ARM Cortex-A7 MPCore Application Processor

ARM launched their Cortex-A7 MPCore processor. Compared to the Cortex-A8, the Cortex-A7 MPCore application processor is 5x more energy-efficiency and one fifth the size. The ARM Cortex-A7 features big.LITTLE processing, which pairs the best of the Cortex-A15 MPCore and Cortex-A7 processors. Big.LITTLE processing enables devices to seamlessly select the right processor for the right task, based on performance requirements. This dynamic selection is transparent to the application software or middleware running on the processors.

ARM Cortex-A7 MPCore processor

ARM Cortex-A7 MPCore Key Features

  • 1-4X SMP within a single processor cluster
  • Multiple coherent SMP processor clusters through AMBA 4 technology
  • CoreSight DK-A7 for debug and trace
  • 30% reduction in memory required to store instructions
  • TrustZone technology ensures reliable implementation of security applications ranging from digital rights management to electronic payment
  • NEON technology to accelerate multimedia and signal processing algorithms such as video encode/decode, 2D/3D graphics, gaming, audio and speech processing, image processing, telephony, and sound synthesis
  • DSP and SIMD extensions increase DSP processing capability while reducing power consumption
  • DSP extensions are optimized for a broad range of software applications including servo motor control, Voice over IP (VOIP) and video and audio codecs
  • Hardware support for floating point operations in half-, single- and double-precision floating point arithmetic
  • Increased performance for floating point arithmetic used in next generation of consumer products such as Internet appliances, set-top boxes, and home gateways
  • Up to 3x reduction on code size for Just-in-time (JIT) and ahead-of-time compilation of bytecode languages for acceleration in traditional virtual machines
  • Large Physical Address Extensions (LPAE) enables the processor to access up to 1TB of memory
  • Performance and power optimized L1 caches combine minimal access latency techniques to maximize performance and minimize power consumption
  • Caches of 32KB for instruction and 32KB for data
  • Integrated, configurable size level 2 cache controller for low latency and high bandwidth access to up to 4 MB of cached memory
  • All RAMs within the Cortex-A7 processor including L1 and L2 caches are protected by parity and ECC error correction
  • AMBA 4 Cache Coherent Interconnect (CCI) provides AMBA 4 AXI Coherency Extensions (ACE) compliant ports for full coherency between multiple Cortex-A7 MPCore processors
  • Cortex-A7 NEON Media Processing Engine (MPE) offers both the performance and functionality of the Cortex-A7 Floating-Point Unit plus an implementation of the NEON Advanced SIMD instruction set for further acceleration of media and signal processing functions
  • Cortex-A7 Floating-Point Unit (FPU) provides high-performance single, and double precision Floating-Point instructions compatible with the ARM VFPv4 architecture
  • Snoop Control Unit for managing the interconnect, arbitration, communication, cache-2-cache and system memory transfers, cache coherence and other capabilities for the processor
  • AMBA 4 AMBA Coherency Extension (ACE)-Lite enables external non-cached bus masters to perform coherent reads and writes to the Cortex-A7 memory map
  • Generic Interrupt Controller for inter-processor communication and the routing and prioritization of system interrupts

More info: ARM