NEWBURY PARK, Calif. -- The newest power supply controller from Semtech Corp.. the SC1406G PowerStep, is designed specifically for high-performance Intel Pentium II and Pentium III notebook applications, the company announced here today.
Like its predecessor SC1406, the PowerStep is a high-performance hysteretic controller that provides up to 90% efficiency over a wide load range, with an output voltage tolerance of less than 1%.
The PowerStep is designed for Pentium processors enabled for SpeedStep (formerly Geyserville) technology, which allows the processor to run at a higher core voltage and clock frequency when the notebook is powered from an AC adapter, thus desktop-like performance.
When the notebook is powered from the battery, the processor switches to a lower core voltage and clock frequency, maximizing battery life. The PowerStep high-speed operation fully supports the dynamic core voltage changes required by SpeedStep technology.
Combined with Semtech's SC1405B High Speed Dual MOSFET driver, the PowerStep provides a complete power solution for mobile Pentium processor designs. The PowerStep includes a 5-bit DAC for setting the core voltage over the 0.925- to 2.00-volt range, as well as two linear regulator controllers for providing system I/O and clock voltages.
This integrated approach simplifies design, reduces cost and conserves board space, the company said.
The SC1405B is a dual output MOSFET driver capable of driving a 3.000-picofarad load with 15-nanosecond rise and fall times, thus minimizing switching losses. Both the PowerStep and SC1405B include a low power shutdown control, drawing less than 10uA when disabled, helping to maximize battery life in mobile applications.
"The PowerStep meets the requirements of the Intel Mobile Voltage Positioning (IMVP) specification, helping designers guarantee that the core voltage stays within specification, even under sudden load changes." said Jon Horner, product marketing engineer for portable system products at Semtech.
IMVP also reduces bulk capacitor requirements, and thus saves board space and cost, added Horner. It can also lead to reductions in CPU power, which can improve battery life, and in thermal dissipation--both important considerations for notebook computer designs.
Samples of the SC1406G PowerStep are available now in a TSSOP-28 package, with full production units available in January 2000. Pricing for the SC1406G PowerStep is $2.50 in 1,000 unit quantities.