ESP-EYE ESP32 AI Development Board Supports Face detection, Voice wakeup

Sometimes last month, Espressif Systems contacted me to send a mysterious new development kit together with a 10-year anniversary T-shirt, an offer I found hard to decline 🙂

So I got a new year present this morning delivered by DHL…

Espressif T-shirt ESP-EYE
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The letter lists the main specifications of ESP-EYE development board:

  • WiSoC- ESP32 dual core Tensilica LX6 processor with WiFi and Bluetooth
  • Memory – 8MB PSRAM
  • Storage – 4MB flash
  • Camera – 2MP OV2640 camera
  • Audio – Microphone
  • USB – 1x micro USB port for power and programming
  • Misc – Reset, boot and function buttons, 2x LEDs
  • Dimensions – 41 x 21 mm

It reminds me of ESP32-CAM camera board, except it adds a microphone, it’s even smaller, and as an official Espressif board, software support might be better. AI features such as face recognition or detection, and voice wake-up are supported out of the box.

ESP-EYE Block Diagram
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The board ships with a micro USB cable, and a card with a block diagram, and a quick start guide explaining you need to press the side “function” button to collect face data.

Click to Enlarge

One side of the board features the 2MP camera, reset and boot buttons, two LEDs, and the microphone (top to bottom),

ESP32 AI Development Board
Click to Enlarge

While the other side reveals the chips used in the design: ESP32-D0WD, 8MB PSRAM, 4MB flash, CP2102 USB to TTL chip, as well as the on-board antenna, a u.FL connector for external antenna, the micro USB port, and function button.

That’s all I know for now, as I can’t find documentation on Espressif website yet, and ESP-EYE board is not for sale at this time. The boards and T-shirt just have been sent to various members of the community, and after testing they should become available.

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25 Replies to “ESP-EYE ESP32 AI Development Board Supports Face detection, Voice wakeup”

  1. Micro SD card would have been nice.

    Makes up for the last ESP32+audio board mentioned here a couple months ago, which got cancelled before it shipped.

    1. In my case, it’s because I cover Espressif products often, but the most active people on the ESP forums and helping with software development likely received / will receive one. I suppose I may have been one of the first to have received it because I’m based in Asia.

    1. You must be referring to the ESP32-CAM board, as I’ve never ever heard about ESP-EYE, and could not find any online references when I looked yesterday.

  2. Since the ESP32 lacks an NPU accelerator, will Espressif launch a software-only SDK for AI? I wonder if this will be part of ESP-IDF or a new framework like the ESP-ADF for audio.

    1. Wouldn’t know. I’d be…hesitant…to consider them more than a decent IP cam that MIGHT be able to do h.264 streaming.

      This is more because of the Kendryte coming along being a much more muscular part capable of doing everything that the ESP32 can and then some for roughly similar pricing per quantity. Your AI isn’t going to be much there because there’s only so much compute power those Tensilica LX6’s at 200-ish MHz can do. It’s an impressive little part, but they’ve had the industry come along and one-up them again in only about 2-3 years time.

      That being said, if they ship it, I’ll play with it.

      1. The Kendryte K210 has no built-in wireless connectivity so I’m not sure about the comparison. The Sipeed M1w module adds an esp8285 for WiFi.

    1. that’s great. thanx for posting.
      do you know what’s the diff between ttgo t8 and ttgo zero (supposedly a new thing) btw?

  3. Can I find examples showing how I may use this in my own way? I want the face recognition feature to trigger some other API end points (when a known face is found) to achieve different things. Any leads?

  4. Hi

    If there was an OV2640 camera module that outputted h.264 encoded video – how hard to update the libraries on the esp32cam?? Yes I am trying to find one…maybe :).

    That way (I am sure you know this) we can just pass the video stream through the esp32 very efficiently.

    And if there was some sort of micro-gstreamer/webrtc library that could run on the esp32 (gstreamer runs on it now)- similar to the micro-RTSP library (that that Kevin Hester put together)… then some interesting things could happen – then you could do live streaming with the esp32 to most any device very easily.



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