart-Jan Vogel, Martin De Boer, Florus Bernardus Van Den Herik
  • Patent number: 8786764
    Abstract: An imaging apparatus for capturing a moving image performs backlight correction of an image and outputs a natural image. The imaging apparatus electronically captures an image of a subject. An optical system has a light amount adjustment function. An imaging unit reads an optical image of the subject that is formed by the optical system. An A/D converter subjects an output of the imaging unit to A/D conversion. A backlight correction unit converts the tones of an image read by the A/D converter using a conversion characteristic selected differently according to a spatial position and at least increases the luminance level of a dark region of the image. An instruction unit instructs to start backlight correction. A control unit operates the backlight correction unit based on an instruction signal output from the instruction unit, and decreases an exposure light amount of the optical system by a predetermined amount.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 15, 2011
    Date of Patent: July 22, 2014
    Assignee: Panasonic Intellectual Property Corporation of America
    Inventors: Haruo Yamashita, Takeshi Ito, Daisuke Sato
  • Patent number: 8767105
    Abstract: An analog signal chain for a CMOS active pixel sensor imaging system utilizes, for each amplification stage, a plurality of fixed gain amplifiers instead of a single multi-gain amplifier. The fixed gain amplifier corresponding to the desired gain level is selected and powered on and coupled to the input/output signal paths, while the non-selected fixed gain amplifier(s) are powered off and isolated from the input/output signal paths. Each fixed gain amplifier is operated at a gain bandwidth corresponding to the timing requirements of the imaging system and the gain of the amplifier. Thus, each fixed gain amplifier (other than the one corresponding to the maximum gain of a comparable multi-gain amplifier) operates at a lower level of power consumption than the comparable multi-gain amplifier.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 21, 2010
    Date of Patent: July 1, 2014
    Assignee: Micron Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Giuseppe Rossi
  • Patent number: 8749665
    Abstract: A system for processing images may comprise a pixel configuration circuitry enabled to set for each pixel in a pixel array one of a plurality of integration times and one of a plurality of signal gains. A column analog-to-digital converter may be enabled to generate a corresponding digital data for a pixel in the pixel array, and digital processing circuitry may be enabled to interpolate output data from the corresponding digital data for pixels grouped into pixel groups, wherein the pixel group comprises a target pixel and neighboring pixels in a same color plane.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 31, 2011
    Date of Patent: June 10, 2014
    Assignee: SK Hynix Inc.
    Inventors: Yibing Michelle Wang, Jeff Rysinski, Hongyu Wang
  • Patent number: 8730365
    Abstract: The present invention provides an image capturing apparatus, which comprises a plurality of photoelectric converter-containing pixels that are positioned horizontally and vertically and a gain circuit, has a gain controller that can control the gain of the gain circuit in N stages (where N is an integer equal to or greater than 2). The gain circuit outputs each of a plurality of signals given by the product of the output signal from one of the plurality of pixels and the gain in each stage of the N stages.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 26, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 20, 2014
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Makiko Yamauchi
  • Patent number: 8717476
    Abstract: A method for reading out an image signal includes providing at least two photosensitive regions and providing at least two transfer gates respectively associated with each photosensitive region. The method also includes providing a common charge-to-voltage conversion region electrically connected to the transfer gates and providing a reset mechanism that resets the common charge-to-voltage conversion region. After transferring charge from at least one of the photo-sensitive regions, all the transfer gates are disabled at a first time. The method further includes enabling at least one transfer gate at a subsequent second time and transferring charge from at least one of the photosensitive regions at a subsequent third time while the at least one transfer gate from the second time remains enabled.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 6, 2014
    Assignee: OmniVision Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Christopher Parks, John T. Compton
  • Patent number: 8717474
    Abstract: An imaging apparatus includes: a plurality of column amplifiers, each outputting, based on the same one pixel, first and second pixel signals derived by amplifying the signal by different amplifying factors p and q; a plurality of column A/D converters for performing analog to digital conversion of the first and second pixel signals obtained; a plurality of replacing units, each selecting the first pixel signal converted by the corresponding column A/D converter when the first pixel signal converted by the corresponding column A/D converter is smaller than a threshold value, and selecting the second pixel signal converted by the corresponding column A/D converter when the first pixel signal converted by the corresponding column A/D converter is equal to or larger than the threshold value; and a horizontal scanning circuit for successively selecting the first or second pixel signals selected by the replacing units.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 29, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 6, 2014
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventors: Kazuyuki Shigeta, Seiji Hashimoto, Keisuke Ota, Takeru Ohya
  • Patent number: 8687087
    Abstract: A parameter of a digital camera or other digital image acquisition device is adjusted to maintain the resulting digital signal within a range carried by a digital processing path that carries a limited number of bits. The magnitude of the parameter is then also used to represent the image. Examples of the parameter include analog signal gain and exposure time. This is a cost effective way to increase the dynamic range of a digital camera, instead of increasing the width of its digital processing path. The digital data may be processed to obtain either tone mapped images, which are compatible with current cameras and other equipment, or to obtain images with a greater dynamic range for use with suitable displays and the like.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 1, 2007
    Date of Patent: April 1, 2014
    Assignee: CSR Technology Inc.
