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Appeared on: Wednesday, March 28, 2001
Oak Technology Unveils World's Fastest CD-RW Controller With ExacLink(TM), Announces Design Wins With LG Electronics, Mitsumi and Yamaha

New 20X Controller Reduces CD Burn Time to 3.7 minutes; ExacLink(TM) Patent-Pending Feature Improves Success Rate When Burning Audio CDs

Oak Technology, Inc. today announced its latest Compact Disc - Recordable/ReWritable (CD-R/RW) controller, which records at 20 times the speed of the original single-speed CD specification, enabling drives based on it to record a full 650 Megabyte compact disc in less four minutes. The new 20X OTI-9796 controller features Oak's proprietary, patent pending ExacLink(TM) technology. Initial design wins for the new OTI-9796 controller include high performance CD-R/RW solutions from industry leaders, Yamaha Corporation, Mitsumi Electric Co., Ltd., and LG Electronics.

``Selection of Oak's OTI-9796, with its ExacLink buffer underrun protection and Constant Angular Velocity is a logical next step in our ongoing partnership work together to develop advanced CD-RW solutions for both PC and consumer audio markets,'' said Takuya Tamaru, General Manager for Yamaha's Digital Storage Products Development Division.

Yamaha's new CRW2200 series CD-R/RW drives, the first in the industry to feature 20X write, 10X rewrite and 40X read speeds, are based on Oak's OTI-9796 controller and are being demonstrated March 22 to 28 at CeBIT 2001 in Hanover, Germany. The series of five drives includes Yamaha's Safeburn(TM) technology, which employs Oak's ExacLink buffer underrun protection integrated with Yamaha's own chips to achieve the highest accuracy and data continuity possible.

Mitsumi also selected Oak's OTI-9796 controller with ExacLink for its next generation 16X write, 8X rewrite and 40X read CD-R/RW drives, targeted for applications with major PC OEMs as well as for the retail market. ``Oak's ExacLink technology, combined with the industry's highest level of integration in an optical storage controller, helps us meet market requirements for higher performance yet cost-effective solutions,'' said Tadao Kazuno, general manager, ODS Division, Mitsumi Electric Company, Ltd.

LG Electronics recently announced the industry's fastest CD-RW drive for notebook computers, based on Oak's OTI-9796 controller. The Model GCE-8080N supports 8X writing, 8X rewriting, and 24X playback and measures a mere 12.7mm thick, making it an ideal solution for notebook computers. ``The 8080N is the third generation of CD-RW drives we have designed using Oak Technology's controllers and the new ExacLink technology in the 9796 enables us to provide stable, high performance drives with improved data recording capability,'' said Mun Hwa Park, CEO and President of Hitachi LG Data Storage Co.

``The enhancements to our latest controller make burning CDs a faster, more pleasant experience for consumers,'' explained Nicos Syrimis, vice president, marketing, for Oak's Optical Storage Group. ``The 20X speed reduces burn time for a full CD to less than four minutes, eliminating the tedious delays experienced with early CD-R and RW drives. Plus, our ExacLink buffer under-run protection is an important feature for consumers who record digital music CDs to be played back in audio CD players. It eliminates the unusable 'coasters' that are created when the recording process is interrupted and employs a methodology that operates in a distinctly different, and novel fashion with respect to other technologies attempting to correct the buffer underrun problem.''

Oak's OTI-9796 controller is capable of 20X CD-R and 20X CD-RW write speeds as well as 40X CD-ROM read speeds. This means that it records 20 times faster and reads 40 times faster than the original single speed CD specification, which required 74 minutes for the full 650MB capacity of a disc.

The OTI-9796 controller, combined with Oak's OTI-9073 analog front-end signal processor creates a low-power, two-chip solution for CD-RW drive applications. In addition to the chipset, Oak offers a hardware and firmware reference design to create one of the industry's most fully integrated, flexible and cost effective system solutions that significantly reduces the OEM's time-to-market.

The OTI-9796 controller uses advanced digital signal processing techniques to minimize the amount of required analog circuitry. This approach provides increased flexibility and greater immunity to system noise. An advanced architecture affords a high level of accuracy and improved seek access time, particularly for CD-RW media. Power management is provided to reduce power consumption and increase power efficiency. Oak's OTI-9073 front-end processor also simplifies drive design and contributes to a lower CD-RW system cost by eliminating a significant number of external components compared to conventional analog front-end solutions.

Oak's OTI-9796 controller is sampling now and will be available in production quantities in April. The controller is priced at $15.00 in sample quantities, and $10.00 each in production quantities of 10,000.

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