Cadence Tensilica ConnX B20 DSP boosts performance

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Cadence Design Systems has unveiled the Tensilica ConnX B20 DSP IP, which it says is the highest-performing DSP in the ConnX family.

The ConnX B20 DSP, which is based on a deeper processor pipeline architecture, provides a faster and more power-efficient solution for the automotive and 5G communications markets, including next-generation radar, lidar, vehicle-to-everything (V2X), user equipment (UE)/infrastructure and IoT applications.

It comes with an enhanced instruction set architecture (ISA) and clock-speed increase and, as a result, is able to process parts of the communication processing chain up to 30X faster and parts of the radar/lidar processing chain up to 10X faster compared to the ConnX BBE32EP DSP.

Further expanding the ConnX family, Cadence has introduced the ConnX B10 DSP, which delivers half the vector width of the ConnX B20 DSP for applications requiring less parallelism.

Both the trend toward higher resolution imaging radar with more antennas for autonomous driving applications and the emergence of 5G mobile equipment have created demand for more processing power. The ConnX B20 and B10 DSPs are Cadence’s response, meeting the demand for higher performance and low energy consumption.

Software compatible with the rest of the ConnX DSP family (the ConnX BBE16/32/64EP), the ConnX B20 DSP has a 512-bit vector width up to 128 MACs, can load 1024 bits of data each cycle and achieves 1.4GHz or greater frequency in 16nm process technology. This extends the ConnX family to serve an even broader range of performance.

Customers have a variety of algorithm acceleration options to reduce cycle counts, including higher precision with either 32-bit fixed-point operations (including operations to optimize MAC, FFT and FIR) with native complex support, or single-/half-precision vector floating-point (VFPU) operations with half precision at 2X the single-precision throughput.

This flexibility allows customers to choose higher precision only when needed.

“Next-generation imaging radar and 5G communications are driving the need for an order-of-magnitude increase in data throughput,” said Lazaar Louis, senior director of product management and marketing for Tensilica IP at Cadence. “To address our customers’ growing need for high-performance radar and communications solutions, we continue to invest in the successful ConnX DSP family. Our new ConnX B20 and B10 DSPs extend our range of scalable, compatible DSPs optimised for complex number processing with higher clock speeds and more optimised instructions, providing customers with an easy upgrade path for existing designs in radar and communications applications for a wide variety of markets.”

General availability for both the ConnX B20 and B10 DSPs is planned for the second quarter of 2019.