Digital Signal Processors

Mijn links op het gebied van mijn werk: Digital Signal Processors... Ik ben bezig met de architectuur van nieuwe DSP's, digitale signaal-processoren. Daarbij dan vooral met DSPs voor in consumer-electronica, dus het zoeken naar de beste combinatie tussen laag stroomgebruik, kost en performance. Toepassingen: bijvoorbeeld voor de spraakverwerking in GSM telefoons, of voor het decoderen van muziek in portable MP3-spelers.

;-) geeft aanbevolen links weer, dead... zijn bedrijven die lijken te zijn verdwenen of niet meer actief zijn met DSP. Op deze pagina (een kopie van mijn pagina op het werk, daardoor veel in het Engels) vind je links op deze onderwerpen; gesplitst in de volgende categorieën:

Algemene DSP links (general links)

Vector/SIMD/Parallel DSP manufacturers

Here, I have a list of 'vector, SIMD and Parallel' signal processing architectures, having e.g. at least more than 2 multipliers, or SIMD >= 4. The two typical application areas are software defined radio engines (baseband processors for 3G and (sometimes) LTE, WLAN, digital TV broadcast reception etc), and media processing (esp video processing).

Not included are SuperScalar/VLIW-like architectures (unless also at least significant SIMD is involved), I see those already as classical DSP architectures further down this page.

  • ARC (mid 2009 acquired by Virage Logic) has a configurable RISC core, the ARC700 family also has DSP and SIMD extensions: "ARC's VRaptor Media Architecture will support multiple ARC 750D CPUs with media extensions, multiple vectorized 128-bit SIMD processors, high performance streaming I/O, and domain specific accelerators."
  • ARM: next to the SIMD NEON extensions in the recent high-end ARM cores, they also have the OptimoDE technology (successor of the A|RT), to generate application-specific DSPs and data paths. Although there seems to be no public material anymore on their web site (apart from news articles), it seems the data engines in their Ardbeg 2/3/4G communications platform are generated by OptimoDE. Recently, the Belgium group was partly spun out into Cognovo; is this also the end of OptimoDE as ARM technology offering?
  • Aspex technology (now Asp[ex Semiconductors) has the Associative String Processing (ASP), a fine-grain Single Instruction, Multiple Data (SIMD) parallel processing architecture. The AspProCore is a GP programmable, scalable, high performance fault-tolerant parallel SIMD signal processor. It is used in the Q IP block. Focus is media processing, especially HD video.
  • dead... BOPS [] broadband DSP cores is dead: FPGA specialist Altera Corp. has acquired the assets
  • dead... Chameleon Systems [] is dead
  • ChipWrights with the 'visual signal processor' family: RISC combined with 8/16-wide SIMD vector-DSP kernels intended for multimedia codecs
  • dead... Elixent (mid 2007 acquired by Matsushita) has the Reconfigurable Algorithm Processing (RAP) technology and the D-Fabrix Array, kind of high-level FPFA. 
  • dead... Eonic: A DSP of Dutch origin: the PowerFFT, "the fastest floating point DSP in the world" based on a reconfigurable computing paradigm, but Eonic is now more into systems design, and no longer actively promoting the DSP as such.
  • IBM Cell Architecture. The Cell Architecture grew from a challenge posed by Sony and Toshiba to provide power-efficient and cost-effective high-performance processing for a wide range of applications, including the most demanding consumer appliance: game consoles. The Cell Architectue explained. IBM info.
  • dead... IBM eLite The IBM eLite vector DSP core is not continued as such, but on this site some presentations. Related to the Sandbridge architecture
  • Icera has the DXP, the Deep eXecution Processor DXP. A slightly different twist to a vector processor, this processor has a two-dimensional matrix of ALU's etc, specifying in a single instruction a sequence of operations to be performed while moving through the pipeline
  • Imagination Technologies has the Ensigma UCCP platforms, intended for wireless communication and digital TV broadcast reception, In this platform, the actual vector processor is the MCP (Modulation Control Processor). Also active in video/media processing, with the PowerVR graphics technology, based on a concept called Tile Based Deferred Rendering
  • Infineon is working on the MuSIC vector processor, but little information (apart from some conference papers) is available
  • dead... Morpho Technologies [] had the rDSP: reconfigurable Digital Signal Processors, using a RISC-based controller, a context memory (?) and a processing array of 8 .. 64 processing elements. Targets: WCDMA, multimedia, 3G, WLAN: like all of us...
  • NXP Semiconductors moved its mobile division, and thereby the EVP vector processor, to the new ST-Ericsson joint venture, see below
  • dead... OnDemand ( ): a vector signal processor (VSP) architecture, an extension on SIMD processing intended for wireless digital TV and mobile multimedia. However, their website seems to be down: one more casualty?
  • PACT-XPP: a multi-core course-grained compute fabric esp for multimedia applications, eg instantiated in its XPP-3C product. Claimed its performance, for the first time, allows high definition video decoding without additional hardware accelerators
  • Philips Semiconductors is now NXP (see above link), the mobile division and its DSP's in the mean time moved to ST-Ericsson (link below)
  • PicoChip The PC101 UMTS base station procesor has a heterogeneous array of 430 16-bit C-programmable processors on a single die. The successor PC20x family also targets WLAN/WiMAX etc.
  • Recore Systems in the Netherlands has the Montium Tile Processor (TP), a kind of reconfigurable DSP architecture with a number of configurable parallel units. Not a classical vector DSP, but it does offer significant parallelism.
  • Sandbridge has a 'vector' DSP processor (as used in SandBlaster) with 4 parallel ALU's, based on the IBM eLite architecture
  • Silicon Hive, the Philips incubator with a methodology to generate SIMD-based application-specific architectures
  • dead... Siroyan OneDSP scalable architecture
  • ;-) ST-Ericsson is a joint venture between the mobile parts of ST and Ericsson, also absorbing the mobile division of NXP (former Philips Semiconductors). Next to classical DSPs, with the NXP part it acquired a high-end embedded vector processor (EVP VD32040) for 3G, 4G (LTE) and SDR, used already in e.g. 3G/TD-SCDMA phones (other link) [2007]. Being the chief architect of this core, I am quite proud of this...
  • dead... Systemonic AG: the OnDSP vector processor technology, intended for OFDM-based modem pipes (WLAN etc), has been acquired by Philips Semiconductors and has lead to the next version 'EVP' (which moved to ST-Ericsson) for 4G/LTE processing
  • Telairity announced a new 'Vector DSP', the TVP400 used in their T1P2000 Video Processor platform, targeting imaging (HD TV) applications. The TVP400 has one risc core plus 4-16 vector pipes each with up to 11 functional units
  • Tensilica, Inc. Customisable, synthesisable microcontroller architectures with DSP extensions, like the Xtensa.
  • The TRIPS architecture: 1 trillion operations per second? "TRIPS (The Tera-op, Reliable, Intelligently adaptive Processing System) is a revolutionary new microprocessor architecture being built at The University of Texas at Austin (and IBM). The team's goal is to produce a scalable architecture that can accelerate industrial, consumer, embedded, and scientific workloads, reaching trillions of calculations per second on a single chip". Dataflow-like?

