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DaVinci-based SoC offers power-saving modes

Posted: 19 Jan 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:processor? DSP? DaVinci? TI? ARM9?

Texas Instruments Inc. (TI) has announced the sampling of the TMS320DM6441 SoC based on DaVinci technology. Additional DaVinci software and development tools for the DM6441 make it possible to deliver high-quality video combined with power saving modes for portable audio and video applications, including portable media players (PMPs), consumer video security devices, medical devices, data terminals, IP netcams, automotive/in-flight entertainment systems and other digital audio and video applications.

DM6441 is a dual-core SoC that consists of an ARM9 and TMS320C64x+ DSP core plus video/imaging co-processors. By offering this device, TI expands the possibilities of DaVinci technology for those seeking video performance of H.264, MPEG 2, MPEG 4 or VC-1, among others, at 30fps combined with power efficient optimizations for a whole new realm of consumer applications. DM6441 provides the key peripherals required for today's portable media applications, including Ethernet, MMC and SD card interfaces, ATA HDD interface, USB 2.0 and multiple UARTs, while offering developers the programmable flexibility and customization they need to design cost-effective portable entertainment products. Furthermore, the power optimization of the device makes it possible for developers to implement PoE, which is suitable for many video security systems.

"By releasing an SoC with specific power management capabilities to the broad market, TI is further driving the adoption of digital video technology into an increasingly wide array of consumer portable audio and video applications," said Greg Mar, SoC platform marketing manager, TI. "Building on DaVinci technology, we are able to provide the optimized application software developers need to design cost-effective, power-efficient digital video products and bring them to market quickly."

Power-saving modes
With dual power modes, the chip can run at full speed (513MHz DSP and 256MHz ARM) at 1.2V or in power-reduced mode (405MHz DSP and 202MHz ARM) at 1.05V. The dual power modes allow the reduction of power consumption during operations, such as audio-only playback, when the full capabilities of the DSP are not required. Additional clock gating capabilities provide a mechanism for turning off peripherals that are not in use. Isolating the power domains of the DSP and ARM cores has made it possible to power down the DSP core individually during non-video operations. The combination of dual power mode, clock gating and isolated power domains can yield overall power savings up to 35 percent over the previously released TMS320DM6443 and TMS320DM6446 devices.

Developers can begin product design with the Digital Video Evaluation Module (DVEVM, TMDXEVM6446), which is available today. The DVEVM includes proven design modules for additional power savings with TI's analog devices and MCUs. DM6441 can also be paired with TI's ultralow-power MCU, the MSP430, which offers a standby current under 1?A and power-manages the DM6441 in its an efficient sleep/halt mode to further reduce average current consumption.

Enhanced software
DM6441's software application programming interface and multimedia framework manages control of power to maximize battery life for portable devices with minimal effort from developers. The increased power efficiency of the chip has also made it possible for TI to expand the variety of codecs available off-the-shelf for portable devices, including VC-1 and H.264. The company has introduced industry-standard uClibc library, making the DM6441 its first device to bring uClibc to the broad market. uClibc reduces product development costs by shrinking application footprints, leading to faster boot times, less external memory requirement and improved reliability through reduced system complexity.

DM6441 is pin-for-pin and software compatible with DM6443 and DM6446, enabling engineers to leverage the extensive infrastructure of development tools available through the DaVinci ecosystem and TI's third-party partners.

DM6441 for portable audio and video applications is sampling today and priced at $24.95 each in quantities of 10,000.

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Related Datasheets
Part Number Description Category
? TMS320DM6441 TMS320DM6441 Digital Media System-on-Chip (Rev. B) EDA - IC Design



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