This paper is about the definition and requirement of Compact lens system. One important application of the CMOS image sensor module is to capture a still image or continuous images when it is bundled with cellular phones (embedded, not add-on module). This type of application is related to the so-called "compact lens system." We will make a description of image forming at pixel and image forming at chip and introduce the experiments of microlens shift. The discussion of the experimented results will include several factors: a) the color filter stack thickness b) the IC stack thickness c) fill factor d) the shape of photo diode. At last, check what problems may happen in actual microlens shift applications. From all above, we can understand the requirement of compact lens system.© (2003) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.