2/13/2004 - Tensilica, Inc. announced that MediaWorks Integrated Systems, Inc., a fabless semiconductor company with the highest integrated system-on-a-chip (SOC) for solid state camcorders, has licensed Tensilica’s Xtensa processor core and supporting audio/video packages for its first product, the MW301 SOC providing ISO standard MPEG4 video. MediaWorks plans to design SOC devices targeted for use in high-volume consumer applications including solid state camcorders, digital still cameras, digital video surveillance and the digital portable video recorder market. These MediaWorks’ media-centric SOCs enable OEMs and ODMs to offer DVD-quality resolution for video and stills along with a high level of functionality, reduced size, power and price. Each SOC from MediaWorks will employ several different Xtensa processor configurations.
As part of the agreement, MediaWorks will use Tensilica’s recently introduced 24-bit Xtensa HiFi Audio Engine and the Intervideo MPEG 4 Codec to bring optimized audio and video capabilities to their SOCs. Both packages contain optimized algorithms and the associated TIE (Tensilica Instruction Extensions) for extending and optimizing the Xtensa processor. The inherent programmability and configurability of the Xtensa processor ensure that MediaWorks’ SOC designers can quickly develop complex SOCs using processors instead of custom-design RTL logic for many functions and can continue to upgrade their products with firmware upgrades to support the latest features, functions and industry standards, without having to respin the chip.
“Tensilica and its partners provided a turnkey solution for bringing best-in-class image and sound quality to our digital video SOCs,” said Dennis Cocco, co-founder, president and CEO of MediaWorks. “The Tensilica technology supports MediaWorks in our goal to provide the most comprehensive SOC in the market. Because it’s a programmable processor-based solution, it will meet current and forthcoming compression standards in the digital video market.”
“The MediaWorks solution demonstrates the power of our partner network for helping our customers to quickly add leading-edge industry standard capabilities to their SOC designs,” stated Bernie Rosenthal, Tensilica’s Senior Vice President of Marketing and Sales. “MediaWorks is an excellent example of the industry trend toward using processors, rather than custom hardware logic, for maximum flexibility in SOC designs.”
About Audio and Video Packages for Tensilica’s Xtensa V Processor
The MPEG-4 Codec application package from Intervideo is a complete solution that includes optimized MPEG-4 application code, documentation, and TIE language extensions to the Xtensa microprocessor instruction set. Using this package, system developers can integrate an MPEG-4 codec into a SOC without the need for additional optimizations or software development.
The Xtensa HiFi Audio Engine from Tensilica is a 24-bit embedded audio processor with inherent advantages over the industry standard 16-bit audio processors in use today. It provides superior sound quality of compressed files due to the increased precision available for intermediate calculations in the compression and decompression algorithms. The engine supports the following standards: Dolby Digital AC-3 decode, Dolby Digital AC-3 consumer encode, MP3 decode, MP3 encode, MPEG-2/4 AAC decode, MPEG-4 AAC encode, and WMA decode. It also supports G.723-1 and G.729AB speech codecs for highly optimized, multi-standard, voice-over-IP (VoIP) SOC designs. All of the algorithm solutions, including the TIE instructions, were designed and developed by CuTe Solutions, Inc., a leading developer of DSP (digital signal processing) solutions for audio and speech processing.
Tensilica’s Extensive Partner Network
Tensilica understands the importance of offering complementary technologies and services to facilitate rapid SOC design. The company’s “Xtensions Network” brings together best-in-class products and services from leading third-party vendors – from application packages to RTOSes, peripherals, on-chip buses and more. The breadth of Tensilica’s product offering mirrors the diversity of the companies it serves and the products that its technology enables.
Tensilica’s Configurable Xtensa Processor
Tensilica’s automated design methodology enables customers to tailor the Xtensa processor for their target application, adding their own customized instructions as needed. Tensilica is the first and only company to offer an integrated, patented hardware and software design environment that enables the automatic generation of application-specific processors and accompanying system software.
Tensilica’s patented Xtensa design environment has been used by over 60 leading semiconductor and system companies to deliver integrated SOCs for a variety of embedded applications. The Xtensa microprocessor core is shipping today in products ranging from low cost consumer devices to high-performance communications equipment.
MediaWorks is a fabless semiconductor company focused on driving the transition to digital video. The company’s first product—a media-centric SoC—is targeted at the convergence of digital still cameras and camcorders, lowering the cost and time-to-market for its customers while providing best-in-class image quality. The company targets ODMs and OEMs for solid state digital video camcorders, digital video surveillance and the digital portable and recorder/player market. MediaWorks’ highly integrated SoC technology enables high quality video with MPEG4 compression at DVD resolution-quality, and high quality digital still images with best-in-class performance and a lower end user price point.
Underscoring this technology is an unparalleled customer service model. MediaWorks offers a partnership approach enabling collaboration on all efforts from design and BOM budget to timeframe requirements that include supplying ODMs and OEMs with complete turnkey reference designs. MediaWorks is located in Irvine, California and can be accessed via the Web at www.mediaworks-isi.com.
Tensilica was founded in July 1997 to address the growing need for optimized, application-specific microprocessor solutions in high-volume embedded applications. With a configurable and extensible microprocessor core called Xtensa, Tensilica is the only company that has automated and patented the time-consuming process of generating a customized microprocessor core along with a complete software development tool environment, producing new configurations in a matter of hours. For more information, visit www.tensilica.com.
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