Eindhoven, The NetherlandsRoyal Philips Electronics has developed its first I²C logic devices based on the Fast-mode Plus (Fm+) specification, which goes up to a 1-MHz frequency compared with 400-kHz of Fast-mode.
Philips' initial products that will support the 1-MHz Fm+ interface include the PCA9633, a 4-bit I²C LED controller; the PCA9698, an advanced 40-bit I²C I/O expander; and the PCA9665 Fm+ parallel bus to I²C-bus controllers.
The Fm+ specification is scheduled to be released this quarter. It offers more than twice the frequency of previous I²C-bus speed specifications and is backward compatible with existing Fast-mode and Standard-mode devices. For more information on I²C-bus communication and protocol conversion, click here: www.semiconductors.philips.com/products/interface_control/i2c/index.html
Fm+ is said to increase the total possible capacitance by a factor of 10. As a result, data can be transmitted at longer distances and slower bus speeds without requiring buffers. Designers can also create more flexible system designs at higher speeds when more bandwidth is needed or use larger buses for emerging LED applications that require a larger number of components on a single bus.
"Philips' Fm+ devices allow for more devices on the same bus, faster communication speeds, and longer transmission distances, taking advantage of the advanced features of the new I²C specification," said Dhwani Vyas, general manager, interface product line, Philips Semiconductors. "Fm+ will help customers improve performance across a wide range of applications, as the I²C bus is used increasingly for maintenance and control of intelligent devices."
The PCA9633 LED driver is equipped with four individual pulse width modulation (PWM) controllers one for each LED outputand a fifth group PWM that can dim or blink all LEDs with the same value. The Fm+ LED controllers also allow four different addresses to be programmed in software. This allows the devices to respond more easily when LEDs dim or blink. It also enables finer-grained control over LED animation and dimming in mobile, entertainment and lighting applications.
In addition, the Fm+ LED controllers offer a higher SDA drive, allowing up to 126 devices to operate on the same bus without requiring an extra bus extender on every node.
The PCA9698 40-bit GPIO is designed to make it easier to control and monitor complex systems. Supporting up to 64 devices on the same bus, the PCA9698 offers several advanced features, including 40 I/O pins configurable to totem pole or open drain; output logic states that can change at the Acknowledge or Stop command; maskable inputs that don’t generate interrupts; an Output Enable hardware pin; the GPIO All Call address; and the SMBus Alert function.
The Fm+ I/O expanders can be used across a wide range of applications, such as servers, mobile phones, gaming systems, industrial control, medical equipment and instrumentation.
The PCA9665 bus controller is the first master device capable of communicating at I²C-bus speeds up to 1-MHz or on longer buses up to 4,000 pF. It allows standard parallel-bus microcontrollers and microprocessors to function as Fm+-capable masters and includes a 68-byte buffer to increase the processor’s productivity.
The PCA9633 and PCA9698 are available now, and samples of the PCA9665 are available today. The Fm+ devices range from 55 cents to $2.05 in quantities of 10,000. Additional I²C products featuring Fm+ will be sampling late in the second quarter of 2006.
Royal Philips Electronics, semiconductor division sales, 1-408-474-8142, www.semiconductors.philips.com