Chip enables DisplayPort, USB and power over a single cable

August 02, 2013 // By Nick Flaherty
Texas Instruments has launched a single chip that delivers audio/video, USB data and power over a single cable between a notebook, ultrabook or tablet PC and a docking station or dongle.

DockPort provides a lower cost alternative to proprietary implementations and offers more features than standard USB docking stations. It enables system designers to create smaller, more affordable docking stations that connect and synchronize computers with LCD monitors, dongles, keyboard/mouse, Gigabit Ethernet, storage, audio speakers, DVD/Blu-ray media player and smartphone.
The HD3SS2521 controller enables DisplayPort, USB 3.0, USB 2.0 and power over a single interconnecting cable , and provides the control logic and automatic switching required on the cable's host side and dock side.
The HD3SS2521 enables system designers to create smaller, more affordable docking stations that connect and synchronize computers with LCD monitors, dongles, keyboard/mouse, Gigabit Ethernet, storage, audio speakers, DVD/Blu-ray media player and smartphone.
A bidirectional 2:1 switch manages DockPort detection, as well as signal and power switching. It enables display, USB, power, and computer docking interface over a single cable, which allows designers to create smaller, more affordable docking stations. The 5-mm by 11-mm package reduces board space by one-third and BOM costs by more than 50 percent compared to competitive implementations that provide data and A/V over a single connector.
Power and charging is delivered over the same cable, reducing the number of connections by allowing upstream charging of host-side computers, or downstream powering of one or more dongles.
Operating in two-lane mode with USB 3.0 data, the HD3SS2521 supports one monitor with resolutions up to 4K2Kp at 30 frames per second (fps) and 30 bits per pixel (bpp), or multiple monitors with resolutions less than or equal to 1920 by 1200p at 60 fps. In four-lane mode with USB 2.0, it supports the following configurations: 1) one 4K2Kp at 60 fps and 30 bpp, 2) two 4K2Kp monitors at 30 fps and 30 bpp, or 3) four or more monitors with resolutions less than or equal to 1920 by 1200p at 60 fps.
System designers can extend DisplayPort reach, enable multiple video interfaces, and add more