PLX ANNOUNCES GENERAL SAMPLING OF PCI EXPRESS BRIDGING CHIP
17x17mm ExpressLane PEX 8114 PCI Express-to-PCI-X Bridge Features Industry's Smallest Package, Lowest Power Consumption; Provides Building Block to Wide Range of PCI Express Designs
Sunnyvale, Calif. PLX Technology, Inc., the leading supplier of standard input/output (I/O) interconnect silicon to the communications, server, storage, embedded control, and consumer industries, today announced general sampling of the PLX ExpressLane PEX 8114 PCI Express-to-PCI-X bridge. The PEX 8114 is the most versatile PCI Express (PCIe) bridging device in its class, capable of forward, reverse and non-transparent bridging, and features one-gigabyte-per-second throughput. The PEX 8114 also features the industry's lowest power consumption and smallest package of any PCIe-to-PCI-X bridge.
System and board designers now can order samples of the PEX 8114, which enables them to upgrade their PCI designs to rapidly growing PCIe interconnect standard. Designers also can order a PLX Rapid Development Kit (RDK) " PLX offers two versions: one for forward-bridging mode, the other for reverse-bridging mode -- to evaluate the bridging device's features, streamline product development and quickly bring PEX 8114-based designs to market.
Building Block in Wide Range of Board Designs
The PEX 8114 device bridges PCIe components to conventional PCI/PCI-X chips and subsystems. In forward mode, the PEX 8114 allows legacy PCI or PCI-X chips and adapters to be used with new PCIe systems.
The PEX 8114 can also operate in reverse-bridging mode, a feature which PLX pioneered in the PCIe architecture, enabling the ever-expanding number of native-mode PCIe chips to bridge back to the PCI-X infrastructure. Reverse bridging allows conventional PCI or PCI-X processors and chipsets to configure and control advanced PCIe switches and endpoints.
The PEX 8114 features a four-lane PCIe port with integrated 2.5Gbps SerDes. The device supports the advanced PCI-X protocol " at 64-bit, 133 MHz operation -- but also provides full bus-backward compatibility with 32- and 64-bit PCI boards and systems, which helps preserve investment in and extend the life of legacy PCI/PCI-X designs.
While the PEX 8114 bridge provides significant performance-enhancing features, it also was designed with power and space-constrained applications in mind. The 17x17mm standard BGA footprint is ideal for a wide range of adapter designs, from standard I/O cards to mezzanine and daughter boards to ExpressCard applications. Additionally, with a maximum power consumption of less than two watts, no heat sink or special airflow is required, making it highly suitable for environments with tight thermal restrictions. Furthermore, the small size and power characteristics allow the PEX 8114 to be easily designed into motherboards and backplane systems based on PCIe technology.
Complete Development Kit
To aid designers and manufacturers, the forward- and reverse-bridging PLX PEX 8114RDK kits provide complete development support packages for the PEX 8114 device. Each RDK includes a proven, working hardware platform incorporating the bridge chip, complete set of board schematics, symbols and layout files for hardware design, and an extensive software support package that includes a graphical utility for access to chip registers, sample drivers and support for Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) Windows and Linux operating systems. The forward-bridge RDK's board plugs into any standard PCIe slot compatible with the PCIe Card Electromechanical (CEM) spec 1.1, including PC motherboards with PCIe slots. The reverse-bridge RDK board plugs into any legacy PCI-X or 64-bit PCI motherboard for evaluating PCIe endpoint cards behind the reverse PEX 8114 bridge.
To order samples of the PEX 8114 (priced at under $20 in volume) and/or its RDKs (each priced at $495), please contact PLX at 408.328.3500 or go to the PLX sales representative locator,