Chipidea Develops Class D Audio Driver IP

Chipidea, the Analog Business Group of MIPS Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: MIPS), introduced the industry’s first Class D Audio Driver intellectual property (IP) specifically designed for system-on-chip (SoC) devices manufactured in process nodes down to 65nm. Chipidea’s analog/mixed-signal Class D Audio Driver IP addresses the explosive growth of markets for portable consumer audio devices including MP3 players, smart phones with integrated audio capability, handheld GPS systems and others where the requisite integrated audio feature set and demand for extended battery life continue to challenge both IC designers and end-product manufacturers.

Offering energy-efficient audio amplification, Class D amplifiers were previously used primarily in large electronic devices including televisions and stationary audio amplifiers. According to research firm Gartner, Inc., the market for Class D amplifiers will register a compound annual growth rate of 15.6% from 2006 to 2011, rising from $334 million to $688 million. This growth will be driven largely by increased usage in portable equipment and space-constrained consumer electronics.

Based on this increasing demand, Chipidea identified these devices as a market opportunity for advanced SoC designs in the portable audio space. Chipidea leveraged its proven expertise in analog/mixed-signal IP for mobile audio applications to develop the new IP, helping to drive broader usage of the Class D architecture in emerging portable consumer applications.

“Because of its integration capability, Chipidea’s Class D Audio Driver IP offers extended flexibility for designers of today’s advanced SoCs,” said Joao Risques, audio product line manager of Chipidea’s Audio and Power Solutions Division. “Depending on their integration challenges, customers can implement the IP as a standalone function or as part of an audio subsystem that can be integrated into a stereo DAC or a complete stereo audio codec. The IP is particularly well-suited for loudspeaker and headset loads, as well as line-type loads, which may ultimately serve as the basis for the next generation of Chipidea audio codecs.”

Chipidea’s Class D Audio Driver IP is optimized for low power consumption and longer battery life for a wide array of consumer devices. It delivers a high-quality audio experience and high performance with low risk. The integrated two-channel stereo audio driver features 1W over 4W with THD <0.1 percent, 125mW into 16W load with THD <0.02 percent, digitally adjustable blanking time, inductor-free operation, and a low quiescent current of 3.5mA per channel, yielding greater than 85 percent power efficiency.

The new Class D Audio Driver IP is the latest offering from Chipidea’s Audio Solutions, the most complete family of portable, easy-to-integrate audio IP on the market. Chipidea audio IP is available at major foundries across multiple process technologies.

About Chipidea
Chipidea Microelectrónica S.A., the Analog Business Group of MIPS Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: MIPS), is the world’s leading analog/mixed-signal intellectual property provider, according to market researcher Gartner Dataquest Inc. Chipidea is a key supplier to system-on-chip designers targeting fast-growing wireless communications, digital media and consumer electronics market segments. With the industry’s most comprehensive portfolio of silicon-proven technology across a variety of product lines, Chipidea offers a breadth of solutions ranging from intellectual property to multi-function integrated circuits. Chipidea works hand-in-hand with its customers to ensure that its unique analog/mixed signal expertise results in silicon success.

Chipidea is a registered trademark of Chipidea.