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ARC platform adds digital audio tools

Posted: 16 Jan 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:arc? configurable processor? digital audio? core? peripheral?

ARC International has followed the recent announcement of its 600 series of configurable-processor cores with a bundle of peripherals and tools that target specific application platforms. The first bundle, with the 600 processor core, peripherals, memory tools, application code, RTOS and development tools, is aimed at digital audio.

The 600 series varies the standard configurable-processing theme. It promises not enormous computing power through configurability but a proper, measured amount with a trade-off in die area. The concept was to tailor the execution units - and thus the instruction set - of the core, caches and scratch pad memory exactly to the application's requirements.

That meant trading a little more hardware for the ability to substantially cut clock frequency in critical loops, and maybe giving up a little fast RAM - and hence a lot of power consumption - when the extra cache or local memory was not necessary to application performance.

The bundles complete the thought ARC started with its 600 core. The digital audio package is the first in a line of application-directed platforms that use the 600's configurability, together with ARC's libraries of peripheral and interface cores, application code and retargetable design tools, to enable application-specific chip development from a standard platform.

The core is now available. Most other pieces are available from ARC. Customers will supply mixed-signal cores, design-dependent cores such as the LCD interface, software for licensed algorithms such as those from Dolby Labs and a file system.

- Ron Wilson

EE Times

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