Synergy First Embedded SBC Vendor to Release PowerPC7457 G4 Chips

7/3/2003 - Synergy Microsystems, Inc. (Synergy) announced that it is now shipping evaluation SBCs with single or dual, PowerPC 7457 G4 processors that deliver 1.3-GHz speeds while using under 15W of power per processor. Company executives said the new class of fully certified boards ­ the first to break long-held cycle-speed barriers without requiring additional power or generating higher heat profiles ­ will enable a new generation of defense and industrial applications.

"We moved very quickly because we believe this new Motorola chip is a break-through design," noted Thomas Powell, Synergy’s CEO. "It provides almost 12 GFLOPS of performance, yet actually lowers the power drain. When running at 1 GHz, it dissipates less than 10 watts ­ which falls well beneath the threshold for embedded power-sensitive designs."

"Also, this CPU is footprint-compatible with the previous 7445/55 series, so it provides a simple migration path. We’ll be transitioning our 7455 boards to the new chip as well." Full production of 7457 SBCs will ship in the third quarter of 2003, when production quantities of the chip come available.

PowerPC Domain Expertise
Synergy’s ability to field the first boards integrating the new 7457 chip validates the company’s strategy to build software, hardware and integration teams around the PowerPC, according to Powell. "By focusing tightly on a single processor family, we’re able to continuously refine our software, optimize our hardware integration techniques, and constantly improve testing/debug procedures. We’ve built a world-class team and proprietary knowledge base around this RISC architecture." Powell says the move is now paying off by giving OEM customers the fastest low-power boards in the industry. "Being first-to-market provides our customers a strategic advantage."

Breakthrough Processing Speed and Efficiency
The 7457 is the embedded industry’s fastest implementation of the universally accepted RISC-based PowerPCTM architecture. It extends the success of the widely deployed "work-horse" 7410 chip operating at 533 MHz, followed by the 7445/55 series approaching 1 GHz, and now the 7457 at 1.3 GHz -- with roadmaps to higher speeds. The 7457 also provides state-of-the-art memory management, including 512KB of on-chip L2 cache (a 2X increase over the 7455’s L2 cache), and L3 cache supporting up to 4 MB of SRAM (maximum of 2 MB for cache memory; remaining 2 MB configurable as private memory). As with all other PowerPC "G4" host CPUs, the 7457 includes a full 128-bit implementation of Motorola’s AltiVec Single-Instruction Multiple Data (SIMD) vector-processing technology. The AltiVec platform allows designers to leverage existing code and add AltiVec functions for increased performance as market and customers’ requirements evolve.

Strong Software Support
Synergy engineers’ in-depth working knowledge of the PowerPC 745x architecture has enabled them to develop exceptionally robust board-support packages (BSPs) for VxWorks/Tornado, Linux, SMP Linux and INTEGRITY. These BSPs have been fine-tuned to support fast boot-up, robust device driver optimization and ease of use. Synergy also provides STAR/ASTRixTM, a comprehensive firmware package comprised of system monitor and diagnostics, power-up and initiated Built-in Self-Test (BIST), as well as configuration, memory management and networking tools. Synergy also offers an extensive hand-coded DSP Math Library optimized to support the PowerPC and AltiVec processors’ handling of intensive signal and image-processing applications.

About Synergy Microsystems
Synergy Microsystems, Inc. ( specializes in the design, manufacture and integration of single- and multi-processor, single-board computers for VME and CompactPCI systems to meet the needs of demanding real-time applications in military, aerospace, DSP, and industrial/commercial markets. Synergy has a long track record of extracting the highest possible performance from current and emerging SBC technologies, then supporting these technologies through extended product lifecycles. In business since 1985 under the original ownership, the corporation is privately held, with facilities in San Diego, CA. and Tucson, AZ.

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