NXP readies 45-nm SoC platform for STBs, HD DVRs

LONDON — NXP Semiconductors will start sampling within the next few weeks a range of tightly integrated SoCs targeting a range of HD DVRs and set-top box platforms in satellite, cable and IPTV networks.

Dubbed the PNX847x/8x/9x range, the devices will be made using a 45-nm process and integrate multi-channel broadcast receivers, delivering broadcast decoding, media processing and graphics rendering technologies.

The company says the set of features will “significantly” reduce bill-of-materials costs and power consumption and also ensures advanced picture quality.

The STB SoC family includes a number of models designed for different operator network categories, including the PNX849x for satellite set-top boxes, the PNX848x for cable and the PNX847x for telco and over-the-top on-line VOD solutions.

The range features a PowerVR 3D graphics processing unit from Imagination Technologies to render advanced programming navigation user interfaces, games and other 3D content. And the SoCs are powered by the 1250DMIPS ARM Cortex-A9 Superscalar applications CPU.

There is also dedicated hardware for flexible content format decoding along side ARM architecture optimizations for Javascript and Flash components to ensure the parts deliver the most responsive and robust user experience for on-line VOD and other content delivered via the internet.

Using an innovative power management architecture specifically designed to maximize energy efficiency, the SoC family facilitates STB compliance with the latest EnergyStar and EC Code of Conduct regulations.

With a dedicated on-chip microcontroller resource to coordinate power management for the entire system, the parts have the flexibility to enable opportunistic use-case based power optimization as well as ultra-low power stand-by operation to implement less than one watt STB complete system level standby power modes.

NXP notes that its SoC integration enables a complete system hardware design to be realized in some configurations with the addition of only DRAM and flash memory ICs.

For more complex STB system implementations, NXP combines the SoC in a chip-set with tuner, modem DAA line-side device and card-reader interface ICs, to deliver a very low system bill of materials. A family of fully engineered set-top box reference hardware system and software development kit will be provided for product evaluation and system integration.

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