A revolution is afoot for next-generation video applications

Dallas, TX (Nov. 5, 2003) — Enabling new types of portable and home entertainment devices, Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) introduces two mixed signal video decoders, including the industry's lowest power, smallest size device available on the market. The high performance video decoders convert NTSC, PAL and SECAM video into digital component video in both portable and high volume, as well as high quality and high-performance applications including personal video appliances, digital televisions, handheld consumer electronics and mobile phone –TV's.

As the only decoder solution of its size and power on the market, the TVP5150 enables new products such as video capture devices and portable personal video recorders. With power consumption at 115 milliwatts (mW) in typical operation, and the industry's smallest footprint at 32-pin thin quad flatpack (TQFP), applications for the TVP5150 include PDA's, Notebook/PCs, cell phones, MPEG4 video players and USB-powered video devices.

“TI's video decoder, the TVP5150, has enabled us to provide consumers with a simple, easy way to archive home movies direct to disk via one simple USB connection to the users' PC,” said Mike McCoy, president for ADS Technologies. “The chip's low power consumption was key to our decision to work with TI, as it is the only semiconductor manufacturer offering a video decoder that eliminates the need for an additional USB power supply.”

Targeting the high quality, high-performance video applications, the TVP5146 is well suited for the high growth DVD recordable (DVD-R) market, and will also be integrated into PVR/DVR, LCD TV and monitor, digital TV and video capturing devices. The TVP5146 is very flexible with 10 video inputs and SCART support. Additionally, the digital video decoder includes a 5-line adaptive comb filter for best in class Y/C separation and four 10-bit, 30-MSPS analog-to-digital converters for superior noise performance.

“Enabling new classes of products, the TVP5150 and TVP5146 are examples of TI's dedication to build solid solutions for an ever-increasing wired and portable consumer electronics market,” said Ron Richter, worldwide marketing manager for TI's mixed signal video. “Our decoders allow consumer electronic manufacturers to deliver the small form factor that consumers demand without compromising quality and performance. TI continues to demonstrate its vast experience and commitment to the consumer electronics market as it drives to add a video decoder with 3DYC to our product line for volume production in the first half of 2004.”

The TVP5150 and TVP5146 are high performance mixed signal video decoders that convert base-band analog NTSC, PAL and SECAM video into digital component video. The TVP5146 supports composite, S_Video, YPbPr and RGB inputs. The TVP5150 supports two composite or one S-Video input. Both video decoders support Macrovision copy protection detection.

These video decoder chips come from the High Performance Analog group in TI. The company says that the TVP5150 and TVP5146 will be good fits for TV, display, and projection markets. This is a hot arena and TI will do well meeting the demands of a market that is about to take off.

Designers of digital displays will want to consider these decoder chips. For example, it could be used for converting from analog composite video to digital for an LCD screen. Another would be for converting VCR tape to a DVD digital signal. The video decoder helps convert the signal from analog to high quality digital. One more would be for the low power design such as a mobile phone TV that has a TV tuner and video decoder in the handset. A USB self-powered video capture device is yet another example. This application would have a little box that you plug into a USB port and would be powered through the USB port (so it has to meet the challenging USB specs for power consumption). That way you can convert your video source to digital video, compress it with an MPEG chip, connect to a USB port and transfer it to your PC. Pretty slick, don't you think?

Now let's look at what TI has done to make this a reality. The company offers two chips for two different markets. The TVP5146 is for high quality video for large screen TVs where you want a lot of flexibility for plugging in different connectors and sources. Some examples would be DVD-Rs, personal video recorders, and LCD-TVs. It has the capability to handle 10 inputs and that means that you can connect three devices; a composite that uses a single wire, an S-video that uses two video wires, a component connection that uses three wires, and still have inputs to spare. TI has found that 10 connections supports even the high-end consumer applications. The 5146 chip uses a composite video broadcast signal (CVBS) for the composite signal (NTSC for example), and also supports SVideo (S2 Y/C), and for component (YCrCb) video it supports the three wire version. A unique feature of the 5146 chip is that it can clean up noise that is caused by VCR heads (but not the noise caused by the camera) before the data is stored on the DVD.

5146 Block
TVP5146 Block Diagram

The TVP5150 is a very low power 115mW device, that's available in a very small 32-pin TQFP package. This is a chip that designers would use for mobile phone TVs, handheld devices like PDAs and USB powered video. The mobile phone TV application would allow you to watch terrestrial TV. It would have an antenna (sometimes it's built into the ear phone) that connects to a low-power tuner, and the tuner gives the signal to the TVP5150 NTSC/PAL decoder, which converts the signal to digital data, and finally it uses TI algorithms to improve the video quality. The TVP5150 has a common 6-5-6 output so the data can be output to a TI DSP or any other DSP as long it has the right interface.

Another application possibility for the TVP5150 is for security. In the past, security applications had one decoder and would switch between cameras to convert from analog to digital cameras. Now, designers are building the boards with 16 decoders on them, with one assigned to each camera. TI says there are also some examples of using the TVP5150 for full-on applications such as a second TV tuner for picture-in-picture. In some cases there will be a third tuner to convert the signal to digital using the 5150, compressing it with an MPEG chip, and then putting it onto a semiconductor memory chip that you could plug into one of your hand-held devices. The amazing part about this chip rollout is that end products will be available this Christmas season.

5150 Block
TVP5150 Block Diagram

Let's step back and compare the 5150 and the 5146. The 5150 has one A/D converter while the 5146 has four converters, because it can support more simultaneous inputs and supports something called SCART, which is a European standard that requires a combination of RGB and composite signals to run simultaneously. Another differentiator between the two chips is that the 5150 uses a 4-line 2-D comb filter while the 5146 uses a 5-line 2-D comb filter. Other differences include a 32-pin TQFP package for the 5150, compared to the 80-pin TQFP package for the 5146. The power consumption is only 115mW on the 5150 compared to 400mW on the 5146. That 400 mW is impressive compared to the competition because many competitive versions have power specs between 500mW and 1,000 mW.

TI uses a 5-line comb filter on the 5146 while most of the competition uses 3- or 4-line comb filters. The 5-line filter provides better picture quality. These chips also provide better YC separation and can lock onto weak and noisy signals, which is important if you have terrestrial broadcast that has a weak signal.

TI has evaluation boards available for the 5146 and 5150. These boards plug into the parallel port of a PC and will set up the registers and operation and then video through it and look at it. Those tools are available from TI. There is also software that runs on the PC that helps you do the setup.

The TVP5150 and TVP5146 all-format digital video decoders are in volume production today. Pricing for the TVP5150 is $5.23 each and the TVP5146 is $10.87 for quantities of 10K units.

5150 data sheet
5146 data sheet

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