    Inventors: Shimon Pertsel, Ohad Meitav, Eli Pozniansky, Erez Galil
  • Patent number: 8675103
    Abstract: An image sensor for electronic cameras includes a plurality of light sensitive pixels arranged in rows and columns for generating exposure proportional signals, wherein the pixels of a respective column are coupled to at least one respective column read-out circuit via at least one respective column line, and wherein the respective column read-out circuit includes at least two column amplifiers which are connected in parallel, and includes a control device for controlling a read-out process of an image, wherein the read-out process for the respective pixel includes at least one read-out cycle. The gain factor of at least one of the two column amplifiers of the respective column read-out circuit is adjustable.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 17, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 18, 2014
    Assignee: Arnold & Richter Cine Technik GmbH & Co. Betriebs KG
    Inventor: Michael Cieslinski
  • Patent number: 8638249
    Abstract: In accordance with an embodiment, a method includes determining an amplitude of an input signal provided by a capacitive signal source, compressing the input signal in an analog domain to form a compressed analog signal based on the determined amplitude, converting the compressed analog signal to a compressed digital signal, and decompressing the digital signal in a digital domain to form a decompressed digital signal. In an embodiment, compressing the analog signal includes adjusting a first gain of an amplifier coupled to the capacitive signal source, and decompressing the digital signal comprises adjusting a second gain of a digital processing block.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 16, 2012
    Date of Patent: January 28, 2014
    Assignee: Infineon Technologies AG
    Inventors: Michael Kropfitsch, Jose Luis Ceballos
  • Patent number: 8625008
    Abstract: An image processing apparatus is provided in which, even if a nonlinear characteristic of a luminance-type gamma correction circuit for converting a luminance signal is changed, saturation with respect to a luminance output can be nearly constant. A signal amount of the luminance signal generated from image data that exceeds a previously defined threshold is calculated. A first nonlinear characteristic is selected from a plurality of nonlinear characteristics previously set depending on the calculated signal amount. Nonlinear conversation is performed on a signal generated from the image data to determine luminance with the selected first nonlinear characteristic. An output ratio of the first nonlinear characteristic to a second nonlinear characteristic is prepared and the second nonlinear characteristic is defined so that the output ratio is satisfied.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 22, 2011
    Date of Patent: January 7, 2014
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Kenzo Hisa
  • Patent number: 8564691
    Abstract: The digital camera includes: a storage unit that stores a plurality of images captured by an image sensor when a multiple exposure photographic mode is set; a gain impartation unit that imparts, to the plurality of captured images, gains based upon the number of shots of multiple exposure photography and determined so that their sum equals unity; and a combination unit that creates a multiple exposure photographic image by combining the plurality of images, after the gains have been imparted by the gain impartation unit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 21, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2013
    Assignee: Nikon Corporation
    Inventors: Yutaka Tsuda, Hidehiro Ogawa
  • Patent number: 8553112
    Abstract: An A/D converter 11 performs multiple-times sampling on a first signal S1 in a first period T1 while performing multiple-times sampling on a second signal S2 in a second period T2. An A/D converter circuit 17 provides a digital signal in response to a signal from an output 15b of a gain stage 15 in the second period T2. The digital signal may have a value “1” or a value “0”. The A/D converter circuit 17 includes a circuit 18 providing a signal SA/DM corresponding to the number of times the value “1” appears. A switch 24 operates in response to a clock signal ?s and is used to sample a signal from a pixel 2a. In a first capacitor circuit 27, a switch 29 and a capacitor 31 are connected to an inverting input 23a and a non-inverting output 23b, respectively. The switch 29 operates in response to a clock signal ?3 and is used for integration in the capacitor 31.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 31, 2007
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2013
    Assignee: National University Corporation Shizuoka University
    Inventor: Shoji Kawahito
  • Patent number: 8547457
