Analog Devices, Inc. (NYSE: ADI) broadened its new fourth generation SHARC® family, the industry’s highest-performance floating-point digital signal processors, by introducing a series of processors for industrial and instrumentation, automotive audio, and home theater applications. Sharing the same higher-performance design as the pro audio version of the SHARC 21469 (commercial temperature range) introduced in October, at up to 450 MHz/2700 MFLOPS these newest processors more than double the total computational performance of the previous SHARC generation. A number of key features across the SHARC 2146x lineup contribute to this impressive performance and I/O throughput, including hardware accelerators, increased on-chip SRAM, a high-speed DDR2 SDRAM external memory interface, and link ports.
Five New SHARC Processors Join the Family
The SHARC processors introduced are: the 21469 (industrial temperature range packaging) for industrial and instrumentation; the 21469W, 21465W, and 21462W for automotive audio; and the 21467 for home theater. Like their predecessors, this newest generation of SHARC processors is based on a single-instruction multiple-data (SIMD) core that supports 32-bit fixed-point as well as 32-/40-bit floating-point arithmetic formats, making them particularly suitable for high-performance applications.
“SHARC has been the leader in floating-point digital signal processing because of its exceptional performance and a high degree of integration that yields a great price/performance benefit,” said Jerry McGuire, vice president, General Purpose DSP, Analog Devices, Inc. “With the next generation of SHARC processors, we’ve continued to listen to our customers: We’re providing the highest-performing standard floating-point DSPs and adding requested features such as integrated peripherals and accelerator engines to perform specific tasks, making more of the core available for increased processing needs.”
Like the pro-audio-optimized version that debuted last month, these new fourth-generation SHARC processors offer more than two times the 32-bit floating-point family’s performance compared with earlier SHARC offerings. One key contributor to this performance increase is the addition of hardware accelerators for widely used signal processing operations: FIR (Finite Impulse Response), IIR (Infinite Impulse Response), and FFT (Fast Fourier Transform).
Additional new features that substantially boost the performance of the SHARC 2146x include: an increase of 60 percent in on-chip SRAM up to 5Mbits and a new Variable Instruction Set Architecture (VISA) feature that allows a reduction in instruction opcode size, freeing up as much as 30 percent of memory space for application code. Furthermore, faster I/O throughput is achieved by a high-speed DDR2 SDRAM external memory interface that effectively doubles the data transfer rate. For data transfers between multiple SHARC processors, link ports provide a parallel command interface for faster data movement than is enabled by the processors’ serial peripheral interface (SPI).
Industrial and Instrumentation
Thanks to its high performance, large on-chip memory, high-speed external memory interface, and flexible peripherals — including eight fully independent serial ports (SPORTs) — the 21469 provides a strong value proposition for industrial and instrumentation applications that depend on SHARC processors’ real-time deterministic program execution. Designs further benefit from a thermal diode that aids in monitoring die temperature by letting developers set their own parameters with respect to frequency and voltage.
Example industrial and instrumentation applications for the SHARC 21469 include power and process control including any kind of high dynamic range data acquisition; motion control including robotics and intelligent servo drives; and test and measurement including oscilloscopes, signal generators, and signal sources.
“SHARC has delivered superior performance in our systems that sense and react to faults and transient events in the power grid,” said LiJiuhu, R&D director, Nanjing Nari-Relays Electric Co., Ltd. “For that reason, it’s great to know this new generation of the processor takes performance to the next level and gives us more room to advance our solutions.” Based in Nanjing, China, NR is a leading company in research and manufacturing of numerical protection, automation, and control systems for both HVAC and HVDC power systems.
Automotive Audio and Home Theater
To help audio developers achieve faster time to market and drive down overall system cost, the new SHARC processors targeted for automotive audio applications (21469W, 21465W, 21462W) and home theater (21467) complement their next-generation SHARC performance with certified implementations of decoders in on-chip ROM: including DTS-HD[tm] Master Audio, Dolby® Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, and many more. This continues ADI’s leadership in working with intellectual property holders to implement the latest audio formats including those required by high-definition, surround-sound systems.
Additional hardware engines for Digital Transmission Content Protection (DTCP) (21465W, 21462W) and sample rate converter (SRC) (all 2146x family members) perform these specialized operations in hardware rather than software, making more core performance available for overall application processing. The SHARC 21469W, 21465W, and 21462W bring further performance acceleration to in-vehicle applications that use these processors’ integrated MediaLB interface for connecting to automotive MOST® (Media Oriented Systems Transport) networks.
Among the integrated peripherals that help reduce bill of materials (BOM) cost for end-product design on the SHARC, 21469W, 21465W, 21462W, and 21467 is the S/PDIF (Sony/Philips Digital Interface) transmitter/receiver, an industry-standard I/O interface for digital audio applications.
Pricing and Availability
The new SHARC processors will be available to sample in Q1 2009. Pricing is $31.50 in quantities of 1,000 for the ADSP-21469 at 450 MHz, while the 400 MHz ADSP-21469 lists at $28.50 for 1,000 pieces.
Visit www.analog.com/2146x for more information. The ADSP-2146x Visual Learning and Development module is available at: www.analog.com/vld. Also see the informative webcast from Avnet Electronics Marketing, an authorized ADI distributor: em.avnet.com/adisharcadsp2146xeetb.
About Analog Devices
Innovation, performance, and excellence are the cultural pillars on which Analog Devices has built one of the longest standing, highest growth companies within the technology sector. Acknowledged industry-wide as the world leader in data conversion and signal conditioning technology, Analog Devices serves over 60,000 customers, representing virtually all types of electronic equipment. Celebrating 40 years as a leading global manufacturer of high-performance integrated circuits used in analog and digital signal processing applications, Analog Devices is headquartered in Norwood, Massachusetts, with design and manufacturing facilities throughout the world. Analog Devices’ common stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker “ADI” and is included in the S&P 500 Index.
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