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Audio DSPs target low-cost home, automotive apps

Posted: 13 Apr 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:TMS320DA707? TMS320DA705? DSP? digital signal processor? Aureus?

Eyeing the home theater market, Texas Instruments (TI) has launched the latest versions of its Aureus generation of audio DSPs. The new TMS320DA707 and TMS320DA705 are said to provide a cost-optimized platform that brings more features and high-quality sound to low- and mid-range applications requiring multi-channel decoding. Such applications include A/V and DVD receivers, home-theater-in-a-box (HTIB) systems, STBs, mini-components, HDTVs and automotive multimedia systems.

The Aureus product line consists of a 32/64bit floating point programmable DSP and a comprehensive software solution, enabling multi-channel decoding applications. The DA705 and DA707 come with an optimized software solution of decoders, post-processors and a system framework. The performance audio software solution for the DA705 includes certified decoders (DD-EX, DTS-ES 96/24, AAC) and post processors (PL2x, NEO:6, Bass Management), as well as TI value-added post processing products such as TI Room Simulators, TI Graphic EQ and TI Matrix Processor.

The DA705 is targeted at inexpensive consumer electronics, not only because of its cost-effective price point, but also because the optimized software solution runs without external SDRAM, lowering the overall system cost, according to TI. With this device, OEMs can bring entry level audio systems high-end features, such as DTS 96/24 decoding with 96kHz post-processing, 10-band graphic equalizer, 18 preset surround modes and 7.1 channel output.

The DA707 DSP allows the addition of SDRAM, enabling some customization and differentiation in mid- to low-end applications. The modularity of TI's performance audio framework enables OEMs to easily plug in differentiating post-processing modules from TI, such as TI Virtual Sound (surround sound from two speakers), TI Bass Boost (extended bass response) and TI Perfect Playback (compressed audio enhancement); from Aureus-supported third parties, such as Audyssey Labs, Neural Surround and Dolby; or from their own intellectual property.

The TMS320DA710 and TMS320DA708, the high performance members in the Aureus DA7xx generation, were introduced in August 2005. These devices provide developers with the hardware and software foundation required for designing high- and mid-range multi-channel audio applications. With the DSPs, an optimized software solution of certified, industry-standard decoders and post-processors is provided, enabling performance headroom for substantial customization through high-performance proprietary audio processing algorithms.

The new DA707 and DA705 DSPs are not only software compatible with the other DA7xx and previous generation DA6xx devices, they are also pin compatible with the high performance DA708. This allows OEMs to introduce a family of end equipments with a single hardware design, using a DA708 for the high performance products and a DA707 or DA705 for the lower-cost derivatives. The three pin-compatible DSPs were designed such that a system with a DSP, SDRAM, parallel flash and multi-channel audio inputs and outputs could be designed on a two-layer board, resulting in a manufacturing cost savings compared to a multi-layer design. The result of the pin-compatible family and intelligent chip design is lower development cost, lower manufacturing cost and faster time to market.

The DA707 and DA705 DSPs are supported by TI's Code Composer Studio Integrated Development Environment. TI has established an extensive network of third parties and ODMs with capabilities ranging from software customization to completely manufactured end equipments.

The TMS320DA705 and TMS320DA707 DSPs are currently in volume production. Both devices are 250MHz and come in a 144-pin TQFP package. The DA705 costs $9.23 each in quantities of 10,000 units or more, and the DA707 costs $11.33 each in quantities of 10,000 units or more. The Aureus generation of digital audio processors is qualified to the Q100 automotive standard.

- Marty Gold

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