    Abstract: Techniques are generally described for an image capture system that may include an image sensor, a flash for providing illumination, a data storage, and a processor operatively associated with the data storage. The processor may be adapted to execute computer implemented instructions to pre-store one or more image capture device characteristics in the data storage, acquire data in a pre-capture phase, model shadow effects based on either or both of the pre-stored data and the acquired data, modify one or more image capture device settings based on the modeled shadow effects, and record image data with the image sensor. Illumination may be provided substantially coincident with recording of the image data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 22, 2009
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2013
    Assignee: Empire Technology Development LLC
    Inventors: Andrew Wolfe, Thomas Martin Conte
  • Patent number: 8537254
    Abstract: According to the embodiment, a feedback clamp circuit is included, which increases or decreases a clamp parameter so that a black level approaches a target value while controlling a change amount of the clamp parameter, which sets the black level, based on the black level read out from OB pixels.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2013
    Assignee: Kabushiki Kaisha Toshiba
    Inventors: Yuji Miyashita, Junichi Hosokawa, Masahiko Nozaki
  • Patent number: 8514306
    Abstract: A correlated double sampling (CDS) circuit is provided. The CDS circuit is configured to perform a CDS on a reset signal and an image signal during a CDS phase respectively. The CDS circuit includes a sampling circuit configured to output a difference between a correlated double sampled reset signal and a correlated double sampled image signal, and a feedback unit configured to feedback the difference output from the sampling circuit during a PGA phase to an input of the sampling circuit.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 7, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 20, 2013
    Assignee: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Wun-Ki Jung, Seog Heon Ham, Dong Hun Lee, Kwi Sung Yoo, Min Ho Kwon
  • Patent number: 8508632
    Abstract: An image processing method, applicable to a digital image device, includes the following steps. At least one original image of different brightness ranges is captured, and more images of different brightness ranges are generated from the original image by using an image post-processing technique. Based on characteristics of the image of each brightness range, the weights of the image of each brightness range are defined. Then, hierarchical fusion is performed on the images of the different brightness ranges according to weight relations, so as to form a high-dynamic-range image capable of presenting features of each brightness range.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 15, 2010
    Date of Patent: August 13, 2013
    Assignee: Altek Corporation
    Inventors: Yun Chin Li, Chan Min Chou
  • Patent number: 8508609
    Abstract: An image pickup device comprising visible color optimization under received near-infrared and infrared light conditions is disclosed. Color signals corresponding to light received through each of a plurality of color filters are processed to determine a near-infrared and infrared light energy contribution. The color signals are processed to optimize color of received images.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 24, 2009
    Date of Patent: August 13, 2013
    Assignee: Kyocera Corporation
    Inventors: Naoto Ohara, Yusuke Hayashi, Tomoya Sugita
  • Patent number: 8493484
    Abstract: The present invention provides an image capturing apparatus, which comprises a plurality of photoelectric converter-containing pixels that are positioned horizontally and vertically and a gain circuit, has a gain controller that can control the gain of the gain circuit in N stages (where N is an integer equal to or greater than 2). The gain circuit outputs each of a plurality of signals given by the product of the output signal from one of the plurality of pixels and the gain in each stage of the N stages.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 11, 2007
    Date of Patent: July 23, 2013
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Makiko Yamauchi
  • Patent number: 8487950
    Abstract: An overflow suppression technique that is effective for avoiding degradation in image quality is provided. A fundamental waveform and detail is extracted out of an input RGB signal. A suppression gain generation unit 614 generates a suppression gain from the extracted fundamental waveform. Multipliers 612a and 612b multiply the detail and the fundamental waveform by the generated suppression gain, respectively. Then, an adder 626 combines them together for a mixed output. Alternatively, equalization processing is performed as follows. A low frequency component fundamental waveform is obtained as a result of the passing of an input RGB signal through a low pass filter 622. A suppression gain is generated from the low frequency component fundamental waveform. Then, the input itself is multiplied by the suppression gain to obtain an output.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 2008
