Electronics > Microcontrollers

System-on-Chip Video Player IC?


I am looking for an inexpensive SOC that I could program to read video files from an SD card and play them to a screen and audio output of some kind. The videos are 480p and can be encoded in whatever format that the IC prefers. For output I am feeding the image directly to a 480P LVDS screen, so if it can do that directly, that would be perfect.

I am optimizing for cost and boot time. This would be a chip that might be used in video capable digital photo frames, or maybe kiosk displays. I am shooting for something under $10 per IC. Any more expensive then that and Pi Zero starts to look appealing, but for boot time I wanted to find something more purpose built. Spent the day rummaging on Digikey with no luck.

 - Bogdan

Edited #2

Almost any SOC targeting the HMI/ advanced UI market might do.

But you say "play video" so of course the key question is what formats may the video be in?
If the chip does have a video playback accelleration decoder, it will not be for all video formats.
Maybe basic chips have like DVD-video / MPEG-2 type decoding and maybe not much else.
More capable chips could offer several other HW / accelerated decoders.
Even so many of the other actual encoding format parameters may still matter beyond the resolution
and frame rate.

Anyway look for chips with a GPU, that is one good indication.

NXP I.MX6 series has several such, as well as I.MX7 and I.MX8 and several I.MX6 ICs are used for
low video quality HMIs / video / kiosk kinds of applications with limited video resolution decoding / playback capability
and built in parallel or maybe DSI LCD interface capability etc. etc.

TI has the DaVinci series and I don't recall if any of the Sitara series is relevant, I think so.
They renamed their series and divided them so much it's hard to remember between OMAP / Sitara / Davinci / etc.

ST has a MPU line with GPU options.

There are also asian vendor based ICs from the likes of rockchip, allwinner, mediatek?, realtek?, or whoever, I forget the devices / companies names but there are a couple that are really popular for video playback "stick" devices.

They are probably more integrated / lower cost / lower flexibility maybe.

BTW a couple of these are "SOC"s in the sense of having in-package SRAM / DRAM enough to work.
But mostly you will need DDRx DRAM or SDRAM to some extent additionally, and possibly also PMIC / regulator ICs and such
so the BOM cost is not just always for the SOC chip itself.

If you look around you might find companies wanting to send things that do that to you for free... https://www.eevblog.com/forum/projects/now-what-can-i-do-with-120x-of-these/


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