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Car infotainment SoCs lower power consumption

Posted: 18 Feb 2011     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:SoCs  car  navigation  infotainment 

Renesas Electronics Corp. and its subsidiary, Renesas Mobile Corp. reveal the R-Car M1 series of SoCs, the R-Car M1A and R-Car M1S, developed for mid-range dashboard-mounted car navigation systems offering low power consumption and support for advanced human machine interfaces (HMI).

The R-Car M1 series that represent the integration of the company's SH-Navi series and EMMA car series products, share the following key features: (1) Integration of the dedicated circuitry for intelligent multimedia processing saves approximately 92 per cent of power in full 1,920 x 1,080-pixel HD (high-definition) video decoding relative to executing the same function in software on previous products; (2) Dedicated power supply IC for use in a voltage regulator reduces power consumption by approximately 20 per cent from Renesas Electronics' existing products; (3) The POWERVR SGX graphics core enhances 3D rendering performance, allowing designers to create realistic GUIs and improved user operability; (4) Incorporation of ARM Cortex-A9 and Renesas Electronics SH-4A CPU cores operating at a maximum 800MHz, deliver superior processing performance of up to 3.7Giga instructions per second (GIPS).

Recently, dashboard-mounted car navigation systems have been required to offer lower power consumption, especially when used in electric vehicles. These systems must also offer high-performance multimedia processing for video and audio, and an advanced HMI with realistic 3D graphics display, and improved user operability. The R-Car M1 SoCs support these demands and can achieve cost reduction, system miniaturisation and reduced development time.

Inside the SoCs
Other features of the R-Car M1 Series of SoCs include the incorporation of the company's video processing IP, the VPU5HD2 to deliver encoding and decoding performance of 30fps in full 1,080 HD with MPEG-2, while meeting the H.264/MPEG-4 AVC compression standard, and offering MPEG-4 decoding and VC-1 decoding. The VPU5HD2 claims about 92 per cent of power compared to the same function done with software processing.

The SoCs also incorporate Renesas Electronics' second-generation sound processing unit (SPU), which is a 24bit audio processing engine. This unit enables an increased number of audio channels to be processed compared to the company's existing products, improving the DSP performance as well as the volume processing function. As an example, the R-Car M1 SoCs can support voice for a guided navigation function, while simultaneously executing audio processing for 5.1ch music. The SPU helps save approximately 88 per cent of power compared to CPU software processing.


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