STMicroelectronics Advances Audio-Chip Performance Enabling ‘Clearer-than-Crystal Sound’ from Home AV Products
GENEVA, Dec. 21 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ – STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM), the leading maker of audio chips for flat-panel TVs, today announced details of its next-generation STA370BWS SoundTerminal(TM) chip, which delivers increased performance at a highly competitive price. The new chip employs ST’s leading-edge Full Flexible Amplifier (FFX(TM)) technology to deliver high-quality stereo audio at 10W and above, in various consumer applications, including the latest ultra-thin LED-backlit Flat TVs.
Advanced chip manufacturing technologies govern the performance and cost of today’s digital audio chips, delivering advantages that include reduced noise and distortion, support for more sophisticated audio processing, and extra features integrated on the chip to reduce the total number of system components. In addition, each technology evolution delivers higher functionality per chip size than its predecessor, enabling extremely competitive pricing relative to performance.
The STA370BWS is the first audio device to use the company’s proprietary BCD8 process technology. An evolution of ST’s successful market-leading BCD6S process, BCD8 is the eighth generation of ST’s Bipolar/CMOS/DMOS technology, which allows the company to build analog, logic, and high-voltage functions on a single chip to increase performance and reduce cost. In developing the STA370BWS, ST has leveraged its BCD8 process to integrate more sophisticated audio signal processing within the CMOS section, enabling a better listening experience for end users. The device also performs a short-circuit check at power on, which increases application safety and prevents pc-board damage, leading to minimum rework costs for equipment manufacturers.
The device’s on-chip power amplifier also delivers better performance over conventional digital amplifiers, using ST’s FFX technology, which provides improved audio at the amplifier output. In addition, ST’s F3X(TM) technology, the third-generation of FFX amplifiers, used in the STA370BWS’s auxiliary output, further improves audio quality by suppressing non-audio signals, such as the carrier waveform that governs the amplifier’s timing, to produce clearer, purer sound throughout the output-power range.
The STA370BWS is the first in a new generation of ST’s SoundTerminal portfolio. The portfolio currently includes the STA333BW, STA335BW, STA339BW, STA339BWS and STA369BWS. The new STA370BWS has a resale price of $2.50 for 10,000-piece orders, and is now sampling to lead customers.
STMicroelectronics is a global leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications with innovative semiconductor solutions. ST aims to be the undisputed leader in multimedia convergence and power applications leveraging its vast array of technologies, design expertise and combination of intellectual property portfolio, strategic partnerships and manufacturing strength. In 2008, the Company’s net revenues were $9.84 billion. Further information on ST can be found at www.st.com.