Engineers of audio, medical, industrial and emerging applications have traditionally implemented floating-point digital signal processors (DSPs) because they offer dynamic range and high precision for data accuracy and easy algorithm programmability. Texas Instruments Incorporated (NYSE: TXN) (TI) announced three new devices that transcend traditional floating-point processors, enabling engineers to easily design more portable, connected, cost-efficient and high-precision end products.
The three new devices, based on TI’s new C674x DSP core, merge the inherent advantages of floating point with a combination of connectivity peripherals, low power and low cost that, until now, has only been available with fixed-point devices. Giving developers the flexible solutions they need to design both basic and advanced product lines, TI’s new processors include the industry’s lowest power floating-point DSPs – the TMS320C6745 DSP and TMS320C6747 DSP – as well as the OMAP-L137 floating-point-DSP-plus-ARM applications processor. For more information, go to www.ti.com/lowpowerprocessors.
“For applications like audio and medical, the high precision and wide dynamic range provided by floating point have always been paramount because end users demand fidelity and data accuracy,” said Corey Chao, low power processors marketing manager, TI. “In recent years, consumers have also begun to require more portability and connectivity. In response to that demand, developers have asked TI for new low-power, floating-point processors with a wealth of integrated peripherals, so that is exactly what we are providing.”
Integration of connectivity and other peripherals saves development time and system cost
TI’s new C6745 DSP, C6747 DSP and OMAP-L137 applications processor include USB 2.0/1.1, 10/100 Ethernet and multimedia card/secure digital (MMC/SD) peripherals to ensure that developers can easily add connectivity options to their designs. Traditionally, these peripherals have only been available on fixed-point devices or via separate components but are needed for a broad range of applications that require connectivity for high data transfer or networking/Internet access. In addition to connectivity components, TI’s new processors offer varying levels of other on-chip options that provide developers with system performance and prices to best fit their application. With the on-chip integration of TI’s new processors, engineers can eliminate the significant investment in development time and cost associated with adding multiple external components.
The new C6745 DSP, which runs at up to 300 MHz, includes an extensive set of serial ports for system control as well as multichannel audio serial ports (McASP) with up to 16 serializers and FIFO buffers. It also includes two external memory interfaces: an 8-bit external asynchronous memory interface (EMIFA) for NAND/NOR flash and a higher speed 16-bit synchronous external memory interface (EMIFB) for SDRAM.
For increased system performance, the C6747 DSP includes all of the features of the C6745 DSP and incorporates an additional 128 KB of on-chip RAM. The EMIFA and EMIFB on the C6747 are also upgraded to 16-bit and 32-bit, respectively. An LCD controller is on-chip, allowing designers to quickly add quarter video graphics array (QVGA) or other displays to their end products.
The OMAP-L137 applications processor includes the C674x floating-point DSP core plus an ARM9, providing up to 300 MHz per core. With the on-chip ARM9, developers can leverage the floating-point DSP for real-time, processing-intensive computations while off-loading non-real-time tasks to the ARM. This functionality enables developers to design more feature-rich end products that include graphical user interfaces (GUIs), touch screens and/or networking stacks. Additionally, developers can use the ARM to implement various high-level operating systems such as VxWorks, WinCE or Linux. The OMAP-L137 is also pin-to-pin compatible with the C6747 DSP, allowing customers to simultaneously develop multiple products with varying feature levels using the different processor options.
More portability with industry’s lowest power floating-point digital signal processors
Power continues to be a primary design consideration for engineers bringing new products to market, so TI is focused on developing the most energy-efficient processors. Using half the standby power and less than one-third the total power of previous generation floating-point DSPs, the C6745 and C6747 are the industry’s lowest power floating-point DSPs. These new power levels give developers the ability to lower heat dissipation, improve ergonomics and bring more portability to end products that require the high precision and wide dynamic range of floating point. Both processors consume 62 mW in standby mode and 470 mW in total active power mode. For detailed use case scenarios, visit www.ti.com/c6747 and www.ti.com/c6745.
The OMAP-L137 applications processor also operates at significantly low power levels, using 62mW in standby and 490 mW total active power.
Silicon and tools availability and pricing
The C6745, C6747 and OMAP-L137 are object code compatible with all devices based on the C64x+TM and C67x+TM DSP cores, allowing developers to easily port code to the new lower power, more integrated floating-point devices. TI is committed to providing customers with a broad range of floating-point solutions, including C67x DSPs, OMAP-L13x applications processors and F2833x microcontrollers.
Customers can now place orders for the C6745 DSP, C6747 DSP and OMAP-L137 applications processor, starting at $10.41, $11.72 and $18.93 (100 unit pricing), respectively. The C6745 DSP, C6747 DSP and OMAP-L137 applications processor are supported by the OMAP-L137/C6747 Floating-point Starter Kit which offers the flexibility of Linux and DSP/BIOSTM kernels. Order entry is also open for the kit, which is priced at $395.