Electronic Design

$10 DSP Hits 600 MFLOPS With Plans To Reach 3 GFLOPS In Future Devices

To make high-performance, 32-bit floating-point DSPs affordable for cost-sensitive applications, Texas Instruments has released a low-cost derivative of its C67x DSP core. Code-compatible with all other members of the TMS320C6000 DSP platform, the TMS320C6712 achieves 600 MFLOPS for less than $10.

"It is both backward and forward code-compatible to provide a scalable migration path up to 3 GFLOPS in future devices," says Martin Burgos, product marketing manager for TI's floating-point DSPs. Operating at 100 MHz with a core voltage of 1.8 V and an I/O supply of 3.3 V, the C6712 delivers 60 MFLOPS for each dollar. Future versions with clock speeds over 200 MHz also are in the works.

Like the recently unwrapped C6711, the low-cost C6712 features a versatile internal memory architecture, an enhanced DMA controller, a 16-bit external memory interface, two multi-channel buffered serial ports, and two 32-bit timers for fast data I/O flexibility. While a Level-1 program cache provides 4 kbytes of direct mapped memory, a Level-2 memory/cache comprises 64 kbytes of memory that can be configured as mapped memory, cache, or a combination of the two.

The company says that developers can begin development with the C6712 by using the code-compatible C6711 DSP starter kit, which includes a C6711 development board, and Code Composer Studio IDE software. Optional visual application builder (VAB) plug-in software developed by Hyperception Inc. also is available. The VAB lets users create DSP algorithms from graphical designs or block diagrams.

Pin- and code-compatible with the C6711, the C6712 comes in a 256-ball BGA package that measures 27 mm on each side. Typically, it consumes about 0.7 W at 100 MHz. Sampling now, volume production is scheduled for the first quarter of 2001. The C6712 initially will be implemented in 0.18-µm CMOS. TI plans to migrate to 0.12 µm in the second half of 2001. In 100,000-unit quantities, it's expected to carry a price tag of $9.95.

Texas Instruments Inc., Semiconductor Group, SC-00103, Literature Response Center, P.O. Box 954, Santa Clara, CA 91380; (800) 477-8924, ext. 4500; www.ti.com.

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