updated 10:40 am EST, Wed February 16, 2011
NEC to bring noise suppression tech to cameras
Japanese electronics maker NEC announced on Wednesday it will take steps to suppress the noise made by motors and related mechanisms used in the zoom lenses of its compact digital cameras. The technique would be most useful in movie recording mode. The technology would do so artificially and can be likened to noise cancelling methods, recording the core characteristics of the offending sounds and then removing them in real time from the signals recorded by the microphone.
The technology would also allow for high-speed operation of the zoom motors for a smoother video recording experience. Ambient environmental sounds would still be preserved as well. The feature would also automatically adapt to the lenses and microphones in different camera models from various manufacturers, reducing the need to rework the design for each different company.
When NEC starts shipping hardware to camera makers with the technology hasn't been communicated, but is likely to happen this year. Casio's ZR10 digital camera already uses noise reduction with the same philosophy.