The reporter found through weekday interviews that the current chip manufacturers have begun to work hard in the audio field, and have launched related audio technologies in an attempt to open up a differentiating path.
Not long ago, Wolfson Microelectronics launched the WM5110 quad-core high-definition audio processor system-on-chip, featuring high integration, low power consumption, and environmental noise cancellation (ANC) with earpieces and stereo headphones Harmonic Acoustic Echo Cancellation (AEC) function enables clear voice calls even in the noisiest environment; HD audio playback can bring longer-lasting, higher-quality music enjoyment to portable devices, and multimedia like IMAX Experience. The chip is mainly used in smart phones, tablet computers and portable multimedia devices, which can bring HD audio performance.
Eddie Sinnott, director of product portfolio of Wolfson Microelectronics, told reporters: "Three years ago, Wolfson had expected consumers to have higher requirements on the audio quality of mobile devices. To achieve this, the audio was separated from the application processor. Yes, Wolfson has created a new series of products called Audio Hub, which can handle all audio inputs, audio mixing, audio conversion, and direct audio signals to the correct output (speakers or headphones). The audio hub improves the audio performance of the device and reduces the cost of materials and shortens design time by integrating multiple discrete components that support audio signals. "
Once the audio signal is transferred from the analog domain to the digital domain, the sound can be enhanced by software algorithms running on the audio signal processor (DSP). Eddie Sinnott mentioned that these can reduce or eliminate unwanted noise and echo, amplify the sound of the low frequency part, maximize the volume without overloading the speaker, and even provide a stereo extended sound field, so the playback audio presentation Surround sound.
For the future development trend of audio technology, Qualcomm's marketing director Bao Shanquan said: "Whether audio uses multiple microphones is very helpful to achieve differentiation.
Eddie Sinnott believes that "the development of audio technology will show two major trends: first, there will be more and more application processor manufacturers to de-integrate audio. I believe that the market formed by this trend will develop at a high speed, with a compound annual average The growth rate will exceed 60%. The second is the transition from electret microphones (ECM) to microelectromechanical system (MEMS) microphones, and in order to eliminate excess noise and improve audio quality, it will be applied to more microphones. "
Considering the limitation of volume in portable products, it is wise to choose a small MEMS microphone with improved audio performance and high sensitivity when applying a multi-microphone solution. Wolfson â€™s MEMS microphones are suitable for smartphones, tablets and game consoles.
In addition, on audio IP, the reporter also saw that IP supplier Synopsys introduced the first audio IP subsystem for integrated hardware and software for system-on-chip (SoC) design, pre-selected verified hardware and The software subsystem is fully configurable, and a complete, integrated software environment ensures that the "plug and play" audio function supports the latest audio standards. It is suitable for tablets, portable audio equipment, digital TV and other products.
Synk Technology â€™s senior product promotion manager Henk Hamoen told reporters that in audio applications, the increasing multi-channel audio content and higher sampling rate have increased the complexity of many current consumer-oriented SoCs. In addition, the new audio standard requires more signal processing and bandwidth to provide high-quality sound reproduction in a wider range of audio formats. Using a dedicated audio subsystem allows audio processing tasks to be offloaded from the main processor, thus reducing design complexity and improving the performance and efficiency of the SoC.
At present, no other IP vendors have launched similar products. Whether the audio IP subsystem will integrate hardware and software in the future remains to be tested by the market.
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