Classical DSP manufacturers

These are the more classical DSP architectures, although also here quite some resources might be available, like utilised with VLIW-style programming. For higher performance, see the vector/simd list.

  • dead... 3DSP, dual-MAC synthesisable DSP architectures. Latest news on the web site (now dead) was April 2003
  • dead... Adelante Technologies (and its REAL DSP's) has been acquired by Philips Semiconductors, moved to NXP Semiconductors, and is now part of ST-Ericsson, the cores no longer available as IP product
  • dead... Amphion is acquired mid 2008 by NXP (part of the Conexant deal): standalone function-specific cores and application-specific accelerator cores IP, focussing on digital video and broadband/network access
  • ARC (mid 2009 acquired by Virage Logic) has a configurable RISC core, but has additional DSP extension capabilities: XY Advanced DSP Subsystem (and ARC even has SIMD, see above)
  • dead... Carmel DSP [] of Infineon is dead. They switched to the StarCore (see below)
  • Ceva (former DSP Group, Parthus Ceva) The well-known ASIC DSP cores Oak, TeakLite, Teak, Palm, Ceder. Now working on a new core, CEVA-X1620, a dual MAC 16-bit fixed point DSP. Looks like a rebranding of their Ceder project
  • dead... Cradle Technologies, Inc. used to have multi-core RISC/DSP platforms, but now is a video surveillance server company
  • Coolflux, an NXP audio DSP for low power applications
  • CoreSonic is a new company (spin-off of research center Linköping University) in multi-standard baseband processing. Based on VLIW-like architecture with many dedicated hardware accelerators (not really 'software defined radio'...). Site does not really say anything. But Google does: Is it the BBP1 processor of the Linköpings universitet, Sweden?
  • dead... Dsp Architectures, Inc with the DSP24 family optimised for frequency-domain processing on multiple 24-bit DSPs, cascadable to high-performance FFT systems, also disappeared
  • DSP Group, Inc. See ParthusCeva Ceva
  • Freescale Semiconductors is a spin-off of Motorola, already known for a long time for its DSP architectures, esp for 24-bit audio (56000/56300 series) but also 16-bits versions like to 56800 series. Also have StarCore variants.
  • dead...? Improv [] Jazz VLIW DSP cores, intended for multi-core configurations. Website is dead?
  • Infineon started with the Carmal (now abandoned), then moved to the StarCore (same fate). Also has the TriCore, a DSP/microcontroller mix
  • Intersil Corporation has function-specific DSP-based building blocks, but no real general DSP cores/chips
  • dead... Lexra LX5380 - MIPS with DSP extensions: Site disappeared
  • dead... Massana - DSP Algorithm Development and IC Design
  • Motorola Digital Signal Processors --> See Freescale Semiconductors (about 15 lines up). Motorloa is already known for a long time for its DSP architectures.
  • NXP Semiconductors moved the mobile division, and thereby its REAL DSPs, to the new ST-Ericsson joint venture. Other DSP's, as the Coolflux, still remain within NXP.
  • Philips Semiconductors is rebranded NXP (see above link). The mobile division and its DSP's in the mean time moved to ST-Ericsson (link below)
  • dead... Siroyan OneDSP scalable architecture
  • ST-Ericsson is a joint venture between the mobile parts of ST and Ericsson, also absorbing the mobile division of NXP. Next to vector processing (see above section), they also feature (but don't license) a more classical dual-MAC DSP architecture for low power/cost applications, the 16-bit Adelante RD1602x REAL DSP used a.o. in GSM phones
  • dead... StarCore is a licensable DSP core, build on an internal VLIW-like architecture with 2 .. 4 multipliers (aving a variable length instruction encoding for code density). Formed as an alliance between Motorola and Agere Systems. Originally a licensable core; now back to Motorola internal
  • ST Microelectronics has an embedded DSP, search for ST122
  • TI DSP Products Portal Page
    TI OMAP Platform Overview and FAQ
    Latest addition: the TAS3108 , a high end audio DSP (28x48 multiplier, 76 bit accumulator), read BDTi announcement
  • dead...? TriMedia Technologies is an efficient Multi-Media processor based on an embeddable VLIW architecture. The technology has been taken back into Philips and moved to NXP, and is relabelled as 'Nexperia Media Processor'. Several DSP-based product chips based on this architecture are available. However, as NXP split off its home division, will there be any future for it?
  • Zaram, with the 'Compact DSP', a Korean DSP company offering DSP IP blocks: low power 16 and 24-bit DSP cores
  • ZSP, super-scalar DSP architectures. Formerly part of LSI Logic, taken over in 2006 by VeriSilicon

