LONDON Frontier Silicon has started sampling a second generation version of its Chorus programmable DAB baseband receiver.
The chip has gone into volume production, and Frontier Silicon says DAB radios and digital audio products using the Chorus 2 will start appearing on shelves early next year.
The tightly integrated device, dubbed the FS1020, is said to provide up to 40 percent space savings on the board and 35 percent cost savings on the system bill-of-material compared to the part it replaces.
Chorus 2 has 640kbytes of integrated memory and uses a chip architecture that is said to yield up to 50 percent power consumption savings compared to other currently available integrated DAB baseband receivers.
The increase in processing power should speed the development of "convergence" digital audio products that meld DAB radios with other audio functionality such as combined DAB/ FM/ MP3/ WMA/ AAC digital music players, DAB radios with USB 2.0 OTG connectivity for high speed file transfer and firmware upgrade, Internet radios, digital music servers and jukeboxes, and multimedia-enhanced PDAs.
Frontier says the Chorus 1 processor is used in about 80 percent of DAB digital radios on the market. The upgraded receiver covers numerous physical layer standards, particularly those utilizing COFDM modulation.
The IC uses a Meta122 CPU with extensive DSP (digital signal processor) capabilities, which is based on a multi-threaded architecture capable of executing multiple DSP tasks on the same core without cross-task interference.
A hardware-assisted DSP architecture on the Chorus 2 ensures that the DSP has additional capacity to run other embedded applications such as software FM, audio decoders, digital rights management, graphics and audio equalizers.