    Date of Patent: July 16, 2013
    Assignees: Taiyo Yuden Co. Ltd., Microspace Corporation
    Inventors: Masato Tanaka, Kazuo Asanuma, Mamoru Sakamoto, Yasuo Hosaka, Akinobu Maekawa, Hidehumi Nakagome
  • Patent number: 8482660
    Abstract: An apparatus for detecting intensity saturation of a light sensor includes a saturation detector for detecting and measuring an intensity saturation condition of at least one pixel of a light sensor, the intensity saturation condition of the pixel being at saturation upon receiving light with an intensity above a predetermined level, the saturation detector emitting a digital signal with a reserved bit combination indicating the intensity saturation condition of the pixel, and a processor receiving and processing the digital signal from the saturation detector and transmitting a control signal in response to the digital signal to compensate for the intensity saturation condition of the pixel.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 5, 2011
    Date of Patent: July 9, 2013
    Assignee: Rambus Inc.
    Inventor: Michael L. Gough
  • Patent number: 8471935
    Abstract: An imaging apparatus includes an image sensor configured to capture an object image, a selection unit configured to automatically select a sensitivity of the image sensor from a predetermined selectable range, and an image processing unit configured to execute correction processing in which a signal of an image captured by the image sensor which has the sensitivity selected by the selection unit is amplified. When the image processing unit is set to execute the correction processing, the selection unit sets an upper limit of the selectable range lower, compared with the upper limit thereof when the image processing unit is not set to execute the correction processing.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 28, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 25, 2013
    Assignee: Canon Kabushiki Kaisha
    Inventor: Takashi Kosaka
  • Patent number: 8462101
    Abstract: An apparatus controls a backlight of a display panel of a camera system. The apparatus includes a sub-pixel extracting unit, an ambient light luminance calculating unit, and a backlight controller. The sub-pixel extracting unit extracts sub-pixel luminance values from image data, where the image data is indicative of a current image frame defined by a plurality of pixels, and where each of the pixels includes a plurality of sub-pixels. The ambient light luminance calculating unit calculates an ambient light luminance value of the current image frame from the sub-pixel luminance values extracted by the sub-pixel extracting unit. The backlight controller which generates a backlight control signal based on a comparison between the calculated ambient light luminance value of the current image frame and an ambient light luminance value of a previous image frame.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2010
    Date of Patent: June 11, 2013
    Assignee: Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Bing Han, Paul Gallagher, Yun-tae Lee, Joon-seo Yim
  • Patent number: 8463212
    Abstract: A receiving apparatus includes: a signal-level detecting unit detecting a signal level of an input signal; a first signal-level converting unit including amplifiers, capturing the input signal and converting a signal level of the input signal; a switching unit switching an output of a converted level signal; a switching control unit selecting a specific amplifier and controlling the switching unit to select an output signal from the selected amplifier; a band-pass filter allowing only a predetermined frequency hand in the switched signal to pass; a second signal-level converting unit converting a signal level of an output signal from the amplifier into a predetermined signal level at which S/N of a mixer is maximized; the mixer mixing the converted signal passed through the band-pass filter, and an oscillation signal to generate an intermediate frequency signal; and a demodulating unit demodulating the intermediate frequency signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 3, 2010
    Date of Patent: June 11, 2013
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventors: Nobuyuki Ishikawa, Yukio Yamazaki
  • Patent number: 8446489
    Abstract: The present invention relates to an imaging device, a drive control method, and a program configured to be capable of making sensitivity ratios constant and improving a S/N ratio. When a storage period of pixels (G pixels) with a green filter as a reference does not exceed a predetermined threshold value, an adjustment of the sensitivity ratio by gains by color is performed. When the storage period of the pixels with a green filter is larger than the predetermined threshold value, the storage periods of the pixels with a red filter (R pixels) and the pixels with a blue filter (B pixels) are calculated from the set sensitivity ratios, and if the calculated values do not exceed a maximum setting value, the adjustment of the sensitivity ratios by the storage periods by color is performed. In contrast, if the calculated storage period is larger than the maximum setting value, the adjustment of the sensitivity ratio is performed by combining the storage period by color and the gains by color.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2010
