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Altera unveils zero-power CPLDs for portable apps

Posted: 08 Jan 2008     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:programmable logic solutions  low-power  macrocell-based 

Razak Mohammed Ali, product marketing manager, Asia Pacific, Altera

Expanding its low-power portfolio of programmable logic solutions, Altera Corp. has announced the new, zero-power MAX IIZ CPLD designed specifically to address the power, package and price constraints of the portable applications market. Offering a resource advantage of up to six times the density and three times the I/Os compared to competing traditional macrocell-based CPLDs, MAX IIZ devices allow designers to meet changing functional requirements at the same or lower power while saving board space. Adding zero-power and ultra-small packages to the CPLD series in the industry, the MAX IIZ devices deliver the many benefits of CPLDs—including flexibility, faster time to market, and board-level integration—to handsets and other portable applications.

Razak Mohammed Ali, product marketing manager, Asia Pacific, Altera said, "In India, the MAX and MAX II product families have been successful in the telecommunications, industrial, factory automation, military and medical market segments. The newly announced MAXII Z product family will augment these market segments and also expand to newer markets, especially power-sensitive applications such as portable devices and consumer electronics goods."

"The introduction of MAX IIZ devices is an exciting extension of Altera's power-conscious product portfolio," said Luanne Schirrmeister, director of marketing, low-cost products at Altera. "From smart phones to portable media players, designers of today's portable applications need the ability to differentiate their products for market success, without increasing power or form factor. As a result, we optimised MAX IIZ devices to offer the best combination of zero power, small package and low cost."

Features and benefits of MAX IIZ CPLDs
MAX IIZ devices are available in densities of 240 and 570 logic elements (LEs). The devices are available in ultra-small MBGA packages with up to 160 I/Os. This increased logic density and greater I/O count allow greater integration of existing functions from other devices, substantially reducing board space and power consumption while lowering overall system costs.

MAX IIZ devices break through the power, space and cost limitations of traditional macrocell-based CPLDs by combining non-volatility and instant-on performance with an innovative look-up table (LUT) logic structure. The devices utilise a 0.18-micron process, 1.8V core voltage and 6-metal-layer flash to provide both high functionality and zero-power consumption in a single device. The advanced system features of MAX IIZ CPLDs such as user flash memory, an internal oscillator, cost optimisation, greater density, smaller packages and lower power consumption, far surpass those of all traditional macrocell-based CPLDs.

Altera Low-Power Portfolio
Altera offers a complete line of low-power solutions. With low-power performance in the Altera Stratix III and Cyclone III FPGAs, HardCopy structured ASICs and MAX IIZ CPLDs, Altera's devices are used in a wide range of power-conscious applications, such as high-performance computing, military radios, mobile phones and digital consumer products.

Software Support
MAX IIZ devices are supported by free Quartus II Web Edition software version 7.2, SP1. With this new version of the easy-to-use Quartus II software, Altera delivers the lowest development cost and fastest time to design completion to ensure a smooth and successful design flow. The Quartus II software also integrates seamlessly with all leading third-party synthesis and simulation tools. Customers can download the subscription edition and web edition of the Quartus II software at

Pricing and Availability
Production-qualified MAX IIZ EPM240Z M68 devices will begin shipping in the first quarter of 2008 at Rs.49.35 ($1.25) in high volumes. All MAX IIZ devices will be shipping in production by the second quarter of 2008. Additionally, over 20 MAX IIZ design examples, enabling designers to quickly and cost effectively create and customise their designs, are available at The MAX IIZ demo board will be available by the second quarter of 2008.

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