TI's Floating-Point DSP Powers Dolby Digital Professional Encoder

2/23/2004 - Leveraging Texas Instrumentsī (TI) (NYSE: TXN) expertise in digital audio along with the firmīs long-term commitment and leadership position in that market, Dolby Laboratories has selected the TMS320C67xTM generation as the basis for a new reference platform that supports Dolby® Digital Professional Encoder. With that reference platform for Dolbyīs premier digital-audio encoding technology, manufacturers will design equipment that allows the creation of digital audio for DVDs, HDTV broadcasts and cable/satellite TV transmissions -- and these new products will be more compact and offer higher encoder performance at a lower per-channel cost than ever before.

"It's been five years since we upgraded our reference platform," explains Sabine Jennings, professional licensing manager, Dolby. "Since then many underlying technologies have made great strides, and we want to take advantage of them. When evaluating DSPs for our new Dolby Digital Professional Encoder reference design, we sought out the highest quality, highest performance device. We also wanted a company with demonstrated expertise in this market and the development tools and support services to help our customers get their products to market quickly. In fact, many of these customers specifically requested that we work with TI DSPs because they know TI is committed to digital audio and because they already use other TI parts in other AV equipment."

As a result, the soon-to-be-released Dolby Digital Professional Encoder reference platform features a 225-MHz TMS320C6713TM, TIīs flagship floating-point audio processor. Whereas previous development kits for Dolby audio required multiple DSPs, now a single chip handles all multichannel encoding chores so manufacturers can create more capable products with fewer parts.

"This announcement is a testament to our strength in the audio market, not only in consumer equipment but now also in the content-creation phase," said Gerard Andrews, DSP audio solutions marketing manager, TI. "Equipment manufacturers have the confidence that they are working with a DSP platform that has not only demonstrated a commitment to this market but also has a roadmap that guarantees a continual stream of innovative, powerful processors with exceptional development tools, and at attractive prices."

The C67x generation has been broadly accepted in digital audio and appears in consumer equipment such as AV receivers from JVC, Yamaha and Onkyo. It is also a core technology in multimedia/gaming systems such as Spherex' Xbox 5.1 Surround Sound System.

This choice of DSP in the Dolby Digital Professional Encoder reference platform demonstrates the growing strength of the relationship between Dolby and TI. Last year, for instance, Dolby chose TIīs Aureus audio DSP when developing its Pro Logic® IIx enhanced Surround Sound technology. Meanwhile, TI has developed implementations of all of the firmīs world-renowned audio technologies including Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Ex, Pro Logic II, Pro Logic IIx, Dolby Headphone and Dolby Virtual Speaker.

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