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NXP introduces multistandard digital radio coprocessor for car infotainment

December 17, 2010 | Christoph Hammerschmidt | 222901286
NXP introduces multistandard digital radio coprocessor for car infotainment Car radios frequently face the problem that when the vehicle travels through various geographies, the regional digital radio standards vary as well. The Series SAF356x digital radio coprocessors from NXP help infotainment device designers to solve the problem: The SAF356x support DAB, DAB+, T-DMB and HD Radio.

Chip vendor NXP claims that the SAF356x is the first base band processor supporting multiple digital terrestrial receivers. The device supports single tuner and dual tuner implementations. In addition, the software can be modified to support future features such as the DRM and DRM+ standards intended to replace AM in the respective frequency bands.

According to NXP, the SAF356x replaces several ICs used in current automotive infotainment systems, reducing design and material costs for digital receivers.

The device demodulates and processes digital terrestrial radio signals and forwards audio and data information to following receiver stages. For HD Radio, it uses AM/FM signals of radio/audio DSPs such as NXPs SAF7741 or the new RFCMOS-based single-chip solution TEF663x.

The SAF356x also facilitates the implementation of DAB systems on existing hardware. Besides adding a DAB tuner module, this only requires installing NXPs new automotive-enabled software for DAB, DAB+ and T-DMB.

NXP says it expects growing acceptance for digital radio systems in cars. While HD radio is already well established in North America, in Europe several governments led by Great Britain have decided to establish the DAB/DAB+/T-DMB standards family. NXP added that interest for such systems also has started to rise in France, Italy and Germany where the radio operators hitherto were very reluctant to move away from the well-entrenched FM system.

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