Broadcom Unveils Third Generation, 802.3ae-compliant Transceiver

3/26/2003 - Broadcom Corporation (Nasdaq: BRCM), the leading provider of integrated circuits enabling broadband communications, announced the Broadcom® BCM8703, the industry’s first single-chip serial 10-Gigabit Ethernet/Fiber Channel transceiver (transmitter/receiver) with integrated 10-Gigabit equalizer. This third generation product reduces power consumption and footprint requirements by 50% of competing multi-chip and single-chip solutions making the BCM8703 suitable for use inside of modules or for placement directly onto system line cards in LAN (local area network) and SAN (storage area network) applications.

According to the January 2003 five-year forecast report published by Dell’Oro Group (a California-based market research firm that specializes in strategic competitive analysis in the networking and telecommunications industries), the 10-Gigabit Ethernet market will expand at a compounded annual growth rate of 220% over the next five years.

The BCM8703 features Broadcom’s proprietary EyeOpenerTM equalization technology designed to enable the use of existing backplanes at 10-Gigabit per second (Gbps) while improving system reliability and lowering cost. The EyeOpener technology removes inter-symbol interference (ISI) on the incoming data stream and enables the reliable transfer of serial 10-Gbps data over longer trace lengths and lower cost PCB (printed circuit board) material such as FR-4. The BCM8703 performs programmable equalization for up to 12-inches on a FR-4 trace which makes it ideal for XFP module-based LAN and SAN applications.

The deployment of XFP solutions decreases the cost of 10-Gigabit interfaces by 50% or more, but requires serial 10-Gigabit transmission over PCB traces, resulting in a design challenge not adequately addressed by competing products. Broadcom is the first company to address this through its proprietary EyeOpener equalizer technology that enables module and system vendors to design their sub-systems for the lowest cost XFP implementation.

The EyeOpener technology is proven and has been successfully deployed in various Broadcom components to date, including the BCM8102, the industry’s first serial CMOS 10-Gbps Clock and Data Recovery (CDR) device integrated within XFP modules. With the introduction of the BCM8703, system architects now have a companion solution to better manage 10-Gbps signals on their line cards that will help jump XFP applications from concept to reality.

“The XFP Group has adopted the final XFP specification for 10-Gigabit optical modules that are compatible with the XFI serial connection used by the BCM8703,” said Robert Snively, Chair of the XFP Group. “We are committed to advancing cost-effective 10-Gigabit technologies and are pleased to see Broadcom be the first to deliver a low-power, 10-Gigabit transceiver that will accelerate the development of the 10-Gigabit Fiber Channel and 10-Gigabit Ethernet markets.”

With a low-power consumption of 1.5 Watts and a small 13mm x 13mm plastic BGA package, the BCM8703 is also ideal for integration with XENPAK, XPAK and X2 modules supporting 10-Gigabit Ethernet applications.

“10-Gigabit Ethernet is the networking protocol for high-speed enterprise networks and Broadcom continues to lead in the development of new 10-Gigabit Ethernet products that focus on reducing power while improving performance,” said Dr. Armond Hairapetian, Senior Director of Broadcom’s Optical Transport business. “Integrating the equalizer into the BCM8703 is a significant achievement to deploy serial 10-Gigabit transmission over copper. This enables our customers to implement XFP-based solutions that greatly reduce size, power consumption and overall system cost.”

Technical Information
Given Broadcom’s leadership and experience in serial 10-Gbps CMOS interface solutions, the transmitter function of the BCM8703 transceiver features the industry’s lowest jitter generation of 5 picoseconds (peak to peak), resulting in best-of-class jitter performance.

On the receiver side, the BCM8703 includes a built-in Limiting Amplifier that improves input sensitivity to 30mV (single ended) and eliminates the need for an external Limiting Amplifier or additional components. This saves the customer additional system costs and valuable board space.

Other features of the BCM8703 include fully integrated SerDes (serializer/deserializer) functions with an IEEE 802.3ae-compliant 10.3125 Gbps serial transmitter and receiver featuring Clock and Data Recovery, a clock multiplication unit (CMU), a four-channel 3.125 Gbps XAUI, a PCS 64B/66B scrambler/descrambler, and an XGXS 8B/10B error detection encoder/decoder, all implemented in a standard CMOS process with a single +1.8V power supply that enables low-power dissipation of 1.5 Watts.

Price and Availability
Samples of the BCM8703 serial 10-Gigabit Ethernet/Fiber Channel transceiver with XAUI are currently available to all customers at a unit price of $235 per 1,000 units. Broadcom also offers a complete evaluation kit including reference designs, evaluation boards, GUI-based software and documentation.

About Broadcom
Broadcom Corporation is the leading provider of highly integrated silicon solutions that enable broadband communications and networking of voice, video and data services. Using proprietary technologies and advanced design methodologies, Broadcom designs, develops and supplies complete system-on-a-chip solutions and related hardware and software applications for every major broadband communications market. Our diverse product portfolio includes solutions for digital cable and satellite set-top boxes; cable and DSL modems and residential gateways; high-speed transmission and switching for local, metropolitan, wide area and storage networking; home and wireless networking; cellular and terrestrial wireless communications; Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) gateway and telephony systems; broadband network processors; and SystemI/OTM server solutions. These technologies and products support our core mission: Connecting everything®.

Broadcom is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and may be contacted at 1-949-450-8700 or at

Broadcom®, the pulse logo, Connecting everything®, EyeOpener™ and SystemI/OTM are trademarks of Broadcom Corporation and/or its affiliates in the United States and certain other countries.

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