TI Home > News Releases

News Releases

The Dolby Digital Professional Encoder-Technology Delivers Three Times the Channel Density of Existing Designs on a TI Platform

New Platform from Audio Industry Leader Brings Higher Density, Lower Power and Lower Cost to Broadcast Audio

Dec 2, 2004

HOUSTON (December 2, 2004) – Empowering developers to bring high quality broadcast audio applications to market, Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (NYSE: TXN) has teamed with audio industry leader Dolby Laboratories to create the TI-based Dolby® Digital Professional Encoder platform. Based on Dolby's premier digital-audio encoding technology and TI's leading TMS320C67x TM floating-point digital signal processing (DSP) technology, the Dolby-certified platform offers up to three times the channel density of existing fixed solutions for equipment for the creation of professional digital audio for DVDs, HDTV broadcasts and cable/satellite transmissions. For more information, e-mail prolicensing@dolby.com.

Dolby selected TI's flagship TMS320C6713 floating-point DSP as the basis for its reference platform. Running at 300 MHz, a single programmable C6713 encodes three stereo pairs and enables a universal broadcast encoder platform, allowing broadcasters to standardize on audio encoding hardware platforms. Previous implementations of the professional version of Dolby Digital, also known as AC-3, required users to have a separate DSP processor for each stereo pair. With the increased capabilities of the TI DSP-based platform developers will be able to reduce the board space required for end equipments.

"When we selected TI as the base hardware technology for our new Dolby Digital Professional Encoder reference design, we had high expectations," said Sabine Jennings, professional licensing manager, Dolby. "Backed by TI's expertise in the audio market, along with their unparalleled development tools and support services, our expectations were exceeded when we confirmed that we could increase the number of stereo pairs encoded per DSP by three times. With this level of efficiency, we will be able to bring the professional quality of Dolby Digital in a smaller, more cost-effective, flexible implementation that has been demanded by our customers."

Created by Lyrtech, the reference design is available for evaluation of the Dolby Digital Professional Encoder platform. This design supports 6 S/PDIF inputs (12 digital audio channels) and three S/PDIF outputs (six digital audio channels) with the ability to embed Timecode and Metadata information into the digital audio output streams, the reference board uses a USB 2.0 interface to connect to a host computer, enabling real-time configuration of Dolby Digital encoder parameters as well as transfer of data. A standard TI DSP Starter Kit (DSK) peripheral connector is also provided to allow this flexible board to support existing daughter card adapters as well as custom modules.

The C67x floating point DSP generation has been broadly accepted by the digital audio industry and appears in consumer electronics equipment. It is the core technology for the family of AureusTM audio DSPs that do the multi-channel audio processing in A/V receivers, such as those from Harman/Kardon, JVC, Yamaha and Denon, and multimedia/gaming systems. The C67x continues to gain momentum in other markets, such as musical instruments, biometrics, machine vision and instrumentation.

"As this engagement with Dolby demonstrates, the C6713 DSP provides the outstanding audio performance Dolby’s customers expect for their end equipment," said Gerard Andrews, DSP audio solutions marketing manager, TI. "With the C67x architecture, TI will continue to provide the continuing innovation required to drive the professional audio broadcast and recording markets over the coming years."

Dolby's choice of Texas Instruments' C6713 DSP in the Dolby Digital Professional Encoder reference platform demonstrates the growing strength of the relationship between Dolby and TI. Last year, for instance, Dolby approved TI's Aureus audio DSP when developing its Pro Logic® IIx enhanced Surround Sound technology. TI has developed implementations of all of the firm's world-renowned audio technologies including Dolby Digital, Dolby® Digital Ex, Pro Logic® II, Pro Logic® IIx, Dolby Headphone and Dolby Virtual Speaker.

Software for the Dolby Digital Professional Encoder is available now from Dolby. Customers interested in learning more about the licensing program for the Dolby Digital Professional Encoder from Dolby should e-mail prolicensing@dolby.com. The production-ready hardware reference design from Lyrtech, already certified by Dolby, is also available. More details on the hardware solution are at www.lyrtech.com. The reference design is based on the 300 MHz TMS320C6713, which has a suggested retail price of $34.29 each in volumes of 10,000.