A 20-MHz switching high-speed light-modulating device for three-dimensional (3-D) image capturing and its system prototype are presented. For 3-D image capturing, the system utilizes a time-of-flight (TOF) principle by means of a 20-MHz high-speed micromachined electro-absorptive modulator, the so-called optical shutter. The high-speed modulation is obtained by utilizing the electro-absorption mechanism of the multilayer structure, which has an optical resonance cavity and light-absorption epilayers grown by metal organic chemical vapor deposition process. The optical shutter device is specially designed to have small resistor–capacitor–time constant to get the high-speed modulation. The optical shutter is positioned in front of a standard high-resolution complementary metal oxide semiconductor image sensor. The optical shutter modulates the incoming infrared image to acquire the depth image. The suggested novel optical shutter device enables capturing of a full high resolution-depth image, which has been limited to video graphics array (VGA) by previous depth-capturing technologies. The suggested 3-D image sensing device can have a crucial impact on 3-D–related business such as 3-D cameras, gesture recognition, user interfaces, and 3-D displays. This paper presents micro-opto-electro-mechanical systems-based optical shutter design, fabrication, characterization, 3-D camera system prototype, and image evaluation.