Electronic Design

Application Processor Subsystem Eases SoC Designs

A low-power processor architecture subsystem developed by LSI Logic-Corp. takes aim at GPS navigation systems, electronic toys, personal media players, and many other low-power handheld applications. The Zevio architecture provides a baseline set of integrated support functions and bus interconnects that enable designers to easily craft system-on-a-chip (SoC) solutions.

Such SoCs could include one or more CPU and DSP cores, video support functions, 2D or 3D graphics, a 64-channel 3D/2D sound engine, USB ports, and memory interfaces for NAND flash, SDRAM, and double-data-rate (DDR) or DDR2 DRAMs selected from a menu of preverified blocks of intellectual property (IP). Available CPU and DSP cores include the ARM7, 9, or 11, the MIPS24K, 5Kf, and 4Ke, and LSI's ZSP200, 400, 500, and 600.

The base set of resources includes a memory controller, a bus arbiter, an interrupt controller, a real-time clock, timers and a watchdog timer, an I2C interface, a serial UART, and some general-purpose I/O pins. These functions tie into a multilayer ARM high-performance bus (AHB).

The CPU, DSP, and A/V cores and associated on-chip memories connect directly to the multilayer AHB. The bus bridges connect the multilayer AHB to additional AHB masters and to an ARM peripheral bus (APB). Additional peripheral slave devices can be connected to the APB. The 3D graphics engine delivers performance comparable to somewhere between a Sony PlayStation and PlayStation2. It includes an autonomous geometry and lighting engine, as well as a rendering engine. Also, it consumes less than 20 mW when clocked at 75 MHz.

The 3D sound engine is frugal with power too, consuming less than 5 mW at the same clock rate. It includes a 64-voice sound synthesis engine with MIDI and sound font support as well as 3D positioning for 16 voices.

In addition to the silicon IP, LSI Logic has three strategic partners. Koto Laboratory provides gaming expertise. Access Co. Ltd. has portable browser technology and a real-time operating system. And, HI Corp. offers graphics application programming interfaces and support. Contact LSI for IP licensing terms.

LSI Logic Corp.

TAGS: Digital ICs
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