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National Semiconductor Introduces Industry's First PCI Express 8 Gbps Quad Equalizer

PowerWise DS50EV401 Equalizer Extends Backplane and Cable Reach While Consuming Only 100 mW per Channel

Feb 19, 2008

February 19, 2008 – National Semiconductor Corp. (NYSE:NSM) today introduced the industry’s first quad equalizer specifically designed for PCI Express (PCIe) applications up to 8 Gbps data transmission rates. The device supports PCIe Gen1 (2.5 Gbps), PCIe Gen2 (5 Gbps) and PCIe Gen3 (8 Gbps) data rates, with typical power consumption of only 100 mW per channel.

The DS50EV401 provides high-speed signal transmission over backplanes and cables used in storage area networking (SAN), switch fabrics, communications infrastructure and automated test equipment (ATE). The quad equalizer compensates for transmission medium losses, reducing deterministic jitter on four data transmission channels. It provides 20 dB of receive boost to equalize up to 10m of PCIe cable or 40 inches of FR-4 printed circuit board (PCB) at data transmission rates up to 5 Gbps, with less than 0.2 unit intervals (UI) of residual jitter at the equalizer output. Additionally, the DS50EV401 equalizes up to 30 inches of FR-4 at data rates up to 8 Gbps, while maintaining the same jitter performance. Its power-to-speed ratio of 13 mW/Gbps per channel, when used in 8 Gbps applications, positions the DS50EV401 among National’s PowerWise® family of energy-efficient products.

The DS50EV401 simplifies system integration. Its input signals can be AC or DC coupled to interface with a variety of ASIC and field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs). The device provides two equalization settings to reduce inter-symbol interference (ISI) generated by the interconnect media. One setting minimizes jitter for PCIe Gen 1 and PCIe Gen 2 data rates, while the other minimizes jitter for the anticipated PCIe Gen 3 data rates. The DS50EV401 supports PCIe link extensions with transmit idle and beacon signaling on a 1x, 2x and 4x lane basis. It uses differential current-mode logic (CML) inputs and outputs that feature 8 kV of electrostatic discharge (ESD) protection. Additionally, the equalizer includes a loss-of-signal (LOS) detect for each channel, operates over the full -40 degrees C to 85 degrees C temperature range and requires a single supply voltage of 2.5V or 3.3V.

National fabricates this signal-conditioning part on its high-performance silicon-germanium (SiGe) BiCMOS-8 process technology, which provides high performance-to-power ratios for high-speed interface devices. The DS50EV401 is the latest addition to National’s growing family of signal-conditioning equalizers, which include the DS64EV400 and DS32EV400 quad equalizers, DS64EV100 and DS32EV100 single-channel equalizers, DS38EP100 and DS80EP100 power-saver equalizers, DS16EV5110 video cable equalizer, DS25BR110 LVDS equalizer, DS40MB200 dual mux-buffer, and DS15BA101 and DS15EA101 cable extender chipset.

About National’s Interface Portfolio
National Semiconductor, the LVDS and CML technology innovator and market leader, offers a wide range of interconnect solutions that transfer high-speed digital signals using world-class analog technology. These solutions help system designers develop high-performance applications in a variety of markets, including communication and industrial systems. The products feature high reliability, low power and low noise, as well as dramatic systems savings in cable and connector costs. National Semiconductor is the world’s largest supplier of high-speed LVDS products, according to Databean’s 2006 Analog IC Market Share survey. For more information on National’s interface products, visit http://www.national.com/appinfo/interface/.

Pricing and Availability
Available now, the DS50EV401 is offered in a 7 mm by 7 mm, 48-pin leadless LLP® package and is priced at $9.90 each in 1,000-unit quantities. For more information on the DS50EV401 or to order samples and an evaluation board, visit http://www.national.com/pf/DS/DS50EV401.html.

Note to editors: To view a high-resolution downloadable photo of this product, visit National's photo gallery.

About National’s PowerWise Brand
National’s PowerWise brand reflects the company’s energy-efficient product portfolio. It signifies products with outstanding performance-to-power at the component level, as well as products that provide an outstanding, energy-efficient solution when coupled with other National parts. National’s PowerWise family of products features energy-efficient power management, operational amplifiers, interface and data conversion products. For more information about National’s PowerWise brand, visit: http://www.national.com/powerwise.

About National Semiconductor
National Semiconductor, the industry's premier analog company, creates high-value analog devices and subsystems. National's leading-edge products include power management circuits, display drivers, audio and operational amplifiers, interface products and data conversion solutions. National's key analog markets include wireless handsets, displays, communications infrastructure, medical, automotive, industrial, and test and measurement applications. Headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif., National reported sales of $1.93 billion for fiscal 2007, which ended May 27, 2007. Additional company and product information is available at www.national.com.