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Digital media processor packs royalty-free H.264 codec

Posted: 20 Nov 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:digital media processor? H.264? video codec?

Texas Instruments Inc. has introduced the TMS320DM357, its newest digital media processor based on DaVinci technology.

The DM357 is a low-cost, ARM-based processor that includes a royalty-free H.264 codec at D1 resolution for video compression, as well as MPEG-4, JPEG and G.711 codecs that do not require licensing fees or royalties to TI, and an integrated Ethernet Media Access Controller (EMAC) to help developers reduce their BOM costs. This allows OEMs to offer price-optimized, advanced digital video end equipments with clear sound and picture such as digital photo frames, IP network cameras and low-cost digital video recorders.

The processor includes an ARM926EJ-S core that runs at 270MHz, as well as a co-processor to speed H.264, MPEG-4 and JPEG processing, in addition to an integrated video processing subsystem. The multiple codec offering, EMAC functionality and performance features of the DM357 processor, coupled with a Digital Video Evaluation Module (DVEVM) development tool, helps customers quickly and easily develop end equipments that meet the needs of digital video markets.

"Now integrated with H.264, embedded EMAC, DDR2 and other system peripherals, the DM357 is yet another offering from TI that allows developers to add functionality and value to their digital video solutions at minimal cost," said Jacob Alamat, product marketing manager for digital media processors, TI. "The DM357 builds on the existing DaVinci technology software framework, which allows customers to quickly develop a scalable product line on TI's digital media processors."

Additionally, developers can re-use intellectual property from the robust DaVinci technology portfolio or leverage IP from the vast open-source resources for ARM-based processing to speed them through the development process.

All-in package
The DM357 processor achieves its high performance by integrating H.264 at D1 resolution and MPEG-4 encoding and decoding at 30fps per channel, as well as JPEG encoding and decoding at 50MPixel/s. The integrated H.264 allows for increased compression for greater storage and streaming capability.

The DM357 also includes a carefully selected suite of peripherals, such as high speed USB 2.0 On-The-Go and DDR2. The integrated EMAC, three video DACs, a host port interface and even more system integration save developers more than $4 in BOM, as well as the associated manufacturing and design costs compared to the use of discrete parts.

The DM357 processor and DVEVM take advantage of all the tools and support included in the DaVinci technology portfolio to help OEMs save months of time. The APIs common across DaVinci offerings also means that developers familiar with DaVinci technology or ARM development can quickly begin creation of their products with virtually no learning curve.

When coupled with the DVEVM, developers are able to get started immediately with product development. The DVEVM helps them achieve the fastest possible time to market, with optimized MontaVista Linux, an uboot loader and drivers for the complete peripheral set. Rounding out the DVEVM are the H.264, JPEG, MPEG-4 SP and G.711 codecs, plus video I/O, audio I/O, external EMAC, USB 2.0 On-The-Go and JTAG for test.

The TMS320DM357ZWT processor is priced at $21.22 in 100-unit volume. The highly integrated device is packaged in a 16mm x 16mm, 0.8mm pitch BGA package. The TMDSEVM357 DVEM is also now open for order entry at $895. Codecs will be available for download in mid-December.

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