A Quick Overview on ESP32-CAM, Camera Module Based on ESP32

In an increasingly digital world, protecting confidential information is becoming more difficult day by day. The ESP32-CAM development board is another member of the ESP32 module family that is extremely useful in major IoT applications. It can be used with advanced projects where facial recognition, image tracking, wireless monitoring, and identification are required.This blog will discuss what is a ESP32 CAM is ,Its pinout, and applications in detail.

Introduction to ESP32-Cam:

. The ESP32-CAM is a small size, low power consumption camera module based on ESP32. The ESP32 CAM WiFi Module Bluetooth with OV2640 Camera Module 2MP and a micro-SD card slot is a small-size camera module that can run independently as a minimum system with a footprint of only 40 x 27 mm; a deep sleep current of up to 6mA and is extensively used in many IoT applications.

It features a ESP32-S chip and comes with a “regular” 2MP OV2640 camera. This board has 4MB PSRAM, which is used for buffering images from the camera into video streaming or other tasks and allows you to use higher quality in your pictures without crashing the ESP32.It’s ideal for smart home devices, industrial wireless control, wireless monitoring, and other Internet of Things (IoT) applications.

With two high-performance 32-bit LX6 CPUs and a 7-stage pipeline architecture, ESP integrates WiFi, traditional Bluetooth, and BLE Beacon. It has an adjustable frequency range of 80MHz to 240MHz, an on-chip sensor, a Hall sensor, and a temperature sensor, among other features.


The ESP32-CAM board includes an on-board antenna as well as an IPEX connector for connecting an external antenna to extend the Wi-Fi communication range.

The board includes an on-board reset button for restarting your board as well as a built-in flash lamp. Before streaming video or taking a picture, the flash bulb can be used to light up the area. The flash lamp, on the other hand, shares a GPIO with one of the microSD card GPIOs. This means that the LED will light up occasionally when utilising features connected to the microSD card, even if you don’t want it to.

One of the major drawbacks of the ESP32-CAM is that is doesn’t have USB-to-UART interface. This implies that you can’t use a USB cable to connect the ESP32-CAM to your PC. An FTDI programmer is required. Regardless, this is one of the most adaptable and affordable ESP32 development boards with camera.

ESP32-CAM Features :

  1. The smallest 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi BT SoC module.
  2. Low power 32-bit CPU, can also serve the application processor.
  3. Up to 160MHz clock speed, summary computing power up to 600 DMIPS.
  4. Built-in 520 KB SRAM, external 4MPSRAM.
  5. Supports UART/SPI/I2C/PWM/ADC/DAC.
  6. Support OV2640 and OV7670 cameras, built-in flash lamp.
  7. Support image WiFI upload.
  8. Supports TF card.
  9. Supports multiple sleep modes.
  10. Embedded Lwip and FreeRTOS.
  11. Supports STA/AP/STA+AP operation mode.
  12. Support Smart Config/AirKiss technology.
  13. Support for serial port local and remote firmware upgrades (FOTA).

Specifications :

  1. Wireless Module: ESP32-S WiFi 802.11 b/g/n + Bluetooth 4.2 LE module with PCB antenna, u.FL connector, 32Mbit SPI flash, 4MBit PSRAM.
  2. External Storage: micro SD card slot up to 4GB.
  3. Camera
    1. FPC connector.
    2. Support for OV2640 (sold with a board) or OV7670 cameras.
    3. Image Format: JPEG( OV2640 support only ), BMP, grayscale.
    4. LED flashlight.
  4. Expansion: 16x through-holes with UART, SPI, I2C, PWM.
  5. Misc: Reset button.
  6. Power Supply: 5V via pin header.
  7. Power Consumption.
    1. Flash LED off: 180mA @ 5V.
    2. Flash LED on to maximum brightness: 310mA @ 5V.
    3. Deep-sleep: 6mA @ 5V min.
    4. Modem-sleep: 20mA @ 5V min.
    5. Light-sleep: 6.7mA @ 5V min.
  8. Dimensions (ESP32): 40 x 27 x 12 (LxWxH) mm.
  9. Temperature Range: Operating: -20 ℃ ~ 85 ℃; storage: -40 ℃ ~ 90 ℃ @ < 90%RH.

ESP32-CAM Pinout

There are fewer I/O pins on the ESP32-CAM module than on the previous ESP-32 module we looked at. The camera and the microSD card port utilise many of the GPIO pins internally.

esp32-cam pinout ai-thinker module

As the ESP32-CAM lacks a USB port, you’ll need an FTDI programmer to upload code via the U0R and U0T pins (serial pins).


ESP32-CAM Pinouts

There are three GND pins and two pins for Power: either 3.3V or 5V.

GPIO 1 and GPIO 3 are the serial pins. You need these pins to upload code to your board. Additionally, GPIO 0 also plays an important role, since it determines whether the ESP32 is in flashing mode or not. When GPIO 0 is connected to GND, the ESP32 is in flashing mode.

The following pins are internally connected to the microSD card reader:

  • GPIO 14: CLK
  • GPIO 15: CMD
  • GPIO 2: Data 0
  • GPIO 4: Data 1 (also connected to the on-board LED)
  • GPIO 12: Data 2
  • GPIO 13: Data 3

This module has components on both sides of the printed circuit board. The camera module connector, as well as the microSD (also referred to as “TF”) card socket, are located on the “top” of the board.

A square white LED on the module’s top, which can be used as a “flash” to illuminate the subject you’re trying to photograph.

The ESP32-S module is located on the circuit board’s underside. The external antenna connector, as well as an internal antenna carved into the circuit board. I’ll go over how to use the external antenna in a minute.

The reset switch is another important component that can be found beneath the board.

Since there are so many components on the bottom of the module, it may be easier to explore with the ESP32-CAM module without using a solderless breadboard. It is recommended that jumpers with female Dupont connections be used.

Camera Specifications

The ESP32-CAM includes an OV2640 camera module. The device also supports OV7670 cameras.  The OV2640 has the following specifications:

  • 2 Megapixel sensor
  • Array size UXGA 1622×1200
  • Output formats include YUV422, YUV420, RGB565, RGB555 and 8-bit compressed data
  • Image transfer rate of 15 to 60 fps


The ESP32-CAM suit for IOT applications such as:

  • Smart home devices image upload
  • Wireless monitoring
  • Intelligent agriculture
  • QR wireless identification
  • facial recognition


Hope this blog what is a ESP32 CAM is ,Its pinout, and applications in detail.We ,MATHA ELECTRONICS  will come back with more informative blogs.

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