Teardown of 'Leap Motion' Gesture-based Controller (2)

Sep 10, 2013
Nikkei Electronics Teardown Squad
The "Leap" without the optical filter that transmits only infrared light
The "Leap" without the optical filter that transmits only infrared light
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The removed rubber sheet
The removed rubber sheet
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The main board
The main board
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The upper side of the main board. Macronix International's flash memory chip seen to the upper left of the LED lamp located at the center.
The upper side of the main board. Macronix International's flash memory chip seen to the upper left of the LED lamp located at the center.
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The other side of the main board. The relatively large semiconductor chip is Cypress Semiconductor's USB 3.0 controller chip.
The other side of the main board. The relatively large semiconductor chip is Cypress Semiconductor's USB 3.0 controller chip.
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The plastic case being taken out
The plastic case being taken out
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The bottom side of the camera board
The bottom side of the camera board
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Continued from Teardown of 'Leap Motion' Gesture-based Controller (1)

After removing the optical filter that transmits only infrared light, we found two cameras that had large lenses and looked like eyes. And there were three (right, middle and left) infrared LED lamps arranged in a straight line.

The cameras, infrared LED lamps and a semiconductor chip could be seen. But other components were covered with a rubber sheet. So, we removed the sheet and found the main board on which the infrared LED lamps were mounted. The cameras were mounted on another board (camera board) located under the main board. In other words, the main components of the Leap are (1) the camera board, (2) main board equipped with the infrared LED lamps, (3) rubber sheet and (4) optical filter.

Then, we took out the main board to examine the camera board. The eye-catching parts mounted on the upper side of the main board were the three infrared LED lamps and a flash memory chip manufactured by Taiwan-based Macronix International Co Ltd.

On the other side of the main board, there was a 10 x 10mm semiconductor chip at the center. It is printed with the characters "CYUSB3014-BZXI," meaning that it is a USB 3.0 controller chip manufactured by Cypress Semiconductor Corp.

According to the company's website, the price of the chip is US$27.3 per unit when it is purchased in a quantity of more than 1,000. The price of the Leap is US$79.99. If its parts cost accounts for one third of the price, the USB 3.0 controller is probably manufactured by an EMS (electronic manufacturing service) company that makes the controller for Cypress for a price much lower than US$27 per unit.

Also, what seemed to be a power supply chip was embedded on the back of the main board.

The camera board was attached to a black plastic case, and it was difficult to remove only the board. So, we took out the plastic case and the camera board together. Seeing the back of the case, we found that the camera board was attached to the plastic case with a net-like sticker (sheet).