    Date of Patent: May 21, 2013
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventors: Yasuhiro Kaneo, Shizunori Matsumoto
  • Patent number: 8400522
    Abstract: A method and apparatus for applying tonal correction to images to obtain a more pleasing photographic image by redistributing low-key, mid-tone and high-key tones. Luminance is calculated by using formulas appropriate for the color space or directly inputted. Two color-difference components are computed for the original image. Luminance is subjected to a tonal correction function to obtain a tonal corrected luminance. Luminance gain is calculated and applied to the color-difference components to obtain two tonal corrected color-difference components. The tonal corrected luminance and two tonal corrected color-difference components can be directly output or used to calculate three color component signals for the desired color space.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 4, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 19, 2013
    Assignee: Micron Technology, Inc.
    Inventor: Ilia Ovsiannikov
  • Patent number: 8379153
    Abstract: In the video signal processing device, the first color space converting section performs color space conversion on an input video signal, to generate a converted video signal configured of H, S and V signals. The first high-frequency separating section separates a high-frequency component from the luminance signal in the input video signal, to generate high-frequency luminance signals. The combining section performs a combining process based on the V signal or the S signal or both, and the high-frequency luminance signal, to generate a combined V signal or a combined S signal or both. The second color space converting section performs color space conversion on a video signal, configured of the H signal, the S signal or the combined S signal, and the V signal or the combined V signal, to generate an output video signal defined in RGB color space.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 24, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 19, 2013
    Assignee: Sony Corporation
    Inventor: Toshinobu Isobe
  • Patent number: 8368779
    Abstract: An image processing apparatus includes: a gradation correction unit configured to perform gradation correction upon a subject image to be processed to generate a corrected image, the gradation correction including processing for lowering contrast in the subject image; a gradation information acquisition unit configured to acquire gradation information indicating relative balance of brightness in each portion of the subject image; and an adjustment unit configured to adjust brightness of the corrected image on a pixel basis based on the gradation information.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 13, 2009
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2013
    Assignee: Casio Computer Co., Ltd.
    Inventor: Yoshitsugu Manabe
  • Patent number: 8368814
    Abstract: The invention achieves a visual processing device that can execute precise contrast adjustment on image signals that have been input and that does not cause discrepancies in the output timing of the image signals that are output. The visual processing device is provided with a gain-type visual processing portion that outputs a first gain signal having predetermined gain characteristics with respect to the input image signal, and a correction portion that corrects the input image signal based on the first gain signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 7, 2010
    Date of Patent: February 5, 2013
    Assignee: Panasonic Corporation
    Inventors: Haruo Yamashita, Takeshi Ito, Yusuke Monobe, Tatsumi Watanabe, Yasuhiro Kuwahara
  • Patent number: 8363131
    Abstract: Methods and systems for enhancing an image. Respective local contrast values are determined for selected pixels of the image by, for each selected pixel, adjusting a respective luminance value of the pixel by an average luminance value of neighboring pixels to obtain the local contrast value. Respective tone-mapped values are determined for further selected pixels in the image based on a global luminance value representing the image. The local contrast values and the tone-mapped values are combined, respectively, for the corresponding pixels in the image to produce the enhanced image.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 15, 2009
    Date of Patent: January 29, 2013
    Assignee: Aptina Imaging Corporation
    Inventor: Sheng Lin