DSP misc. info

  • BDTi The standard in DSP benchmarking, including two new benchmark suites: BDTI Communications Benchmark (OFDM)™, and BDTI Video Benchmarks™.
  • CPU Info Center
  • dspGuru: DSP Central: dspGuru's purpose is to promote resource-sharing among DSP designers. Books, FAQs, Tricks, HowTos.
  • DSP Design Performance: Freely Usable Digital Filter Design Applets plus DSP Tutorials and Code Segments. Each filter design tool is a Java Applet which provides an interactive design method and a frequency response calculator that graphs amplitude, phase, and group delay.
  • Looking for a specific DSP? Dspstore has info over all kinds of DSPs, algorithms, etc. Adelante's Saturn is also listed! However, you do need to register.
  • DSP Valley is a technology network organisation, focusing on the design of hardware and software technology for digital signal processing systems. DSP Valley groups members of different kinds: universities, research institutes and industrial companies.
  • EEMBC DSP application level benchmarks (higher level than BDTi), and ECL: the EEMBC Certifications Laboratory
  • eg3 on dsp - a lot of information and links on Digital Signal Processing
  • Filter Solutions, Analog and Digital Filter Design Software
  • FFTW Home Page Fastest Fast Fourier Transforms for PC (libraries)
  • Forward Concepts Solid DSP-related marketing analysis (Will Straus), lot of fodus on application domains like cell phone market analysis
  • FPGA-GURU: DSP etc on FPGA
  • GSM Reference Site / UK SMS Gateway
  • In-Stat/MDR on Wireless: "In-Stat/MDR has the most comprehensive global wireless research in the industry, with coverage from components to base stations; and from Bluetooth to PCS."
  • Rainer's Homepage (DSP, audio formats, genetic alg's etc)
  • SPUC - Signal processing using C++ classes - A DSP library
  • TechOnline Online Courses for the Electronics Engineering Community. With even a few (old) papers by me: Optimizing DSP: Low Power by Architecture, and Embedded DSP Technologies in Consumer Applications.
  • Yahoo! Clubs dspengineering

Development Tools

Some random links from the past...

  • The ACE Group: ACE Associated Compiler Experts, compiler technology and home of the CoSy compiler development system, the CoSy Express compiler generation technology and the SuperTest C compiler test & validation suite. Also for Embedded/DSP-C compilers
  • CoWare (now taken over by Synopsys) had the Dead Link? LISATek tool suite for generating processors (HW and tools) based on a processor description. Based on ACE compiler framework. Comparable to Target?
  • DSP-C page (by ACE and others): the DSP optimised standard extension to C, now being reworked in 'Embedded C'
  • Eclipse is an open-source development platform. It also incorporates a C/C++ IDE extension (CDT: C/C++ Development tools), more info on
  • First Silicon Solutions (FS2): debugging tools for System-on-Chip applications (On-Chip Instrumentation, JTAG, trace)
  • Octave is a free (open-source) MatLab clone. A Windows version can be downloaded here.
  • Open64 vectorizing compiler tool suite
  • OSE Systems DSP real-time operating systems from ENEA
  • SystemC: information on the SystemC C++ extension for HW modelling
  • Target Compiler Technologies, development tools centered around Chess/Checkers, a complete and retargetable computer-aided design environment.
  • TASKING DSP/Microcontroller sftware development systems
  • Wolfram Research, Inc. Mathematica tool, 'the complete environment for all of your technical computing tasks, whether simple calculations or large-scale computations, complex programming, visualizing or modeling data, or even presenting to collegues or clients'