LONDON -- Wireless chip specialist CSR (Cambridge, England) has entered the foray into audio processors for mobile phones with the MusiCore1 single chip device that integrates Bluetooth with a stereo audio processor.
The architecture offers what the company says is a more cost and power effective solution to add both music and Bluetooth into a mobile phone design than anything else in the market.
MusiCore1 is said to save 75 percent of the cost of an audio processor, over 36mm2 of space and enables 100 hours of music playback.
Samples are available now, with volume production scheduled to begin in September 2008.
CSR says the MusiCore1 overcomes the limitations of a phone CPU to handle both audio and voice processing, reducing the higher bill of materials (BoM) and design restrictions of using both Bluetooth and audio processor chips. It adds mobile phone CPUs are not appropriate for supporting music decoding or playback (MP3 files for example), and the result is, the CPU consumes too much power trying.
Using a separate audio processing chip for this function costs over $4 and takes up in excess of 36mm2, which is not acceptable to handset makers who need to keep the bill of materials down.
The part is based on CSR's proprietary Kalimba 64MIPS digital signal processor, the cornerstone of the company's BlueCore Multimedia product range. The device is said to offer audio quality comparable to standalone MP3 players - with 95dB signal-to-noise-ratio (SNR). CSR’s latest CVC noise reduction technology also provides 30dB of dynamic background noise reduction.
"End-users are demanding MP3 as a function in phones but currently not using it because decoding MP3 files consumes too much power." commented Matthew Philips, Senior Vice President of CSR’s Mobile Handset Connectivity strategic business unit, "MusiCore1 addresses this by presenting low power but high quality stereo audio processing to give 100 hours of music playback, high quality voice enhancements and added Bluetooth wireless connectivity."
The Bluetooth element of the device includes the company's BlueCore technology including support for v2.1 + EDR Bluetooth, and FastStream low latency (40ms) wireless technology that ensures there are no lip synch / time delay issues when a phone is used for gaming or watching videos and is connected to Bluetooth headphones.