SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Integrated Device Technology Inc. here today introduced its first integrated communications processor dedicated to the still-evolving world of customer premise equipment, such as gateways for cable and digital subscriber line (DSL) connections for the home and small offices. The RC32355 processor combines a 32-bit RISC core with on-chip peripheral interfaces for asynchronous transfer mode (ATM), Ethernet, universal serial bus (USB), and time division multiplexed (TDM) connections to systems.
IDT said its new processor is the first to successfully integrate ATM, Ethernet, USB and telephony interfaces (via TDM) while maintaining concurrent wire speeds of all of its interfaces. The processor's functions also include a number of high-bandwidth features, such as a 300-megabit-per-second I/O bus and a "fly by" DMA (direct access memory) engine that handles data movement without the central processing unit being involved.
"The CPE customer premise equipment market segment is still evolving and OEMs are asking for multiple options and capabilities to implement systems for their customers," said Sandra Chang, solutions marketing manager for IDT's Internetworking Products Division. To handle the wide ranging and often changing market requirements, IDT is banking on both higher levels of integration as well as increased processor performance, Chang said.
One example of how the processor is designed for higher performance is its DMA block. "Instead of utilizing the CPU to handle the mundane job of data movement from Ethernet to Utopia ATM, we have a DMA engine that moves the data," Chang explained. "This allows the CPU to use its horsepower on other functions, such as security algorithms."
The processor also has configurable parameters for optimizing movement of data between its integrated interfaces to match the needs of gateways and other customer premise equipment. More than 500,000 gates of logic--excluding the CPU core and cache--are used to implement the interfaces and other support features on the processor in 0.18-micron process technology.
The processor's Ethernet MAC unit is handles both 10-Mbit and 100-Mbit operations. The chip also contains a 25-Mbit ATM segmentation and reassembly (SAR) controller. A 12-Mbit USB controller provides full compatibility with the USB 1.1 specification. The TDM bus interface is used to provide direct connection to external voice circuitry.
IDT is offering samples of 133- and 150-MHz versions of the processor. The 133-MHz unit is priced at $22 each in quantities of 10,000. Production-volume shipments of the CPE communications processor will begin in June.