Light-to-digital converter that doubles as a proximity sensor, fast operation makes it suitable for portable applications.
If you could see it through a microscope, the TCS3771 light-to-digital sensor aboard Color 3 click would look like a tiny colourful glass tile window with 16 squares of red, green, blue and clear tiles, four of each.
Each of the tinted tiles covers a photodiode underneath it, filtering a particular wave length of light. The raw material of light beams is then processed by internal accumulators, amplifiers, and comparators, before finally being converted to a discrete digital value by the four internal **16-bit ADCs (one for each color).
These digital values should correlate to visible colors under a wide range of lighting conditions, even when the sensor is placed under a dark glass cover, for example. This is because of its very high 1,000,000:1 dynamic range.
Coupled with an onboard IR LED, Color 3 click can also function as a proximity sensor (as is the case with most sensors of this type). Color 3 click, however, can measure distances both short and long (from a few mm to about half a meter, a distance of a user in front of a computer screen for example).