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Get Your High Definition Here: TI's Digital Media Processor Cranks Out HD Video Streams with Room to Spare

View Blazingly Fast Video Encode/Decode of Microsoft's

Sep 8, 2004

AMSTERDAM (September 9, 2004) — Manufacturers of consumer electronics and set top boxes now have a clear path to delivering high definition (HD) streaming video with the new 720 MHz version of the TMS320DM642 DSP-based digital media processor from Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (NYSE: TXN). TI’s digital media processor delivers HD video streams in Microsoft’s Windows Media High Definition Video (WMV HD) format at 720p resolution, as well as MPEG-4, MPEG-2 and MPEG-1 formats. The device also processes standard definition video decoding for the emerging H.264 format.

This digital media processor follows on the success of the 600 MHz DM642, which is in the hands of hundreds of customers developing everything from security cameras to video telephony systems, and is being incorporated into designs by eight of the top 10 IP set top box manufacturers. For more information, please see: www.ti.com/dm642720pr.

TI will demonstrate the digital media processor family at the International Broadcasting Convention in Amsterdam, Sept. 10-14, in Hall 4, booth #161.

In addition to sampling the 720 MHz version of the DM642, TI is now offering production class devices for the TMS320DM640 and TMS320DM641, plus the 600 MHz version of the DM642. These code-compatible digital media processors are scalable across a wide range of clock speeds and memory capacities to support applications from video-based consumer electronics to video infrastructure equipment.

“TI’s DM642 was one of the first programmable DSP to pass conformance testing at D1 resolution for both the Windows Media 9 encoder and decoder,” said Steve Sklepowich, group manager in Microsoft Corp.’s Windows Digital Media Division. “TI’s new 720MHz DM642 facilitates the ramp of HD WM9 into a range of embedded consumer applications with code-compatible, programmable performance.”

“We expect to see momentum for high end IP set top boxes,” said Greg Ireland, senior research analyst, consumer markets: video for for IDC. “For US deployment, HD will be a critical element of advanced video on demand services, and the availability of set top boxes that can deliver robust HD will have a positive impact on the market.”

With manufacturers driving toward more complex features and functionality, having a programmable platform with optimized performance is key. The DM642 includes integrated multimedia and communications peripherals such as on-chip HD-capable video ports, glueless Ethernet connectivity, multi-channel audio and 66-MHz PCI connectivity. The new 720 MHz version offers higher performance for HD streaming and broadcast applications as well as headroom for extended features such as object recognition and tracking for surveillance applications, multiple channel decode for streaming applications and image cleanup, network transport, better audio quality and better system control for other video applications. The DM641 and DM640 processors also support video ports and critical peripherals for digital media adapters, personal video recorders, consumer IP-based video phones and video conferencing systems and digital surveillance systems.

DM64x Platform Features




Video ports (BT656 compatible)

3 dual (20 bits)

2 (8 bits)

1 (8 bit)


8-bit dual



Host Interface




Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI)

66 MHz



SDRAM interface




L1/L2 Cache Memory

L2: 256KB L1P: 16KB

L1D: 16 KB

L2: 128KB       L1P: 16KB

L1D: 16 KB

L2: 128KB

L1P: 16KB L1D: 16 KB

Clock Rate




Millions of Multiply Accumulates  (MMACs)

2880/2400/ 2000



TI continues to supply advanced development tools to accelerate product development. Engineers can turn to the Digital Media Developers Kit, which contains a PCI-bus EVM evaluation module (also available separately) as well as eXpressDSPTM software and development tools including DSP/BIOS™, reference framework software, streaming-media executable demos, a high-speed emulator and even a camera with cables. Also, the new 720 MHz version of the DM642 EVM enables engineers to begin immediate evaluation of their algorithms such as dual standard-definition D1 decoding or HD 720p decode. Further, third parties supply DM64x-based tools with hardware and software tailored for system-level solutions in specific markets such as consumer IP-based video phones or set top boxes. This third party network also offers a wide range of AV algorithms including H.264, H.263, AC-3, AAC, MP3 and more; please see http://www.ti.com/dm642720pr for full list.

Pricing and Availability

The DM640, DM641 and DM642 (600 MHz version) are available now in volume production with pricing starting as low as $19.95 each in quantities of 10,000 for the 400 MHz DM640. The TMS320DM642 running at 720 MHz is sampling today at $59.99 (10 KU). The DM642 Evaluation Module (EVM) is $1995 with the complete DM64x-based Digital Media Developer´s Kit (DMDK) selling for $6495 which includes the DM642 EVM.


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