Wolfson Microelectronics has announced a single-chip audio processor that could, potentially, replace up to five of its discrete ICs in mobile devices, including mobile phones, tablet PCs and other handheld media devices. The WM5100 also represents the first extensible solution using algorithms either developed by the customer or purchased from Wolfson.
The SoC integrates much of the functionality previously found in the company's AudioHUB and MyZone ANC categories, but as well as increased integration the WM5100 is claimed to offer greater performance at lower power. But by integrating three bespoke DSP cores, customers now have greater access to the device's performance, through their own or licensed algorithms.
Wolfson has always used DSPs in its devices but previously they have fixed-function and not accessible to the end-user. Wolfson's Chief Commercial Officer, Andy Brannen, explained that this is the direction the company will now be taking; adding greater processing performance to its devices to further relieve the application processors typically found in its target application area.
While existing products have offered non-adaptive RX active noise cancellation (ANC), through the integration of the additional user-accessible DSPs this latest device brings adaptive RX active noise cancellation (ANC). This is expected to be more attractive to operators, OEMs and ultimately consumers, as it improves the user experience even in noisy conditions.
The DSPs have been designed to operate in either asymmetric or symmetric multiprocessing modes, such that multiple functions can run at the same time, partitioned across the cores. Brannen commented that this level of system partitioning will become more important in the future, as more OEMs look to off-load the audio functionality.
This article originally appeared on EE Times Europe.