FPGAs Save Power in DSP Applications
Xilinx Adds Greater Power Efficiency to High Performance Spartan-3a DSP Platform FPGAs
SAN JOSE, Calif., July 23, 2007 – Xilinx, Inc. (NASDAQ: XLNX) today announced the addition of power efficient Spartan(TM)-3A DSP devices to its XtremeDSP(TM) portfolio of solutions for signal processing applications. The new devices, which are in production today, deliver high-performance DSP capabilities in a low-power FPGA for applications such as tactical radios for military communications, wireless access points and portable medical equipment.
The Spartan-3A DSP low power (LP) devices deliver a 50% static power savings, and a 70% savings while in suspend mode, compared to the standard devices and are available in industrial rated grades. The lower power complements the dynamic power advantage inherent in the Spartan-DSP series due to the integration of dedicated DSP circuitry. In fact, the Spartan-3A DSP 3400A LP devices have a 25% power efficiency advantage over competing FPGAs by delivering 4.06 GMACs per mW at a speed of 250Mhz in the lowest cost speed grade.
“As the insatiable need for DSP performance increases in a plethora of applications, optimized energy efficiency becomes a requirement in many of those applications,” said Bruce Weyer, Sr. director of marketing for Xilinx’s Processing Solutions Group. “Applications that require significant DSP performance can now also benefit from the new power efficiency performance ratio Xilinx delivers with the addition of low power Spartan DSP devices to the XtremeDSP portfolio.”
High Performance, Power Efficient Spartan-DSP
DSP power efficiency refers to the amount of power consumed performing signal processing calculations. DSP power efficiency measurements can be applied to systems, function, building blocks and common operations. The Spartan-3A DSP LP devices deliver 4.06 GMACs per mW at a speed of 250Mhz in the lowest cost speed grade when analyzing the common multiply-and-accumulate operation.
The Spartan-3A DSP FPGA platform’s ability to perform signal processing functions without the need to consume logic resources enables designers to meet their performance and cost goals while enabling better power efficiency. The XtremeDSP DSP48A slices that make up the dedicated DSP circuitry include dedicated 18 x 18 multipliers along with 18-bit pre-adder and 48-bit post-adder/accumulator to deliver superior performance of DSP functions at a low cost.
Power efficiency can also be derived from the advanced static power management suspend mode feature in the Spartan-3A DSP FPGA platform, which reduces FPGA power consumption while retaining the FPGA’s configuration data and maintaining the application state. This means devices can quickly enter and exit suspend mode as required in an application.
The Spartan-3A DSP LP devices can be used in applications such as ultra portable ultrasound equipment, where digital beamforming is a key DSP application and channel counts vary from 16 to 128 depending on system requirements. The suspend mode capabilities of the Spartan-3A DSP FPGA platform also helps to extend battery life in these applications. Other applications that can benefit from the industry’s lowest power/high performance FPGA platform include MILCOM portable and mobile tactical radios, and portable night vision equipment.
Pricing and Availability
The XC3SD1800A-4LI (low power, industrial temperature grade) device is priced at USD $34.80 and the XC3SD3400A-4LI device is priced at USD $50.00 Pricing is for 25,000 units in volume production, end 2008. Customers can contact their local Xilinx distributor or go to the Xilinx on-line store at www.xilinx.com/onlinestore/silicon/online_store_s3adsp.htm to buy devices today.
About Xilinx XtremeDSP Solutions
Xilinx is the world’s leading supplier of high-performance reconfigurable DSP solutions optimized for performance, price and power. Xilinx® XtremeDSP(TM) solutions come complete with silicon platforms, design tools, development boards and kits, reference designs and a host of signal processing IP for wireless and multimedia video applications. The XtremeDSP silicon portfolio delivers maximum flexibility with three device platforms: the Virtex-4 SX FPGA platform with over 250 GMACS at 500MHz, Virtex-5 SXT FPGA platform for ultra-high bandwidth with over 350 GMACS at 550MHz and integrated low-power serial connectivity, and the Spartan-3A DSP FPGA platform with the most price-performance optimized devices offering over 30 GMACS at 250MHz in the lowest cost speed grade. Detailed information is available at www.xilinx.com/dsp.
Xilinx, Inc. (NASDAQ: XLNX) is the worldwide leader of programmable logic solutions. Additional information about Xilinx is available at www.xilinx.com.