TI Extends Battery Life with TMS320C55x Power Optimization DSP Starter Kit

1/17/2006 - Once again bringing new levels of innovative design tools to developers of low-power and portable applications, Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (NYSE: TXN) announced the availability of the TMS320C55xTM Power Optimization DSP Starter Kit (DSK) for evaluation of C55xTM DSP devices. With a fully-integrated set of power estimation and measurement tools, including built-in, USB-based National Instruments measurement hardware for power monitoring, the C55x Power Optimization DSK allows developers to accurately plan, analyze, manage and optimize real-time power consumption. As a result, developers can design truly power efficient products and deliver them to market quickly giving them a competitive edge over less efficient designs.

As the result of a joint collaboration between Texas Instruments, Spectrum Digital, Inc. and National Instruments, the C55x Power Optimization DSK includes everything that a developer needs to jumpstart a power-sensitive application at a compellingly low price. The DSK, priced at $495 USD, includes comprehensive power planning tools, Code Composer StudioTM IDE v3.1 DSK tools, DSP/BIOSTM kernel v5.20 software with Power Manager, Power Scaling Libraries, National Instruments Power Analyzer hardware and software, and a robust C5509A-based target board complete with on-board emulation and board support libraries from Spectrum Digital.

"No other company offers as comprehensive a set of tools to measure power in a meaningful way, resulting in lower power consumption, faster time-to-market, and reduced system cost," says John Dixon, low power DSP marketing manager, TI. "Not only does the new DSK shave weeks to months off development cycles, the visibility into power consumption that it provides also enables OEMs to achieve greater power efficiency than ever before, giving their products a clear competitive edge over less efficient designs."

Power Optimization Critical for Portable Applications
Accurate power measurement is a crucial requirement for optimizing and maximizing the power efficiency and battery life of portable and mobile applications. The C55x power planning tools enable developers to first estimate power consumption in order to select the right device and peripherals upon which to base a design. The C55x Power Optimization DSK then allows developers to accurately measure power consumption through real-time profiling of DSP application code, eliminating the need for expensive lab equipment like current probes and oscilloscopes. For example, instead of making rough estimates of battery life for standby and active modes, developers can use the DSK to run their application for several days, cycling through real-world use profiles to more accurately determine power consumption. Being able to make these measurements earlier in the design cycle gives developers the ability to more easily meet constrained power budgets and cost-effectively make design tradeoffs that result in improved power efficiency and lower overall system cost.

"We are extremely pleased with the flexible functionality of C55x DSPs," says Jesper Brik Petersen, DSP Engineer at GN Netcom, world leader in the wireless headset market. "The development tools enable us to implement and test our algorithms quickly and efficiently. The low-power capabilities of the C55x DSPs enable us to achieve unprecedented operating efficiency. The high level of flexibility and functionality enable us to implement DSP functionality into new products with a minimum of development time."

C55xTM Power Optimization DSK Offers Comprehensive Tools and Out-of-Box Experience
The C55x Power Optimization DSK enables developers to quickly evaluate TI's low power C5503, C5507, and C5509A DSPs, as well as estimate and then accurately measure real-time power consumption. The C55x Power Optimization DSK is designed to provide a fast out-of-box experience, enabling developers to bring a system up quickly with sample software and begin product evaluation immediately. TI's new eXpressDSPTM -based power optimization tools eliminate the guesswork of reducing power consumption and allow developers to design products that consume only as much power as is actually necessary by dynamically turning off all peripherals and internal functional units when they are not needed.

In addition to TI's design tools, the C55x Power Optimization DSK also includes the USB-based National Instruments Power Analyzer, a ready-to-run power monitoring application based on industry-leading NI LabVIEW software. The DSK has built-in NI USB measurement hardware for power monitoring and trigger functionality for profiling power consumption during specific segments of code. This same circuitry can be plug-and-play compatible with NI software tools such as LabVIEW, LabWindows/CVI ANSI C development environment and SignalExpress interactive measurement software.

A wide range of daughtercard modules are available to provide additional DSK functionality, in addition to Ethernet connectivity, fingerprint sensor, LCD display, voice and audio codecs, multichannel A/D and D/A converters.

Pricing and Availability
Available now through TI authorized distributors and the TI E-store, the C55x Power Optimization DSK is available for $495 USD and includes a DSK version of Code Composer Studio Platinum which is fully integrated with the eXpressDSP Power Design Tool Suite.

For more information about TI's new power design tools, new DSPs, and a roadmap of TMSC5000TM devices is available.

About TI
Texas Instruments Incorporated provides innovative DSP and analog technologies to meet our customers' real-world signal processing requirements. In addition to Semiconductors, the company's businesses include Sensors & Controls, and Educational & Productivity Solutions. TI is headquartered in Dallas, Texas, and has manufacturing, design or sales operations in more than 25 countries.

Texas Instruments is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TXN.

TMS320C55x, C55x, Code Composer Studio, DSP/BIOS, eXpressDSP, TMSC5000, C5000, and TMS320C54x are trademarks of Teas Instruments.

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