NEC Electronics today released a new System-on-a-Chip (SoC) for 24x DVD burners, - the fastest ever announced - featuring low power consumption as well as a small footprint.
Named SCOMBO 8, the new SoC supports up to 24x recording for DVD media and up to 48x for CDs, while the reroduction speeds are 16x for DVDs and 48x for CD media. NEC said that by adopting the BiCMOS process, both analog and digital circuits were optimized by implementing high-speed bipolar process into analog circuits and implementing CMOS process with outstanding power quality into logic circuits.
The company also added that the new product is very energy efficient. For instance, it consumes just 0.8 W during DVD burning at 8x, which is almost 50% lower than the previously available solutions. The consumption for 24x DVD burning is 1.0 W. Other improvements include a lower internal voltage (1.0V) mainly achieved due to the 90nm process, and optimized functional blocks including the CPU.
The LSI is also compact enough to be implemented in small boards inside a DVD burner, meaning that it can be also used in slim-type burners. It integrates DVD drive control logic, synchronous DRAM, and flash memory all in a compact 14mm square flat package. This could allow DVD drive manufacturers to reduce external components by 20 to 30 percent.
The new product integrates functionalities such as servo control circuit that controls the optical pickup, data modulation/demodulation circuit, digital read channel function, and write strategy circuit. It also provides analog circuits to process the output signals of the optical pickup, CPUs, and a serial ATA interface all on a single chip. In addition to these control circuits, the SoC includes 16 Mbit SDRAM and 16 Mbit flash memory.
The market for CD-ROM, DVD, Blu-ray, and other optical disc drives for PCs is estimated at about 300 million per year. DVD drives account for about 80 percent of this market, with steady growth expected in the years ahead.
NEC plans start mass production of the LSI March, aiming at a monthly output of 1,000,000 parts. The company expects to be able to offer up to 4,000.000 units by March 2010. The product will be available for US$10/unit.