What is MGS?

Micro Gimbal Stabilizer (MGS) is an innovative mechanical image stabilizer camera technology protected by 100+ patents in multidisciplinary engineering fields. During image stabilization, the MGS drives a lens and an image sensor together in the opposite direction of the vibration, like traditional gimbals. Since there is no relative motion between the lens and image sensor, the MGS can deliver superb Anti-Shaking (AS) performance with large compensation angles and consistent AS performance across the whole pictures, enabling MGS cameras to capture clear images even in low-light and shaky conditions.

AS Technology Comparison

 Lens-Shift OISOur MGSOther Gimbal Camera
AS TypeOpticalMechanicalMechanical
2-axis AS   

3-axis AS

   
AS performance at corners⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Max. AS Compensation Angles⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Camera Module Size⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Cost⭐⭐⭐

Patented Spring Design

The tilted spring design is one of the patented core technologies in the MGS. The tilted springs are the key components in the mechanical suspension system. There are 4 tilted springs at the 4 corners of the MGS, connecting the MGS stator and rotor. This innovative suspension system provides 2 rotational Degrees-of-Freedom (DoF) with small spring constants for the low-power AS motions, while limiting the other 4 DoF with extremely large spring constants for low posture dependency due to gravity.

Each tilted spring is flat and can be made by etching copper alloy sheets, which is widely used in smartphone AutoFocus (AF) Voice Coil Motors (VCMs) with outstanding precision, cost effectiveness and reliability. Unlike ball bearings, the tilted springs do not cause any non-linear friction, so the MGS AS performance under small amplitudes and high-frequency vibrations is better than other gimbal cameras with ball bearings.

Patented FPC Design

The MGS consists of patented double L-shaped Flexible Circuit Board (FPC), transferring image sensor signals from the image sensor in the MGS rotor to stator. The double L-shaped FPC deforming during AS motions can provide multi-DoF required for the MGS motion in a very confined space. Unlike other gimbal cameras in smartphones using multi-folded FPC designs, the double L-shaped FPC does not occupy valuable space outside the MGS motor, enabling at least 30% space saving. Since all the deforming parts of the FPC are flat, the FPC can be produced and assembled easily and cost effectively, without sacrificing AS performance.

Calibration and Control System

Besides the mechanical and electronic designs, we also provide patented calibration and control systems for the MGS and also other Optical Image Stabilizer (OIS) solutions. Our calibration systems and control programs support various control systems, including Open-Loop Control (OLC), Sensorless Feedback Control (SFC) and Hall closed-loop control.

Although the OLC eliminates the Hall sensors and allows simpler, more cost effective and compact motor VCM designs, the AS performance of the traditional OLC is worse than Hall closed-loop control. With our calibration systems and advanced OLC control algorithms, the OLC OIS and MGS VCMs can achieve AS performance in terms of Compensation Ratio (CR) in dB similar to Hall closed-loop control.
When there are strong vibrations with frequencies close to the resonant frequencies of the OLC VCM, the VCM spring-and-mass systems may occur resonance, causing blurry images. To tackle this problem, we have invented the SFC technology for VCMs without Hall sensors. The SFC algorithm reads the ElectroMotive Force (EMF) in the VCM coils and adds an electronic damper to the VCM spring-and-mass systems. As in the video on the right, the electronic damper can notably lessen the resonance problem, shorten the settling time and thus improve the image sharpness. The SFC algorithm has been implemented in OIS driver ICs with MCU and will be embedded in a SFC VCM driver IC in the near future.