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TI's Class D amps provide 50% efficiency

Posted: 09 Jan 2006     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Texas Instruments  TI  digital amplifier  TAS5414  TAS542 

Texas Instruments Inc. (TI) announced its first digital amplifiers designed to meet the reliability and requirements of the automotive market. The TAS5414 and TAS5424 Class D amplifiers introduce the power efficiency of digital amplification for automotive audio applications, such as head units and external amplifiers.

Designed for the automotive market, the TAS5414 is a single-ended input amplifier and the TAS5424 has differential input, enabling it to achieve higher dynamic range performance. These 4-channel digital audio Class D amplifiers provide 40 per cent to 50 per cent efficiency (25 per cent in some cases) at moderate power levels. With the TAS54x4 amplifiers, TI delivers 90 per cent power efficiency at normal radio listening levels for automotive audio systems. Comparatively, two TAS54x4 amplifiers can provide eight channels of audio, while generating less heat than a 4-channel Class A/B-based system, enabling a whole class of cost-effective eight-channel audio systems that are lighter, smaller and more power efficient than existing systems. In addition, the amps can be used with two-Ω speakers to offer twice the output power of an AB amplifier into four-Ω speakers, while generating less heat.

By reducing heat dissipation, explained the company, the TAS54x4 needs only a thin heat sink to spread heat compared to the large heat sinks and fans Class A/B-based systems require. Radio head units with more functionality or more output channels can now be designed, eliminating the need for external amplifiers and wire harnesses. The surface mount device packages do not require mounting brackets and reduce the labour required to install and test these components.

"The significant improvement in power dissipation enabled by the TAS5414 and TAS5424 opens up entire product categories for our customers," says Jeff Akgul, digital audio business manager at TI. "The TAS54x4 digital amplifiers provide tremendous advantages to automotive manufacturers, as they deliver great sound quality, while minimizing heat generation."

The TAS5414 and TAS5424 are designed from the ground up to meet demanding automotive quality standards. These amps are TS16949 certified. Currently sampling, the TAS5414 and TAS5424 are expected to be available for volume production in late 2006 and are scheduled to be AEC Q100 qualified at that time.

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