[Hong Kong, 23 Nov 2009] Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute (ASTRI) and Optek Electronics Company Limited (Optek), a Shenzhen based IC solution provider for consumer electronics, have jointly unveiled an advanced multimedia Audio Codec SoC ASIC (OPT5256) that supports multiple music format codec and audio effect post-processing. This advanced Audio SoC is fabricated in the state-of-the-art 0.18µm to 0.16µm CMOS direct shrink process technology offered by Silterra, a Malaysia based leading mixed signal wafer fabrication foundry. Silterra's 0.16µm process technology was chosen because it is the most optimal and cost effective process technology for the highly competitive consumer electronics market.
OPT5256 is a highly integrated solution jointly developed by ASTRI and Optek. It can support a broad range of music formats codec including MP3, WMA and AAC, and JPEG decoding for photo display. One prominent feature is that it can convert CD to MP3 with compression for SD card and USB flash storage. Apart from USB port and SD-card interface, the solution also integrates most of the peripheral devices such as memory, LCD display control and many input/output devices into a single chip. The solution will enable system manufacturers to roll out highly compact and cost effective products due to smaller footprint and less components required. OPT5256 is also hi-fi compatible. By incorporating an ASTRI-owned audio effect post-processing IP into the solution, it can offer spatial and bass enhancement, and 5-band graphical equalizer which are important features for enhancing music performance.
"With these unique features, OPT5256 provides an all-in-one solution for manufacturers to design their products with flexibility and create differentiation in CD, HDD and flash-based multimedia player applications," said Dr. Chao Shen-chang, a Vice President and Group Director of ASTRI. Under this collaboration, ASTRI has assisted in direct-shrinking Optek's design from 0.18µm to 0.16µm CMOS process technology to achieve additional size and cost reduction of their products.
"We target to offer our customers a cost-effective, low-power and high-performance microprocessor solution. OPT5256 has fulfilled all these requirements and will satisfy the needs of manufacturers for producing high quality digital audio systems," said Lee Ping, CEO of Optek. OPT5256 solution can be applied in a wide range of products including car audio, home audio system, boom box, digital photo frame and high-end digital audio system with TFT GUI display panel, just to name a few.
The CMOS 0.16 silicon sample chip of Audio Codec SoC ASIC with audio post-processing features has successfully passed all functional tests including USB1.1 & 2.0 interface tests. Optek is currently preparing for mass production in Silterra and is finalizing the application software and system board for reference design.
"Silterra is very excited about the partnership with ASTRI and Optek to accomplish the first time silicon success on Silterra's 0.16µm to 0.18µm process technology. We look forward to broadening our collaboration with ASTRI and Optek on Silterra's high-performance 0.13µm and 0.11µm process technologies in the near future", said Lai Yit Loong, Worldwide VP of Sales and Marketing of Silterra.